Previous winning product nominated for Design of the Year

By 20/10/2020 December 9th, 2020 News

We are very excited to hear that a previous winner of Design Innovation in Plastics, has been nominated for a prestigious design award and is being formally launched onto the market in time for Christmas.

Innovative music start-up, Soundbops, has been nominated for Beazley Designs of the Year 2020, among what the Design Museum in London describes as “The most innovative designs across fashion, architecture, digital, transport, product and graphic design, as nominated by the public and design experts from around the world.”

The product will be featured in the Design Museum exhibition in London from October 2020 to March 2021. Visitors can see the incredible journey Soundbops has taken from a basic idea to the patent-pending technology behind the child-friendly instrument.

Soundbops – originally called DOTS – was invented in 2014 by Michael Tougher, to encourage children to learn music in a fun way.  As a result of his win in the Design Innovation in Plastics competition, Michael was given a £1,000 cash prize, a placement with one of the competition sponsors, Hasbro, the toy and board game company, and a trip to see headline sponsor Covestro – then Bayer MaterialScience – in Germany.

Michael has spent the years since winning the DIP award further developing his transformational music education invention, which is to be market ready in time for Christmas.

He says: “We’ve used ABS to create the product and with safety and durability the key, for our blocks, which we call ‘bops’, we use friction welding between the bottom and top plastic parts to ensure they stay together and keep the magnets and electrical contacts inside.

“We are honoured and humbled to be one of the design success stories of 2020. Our mission to bring the joy of music to children will be hugely helped by this recognition.”

Soundbops aims to make music accessible to all children, together with all the educational, social and developmental benefits that music brings. Their revolutionary new musical instrument lets children take apart and build up the basic building blocks of music and prepares them for a lifetime of musical enjoyment, supported by the Soundbops music course that teaches children as young as three how to read, play and enjoy music.

The Design Museum is the world’s leading museum devoted to contemporary architecture and design. It has staged over 100 exhibitions, welcomed over seven million visitors and showcased the work of some of the world’s most celebrated designers and architects including Paul Smith, Zaha Hadid, Jonathan Ive, Frank Gehry, Eileen Gray and Dieter Rams.

The first batch of Soundbops will arrive in time for Christmas, and is expected to sell out very quickly. Soundbops is available exclusively from the Soundbops website at