It’s not uncommon to witness a little person, decked out in full dress up, stomping down the hallway. And you’ve never seen a nearly five-year-old work those heels quite like Ella does. I didn’t even know she had hips!

It appears Holly is following suit with her love of dress ups. This week she had on a PJ top, trackie pants, a sheep beanie, a pair of bathers, a mermaid outfit and matching mermaid bag – all at once. She thought she looked utterly gorgeous – and that’s all that matters. (Here she is partly dressed in the above mentioned)

 Pink Poppy

To listen to the stories they create when they’re “made up’’ just reinforces how important it is to foster their imaginations – and capture some hilarious photos for their 18th birthdays.

Pink Poppy

Then there were the tea parties. I think the novelty lies in being able to pour water from the sweet little teapot into the dainty tea cups and drink from them. Water mess inside I can deal with. And who can’t resist having these little tea cups, saucers, teapot, sugar bowl and milk jug sitting on the kitchen bench against the kettle.

Pink Poppy

For me, it’s been a big educational experience. Like, did you know purple tea is the best kind of tea? That Rebecca* did something naughty at school and had to sit in the corner? That Holly (nearly 2) can’t pour the tea because she’s not big enough (according to nearly five-year-old Ella who is chief tea pourer)?

tea party

The latest creative play comes courtesy of Pink Poppy, who supplied us with:

Pink Poppy

The beautiful tea set, dainty jewellery box with drawers, old-style bedside clock, snow globe, notepad with mermaid stickers and 

Pink Poppy

sweet turquoise mermaid outfit with matching bag,

Each embraced the mermaid theme. What stands out for me is the quality of the products, how beautifully designed they are and how they’re all traditional toys that fully developing the girls’ imaginations. More importantly, the girls haven’t tired of them, like they do so many of their “gadget’’ toys.

The site allows you to search by “theme” (buzzy bee, dancing, dinosaur, dragon, ladybug and more), making it easy. The real issue is choosing what theme and THEN what products! To learn more about Pink Poppy visit the blogTwitter and Facebook.

We’re giving away the entire collection for your little people to foster their imaginations. To win, simply tell us: what is your child’s favourite game using their imagination?

Terms and conditions: The Pink Poppy competition will be judged on creativity and originality. The competition opens Saturday, September 15, 2012 at 1pm AEST and closes on Monday, October 1, 2012 at 7.30pm AEST. One entry per person. Australian entries only. There is one prize winner. The winner will be notified via email and name published here. Entries remain the property of Three Li’l Princesses and may be republished.

If you would like to learn about more of our giveaways, make sure you sign up to our eNewsletters. You’ll also find more giveaways in the Aussie Giveaway Linkup.

DISCLAIMER: I received all the item above to try with the girls. I have not been paid to write this post. All opinions expressed are purely my own.

*Not her real name


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38 Responses to How to foster a child’s imagination + Pink Poppy giveaway CLOSED

  1. Mumabulous says:

    Your household sounds strikingly similar to ours. I allowed my almost three year old to go to daycare last week wearing flannel pjs overlaid by her older sisters princess dress up gown. She completed the look with a Rhianna style hoodie in lime green terry toweling. It so complimented the crimson dress (NOT). We are also heavily into the art of the tea party – with 3 tea sets.
    We are absolutely Pink Poppy fans.
    Love Mumabulous
    Mumabulous recently posted..Advancing My StyleMy Profile

  2. Kylie Embury says:

    Carter LOVES cubbies (he’s in one now). He’ll use a box or bring me a towel or even one of his Dad’s shirts from the washing pile to make a cubby between the foot stools and the lounge. His lovely sister makes them with him and he can’t get enough. I remember we used to do it as kids too, just a couple of years ago 🙂

  3. Caroline says:

    Oh my! how gorgeous are your two.
    Miss K loves to dress up & has an awesome sense of ‘style’ the latest is summer dresses over trackies & long sleeve tops.
    The favourite imagination game is a toss up as at the moment it’s tea parties (with invisible cups or my baking tins which she uses to ‘cook’ cakes) or playing in her card table tent. I remember hours of playing in indoor tents and love that Miss K enjoys the simple pleasures of a table covered in a sheet or two 🙂
    Caroline recently posted..20 days to organise?My Profile

  4. Linda Enever says:

    Kellie I think Miss C would join your girls and be in heaven!

