Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Meet the Artist and Giveaway: Kathleen from Smiling Tree Toys

Next up for grabs is a gift certificate to Smiling Tree Toys!


I really think you're going to have a lot of fun spending this gift certificate.
How do I know? Justin and Kathleen sent me one of these adorable little trucks.  
It is simply amazing! The edges are remarkably smooth, I've never seen or felt anything like it.

organic toy car, a natural wooden toy - OLD-SCHOOL TRUCK - wood baby toys, eco-friendly for toddler, kids, preschoolers
Buy it here
I love the contrast of the dark against the lighter wood. And it glides across the floor with such ease.
You will not find anything like it anywhere else. I guarantee you'll be satisfied with your purchase, 
or in this case your free gift!

I'll be showing you  more of these funtastic creations 
as we get to know the team behind them a little more. 

Q: Tell us a little about yourself. 
A: Our Etsy profile tells you more about us and what we were up to before Smiling Tree came to be. 

We created our Etsy shop to support our family by doing something that brings joy to others, is gentle on Mother Nature, and allows us to give back to our community (we donate to Peace Corps youth projects for every toy we sell). 

We love being work-from-home parents! The freedom to plan our daily schedules around play time, story time, and nap time is priceless.  And because the first few years of a little one’s life just fly by, we feel very blessed that we can earn a living while not missing a single moment of our daughter’s daily achievements and discoveries. 


natural wood TEETHING gift set - organic eco-friendly wooden teethers for farm loving baby, Barnyard animal toys, homegrown organic finish
Buy it here
The name Smiling Tree Toys reflects our love of and appreciation for Mother Nature.  Our toys wouldn’t exist without her, and so we wanted our name to pay homage to the trees that allow us to transform them into wooden fun for little ones.  The gorgeous grain patterns, coloring, and silky smoothness of organically finished hardwoods just can’t be beat!  We do everything in our power to keep our environmental footprint very small; we like to think that all of the earth-friendly things we do bring a smile to the trees we use. (see http://www.etsy.com/shop/smilingtreetoys/policy  for some of the ways that we’re eco-friendly) 


Q: What's it like working together?
A: Depends on the day (just kidding)!  It's exciting to be in business with your spouse and best friend - we get to celebrate shared victories, offer encouragement when one or the other needs it, and eat lunch together.  We make the effort to keep things light-hearted and personal so that "business" doesn't get in the way of enjoying each other's company and remembering why we're in this together.  Some days are harder than others, but all-in-all it certainly beats working a 9-5 job for somebody else! 


wooden PLAYGROUND pretend organic toys  - all natural safe non toxic, for montessori kids, original creative learning, imagination toys
Buy it here
Q: Where did you learn to woodwork? 
A: Justin's always been passionate about working with his hands and we both hold a deep admiration for trees and natural life.  Justin has lots of experience building houses, and over the years he's gradually taught himself the more detailed work of making toys, cutting boards, and other wooden items. 

Q: Your toys are lovely, such a wonderful idea. What was your inspiration? 
A: Our design inspiration comes to us in many, sometimes unexpected, ways.  Often it’s when we’re playing with our daughter, nieces, and nephews.  Other times it’s every day household items and the way our little one interacts with them that get the creative juices flowing. (You know, all of the things that aren’t made for kids but that they insist on playing with instead of their toys…) 


20 piece organic wood blocks - all natural wooden toys, building block set, eco friendly for montessori toddlers, kids, babies
Buy it here
 Q: What do you think sets your shop apart from other similar shops on Etsy? 
A: We're in love with what we do (we're so lucky!), and that shows through in all facets of our shop - original designs, attention to detail, our story, the "human" factor that's always present in our descriptions, extra-friendly customer service, and that we use our very own homegrown organic wood finish.  It's comprised of camelina oil grown on Kathleen's family farm (camelina is a relative of flaxseed), and beeswax from our bee hives.  Read more about it on our blog


natural wooden xylphone toy - handmade musical piece for the montessori baby, earth friendly with homegrown organic finish
Buy it here
Q: Any new products in the making? 
A: Oh, where do we begin?  We’ve got oodles of new and different design ideas up our sleeves.  Like most small business owners, our minds never stop running. Justin even keeps a small notepad on his nightstand for those “aha!” moments that come to him in the middle of the night! Our big secret: beginning in early 2012, we're taking Smiling Tree to a whole new level! We'll be offering personalized toys and will be adding lots more educational items with numbers, letters, and other fun stuff.  

Q: Any advice for new sellers on Etsy? 
A:  Tell your story, be friendly and approachable, pay attention to details, practice, practice, practice, take great, well-lit photos, and stay positive.

wood rattle for baby, all natural wooden toy, organic finish, teether safe, fun for eco-friendly baby, toddler, children
Buy it here

Q: Just for fun, what's the last thing you bought yourself on Etsy? 
A:  So glad you asked!  I bought this t-shirt from New Duds for Justin for his recent 30th birthday. He loves it!


