Today, I would like to introduce you to our newest Natural Suburbia sponsor, Armadillo Dreams and their beautiful wooden treasures that they sell in their Etsy shop.
Tell us about the beginnings of your business and how it has developed and grown.
Armadillo Dreams began as a way for us to combine our skills into an etsy shop that we could run together. I (Dustin) found a love for woodworking after building our chicken coop, and Amanda wanted a child centered creative outlet. We thought it might help to bring in a little income on the side and a way to provide our kids with natural toys on a limited budget. The success we were able to achieve in our first year of business far exceeded our expectations! After having gotten through the 2011 holiday season (whew) we are now working on more new toys, expanding the wood shop and preparing to launch our own shop/blog on http://armadillodreams.com. Our main goal in 2012 is to turn Armadillo Dreams into a sustainable business that can support our family financially.
Who or what is your inspiration?
Our two children are our hugest inspirations. We have a daughter named Lucy who is almost 5 and a son named Lincoln who is 1 ½. Watching them play and imagine gives us lots of ideas for toys. We live in beautiful Central Oregon where we are surrounded by forest, desert, lakes, rivers, mountains and the Pacific Ocean just a few hours drive away. Being in nature is always inspiring.
What is your creative process and how long have you been creating these beautiful wooden treasures?
We have been making handmade wooden toys for almost a year and a half. Amanda comes up with a lot of the designs for the toys. She never knows when inspiration will strike and is constantly inspired by little things – just this or that. She usually will let an idea marinate in her head for a while until she is ready to try it out (with gusto). I like to tease her for being impulsive but she insists she’s not. Once the idea is drawn out on paper the design is transferred onto wood and we work as a team turning the idea into a physical toy.
What do you enjoy most about your business?
My number one favorite thing about our shops by far is all of the great feedback we receive from our customers! I love receiving it and reading over it. It’s really nice when people take time out of their day to tell a shop owner how much they enjoyed the products they received or to tell about their shopping experience. I especially enjoy the stories of their children playing with our toys. In my previous professions I had never heard such nice things from customers. I used to have way more negative customer interactions than positive interactions. To be able to devote myself to Armadillo Dreams is like a breath of fresh air. The world needs more people like Etsy customers!
Are there any new and exciting products you would like to tell us about?
We just recently launched our Spring/Easter line. Spring starts on March 20th (our daughter’s birthday!) and these items are perfect for spring nature tables and as gifts for Easter baskets! We always have new product lines for each season. We also come out with fun, new toys for every season and many holidays. Our product line is constantly evolving so there’s always something new!
Isn’t this Pirate Ship just gorgeous!!
You can also find Armadillo Dreams here:
Armadillo Dreams is giving away this beautifully made, wooden Montessori Weather Set to one reader.
The winner will be chosen on Tuesday, the 13th of March and will be announced here in this post.
PS If you are reading this post in Google Reader in your email inbox, you need to click on the title of the post and it will bring you here to the actual blog post and you will be able to comment there to enter.
These are fine toys. I like when something so simple is so much fun
Please could you email me your postal details:)
Thanks so much
Armadillo Dreams is offering a special discount to Natural Suburbia readers! Enter code “NS312” during checkout to receive 10% off of your order!
Thank you so much to both Dustin and Amanda for joining us here today and sharing their thoughts and wonderful work with us.I wish you all the best with your beautiful business!
If you would like to become a sponsor here on Natural Suburbia, you can contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org