  5. Rhianon says:

    My 17mth old’s favourite non-technology play time includes Teddy being unceremoniously plonked on Daddy’s knee and nonsensical instruction to him to put a nappy on Teddy. Daddy figured this out, she was pleased and then took Teddy on a shopping trip, in his own stroller. She ‘shopped’ in the kitchen utensil drawer with her brother. Two happy children, one big mess. Fun though!
    Rhianon recently posted..WeaningMy Profile

  6. Whatever imaginary game my girls play, I admire the way they can sustain their roles! Today they are wearing dress-up glasses, they are twins named Ruby and Daisy, and they must wear matching clothes – none of this reflects their actual positions in life. At breakfast, “Ruby” dropped her
    “glasses” and it took both of them 10 minutes of crawling around (eyes closed) to (pretend to) find them and restore poor Ruby’s sight. An hour later, they still will not answer to their real names. I love that their imaginary world is SO real to them! It encourages bonding between them too as they join forces against me to reinforce the game 🙂
    Lara at This Charming Mum recently posted..On the BWF 2012My Profile

  7. Mel Boerma says:

    Oh yes, clothing situation the same here. In Hobart the layers have been pretty handy though to beat the chill! Though the latest imagination game has been to strip off and put her bathers on, grab a blue towel to lay on the floor, strategically place stuffed toys around (monkey, elephant etc) et voila! She is swimming down a river. By the mix of animals I’m assuming in a jungle somewhere. Very cute, but seriously not a good costume choice on a chilly winter or spring morning!
    Mel Boerma recently posted..Top Stuff for Kids – Part DeuxMy Profile

  8. Happy Birthday – it consists of wrapping something from around the house, singing happy birthday, blowing out imaginary candles, slicing imaginary cake, hip hooraying…and then swapping turns and doing it all over again. Here, have a crayon stub!
    Michelle @ Blundermum recently posted..Christmas is coming? Stuff that.My Profile

  9. Bernie Clegg says:

    My daughter loves playing fairies! She writes tiny little notes to the fairies and leaves them around the yard for them to find. When her best friend comes over to play, they sit outside watching nature, looking for “signs of fairy life”. A sparkle in the grass, a flutter in the trees, a tiny noise…all could be possible fairy activity! It’s very cute because she takes it so seriously.

    She would love this girly gift pack! I can imagine her out in the backyard pouring tea for the fairies with the teaset and using the note paper for further “fairy correspondence”!

    I actually don’t want her to grow out of this stage.

  10. Kim maxwell says:

    My daughter loves hide and seek, but the funny kind where as long as her head is hidden then we cant see her, very funny to see her with her head under the bed and her body sticking out, then us trying to get out the ‘where are you’s’ while trying to stifle our laughter!

  11. jennifer abson says:

    My daughter likes to pretend that she can skate without any skates on she slides across our floorboards!!

  12. Rebekah says:

    Imagination play is my FAVOURITE! Generally it involves talking on the phone to daddy, going to Castletown (our local shopping centre), and getting in a car crash on the way (I thank Richard Scarry books for that one!) The detail of his play is what amazes me!!! Love it!!
    Rebekah recently posted..Our Practice TripMy Profile

  13. Ron Rose says:

    My grand-daughter, Annaliese, just loves playing “Fairies”. I often mind her alone and always know what’s coming. Yes, she is the Pink Fairy and I get to be the Purple Fairy. We prance around the house carrying our wands, she wearing a pink dress and wings, while I have to put a purple cloth on my head as hair. We fight witches, dragons, crocodiles etc – depending on what her imagination thinks up.
    And no, there is certainly NO video or photos of me in my role as Purple Fairy! 🙂

  14. Cathy B says:

    Our twins 2, love playin tents with a sheet over the table, Charlotte loves dress ups and tea parties with her teddies and dolls. Alex enjoys loading baby Leo 11 months, onto his wagon and taking him for rides, he used to do it with his teddies until Leo climbed into the wagon by himself.
    All three absolutely love “kangawoo” spotting in our garden, late afternoon the ‘roos and wallabies visit our garden and the kids love it.|Further to that the twins also love pretending to be kangaroos and like jumping around the garden.

