A child’s perception of belonging and beauty needs to be positive and reflective of themselves. Children construct an identity from very early in life, so it is imperative that children see themselves represented in the toys and dolls that they play with. By playing with black dolls a child’s self esteem is raised and an identity is formed.
We did some research and discovered a glaring gap in the market; it is almost impossible to find diverse darker skinned dolls not only in Africa, but worldwide! Dolls tend to come in one shape and form, usually pale and blonde, with long sleek hair. This struck us as awfully odd. Why this worldwide shortage of darker dolls? It was at that moment that we realized that we had to change this.
It is now our mission to shift the world’s attitude on what defines beauty by bringing them different shades of diverse dolls.
As we grow, we hope to design a larger range of toys to suit all skin types and colours. Our inspiration comes from the people and colours of Africa, and in the future we hope to produce a whole collection of assorted, realistic looking dolls and toys. Our team is really excited about constantly improving, changing, and growing. Enjoy this journey with us!
Our Company name:
We wanted a fun catchy name that people would remember. In Africa to toyitoyi means:
- “to dance and sing in protest about some real or imagined wrong by people in authority.”
- “a dance expressing defiance and protest.”
- “from protests to celebrations, the chants capture the emotions of joy, pain, encouragement, heartbreak and solace. Toyi-toyi is a powerful and infectious statement, by which the oppressed may voice their grievances.”
We are currently busy with designing a range of dolls with a much darker skin tone and also looking to bring out action toys with darker skin.
We are involved in two exciting collaborations at the moment: one with a jewellery designer in Amsterdam, who is creating a exclusive range of jewellery especially of our dolls. The other is with a video gaming company, who are looking to feature our dolls in a video game. Exciting times! Watch this space.