Okay, now head on over and check out Smiling Tree Toys 
if you haven't already.

Now, are you ready to find out how to win a gift certificate to this awesome shop? 
I thought so. Here goes!


How to Enter the Giveaway:
1. Follow this blog (Mandatory)
and leave a comment here saying you did.

and leave a separate comment here saying you did.

3. Follow Kathleen & Justin's Blog via GFC
and leave a separate comment here saying you do.

Make sure to bookmark my giveaways page if you haven't already, 
and READ THE FINE PRINT

Fine print:
Only 3 entries per household please
Giveaway ends November 30th at midnight PST
Winner will be chosen by random.org
Entries will be validated
Winner will be announced here
Winner will have 3 days to contact me, 
after which a new winner will be chosen
Must be 18 years of age or older to enter

Recently I have had to choose a second winner for quite a few giveaways 
due to lack of an email response from my winners. 
If you really want to win, check your SPAM folders often, or better yet 
add moderntypography@aol.com to your address book. Good luck!

50 comments:

  1. I follow your blog via email (kirsten.sorensen@gmail.com)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I "liked" Smiling Tree Toys on Facebook

    ReplyDelete
  3. i follow this blog (dramblenaite eta gmail)..:)

    ReplyDelete
  4. i liked smiling trees in facebook as Da ki.:)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I follow this blog with gfc.
    Lisa Otis
    lisa.otis6 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am now following Kathleen and Justin's blog.
    Lisa Otis
    lisa.otis6 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  7. I follow thru GFC
    herent@comcast.net

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm following you via GFC : )

    Rachel
    vintagequeengf(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  9. I"m following Kathleen and Justin's blog via GFC

    Rachel
    vintagequeengf(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  10. following as eugenia g via GFC


    bohemian_sin(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  11. liking as madalina bibi on facebook

    ReplyDelete
  12. following this blog via GFC

    passions0123@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  13. liked smiling tree toys on fb

    passions0123@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  14. following kathleen and justins blog via gfc

    passions0123@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  15. I follow on gfc.

    lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  16. I follow this blog via GFC

    danielleaknapp at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  17. I follow Kathleen and Justin's blog via GFC (Danielle Knapp)

    danielleaknapp at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  18. I would love to give some of the amazing wood toys to my nephew!

    ReplyDelete
  19. My Etsy shop.... jessvartanian.etsy.com

    ReplyDelete
  20. My Art portfolio .... jessvartanian.carbonmade.com

    ReplyDelete
  21. Following you sweet blog via GFC! (ksyshenka)

    Thank you for the chance!

    ksyshenka(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  22. I Like Smiling Tree Toys on Facebook and sent regards from you:

    https://www.facebook.com/smilingtreetoys/posts/272316162814580

    (oksana vladimirovna)

    ksyshenka(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  23. Follow Kathleen & Justin's Blog via GFC! (ksyshenka)

    Thank you for the chance!

    ksyshenka(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  24. New follower via GFC as Diana
    goldiez at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  25. Like Smiling Tree Toys on Facebook as Diana Z
    goldiez at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  26. Follow Kathleen & Justin's Blog via GFC as Diana.
    goldiez at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  27. I follow you here
    GFC name: Jenny
    twosisters8795 at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  28. follow you on facebook
    name: My dreams and my reality

    twosisters8795 at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  29. I follow Kathleen & Justin's Blog
    GFC name: Jenny

    twosisters8795 at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  30. I follow this blog!

    thecountryblossom at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  31. I like Smiling Tree Toys on facebook! Katy A.

    thecountryblossom at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  32. I follow Smiling Tree Toys blog!

    thecountryblossom at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  33. Following on GFC (Mimi Avila)

    ninjabunnyz at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  34. Liked on FB (Mimi Avila)
    ninjabunnyz at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  35. Following Kathleen & Justin's Blog via GFC (Mimi Avila)

    ninjabunnyz at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  36. GFC follower=Lyudmila
    lusizova at gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  37. Like Smiling Tree Toys on fb=Lyudmila Sizova
    lusizova at gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  38. Follow Kathleen & Justin's Blog = Lyudmila
    lusizova at gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  39. GFC: France Irish

    franceirish_c(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  40. Liked Smiling Tree Toys on FB
    https://www.facebook.com/franceirish

    franceirish_c(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  41. Following Kathleen & Justin's Blog via GFC
    GFC: France Irish

    franceirish_c(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  42. I follow you via GFC.
    Angie
    14earth at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  43. I like them via FB as Tofu Fairy.
    Angie
    14earth at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  44. I follow their blog via GFC.
    Angie
    14earth at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  45. I follow your blog!

    My email is on my blog:
    Born To Be Styled

    ReplyDelete
  46. I like Smiling Tree Toys on FB!

    My email is on my blog:
    Born To Be Styled

    ReplyDelete
  47. This giveaway has ended. Stay tuned for the announcement of the winner!

    ReplyDelete