  15. kerry santillo says:

    Dressing up is my childs favourite game,
    5 times a day, its never the same!!
    One she was off to work,
    she turns and spins with a smirk 🙂
    Clothes everywhere we play
    I use to do it, and I must say,
    Its so much fun pretending to be
    Whoever you want and letting your imagination run FREE ♥

  16. Nicole Kent says:

    Miss little 2 loves to pretend she’s the doctor in our house. Curing me, her 8 month old brother and our cat all with her stethoscope and tea towel…and we are magically healed from our aches, pains and bruises again. She even makes us drink her ‘medicine’ from her tea cups.

  17. My 4yr is currently right into playing “Cat in the Hat” he sits at the window with two chairs and then he hears an imaginary bump that makes him jump … and he goes from there. I have been known to sit and stare out the window and pretend there is a cat standing on an imaginary mat infront of us. I personally can’t wait till miss nearly 3months is old enough for tea parties 🙂
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  18. Sonya N. says:

    My daughter’s favourite game is “Just Pretend” – she starts off every game with “Just pretend… I’m a frog and I’m reading bedtime stories” or “Just pretend… my rocket ship has broken down and a superhero is coming to bring me petrol…” she just loves pretending and doesn’t need any props to do it either.

  19. Larabelle says:

    Miss Six has obviously inherited Mummy’s bossy teacher traits – her poor teddies and dolls suffer through interminable lessons on letters of the alphabet, shapes and numbers. And it’s no old-hat blackboard for her, apparently she teaches with her ‘Smartboard’!!!

  20. Danya says:

    My little 2 year old is going through a serious shoe fetish at the moment. She has named all my shoes after Playschool presenters (ie my silver ones are Justine’s shoes, my orange ones are Essy’s shoes, etc) and when she or I put them on we adopt that role. She also play shoe shop with Daddy every other day. And of course we can’t walk past a real shoe shop without a half hour detour. It’s amazing how they can walk in heels isn’t it! She can wear shoes I’d fall over in 🙂
    Danya recently posted..Introducing: Little Miss Bumble BeeMy Profile

  21. Dee says:

    The mystical, magical land that only kids can enter! Apparently the crack down the study wall opens when no grown ups are around, taking our children to a land full of cute fluffy animals that can talk, pixies, goblins and all things amazing!

    I’m so glad they got their fathers enormously expanse imagination, and btw we are going to re-paint soon, so what will happen to this secret world then!

  22. Diana O says:

    Indoor camping, where wild creatures and even dinosaurs roam! It’s amazing how this world comes to life, the minute I throw a blanket over the lounge room table and in they all scramble.

  23. Ying Ying TAN says:

    My daughter Charity loves to pretend to be ‘MUMMY’ and I have to pretend to be ‘Charity’. Although its fun, its quite weird hearing your very own words/behavior coming from your kids, makes my hair stand on end all the time, haha!

  24. S Armstrong says:

    Cafe’s – we have to sit at her play kitchen and order from her cafe. She even tell us what we have to order. Glad it’s not real food or I’d need a trip to Gym everyday

  25. Kelly Arndt says:

    I love watching my three Princesses and my little Prince play. Their imagination knows no boundaries! I try to keep their creative juices flowing by adding dress-up outfits and accessories when I can afford it. The favorite game of the moment is something they call ‘Pirate Wedding’. This involves Miss 11(The Pirate Princess)battling Miss 6(The Evil Pirate Queen)and Master 2 1/2(The Queen’s Henchman)to marry Miss 4(The Pirate Prince). There is the obligatory duel and The Evil Pirate Queen throws herself off the plank, even when she is shown mercy! The Prince and Princess Pirates marry and there is even a Wedding Waltz… I have to say that my gorgeous little pirates have to be the cutest ever seen, although the costumes are also strangely apt… And don’t you just love to see girls dressed up as pirates?!

