Review of North Star Toys, located in Questa, New Mexico. Tim & Connie have been making toys since 1979, which happens to be the year I was born! Categories of toys: Rainbow Collection, People Mover, Toys for Wee Ones, Baby’s First Animals, Classics, Legendary Creatures, Creative Play Sets, Big Rollie Dinosaurs, Big Rollie Vehicles, Little Rollie Vehicles & Animals, Magic & Myth, Pull Toys, Camera, Extra People, Rubber Band Powered, Nativity.
They sent me the People Mover in the photo, which is made of Alder & Birch wood. I love that my son (he’ll be 3 in March) recognized the little wooden pegs as people immediately. He’s REALLY in to nursery rhymes right now, and has been having so much fun playing with the people. I’ve seen him playing with them while singing: Monkey’s Jumping on the Bed, 10 in the Bed, The Wheels on the Bus, Humpty Dumpty, and on & on. That’s the thing I’ve come to love about ‘simple’ toys, they really do inspire the imagination! We’ve worked on counting to 10, taking the people in & out, and arranging them by colors. Of course when he plays with Dada, they work on launching the bus off ramps & crashing it into other cars, etc The people are available unpainted as well, you can order extra people, and there are other vehicles such as boats that the people can be used with. The People Mover sells for $25.
The toy did come wrapped in a plastic cellophane wrapper. I know they wanted to keep all the people in the vehicle, and the clear plastic allows you to see the toy nicely. But, I’d rather see a beautiful wooden toy wrapped in a cloth bag, as most of the other wooden toys I’ve ever received have been. I asked them about this and here’s what Tim told me: “The bags we use for our toys are cellophane – regenerated cellulose, a plant based product. One of our primary goals is to use products which are locally made or made in America.”
From their website: “At North Star Toys we know children deserve safe, well-made toys. All our designs reflect this primary concern. We personally make each toy from start to finish in our workshop located in the mountains in Questa, New Mexico. Our lumber comes from the US, and our parts follow the federal and voluntary guidelines governing small parts, sharp points, and chemical make-up. Our toy finishes are safe. Our toys are simply coated with a non-toxic, food grade mineral oil which meets or exceeds requirements by the USFDA, US Pharmacopeia, US Dept. of Agriculture and is certified Kosher and Pareve. In some of our toys we have painted passengers. There is no lead in the paints or finishes used on our toys.” For the record, mineral oil is derived from petroleum. Is that terrible? Not necessarily. It’s the refining & other processes petroleum goes through to make it into gasoline that aren’t eco-friendly. It is a natural product.
I thank them very much for sharing one of their hand-crafted toys with my family, and also for making quality wooden toys here in the USA. They sent me a hand-written note thanking me for my site & letting me know they just became Grandparents for the 1st time & get to see their Grandchild almost every day which is obviously very important to them—congratulations Tim & Connie! And keep the great toys coming!!
Please visit their website & FB pages for more info!
FB page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/North-Star-Toys/158946754139242