Strictly Briks Owner Discusses The Importance Of Creative Play

Playtime in our home is one of our favorite things to do as a family. It’s our way of bonding with the kids and letting them explore the world around them.

Whether we’re building a city with brick pieces or creating a track for our cars to race, it’s all about using your imagination. 

After chatting with Brian Semling, Owner of Brian’s Toys, the creator of Strictly Briks, it was nice to hear of a company that is developing toys for the curious mind.

Semling is a toy industry veteran since 1994 and a parent of two children who help run the family business. 

Aside from the standard bricks, Strictly Briks offers different shapes for kids to choose. Semling shared how the idea for the business came about during an interview with Motherhood Through My Eyes. 

“From the beginning of Strictly Briks, we recognized the opportunity to fill the niche of Creative Play with a wide variety of different colors, shapes, and sizes of baseplates to help encourage children’s creativity,” he explained. “The leading brands offer amazing model making sets, and we wanted to focus on allowing kids to be the designers, architects, and creators by offering a wide variety of baseplates from which they could build.”

It’s always interesting to hear about companies like Strictly Briks that are family-run. You’ve got a dad as the creator, a mom as the photographer and the kids as product testers. It seems as though Semling has formed a masterpiece of his own. So, I had to ask how working together has helped their relationship as a family.

“Our family has always been close and including our kids in the business has been a very natural step,” he shared. “The kids learn about many aspects of our business and take pride in being the public face of Strictly Briks.  Both Sonja and Erik say they want to join us in running the business as they get older.”

As for his kids’ most memorable creations using Strictly Briks, Semling discussed how Sonja and Erik are always building huge setups with the Big Briks.

“They love Big Briks so they can build larger and more quickly.  They tend to incorporate their Star Wars action figures to make giant battle scenes,” according to Semling.

One of the recent creations from Sonja and Erik. 

One of the perks of creative play is that you can control screen use. During the interview, Semling shared tips for parents looking to minimize their family’s tech use during the school year.

“Combine limiting screen time with setting aside a certain amount of ‘play time’ each day or week that is reserved, that is to be playing with physical toys and bricks,” he noted. “This way there isn’t just a ‘You can’t do this’, but rather a ‘You can do this instead.'”

Strictly Briks is expanding on their innovative 3D Briks, Pixels, and Puzzles with the release of the new Rubik’s Briks line this 4th quarter. The line consists mostly of 3 in 1 set that shows 3 possible options for building along with encouragement for children to “Build Your Creativity” and build anything they can dream up.

28 Comments

  1. I so totally agree! Creative play is crucial to a child’s development. It teaches creative problem solving, which is a skill they will use throughout their lives.

  2. Those are really neat. My daughters love to build. I bet they’d really love these.

  3. My niece has a few bricks and she got to enjoy and be creative with it. I think she needs a lot more so she can do more.

  4. My son used to build huge setups like that using bricks and or Lego pieces. He loved doing it and enjoyed it a lot. And I enjoyed watching him too.

  5. I love the ideas of when limiting screen time you can say you can do this instead. Kids have so much tech in their lives now that sometimes we forget they need to have that creative play to expand their horizons.

  6. My kids loved using building bricks. Big or small, it did not matter!

  7. When it comes to games I love anything that helps bring the creativity out of the kids. I do not mind screentime but creativity is the best.

  8. So important for kids to make their own things to stimulate creativity!

  9. Creative play is so important, and we have so many bricks to play with here, but I am looking into getting these ones now.

  10. OK I don’t have kids (so I know that likely means my opinion doesn’t count here) but I strongly agree with you that creative play is SO important, especially in a digital world. When I see my friends children glued to screens for huge amounts of time I just cringe (but stay silent…. ‘cuz you know how that would go).

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