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Creating With Colors Review & Giveaway: Cardboard Toy Pirate Fortress [CLOSED]

My children love to color, whether it is in coloring books or coloring pages I print out online. This project takes this concept one step further and creates a 3d coloring book that can be enjoyed for quite some time after the coloring has been completed. These cardboard toys made by Calafant are surprisingly sturdy. Our cardboard pirate fortress made it through the most humid days this summer (88% humidity) without buckling. These toys are made of 100% recycled cardboard with a layer of non-recycled paper on the coloring surface. They are also 100% bio-degradable.

Today's Project: Cardboard Pirate Fortress

Ask your child to color in all the white surfaces of this Calafant Pirate Fortress after it has been assembled and the details have been drawn.

Supplies Needed:

2) A thin black permanent marker (like a Sharpie)
3) Crayons in a variety of colors
4) A pencil (optional)

Step 1: Partially assemble the fortress. From personal experience, I learned that it is easier to decorate the fortress with the four towers and walls assembled, but not attached to each other.

Tip #1: The assembly should be done by an adult. Although the fortress is very sturdy after it has been built, the cardboard can be bent and creased if not handled appropriately.

Step 2: Draw the outline of pirate-themed accents right onto the white surfaces of the fortress. You can use a pencil to draw the lines first and then go over the pencil lines with the black marker or just draw directly onto the fortress with the marker.

Here are some ideas for pirate-themed accents . . .
  • treasure chests
  • skeletons
  • torches
  • trap doors
  • dungeons
  • barred windows
  • shackles
  • anchor, harpoon, telescope
  • pirates
  • stone and planked surfaces
  • cannon and cannon balls
  • mop and bucket

Tip #2: Depending on the child's confidence, he or she can assist the adult with drawing the lines. If your child is not confident enough to draw the accents, then he or she can contribute by offering ideas of what should be drawn and where.

Step 3: Once the black lines are drawn, complete the assembly of the pirate fortress.

Step 4: Now let your child color in the pirate fortress completely.

Tip #3: It may be easier for your child to color in all the accents first and then tackle the larger areas.

Tip #4: If only one child is coloring, this will be a long process. It may be a good idea to break the coloring process up into 2 or 3 sessions.

Tip #5: Help your child color in the fortress. Take advantage of this quiet time to talk and share some quality time together.

This is how our pirate fortress turned out . . .

The Calafant Pirate Fortress does not come with any figures. Luckily, we had some Pirates of the Caribbean figures that were the perfect size. It would be great if the kit came with some cardboard pirate shapes similar to paper dolls. Then these could be decorated right along with the fortress, which would allow the children to play instantly once the project is finished. This small addition would make a huge impact on the fun factor of this cardboard toy.

As you can see, all our children enjoyed playing with this toy. My 6 year old son's favorite part of the fortress is the skull drawbridge that really opens and closes.

To view the full line of small, medium, and large Calafant cardboard toys, visit . The small cardboard toys are perfect activities for birthday parties or just rainy days. When you sign up for the Creative Toyshop Newsletter, you will receive a coupon for Free Shipping on your next order totaling over $20.

Thank you to for sending us a sample cardboard toy free of charge to base this review upon and for providing a second toy for our contest prize.

What you can win:
One lucky reader will receive their choice of either a Calafant Pirate Fortress or a Calafant Dollhouse.

This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only. You do not need to be a blogger to enter, but you must have a valid email address and be age 18 years or older. If you enter anonymously and do not include a valid email address in your comment entries, I will not be able to notify you should you win this random drawing.

How to Gain Entries:
Browse the selection of cardboard toys and more offered by Creative Toyshop. Then leave a comment telling me the name of one specific item you would have loved to own as a child (aside from the item reviewed in this article). You MUST do this to be eligible to win this contest.

Extra Entries:

1) For 5 extra entries, leave a relevant comment on one of my non-giveaway posts. Then leave FIVE separate comments with the name of the post on which you commented. You will earn 5 extra entries for each different non-contest post you comment on.


For 5 extra entries, enter one of my other contests. Leave FIVE separate comments here telling me which contest you entered. You will earn 5 extra entries for each contest you enter.

For 10 extra entries, blog about this contest linking back to this post AND . Then come back here and leave TEN separate comments with the link to your blog post.


For 1 extra entry each, if you are a Friend of mine on Facebook and/or if you have "liked" the 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires Facebook page, then leave a separate comment here telling me so with the link to your Facebook profile.

5) For 2 extra entries
, sign up for the Creative Toyshop Newsletter. Then leave TWO separate comments telling me which email you used to sign up. (Remember to use "DOT COM" in place of ".com" when you leave your comment.)


Follow me on Twitter. Then leave a separate comment with the link to your Twitter profile.


Tweet about this giveaway linking back to this post. Then come back here and leave the link to your tweet in a separate comment. You may do this once per day until the end of the contest.


Subscribe to this blog's feed. Or you can follow me through Blogger or subscribe via email (widget is on sidebar). Then leave a separate comment telling me you did so.


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Add my button or blog link to your blog's sidebar. Then leave a separate comment with the link to your blog.

(All entries will be verified prior to awarding this prize.)

Random Drawing:

This contest will be closed on Monday, August 2nd, 2010 at 11:59pm EST. A random number drawing will be held shortly after. The winner will be announced here and will be contact via email or through their blog. If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, a new number will be drawn.

Good luck in the drawing!