maliabyers1 on Jan 30, 2015
Cute little teether and I love that it is hand made!!!!
Behind the Toys
*** About Us ***
Armadillo Dreams is run by Dustin and Amanda Cowell. We have lived in Central Oregon most of our lives. We met during sophomore year in high school. After graduation we moved to Portland, Oregon for about 3 years and then moved back. We got married in 2004, had our daughter Lucy in 2007 and had our son Lincoln in 2010.
*** Our History ***
Armadillo Dreams started in late 2010. We started the shop after Dustin discovered a passion for woodworking during the summer that year while building a backyard chicken coop. We always wanted more wooden toys for our children, but didn’t have a lot of money. Amanda had already been selling on Etsy for about 5 years with her shop (Wild Plums: http://wildplums.etsy.com). We combined Amanda’s artistic skills and knowledge of Etsy with Dustin's passion for woodworking and Armadillo Dreams was born.
No matter how big Armadillo Dreams gets we plan to keep operations small and home based. Our wood shop is in our backyard (a large converted shed). We also have a two car garage that was remodeled into a family room that serves as an indoor work area. A lot of work also takes place on our dining room table. We like it that way.
*** Our Process ***
We hand draw all of the designs for our toys. We then cut them out of hard maple in our backyard wood shop. Each toy goes through up to five sanding processes to make them super smooth on all sides. Next we wood burn all of the details so they will never fade. At this point we paint some of our toys with AP certified non-toxic watercolor, while others are left natural. Lastly, we seal the toys with natural beeswax polish.
*** About Our Toys ***
We get our hard maple from a local lumber yard who sources it from a sustainable supplier. Each toy is made from a different piece of wood, so grain and slight color variation may occur. Our wooden toys are hand detailed and each has its own personality, but will look very close to the original. Painted toys receive a light wash of paint instead of completely coating them, so you can still see the wood grain for a more natural texture. All of our designs are hand drawn so you won't find wooden toys like ours anywhere!
*** Safety ***
We don't recommend giving our painted toys or small toys to children who are still placing objects in their mouths. Our painted toys are painted with AP certified non-toxic paint and sealed with natural beeswax polish, so they are safe if a child does happen to put a toy in their mouth.
Owner, Maker, Customer Service, Shipping, Marketing, Husband, Father
Dustin does the cutting, sanding, some painting, polishing, packaging, shipping, customer service and marketing. He also enjoys fishing, cycling, gardening and movies.
Owner, Maker, Designer, Wife, Mother
Amanda is the artist. She makes all the patterns, wood burns, and paints. She designs our graphics for web and print. She also chases around our children, has three other Etsy shops, is learning fishing, reads and gardens. She is Super Woman!
Daughter, Toy Tester
Lucy is amazingly smart, creative, is an advanced reader and has a huge love of the outdoors. She enjoys spending time with her Dad in the wood shop.
Son, Toy Tester
Lincoln is a very active and fun toddler. He has a big personality for a little guy. He enjoys dinosaurs, planes and loves the outdoors. He likes to say "shoes... go... bye bye".
We use poplar wood for almost everything in our shop. Each item is carefully cut, sanded smooth, and the edges are slightly rounded and hand sanded to make sure they're friendly for little hands. Details are wood-burned by hand so they'll never wear away. Some items are painted with a wash of AP certified non-toxic watercolor paints, but most are left natural so children can project their own colors onto them, stimulating imagination! We finish each item with a beeswax/mineral oil wood cream which is rubbed in and buffed for sheen and to help seal the wood. Since we use watercolor paints for color, items are not suitable for use in water.
Accepted payment methods
- Accepts Etsy gift cards
- Money Order