Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Unique Heirloom Quality Toys
Getting lost in the Toys R Us' of the world can add to the head ache of gift giving during the holiday season. Sure there's amazon where you can have it delivered straight to your door (I'm a big Amazon supporter you guys), but sometimes you just want to give a special gift. One you're not going to have to wrestle another parent to the ground over on Black Friday! So this Christmas why not shop small and give unique heirloom quality gifts to all the kiddos in your life. Not only will you make their day, but you could make a small shop owners day as well! Some of these shops have powerful messages behind their products and some even support a great cause. So check out my list I've compiled of truly unique and special gifts your little ones are sure to treasure. Be sure to check out my Pinterest Board on the topic as well, each item pinned links back to the shop's site or their Instagram account making it easy for you to shop!
Games, Puzzles and Cognitive Toys
Giving a gift that works the brain is a win win for both parents' and kids'. Bonus points when it's heirloom quality and looks like it came straight from Santa's work shop! Below is a list of small shops and some of their special items' I've chosen to highlight below.
1. This & That
I had the honor of meeting these awesome shop owners at Chip and Joanna's Silobration this year in Waco. They are a family owned shop and their little ones even came to the event! Their puzzles, tic-tac-toe, and matching games are truly one of a kind that can be handed down from generation to generation. Check out their site for lots of fun one-of-a-kind pieces.
photos curtsey of This & That Etc. on Instagram
2. Grimms Wooden Toys
Grimms' has lots of wooden toys sure to support your child's cognitive development! My favorite is their color sorting toys! They're also look pretty sitting on your child's shelf!
3. Uncle Goose Blocks
Blocks blocks and more blocks, but these are more than just blocks. They're teaching tools! Uncle Gooses blocks (or should I say Uncle Geese ?!) range from sets that teach the states and their abbreviations, to American Sign Language, to my personal favorite "Women Who Dared Blocks" that teach names and faces of different important women throughout history!
5. Banner Toys
Rattles in the shape of states, building blocks, Alphabet Learning Tiles, Animal push toys, Stackers, Yoyo's etc! This store also specializes in heirloom quality wooden toys that support early cognition!
Dolls and Stuffed Creatures
The shops highlighted below make gorgeous, high quality, one-of-a kind stuffed creations. These works of art will help foster your child's imagination, decorate their room nicely, and even look good in pictures!
1. Bertie Blue
This sister shop (both teachers !!). Designed one of a kind heirloom quality sea creatures out of recycled materials! Each creature has a cleverly thought out name and their fabrics can be customized! Use a material that is near and dear to you or the child's heart and even have their name monogramed on it for just an additional $5.00! These ladies are the sweetest and will not disappoint you with their customer service or product! Their currently on vacation getting ready for the holiday season and all the craft fairs they'll be participating in, but follow them on Instagram, Facebook and Etsy to see when they'll reopen! As with any shop make sure and get custom orders in early for the holiday season!
Photo's curtesy of Bertie Blue Shop on Instagram
2. Hazel Village
Another small shop I had the pleasure of meeting while at Silobration! Their dolls and animals make the perfect companions for little ones! Each has a clever thought out name and story and can be customized with different outfits to mix and match! Give your kids a Hazel Village stuffed toy and they'll sure to bring them along on all their adventures!
3. Cuddle + Kind
These stuffed Dolls and Animals by Cuddle + Kind are a d o r a b l e and this shop gets an A+ in the Philanthropy department! For every doll purchased you help feed 10 families in need! Each character is available in two different sizes so they make a great gift for little ones as well as bigger ones as well.
Photos curtesy of Cuddleandkind on Instagram
The cutest little stuffed mice, bunnies and...."Gingers"?!? Yes this little shop has a line of stuffed red head dolls; so they get major points in my book. Except for maybe calling them Gingers (I'm not a big fan of that term). The Mice are my personal favorite some coming with match box beds even! Shop here and follow them on Instagram!
Photos curtesy of Maileg on Instagram
These best friend shop owners set out to reinvent the "lovey" Blanket/stuffed animal combo by designing each creature based on real life inspiration around a positive life skill with the intention to promote positive attachments during the bedtime routine. Their site reads, "For parents, they are a resource for how to teach life skills and build positive attachments during the cherished bedtime routine. For children, they are magical best friends, ready to be snuggled, through all of childhood's wild adventures." The Slumberkin options are Big Foot, a Fox, Yeti, and a Sloth and are available here in different colors!
