Saturday, March 8, 2008

Little Bitty Bins

Made by the Little Bitty™ Fun Company Little Bitty Bins were small plastic garbage bin style storage containers manufactured in the 1980s/1990s and sold in Australia (& other countries?).

They came in a variety of sizes and colours including 50ml, .2L, 1.5L, and much larger sizes. In addition mini crates were available. Other items included a small wheelie bin style waste basket, and a Post office 1L money box.

According to Industrial Design in Victoria: the bins were designed by Victorian industrial designer David Flynn in the 1980s during his time with the team at Bayly Design.

An article in The New York Times CHRISTMAS SHOPPING A YEAR EARLY by ISADORE BARMASH: December 17, 1988 reports on the products being picked up by Mr Grinell, a buyer for US chain F.W. Woolworth:

“It was on a trip to Australia that Mr. Grinnell learned that a plastics producer there had sold 10 million Itty Bitty Bins. He found a domestic producer who agreed to make them for Woolworth as Little Bitty Bins under license to the Australian originator. ''We think we can sell one million of them this year,'' Mr. Grinnell said. ''We've already sold 800,000 and we expanded the color range.''”

Currently Willow manufacture the bins again, but they are only available in a couple of sizes and they have a clear tinted bin with coloured lid.

I still have some little bitty bins (I use one at work!) & I have picked some up at op shops.

I cannot believe there are only 19 Google results for “little bitty bins” &  there are 25 for the other name some people may have know them by “itty bitty bins”. Well hopefully this post will go a little way to addressing that...

post script April 2012:  from your comments I heard that Itty Bitty Bins were back in production again and available at Office Works so I decided to check them out...
A word of CAUTION however they do not appear to be the original bin but rather a generic version. They lack the distinctive lid and bottom design of the original bins and the plastic used to construct them is very different. For a Little Bitty Bin 'purist' like myself I'll be keeping an eye out in opshops to pick up any original bins if I feel my supplies are running low!
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