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Moss Vale

The Vintage Toy Box specialises in unique, fun & funky vintage & retro inspired toys, games and gifts for children (and big kids!) of all ages.

Classic toys from the 1950s, 60s, 70s & 80s


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Classic toys from the 1950s, 60s, 70s & 80s

Saskia Sharp

The 'good old days' were a lot of fun for kids. In the past, children had more engagement with their toys than they do today, and they formed a longer attachment.  There weren't  countless number of toys to choose from and to play with. Children bonded with their toys, and allowed their imagination to take over in their creative play. This article gives a quick glance at those toys from the 1950s to the 1980s which have created wonderful memories for kids throughout the decades. 

The 1950s saw a surge of toys in the market, as post war indulgence changed the way that people spent. Tin toy cars flooded the market (Dinky & Matchbox), along with friction cars, Tonka trucks, kitchen sets, Tiny Tears dolls, Hula hoop, Barbie and farm equipment.  These toys are the essence of vintage toys and all to this day still remain. Most have evolved over time, but their timeless, classic design still ensures that generations of children still love to play with them. 

A large number of toys which were introduced back in the 1960s are still also around today. The 1960s heralded a golden era for toys, with bigger families, and more disposable income paving the way for greater choice and variety. If you take a close look at toys available in the 60s and 70s, you will not see a great deal of difference between the offerings. The toys were quite similar and still hold great enjoyment for the next generations of kids. 

A few toys and games like Ker-Plunk, Twister, Etch A Sketch, Slip 'n' Slide, Rubik's Cube, Spirograph and  G.I. Joe can still be found in children's toy boxes and toy stores now. 

Another major influence on toys was the introduction of TV into people's homes.  Toy manufacturers realised that they could theme toys on popular TV shows, and the toys would fly of the shelves. The batman comic books became hugely popular and batman-themed toys started filling the shelves of toy stores. This was a huge profit making game-changer for all the toy makers.  

As time moved on, and families had more disposable income & greater spending power, toy manufacturers had to start thinking outside the box if they wanted to increase their sales. 

To make things a bit more fun and exciting for the kids, toy manufacturers started introducing electricity into toys, and a whole other world of new, innovative toys came into being with the dawn of electronics.  Toys would never be the same again. Every Christmas, we now see the release of the newest, biggest, flashiest toy. In amongst all of these toys though, and still standing the test of time, are the classic toys from the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s & 1980s. 

These toys and games passed on from decades before are still famous, popular and loved even now. Grandparents give the retro toys to their grandchildren, and watch with delight as the children play. Old memories flooding back of the joy that they themselves used to feel playing with the same toys when they were young. 

There's nothing like playing with an old toy to bring back happy memories.