Metropolis Holiday Gift Guide 2017: Play

Our editors select the best design-minded gifts of the season as part of an on-going series this week.

Whether you have a kid, or are just a kid at heart, we’ve rounded up the best playful gifts for the budding starchitect or designer in the family.

Holiday Gift Guide 2017 Play

Courtesy Areaware

Habitat Blockitecture, $25

Celebrate the holidays and the 50th anniversary of Moshe Safdie’s iconic Habitat 67 by gifting this wooden architectural block set from Areaware. Created by Brooklyn-based designer James Paulius, Blockitecture emerged from a class at the Rochester Institute of Technology. The ten-piece set, crafted from New Zealand Pine, can be configured in infinite arrangements and places, just like Safdie’s global vision for the modular housing concept.

Holiday Gift Guide 2017 Play

Courtesy Zupagrafika

Brutal East, $20

Who said the Holidays have to be warm and fuzzy? Recreate the Eastern Bloc’s greatest Brutalist hits in cardboard with Zupagrafika’s new Brutal East architecture kit. The set features seven endangered buildings constructed between the ’60s and ’80s in the former U.S.S.R. including the “Romanita” Collective Housing Tower in Chisinau, Moldova, Serbia’s Eastern Gate of Belgrade, and the Novosmolenskaya Housing Complex in St. Petersburg, Russia (shown above). It gives a whole new meaning to “Paper Architecture.”

Holiday Gift Guide 2017 Play

Courtesy Chronicle Books

Doodlebomb Sticker Book, $24.99

Sure, Snapchat has enabled us to slap stickers virtually onto almost everything, yet somehow, it still isn’t a substitute for the real thing. But forget Lisa Frank: Laurence King Publishing has released a sticker book by London illustrator, Hattie Stewart, whose zany doodles have appeared on everything from magazine covers to snowboarding gear. This book includes more than 1,000 punky stickers to “doodlebomb” the heck out of all your stuff.

Holiday Gift Guide 2017 Play

Courtesy Monument Valley

Monument Valley 2, $4.99

The sequel to a wildly-popular predecessor, Monument Valley II is a game for Android and Apple that combines whimsical architecture and puzzle-solving. Players guide a mother and her child through  M.C. Escher–like landscapes full of brain-teasing challenges and stunning visuals.

Holiday Gift Guide 2017 Play

Courtesy Brand New Noise

Loopy Lou, $76

Remember the wonder of hearing your own voice for the first time? Encased in a sturdy box and armed with easy controls, the Loopy Lou by Brooklyn-based Brand New Noise is a surefire way to delight children and nascent audiophiles alike. Users can simply record up to 30 seconds of sound, play it back, loop it up, or mess around with the pitch.

You might also like, Metropolis Holiday Gift Guide 2017: Food + Drink 

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