Should I buy a rainbow Stacker? {Your Toy Questions answered}

The rainbow stacker has been one of the most popular toys I’ve seen in Montessori and non-Montessori homes. They are like a piece of art, but are they worth it? Let’s find out!

What is a Rainbow Stacker?

A rainbow stacker is a wooden rainbow made up of At least 6 arch wood pieces that stack over each other from small to largest to create a standing rainbow. The most popular ones are the rainbow colors from red to purple but they also sell it in natural wood, pastel colors, and other variations.

These open-ended toys are popular in Montessori playrooms. They are beautiful to look at and are meant to be played, stacked and used in different ways.

Why are Wooden toy better?

If you have done a little bit of reading about the importance of play you probably have hear that wooden toys are better. Montessori and Waldorf all por for these kind of toys as oppose to plastic and battery operated. Most wooden toys are open-ended toys.

This means they are toys that need to be manipulated by the child in creative ways to be played with. They are toys that can serve multiple purpose for different play so they often get used the most for longer no matter the age.

rainbow stacker and open toys

Open-ended toys could be more pricey but will be used for longer as they will grow and adapt with your little one’s creative mind. In the long run, the investment could be greater to start but the cost per play (a term created by

My first Rainbow Stacker

When I learned about the benefit of having open ended toys I learned that the rainbow stacker was a must-have. I looked online and there were so many options, so many companies and so many different prices to choose from.

Being that this was my first open-ended toy, I didn’t feel super comfortable buying the Grimm’s Rainbow stacker.

Why is Grimm’s so famous?

Grimm’s is like the father of open ended toys. Their handmade toys are of great quality. The paint the use is non-toxic and their wood is ethically sourced.

The paint Grimm’s use is non toxic. According to Grimm’s “The colors and oils used are certified in accordance with the EN 71 and CPSIA/ASTM 963 standards”. Non-toxic paints are recommended to be used on children’s toys as some children might still mouth them piece and be in contact with the paint. The paint is non-toxic and there has been rare cases of discoloration of the toy by often contact with saliva.

Are there any less Expensive options?

Because it was my first experience with getting a rainbow, I didn’t know if my son would actually play with it. All the non-toxic and handmade information was awesome but what if spent all this money and my son would never touch such a toy? I went the date rout and opted for a less expensive but still handmade rainbow stacker from a MayersNatura shop on Etsy.

There are tons of websites selling rainbow stickers, with lots of different paint and cutting techniques. Some with great reviews to get started with your first rainbow stacker. (But knowing what I know now, I would just get the real deal… I ended up getting the Grimm’s one after, so now I have both. I’ll tell you why further down)

What age is Grimm’s Suitable for?

My son was about one year old when I got it. The rainbow stacker sat in our shelf untouched for about a year. I felt I had wasted my money, I was glad I didn’t put the money into the expensive one from Grimm’s until about a week ago.

My son turned two and is now discovering the world of pretend play. Yes, he had done a little legend eating with cups and bowls but never act out a scene or recreated a scene. Until now.

Are Grimm’s Toys worth it?

Now that we are actually playing with the rainbow stacker. I realized two things, fist, one rainbow was not enough. In order to build towns and roads 6 pieces seemed to little. The rainbow stacker I had was light and would slip when stacking onto each other in different ways, so our creativity was a bit limited.

I took the plunge and ordered the Grimm’s version. I wanted a larger rainbow to extend our play but seemed to have ordered the exact same size I had already purchased. Now I have the larger one in my wishlist!

The good thing was that I now had two exact sizes to compare and now you get to read all about it!

Wow! The moment I touched that rainbow I knew what everyone was talking about the quality of Grimm’s. You just feel it in your hands.

The rainbow is rough to the touch as opposed to the other one I have that it is smooth. The colors are rich and vibrant, they hypnotize you … I know its weird, but they do… they just call out to you! Or maybe it is just me that I LOVE all things color.

I immediately took it out of the bag and did my stacking test. The only creative stacking I have been able to do with the other one. Wow! The pieces just stood there without wobbling it, without slipping. I got why the texture was rough, why the wood was heavy. It was meant to be that way because that’s how it supports the different play positions.

What can you do with a Grimm’s rainbow?

Pinterest is full of photographs of creative ways to use these rainbows. From using large ones to using the smaller ones to even combining the two. If you can imagine it you can basically create it.
Rainbow stackers are considered the perfect toy because it is a puzzle by stacking from smaller to largest. It is a learning tool to practice the colors of the rainbow. It is a holding toy because you can stack it in unbelievable ways. It grows with your child, as his imagination grows and the ability to make more complex structures the rainbow will adjust.

Should You buy a rainbow stacker?

So is it worth the purchase? Absolutely! Rainbow stacker is a staple on so many homes and playrooms because of the many ways this toy can be used.

My new motto is to play with intention- buy with intention. this means that after all my research about play I am now at a point where I am willing to invest in good quality toys that I know will not end up in the recycling bin for a while. Although I am leaning toward more quality toys doesn’t mean we don’t still play with our first rainbow stacker purchase. We use both. We play with both. But we tend to prefer the Grimm’s rainbow stacker as we can manipulate it in more ways. It doesn’t fall apart when stacked at the finishes are rougher and it is more sturdy.

No matter which one you choose, I’m happy that you are opting for getting open-ended toys that will provide your child with years of creative play. If you can afford the Grimm’s go for it, if you can’t then choose one with rougher finishes and non-toxic paint.

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