SEATTLE, Wash. /eNewsChannels/ — NEWS: Seattle-based Georgian Wooden Toys is making its entire collection of beautiful handmade wooden toys available nationally via its new online store. The old-world style toys, made in the country of Georgia, on the Black Sea, are sold exclusively in North America by the Seattle company.
“These are not your ordinary toys,” said Georgian Wood Toys store owner Dolores Rose Dauenhauer. “These are handmade, smooth to touch, lovely to look at, and perfect for letting a child’s imagination roam. We carry 700 different toys — animals, birds, trains, fairy-tale figures — some painted and some unpainted. Many of the toys are rounded, which not only highlights the wood grain but feels wonderful to hold.”
How the Georgian-made heirloom toys got to Seattle is quite a tale. A friend of the owner, who visited Georgia, was so taken by the toys when she saw them in a small toy store that she met the group of artists who made them. She convinced Dauenhauer to try to sell them in her Seattle book store; in 2000, the store commissioned one box of toys on trial.
“The toys sold out almost immediately,” Dauenhauer said. “Customers raved about them. A typical comment was, ‘They are more beautiful that all the other wooden toys I am familiar with from Europe, and these artists have been able to capture the inner soul quality of the animals.’ Word spread by mouth. We didn’t need to advertise.”
By 2001, Dauenhauer became the sole distributor of the toys in North America.
“There is something about these charming toys that captivates children,” one Seattle parent said. “These toys are little gems and our kids love them! My youngest child has a lot of toys, but he reaches first, every time, to play with his Georgian wood train.”
Dauenhauer noted that the toys are crafted from local white maple, birch, or alder; all the paints used are organic; the toys are spittle-tight; and they can be washed. “This last point is important with little children.”
The toys are also often purchased by collectors, and Dauenhauer expects that collectors will make up a good part of the online business.
More information on Georgian Wooden Toys: http://georgianwoodentoys.com/ .
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