Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Wooden Delights!

My first exposure to wooden toys surprisingly came when I was pregnant and became interested in baby/kids stuff. For someone without much exposure to kids, cousins, or had little people to play with in general...what would I be doing at Toys R Us? Why would I go into that new toy store on the Drive when that new shwarma place was calling my name right? haha

Fastforward, I was pregnant and Dilly Dally just happened to open on the Drive. Wonderful kids store! Lots of beautiful items that bring back that nostalgic feeling (ie. that paddle with the rubber band attached to the ball). Here I first noticed the vast array of wooden delights, from play food, play kitchens, animals, stacking toys, and rattles. I LOVE the workmanship, the colours, the simplicity (but not the prices, oh well), and as an added bonus- it's a sustainable product.

Whenever i see a shelf of wooden toys, i picture a nice clean  organized play room with pretty, solid, toys on the shelves  vs. the explosion feeling I get when i walk into toys R us.  Whenever I see instruments, particularly a Xylophone, i can see Max banging on that thing and creating some sweet tolerable noise. Whenever I see puzzles, i'm like "Wow, that'll make him a genius!" Something about a mess pile of wooden toys that make them more forgivable!

Our first wooden toy was gifted to us for Christmas (mind you I requested this as part of a secret santa). I admit they're still in the box, just dying to be opened, but i'll let Max do this when he's old enough.

So there begins my current obsession. I almost don't even care to go into clothing shops- I want to look for baby boutiques and stores to check out the wooden selection!  Right now, I want to buy nearly everything I see. But since Max can't exactly play with most of the fun looking stuff yet, I honestly have to remind/tell myself that "now is not the time. don't tell yourself to stock up. Let him choose what he wants."

Where to find natural wooden toys in Vancouver (that i've been to):

Knotty Toys on Granville Island - The store of stores. LOVE. Best prices in my opinion
Dilly Dally Kids on Commercial Drive - excellent food and kitchen selections, as well as animals.
Lussobaby in North Van - Not too busy with kids running around
Dandelion Kids on Commercial Drive - not the greatest selection, but worth going to for other stuff
Little Earth consignment on Commercial Drive - lots of Melissa and Doug stuff. Some on consignment
Winners - Lots of Melissa and Doug stuff to choose from if you can look past the MESS
Chapters - Lots of Melissa and Doug and Manhattan Toys
Camelot Kids on Granville Island - lots of Haba Toys
Raspberry Kids - an online store, but you can pick up the stuff at their warehouse
Hip Baby on W. 4th - small in store selection, better website
TJ's Kids on SW Marine Drive or W. 4th - it's on the website, but i don't remember seeing in store
Go! Toys and Games at Oakridge - small but decent selection. Plan toys can be bought here too
Toys R Us - i haven't checked w. Broadway, but the Metro one has a pathetic small selection
Saf and Benjamin - small selection but stuff i also haven't seen around
Michaels  - small selection. even better priced when you have a Michaels coupon
Beansprouts - small selection but you can shop for other cool things at this consignment store
IKEA - some nice toys here! The MULA Bead roller coaster is popular!
Superstore - must be a new line, but they have some toys i wouldnt mind buying! well priced

Places I haven't been to yet:

Jack and Lola in North Van
Pebble on Arbutus
BC Playthings in North Van

if you know of anymore, let me know!

and last but not least. GARAGE SALES. Believe it or not, I bought my largest haul of wooden toys from a garage sale in North Van without breaking the bank!

these two are my all time favourite garage sale finds. Paid $2 for the bus, $4 for fishing set! 

Brands to look for:

Educo =====  Hape
Haba   =====  Manhattan Toys
Melissa and Doug ==== Superstore Brand
Plan Toys =====  Janod
Santoys =====  Le Toy Van
Grimms ===== Atelier Fischer
Goki ===== L'atelier du cheval du bois (canadian)
Holztiger =====  Sri Toys

name puzzles c/o Knotty Toys!


  1. Jack and Lola - North Van
    Westcoast Kids - Richmond
    and I think Pebble (on Arbutus) and Hip Baby also sell them!

  2. how exciting! i have added them to the list!

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