Safety eyes can look lovely on toys, and in short, yes when correctly attached, they do live up to their name!
Where can I get them?
There are a fair few brands of safety eyes (and noses!) out there which are already tested for EN71-3(chemical/metals tests). Trimits, craft bits and Cello express will send certificates for eyes which will cover the chemical tests, but its important that the physical tests are carried out on your completed toy so you can tell how your fabric behaves under the stress of the weights, to avoid choke hazards. Strength of fabric may well come into play as you’re testing your eyes as hard parts, so using the upper weight amount.
The real trick comes into safely attaching them, so I’ve been on a little search for some brilliant tips from our members, these two tips make all the difference.
- Use felt at the back of the eyes before adding the washer (check the free resources page for EN71-3 felt)- this gives extra strength and reduces them ripping your skin fabric when weight testing.
- – When attaching to yarn toys, be sure to poke them through the thread of the yarn, rather than the natural holes where they may pull through.
How do I test them?
Clamping eyes can be quite tricky, so there are a few ways you can try. You can just try and clamp with your G clamps, but if they are small and rounded this may be difficult
Some have had success with tying ribbon or fishing wire around the eye to hang the weights from, though if the eyes are fixed very tightly it can be tricky to get the wire behind it.
Others have had more luck by attaching a ribbon between the eye and the test toy, to hang the weight bag from, this obviously needs pre-thought for your testing toy, and will need removing for flammability testing.
Your safety eyes may also need an impact test and drop tests if they do not come with a certificate saying these have been tested already.
If my toys have safety eyes(ie a hard part) are they still suitable from birth?
Hope this helps your toy development!