Choosing the right products for your children is not always an easy task. You want them to be safe, fun, educational, and beautifully made. But often parents have no choice but to compromise on aesthetics and quality. And that is why a young dad, Jun Kim, started ‘Le Papa’ 2 years ago, with a commitment to make timeless products with unique design and high-quality materials that not only kids but also parents can be proud to own.
Prior to Le papa, Jun Kim had dedicated his career as a product designer, specializing in eco-friendly wooden toys and furniture for children. During this time, his talent was recognized by the MoMa (Museum of Modern Art) Store in New York where he was featured as a “selected designer” in 2013. Whether it is a joy or a struggle, director Jun Kim’s daily experience as a father has always been the biggest inspiration for every single product he makes.
At Le Papa, Jun Kim also works with a team of passionate designers, one of which with years of experience and knowledge about the industry in UK and Hong Kong. Le papa’s design team provides creative and interactive eco-friendly toys and interior décor items that entertain children while serving as attractive accessories for the home. With safety for kids and practicality for parents in mind, they insist on using non-toxic and durable materials, which are also easy to clean and maintain.
‘Car Village’ Play mat/rug
All Le Papa’s products are created with stories, which quickly become live on Jun Kim’s sketch book. In a way, Jun Kim still sees himself as a “story teller” or a “toy maker” rather than a director of the company. The signature play mat ‘Car village’ was designed based on a familiar neighbourhood he and his son used to love. But he also made sure to communicate with his team as well as other moms and dads in the design process, so the product has many aspects of fun and excitement for other parents and their kids to play and interact with. The play mat’s 3-dimensional details in each building and its surroundings will be recognized more and more as kids get older and develop greater sense of spatial awareness, which in turn, will help parents and kids to communicate and play in more complex situations.
Jun Kim’s Idea Sketches and ‘Fairy tale Town’ Play mat/rug
‘Robot Factory’ Play mat/rug
‘Le Voyage’ Towel Blanket
No matter how desperately parents want their kids to stay kids, they all seem to grow too fast. And parents constantly worry whether they are doing enough, or being there when children need them the most. Through Le Papa Jun Kim and his team hope to lend a helping hand to other parents out there so they can enjoy being a mom or dad during the most precious time of their children’s lives. And they will continue to be inspired by their own and other parents’ experiences to make safe, creative, well-designed and well-crafted products for our children.
“My son was fascinated with bugs when he was about two and a half years old. At the time, I was designing a magnifying glass with wheels so I asked my little ‘chief executive design consultant’ how he wanted the glass to look. Immediately, he shouted out “stag beetle, daddy!” I must admit, I wasn’t even sure what a stag beetle is supposed to look like until then. After some research followed by a few rounds of sketching and sampling, our beloved stag beetle magnifying glass was born. And I owe it all to my little one, once again.” – Jun Kim, Creative Director of Le Papa –
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