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Discover the top 10 creative toys for kids to inspire their imagination

Want to help encourage your child’s creativity? Whether it’s building a LEGO® masterpiece or making a mess with Play-Doh, we’ve compiled a list of creative toys for kids that will spark their imagination and provide plenty of fun.

By Gemma Wilcock | Last updated Apr 26, 2023

Creative toys for kids with LEGO

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Children love getting creative and, while it can get a bit messy at times, it is great for their development too. Whether it’s drawing a picture, making a mess with paint or building construction toys, encouraging your child to get creative has so many great benefits.

Through creative play, children can learn how to express themselves, manage their emotions, as well as develop their social and thinking skills, such as problem solving and critical thinking. Creative activities can also aid their physical development, supporting fine motor skills and hand eye coordination.

But, most of all, it’s fun! A good toy will help inspire a child’s creativity so to help you find the best creative toys on the market, we scoured our Mumsnet forums to help us come up with a list of tried-and-tested products that cater for all ages, interests and budgets.

Here are some great creative toys for kids and toddlers to enjoy and play with…

1. LEGO® Friends Emma’s Art School

LEGO® Friends Emma’s Art School

Price: £59.99 | Buy now from LEGO®

“My daughter loves the LEGO® friends sets. Particularly anything to do with animals. She loves creating wonderful homes for them, no simple kennel, hutch or basket is enough, they need to have at least three floors, gardens, as many beds as they could need. An area for pampering, a nice deep bath, and obviously a play area. Sometimes there is a fall out over who should use the space, so she obviously has to create another whole animal house to stop the arguments.” Ratbagcatbag

Children can combine imaginative and creative play with the LEGO® Friends Emma’s Art School set. It comes with plenty of exciting accessories so they can have fun building the three-storey set and then creating stories for the students at the art school.

There’s four studios where the students can learn about ceramics, fashion and 3D printing. Fun functions include a pottery wheel which turns just like the real thing, a poseable mannequin and a camera with two lenses.

The students can then photograph their creations in the photography studio. We also love that children can use their creativity to customise the building using LEGO® DOTS tiles.

  • Recommended age: 8+ years old

2. LEGO® Sunflowers

LEGO® Sunflowers

Price: £11.99 | Buy now from LEGO®

Give the gift of flowers to your little one - the only catch is they have to build them first! The LEGO® Sunflowers set and building kit would make a lovely display on their own or they can be added to other sets to make an even bigger bouquet.

With LEGO® Roses, Tulips and the Flower Bouquet sets also available - sold separately - your child can get creative as they have fun pretending to be a real life florist and design their own display. Once they’re finished, they may even want to give the bunch of flowers to someone they love.

  • Recommended age: 8+ years old

3. LEGO® The Ice Castle

LEGO® The Ice Castle

Price: £44.99 | Buy now from LEGO®

If you have a Minecraft fan at home, The Ice Castle LEGO® set will make them feel like they are part of the game, with authentic characters and scenes brought to life.

It comes with six characters, including the Royal Warrior, a yeti and a group of skeletons and zombies. Once children have built the set, they can act out attacks on the castle, defending it from the enemy with weapons, such as a launcher that fires arrows, a diamond sword and an axe.

Other cool accessories include a cauldron and a treasure chest. The set can then be refigured to inspire even more Minecraft creative fun.

  • Recommended age: 8+ years old

4. LEGO® Creator Fish Tank

LEGO® Creator Fish Tank

Price: £24.99 | Buy now from LEGO®

“My two daughters both love LEGO®, they spend hours playing together and have created some really elaborate creations such as a rescue centre for all their different LEGO® animals (including tigers, dinosaurs and a three-headed dog!).” Purplestorm83

LEGO® Creator sets don’t just offer one model to build, there’s three in each box - so with this toy, children can have fun building and playing with a fish tank, easel and treasure chest.

The fish tank comes with realistic features such as five different colourful fish, a mini submarine, some coral and an aquatic plant. The easel can be built with a picture of a parrot but children can use their creative skills to design their own picture.

As with any LEGO® set, the options are endless, as once children have built and played with all three sets they can use the bricks to make their own creations.

  • Recommended age: 8+ years old

5. LEGO® DOTS Unicorn Creative Family Pack

LEGO® DOTS Unicorn Creative Family Pack

Price: £44.99 | Buy now from LEGO®

“My 8.5 year old loves them and just got her friend a much coveted dots cupcake set for her 9th birthday, which she loved.” Himawarigirl

The LEGO® DOTS Unicorn Creative Family Pack set allows children to create and customise their own jewellery and room decorations.

