In an age when we’re bombarded with electronic this, remote-controlled that, it’s refreshing to find simple, beautiful items that are designed to catch the eye while serving a very practical purpose too. Volotot, a San Francisco-based design outfit, has mastered this low-tech balance, calling on pastels and playful shapes to create items that will complement a nursery or a child’s room. The latest products, available now for pre-order, are guaranteed to delight children and adults alike.

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“Our philosophy is that iconic design exists as a result of aesthetics and function working in tandem,” explain the designers. “Visual refinement comes from the application of an artistic eye, logical principle, and human values,” they add.

volotot zoo hooks
Volotot zoo hooks

The Zoo Hooks are a trio of animals that both look cute and also help keep baby’s room organized. Talk about a win-win. The animals even have names, so perhaps you’ll end up telling stories about their day’s adventures when it’s bedtime and everyone’s settling down for the night.

volotot cable critters

The Cable Critters are nifty organizing birds and squirrels, who perch or scamper up their wires to hold onto your photos or pictures in place on the wall. We’ve all seen them in real life, but who knew these creatures could be used to keep things in order? Our eyes have been opened.

You can angle them in any configuration you choose, and string them together for different design options and to hold larger artwork. (Perhaps it’s just us, but we’re thankful it’s birds and squirrels and not birds and cats, who may not be able to coexist quite as peacefully.) As with the colorful Zoo Hooks, the Cable Critters are limited-edition and hand-painted and finished in San Francisco.

volotot kangamat

Volotot’s Kangamat does double duty as a play mat for children and also a storage bag you can hang on the wall using the company’s Wall Pins. Think of it as usable art, if you will. Let your little one relax on the mat and pull out their toys from the kangaroo’s pouch, perhaps making a game of “Find the lion” or “Where’s your giraffe?” Then when playtime’s over, simply throw the toys back in the pouch and hang the mat back on the wall.

volotot nimbus height chart

The Nimbus height chart doesn’t involve cute critters (we know, we know, we love cute critters too…), but the kids will want to reach up high and tall to touch the puffy cloud on top. The designers clipped raindrops to keep track of growth spurts, and thoughtfully added an area at the bottom of the Nimbus chart so you can write down measurements and dates to document progress. Again, the Nimbus chart is hand-painted and finished.

volotot weather Tshirt
volotot worker Tshirt

The Volotot team has also created characters called Tots that it screen-prints on T-shirts, using eco-friendly ink. The Tots have a complicated backstory that involves traveling the universe on an icy comet and developing large eyes to see in the darkness. They are a cooperative crew, and love to learn together. Perhaps the shirts are the start of a whole new world for the Tots? Stay tuned….