I have reviewed many Orb factory kits and bought several. They are one of my favorite companies, so I had to include them in this year’s Holiday Gift Guide. They sent along two of their kits for us to try and share our opinions with you. Both of these types of kits were new to me plus I got my nieces involved this time around, so it was extra-fun! My nieces are 12 and 13 years old and love to craft as much as their favorite aunt. Each of them took on one kit in the afternoon we spent together. Mackenzie chose to do the Sew Softies and Nevaeh chose the PlushCraft.
Mackenzie had no previous experience with sewing, so it was interesting to see how she would do. The kit comes with pre-cut pattern pieces, thread, stuffing, eyes, and nose. The pattern pieces were punched with holes for stitching. The directions were not always very clear… particularly the drawings of ear placement. It was ultimately the pre-existing holes that helped us out. As the more experienced sewer, I was a little concerned that there would not be enough thread. The thread is similar to what you use for cross-stitch, so I assumed it needed to be separated. The instructions didn’t mention this. Other than that little potential hiccup, it went very easily and Mackenzie had constructed an adorable plush dog in about an hour’s time. She was ready to take on more kits!
Nevaeh took off running with the 3D Plushcraft. It’s similar to the PlushCraft pillows I have reviewed in the past, but this does not have pre-punched holes. It’s also a figurine instead of a pillow. This format left a little more room for interpretation, but the base piece had easily definable sections and the instructions were very clear on where to go. This was a bit harder to do physically than the PlushCraft pillows, because you need to push right into a plastic-like material instead of pre-made holes in a pillow. The plus to not having pre-made holes is that you can use the excess fabric squares to get a plusher look… and Orb Factory always includes plenty of excess materials. This is definitely more of an object for decoration than for playing. Pieces will fall out pretty easily if it’s touched a lot, but that could be in part to us having the fabric pieces arranged more closely together. There is a small brochure inside the box and Nevaeh was pointing out the other kits she would like for Christmas. I think she liked it!
I had mentioned in previous reviews that the crafts were definitely leaning more toward girl crafters, but this Dog and Puppy kit (among others) are showing a shift in the direction of more boy-friendly or gender-neutral designs. That’s great to see… boys like to craft too!
Pros: Big variety of FUN kits for many ages. Easy to complete in an afternoon. Very budget-friendly.
Cons: Directions on Sew Softies could be more clear.
Located in Halifax Nova Scotia, The Orb Factory is a provider of award winning crafts and activity products. With over 20 years in business, they are always creating brand new lines and exciting new products. They are now sold in over 60 countries, have won numerous awards, and have become a recognized and trusted name in the toy industry. The Orb Factory believes in the power of play. They strive to produce toys that not only stimulate a child’s mind, but their creativity as well. Their kits allow children to lose themselves in a world of magic, imagination and artistic freedom.
- Sew Softies Dog– With special kid-friendly components and illustrated instructions, Sew Softies makes learning to sew easy and fun. ($5.99.)
- 3D PlushCraft Puppy– Use the stylus to punch fabric pieces – match the colors to create 3D Plushy pals. ($12.99.)