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Fuzzy Felt

Fuzzy Felt
c 1955 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This is an early example of Fuzzy Felt, which was first sold as a toy in 1950. Fuzzy Felt was created by Lois Allan who worked in gasket production during World War II. Allan noticed how the workers’ children enjoyed sticking the offcuts of felt to the fuzzy backs of table mats and so came up with the idea of producing boxes of felt shapes which could be arranged on a board to create an infinite number of scenes.

Fuzzy Felt was hugely popular with children, and with its fairly cheap sale price and encouragement of quiet play it also appealed to parents. Themed box sets were introduced, international sales took off and Fuzzy Felt reached the height of its success in the 1970s. Over 25 million Fuzzy Felt sets have been sold since its creation.




object details
Categories
Object Type
Parts
This object consists of 20 parts.
(Some alternative part names are also shown below)
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Box Lid
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Box Base
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Box Insert
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Booklet
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Board
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Board
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
  • Fuzzy Felt
Materials and Techniques
Folded card, cut felt
Brief Description
Fuzzy Felt boxed set, made by Allan Industries Ltd, England, c 1955.
Physical Description
Boxed Fuzzy Felt playset containing over 300 small, colourful felt pieces cut into varying sizes and shapes and two art boards on which to create scenes using the felt. An image of a figure holding a flower, made of Fuzzy Felt shapes, is printed onto paper and adhered to the lid of the box. At some point six short lengths of sticky tape have been applied to a corner of this piece of paper to secure it. The inside of the box lid has remnants of green paper with a holly motif adhered to its sides. Inside the box is a card insert folded to form twelve compartments in which to house the Fuzzy Felt pieces. On the box lid, base and insert there is child's writing and marks in pencil. A stapled paper booklet entitled 'FUZZY-FELT PICTURE MAKING' is printed with red text and images explaining how to use the Fuzzy Felt, with some pictorial ideas for scenes to make. This booklet has sticky tape down its spine. The two rectangular, card art boards have fabric upper surfaces, which the Fuzzy Felt clings to. The boards have scenes on them: the blue fabric faced board has two figures and a path leading to a yellow house and the green/blue fabric faced board has a boat, a figure and flowers.
Dimensions
  • B.578 7 2016 length: 20-30cm (Note: 2 large felt pieces, in green and brown)
  • B.578 8 2016 length: 2-16cm (Note: 17 fringed felt pieces)
  • B.578 9 2016 length: c 3.5cm (Note: 9 fish shaped felt pieces)
  • B.578 10 2016 length: 1.2-6cm (Note: 25 triangular felt pieces, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 11 2016 length: 3-14cm (Note: 36 thin green felt strips, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 12 2016 length: 2-4cm (Note: 32 rectangular felt pieces, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 13 2016 length: 1-2cm (Note: 59 geometric felt pieces, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 14 2016 length: 6-13cm (Note: 13 thin strips of felt, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 15 2016 length: 2.3-5.5cm (Note: 67 thin strips of felt, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 16 2016 length: 1.5-4.5cm (Note: 25 felt stars, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 17 2016 diameter: 1-2cm (Note: 17 felt circles, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 18 2016 length: 2-3cm (Note: 13 felt oval shapes, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 19 2016 length: 2-3.5cm (Note: 48 leaf shaped felt pieces, including those on the art boards)
  • B.578 20 2016 length: 4-5cm (Note: 14 crescent shaped felt pieces, including those on the art boards)
  • Box lid length: 34.5cm
  • Box lid width: 19.5cm
  • Box lid depth: 2.5cm
  • Box base length: 33.5cm
  • Box base width: 19cm
  • Box base depth: 3.5cm
  • Box insert length: 31.2cm
  • Box insert width: 17.7cm
  • Box insert depth: 2.5cm
  • Booklet length: 18.2cm
  • Booklet height: 12cm
  • Two art boards length: 27.6cm
  • Two art boards width: 17cm
  • Box height: 50mm
  • Box width: 340mm
  • Box depth: 210mm
  • Felt cards ( 5, 6) height: 170mm
  • Felt cards ( 5, 6) width: 277m
  • Felt cards ( 5, 6) depth: 2mm
  • Instructions ( 4) height: 120mm
  • Instructions ( 4) width: 183mm
  • V depth: 2mm
Style
Production typeMass produced
Marks and Inscriptions
  • A NEW METHOD OF PICTURE BUILDING - FASCINATING FOR ALL AGES Just pick a pile of pretty felts On Fuzzy-Board arrange them A gentle pat will keep them on Until you want to change them (Printed in black text on the paper adhered to box lid)
  • FUSI FELT FUZZY FELTS (Hand written in pencil on the box lid top and side)
  • Private do not come in. But knock. (Hand written by a child in pencil, on bottom of box base)
  • Pencil scribble and monster face (Drawn in pencil by a child on the inside of the box base)
  • PATENT APPLIED FOR No.27476/31 (Embossed into the cardboard box insert)
  • Teddy / Bunny / Monkey / Lamb / Horse / SNAKE Swan (Hand written by a child in pencil, inside the compartments of the box insert)
Summary
This is an early example of Fuzzy Felt, which was first sold as a toy in 1950. Fuzzy Felt was created by Lois Allan who worked in gasket production during World War II. Allan noticed how the workers’ children enjoyed sticking the offcuts of felt to the fuzzy backs of table mats and so came up with the idea of producing boxes of felt shapes which could be arranged on a board to create an infinite number of scenes.



Fuzzy Felt was hugely popular with children, and with its fairly cheap sale price and encouragement of quiet play it also appealed to parents. Themed box sets were introduced, international sales took off and Fuzzy Felt reached the height of its success in the 1970s. Over 25 million Fuzzy Felt sets have been sold since its creation.





Collection
Accession Number
B.578:1 to 20-2016

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record createdFebruary 27, 2017
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