  26. Lisa Abejja says:

    I have made them dinosaur tails and they like to hunt through the back garden being dinosaurs. They roar and stomp their feet. Ishaq who is 4 loves to pretend he is so tall to eat from our trees and Elias who is 2.5 loves to crawl around. They hide under the trampoline pretending it’s a cave, they hide behind the shed and pretend it’s a mountain and when the dog comes they pretend to chase him to eat him !! I love to watch them at play.

  27. Seana Smith says:

    Our latest favourite is playing doctors, both twins dress up and I am the patient patient. Sometimes they treat the cat as well, pretending he is a human… otherwise they’d have to be vets, they tell me. The cat too is a patient patient.
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  28. Melinda says:

    We play Masterchef in the yard. (well their version anyway) it consists of each child having an empty bowl each and they must collect all the things I asked to make their special meal. Leaves, lavender, paisley, whatever is in the garden really. Then once their meal is done its restaurant time, where one take the order and the other eats etc.. It uses imagination and some writing skills. They love it- unbeknown to the kids, it’s just a reason for the worn out mum to sit for a minute.

  29. Elise says:

    Little Miss 1 year old loves to imitate me in her play. The latest favourite game is to feed her baby side by side with me as I feed her brother – complete with spit cloth, loud burping noises and encouragement to finish his bottle!
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  30. Maree says:

    My almost 3 year old son is loving dress ups but his new game is to hop in his little car with his tool kit in the trailer and go off to work or “to the shops” for mummy. Very much in awe of his Daddy who has gotten really good at running off to the shops for me since I have become heavily pregnant! I am also loving the “doctors” games he has been playing, getting the portable shower hose (things u have around the house when Mummy is a hairdresser) and playing “ultrasound” on mummy’s big belly!

  31. Karen Edwards says:

    My 2 like to dress up and play doctors or Mum’s and Dads

  32. tamra childers says:

    my son loves to put objects under our rug to make hills and caves etc. for his cars and then drives them all over it. He makes up all sorts of things that they see and do while driving through the ‘hills’. Its fun to watch.

  33. theresa tan says:

    Miss 3 loves the world of Pirates, Princesses, Knights and Unicorns where she would often play all 3 roles!

  34. Marita says:

    Lego wins hands down for imaginative play in our house at the moment. The girls build fascinating creations and then the lego people walk around, have conversations and adventures. Very cool
    Marita recently posted..A nice cup of a tea and a good book.My Profile

  35. Rachel K says:

    Our little one’s favourite game using her imagination is playing afternoon tea with her toy tea set, which was originally mine way back in the day. It is plastic with pretty bunnies and flowers painted on it and I loved it as much as she loves its now!

    The first time she came up with this idea was the most funny and absolutely priceless. While Daddy was relaxing and watching the TV she brought him a little cup of ‘tea’, (but it was really only water!) and after several cups of tea and lots of praise and thanks for the yummy tea, Daddy called me to come and see.

    I was made to wait in the living room so I would be surprised as I witnessed the super cute tea waitress! I watched as “little miss” came down the hall with a cup of tea for Daddy; and I watched him drink it up.

    I was in complete hysterics and couldn’t even catch my breath as I struggled to get my words out which were, “Did it ever occur to you that the only place she can reach to get water is the toilet!” I was buckled over in laughter for what seemed like an eternity! Needless to say, now she has a plastic jug which she can reach on the coffee table which is filled with filtered tap water!

  36. Michelle Gray says:

    My 4 year old daughter loves to play dress ups, at the moment she is using her hooded dressing grown to become Rapunzel’s long hair, very cute to watch 🙂

  37. My 2 year old girl imagines that she is a big girl like her 5 year old sister!

    She is so cute! She pretends to talk on the “phone” well any object like a remote control which can resemble a phone!

    She also has a tantrum everyday when her sister’s class gets into line and trots off to kindergarten- wait for the punchline WITHOUT the 2 year old!!!

    I always joke that if the teacher would only change nappies for Miss2, that Miss2 would settle into kindy better than Miss5 did!
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  38. Rosemarie says:

    My daughter loves to make food items out of her duplo. Her favourite is to stack up lots of small square blocks, and hand them out to everyone, so we can eat icypoles 🙂

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