Common sense dictates that solid equals strong, but an Austrian design trio has discovered that in some cases, full-of-little-holes equals stronger. They’re applying this principle to Bioblo, a construction system, and turning the world of solid building blocks upside down.
When we say ‘little holes’, we’re not talking random holes, we’re talking regular, uniform hexagons, arranged in neat rows, a lot like the honeycomb pattern in beehives. The designers noticed that when this structure appears in nature, it’s at once super strong and super lightweight, and so they decided to appropriate it for their toy. The design means that Bioblo blocks and the structures they’re part of are sturdy, but not heavy. In fact, the lightweight quality of the pieces means that Bioblo structures are more stable than those built from normal building blocks.
Unless of course a younger sibling, bent on destruction, comes along and knocks it over. And if that should happen, the folks at Bioblo see it as a learning opportunity rather than a disaster: kids develop a higher frustration tolerance, which is important when you’ve got pesky younger siblings.
The Bioblo design isn’t just practical, it’s environmentally friendly as well. Each block is made from 100 per cent renewable materials, is oil free, carbon-neutral, recyclable and yet totally resistant to environmental factors like moisture. And while the blocks are recommended for three years and up, there’s no danger of paint flaking off if the baby gets hold of one – the colour is mixed in during the manufacturing process rather than put on the surface. It’s no wonder that Bioblo won the 2015 Green Product Award in the ‘kids’ category.