Featuring two bracelets, a unicorn box stationery holder, a small message board and a bunting with string, children can build the models and use the colourful tiles and alphabet tiles to decorate them.

The DOTS sets inspire children to use their imagination and creative skills to make their own designs, which they can put on display or rebuild to create new models. This is a toy that they can enjoy playing with alone or with family and friends.

  • Recommended age: 6+ years old

6. LEGO® Stuntz Double Loop Stunt Arena

LEGO® Stuntz Double Loop Stunt Arena

Price: £129.99 | Buy now from LEGO®

Featuring a double loop, two stunt bikes and a host of cool accessories, children can create this fun LEGO® Stuntz set and put on a thrilling show.

The two flywheel-powered bikes and a monster truck with a ramp perform stunts in the arena, with props including a toy wall of flames, snapping snake loop and a loop of fire. There’s also fun accessories such as a vendor stall and spectator stand for inspiring creative storytelling.

For an even bigger stunt adventure, children can combine it with other sets from the Stuntz range.

  • Recommended age: 7+ years old

7. Play-Doh Burger Barbecue Set

Play-Doh Burger Barbecue Set

Price: £10.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“It is great for creativity, developing fine motor skills and it’s not massively messy compared to say painting. I love it! My 4YO has a few of the Play-Doh creations cooking sets and will play with it unsupervised for like an hour.” LakeShoreD

Squishing Play-Doh and moulding it into different shapes and structures is not only fun for children, but also inspires their imagination and creativity. Get them the Play-Doh Burger Barbecue Set and they can pretend to be the chef of the house and cook up a storm in the kitchen.

The grill opens up to make burgers, hot dogs or whatever food creation they can think of. They can use the decorator tool to make fries and condiments, and the moulds to make onion rings and toppings to make the burgers look even more yummy. The set comes with five different colours.

  • Recommended age: 3+ years old

8. Marble Mania 162 Piece Marble Run For Kids

Marble Mania 162 Piece Marble Run For Kids

Price: £26.99 | Buy now from Amazon

With 162 colourful pieces, your child will have endless fun creating a different marble run each time! They’ll love building their course, then popping the marble at the top and watching it work its way through the obstacles until it comes out at the other end!

A guidebook can help you build four different runs, but children can design their own using the 90 building pieces. The pieces are made from 100% non-toxic & BPA free plastic and easily pull apart for little hands to construct their track.

It comes with a handy storage box too - so you don’t have to worry about where to keep all those little pieces! This is a great toy for both playing alone or with friends and family

  • Recommended age: 4+ years old

9. Crayola Light Up Tracing Pad

Crayola Light Up Tracing Pad

Price: £11.99 | Buy now from Amazon

If your child likes to draw, the Crayola Light-Up Tracing Pad is a great toy for helping them learn new skills and inspiring their imagination.

There are ten trace sheets included, featuring fashion and horse-themes, that are held in place by the frame and the bright LED screen lights up the paper so that children can learn how to draw the scenes.

The kit comes with a graphite pencil and 12 colour pencils for colouring in. There are also blank sheets and you can download lots more themes on the Crayola website to help inspire even more creativity.

  • Recommended age: 3+ years old

10. Magna-Tiles Clear Colours 32 Magnetic Pieces

Magna-Tiles Clear Colours 32 Magnetic Pieces

Price: £34.99 | Buy now from Smyths

“Magnetic tiles have been a huge hit here too, we got them 2 years ago when DC were 2 and 3 and they are still played with regularly.” Duckchick

With the Magna-Tiles Clear Colours 32 Magnetic Pieces set, children can combine creativity with learning about maths and science.

The 32-piece set comes with 3D magnetic triangles and squares in a range of different colours and sizes. Children can build, stack and create different shapes and structures, such as a rocket ship and house, which encourages their imagination and engineering skills.

It also offers great sensory play, and when combined with other sets, it encourages children to create even bigger structures and storytelling.

  • Recommended age: 3+ years old

About LEGO®

At the LEGO® Group children are our role models. Their curiosity, creativity and imagination inspire everything we do. We strive to inspire, build and develop a global culture of creative play where everyone feels included. And we love seeing and reading feedback on how builders of all ages are having fun with LEGO® bricks and building sets.

Read next: The best DUPLO sets Mumsnetters love