Wednesday, January 30, 2013

CE Testing Update

Back in the summer I found out that the UK law has changed and all soft toy products (toys are anything that looks like a toy) must be CE certified.  It is not a task for the faint hearted or for those that give up as soon as someone says "no", but it can be done..... Not in the way that many people suggested which was to attach labels stating not for under 14's or under 3's ( not a legal cover) or say this is for display only (as they too have to be tested if they look like a toy, they are a toy)
Knit a hat for a child and sell it, no problem, but put the same hat on a toy and it then needs to go through a large range of tests.
My trading standards department couldn't see a feasible way to get tested as socks are clothing and thus not subjected to the same rules.... so I stopped trying, withdrew my sock monkeys from sale and started to research.
I've found a very helpful company and a group of other makers who have been or are going through the process.

It has not been a cheap process and takes a lot of time and paperwork.  You should see the piles I have.
Every single component has to come up to certain standards and be traceable, frlt, fabric, stuffing, thread, ribbon, buttons etc.  It means that you cannot use vintage or second hand fabrics because you can not trace the manufacturer.

So my monkeys have now had weights attached, seems poked, eyes twisted painfully, have been washed, tumbled dry and photographed like a top model and they are currently awaiting more torture  but the wind is currently stopping proceedings.  I need a still day.

Throughout the process, I have been tempted to give up, but with encouragement from other people going through the same thing I've very nearly reached my goal.

I have also been developing a new product.  Ra Ra Raggie Dolls are traditional style rag dolls who are also being tested at the same time.
So watch this space while I watch the wind!

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