Photos curtsey of Slumberkins and gypsyjones_ on Instagram
6. Unicorn Garden Dolls
Unicorns are very in if you haven't noticed! These cute little stuffed unicorns foster hours of imaginative play and are gorgeous to boot! They make great stocking stuffers since they're small. Is your child not a unicorn fan? They have other cute options as well, just check out their Etsy shop! Perfect for the child that likes to bring trinkets everywhere they go!
Photos curtesy of Unicorngardendolls on Instagram
7. Jess Brown Dolls
These are a bit of an investment, but if you have a budding fashionista or appreciate a stuffed toy that will add flare to the decor in your child's room, these dolls by Jess Brown are so worth it! Truly heirloom, truly one-of-a-kind and gorgeous!
Photos curtsey of Jessbrowndesign and jadestell on Instagram
8. Candy Kirby Designs
This shop makes swaddles and baby clothes, but they also have gorgeous dolls as well! These dolls sport adorable tutu dresses and a bow to boot! Congrats to this shop, they just found out their dolls will now be in Nordstrom!
9. The Doll Kind
These fabulous dolls come with tokens that kids are encouraged to give to others as gestures of kindness. For each doll sold a doll is donated to a child less fortunate so you can feel good about giving back when you shop with The Doll Kind this holiday season!
Photos curtesy of Thedollkind on Instagram
Imaginative and Creative Play
Give a gift that encourages creativity and play!
1. Ollie Ella
Two of my favorite items from Ollie Ella are the Holdie House, a doll house that packs up and can be carried where ever and the Playpa coloring mats. The Holdie House is a simple and class design that can be painted or left as is. It's perfectly Gender neutral and simple. A doll house that can be handed down to multiple generations! The Playpa coloring mats or rolls are 26 FT long and themed for your child to decorate, color, put stickers on, drive cars across, and stomp dinosaurs through! Pair it with the Pollie Shelf for functional and stylist storage and easy accessibility! Ollie Ella also makes the most adorable Luggy Baskets (with wheels) and Piki Baskets (Picnic
2. Green Bean Toys
Wooden Trains and rolling animals. Picture the toys our parents or even grandparents played with! Simple, classic and quality! Shop Green Bean toys in their Etsy shop here
3. Damhorst Toys
Damhorst makes several different kinds of unique toys, but my personal favorite from them is their "Automoblox" my son will definitely be receiving one of those this Christmas! This also fits in the cognitive, puzzle category!
4. Little Rose & Co
Little Rose & Co's shop on Etsy makes the cutest wooden cameras in a variety of colors among other adorable things that will help your child's imagination run wild! Stylish and completely adorable, just imagine your little photographer running around with this around their neck asking for your picture! Order deadlines for this shop to receive before Christmas is November 15th so hurry!
Images curtsey of Little_rose_and_co on Instagram
Last but certainly not least.....
Adorable kid friendly decorations
My daughter absolutely loves to decorate her room and she is the most festive member of our family! Why not give some adorable decorations for your future interior designer. If you request these from Santa perhaps he could use them to decorate the living room to add flare to all the toys Christmas morning!
1. The bees knees shoppe
I also had the honor of meeting this husband wife team at Silobration. My client's shop was literally sandwiched between two of the sweetest family owned and operated shops! Funny thing was that I had purchased Valentines decorations from them for my pink and red loving daughter! The Bees Knees Shoppe makes the most adorable and creative, kid friendly decorations I've ever seen! My daughter loves to decorate her room in them! The way Christmas was always done at my house is presents from my parents were wrapped and opened Christmas Eve. Santa's gifts were always displayed like a store front Christmas morning. Wouldn't it be so cute if you purchased decorations and used them to add some extra flare to Santa's loot Christmas morning?
Photos curtsey of Thebeeskneeshop on Instagram
Are there any adorable toy shops you frequent? Have you purchased from any of the shops mentioned or do you plan to? A big thanks to all the brands mentioned that were willing to work with me on this article and let me use their fabulous pictures!