Steiner Wooden Play Stand Toys
Today, I’d like to introduce you to a local business run by my friend, Sharon and her husband Dave.
Sharon and Dave make delightful Steiner wooden play stands for children, often seen in Waldorf kindergartens.
Children can use playstands in all kinds of play-
- to make cubbies,
- shop windows,
- walls for ‘homes’ or ‘home corner’ or ‘restaurants’
Laid on their side, they become
- to set up shops complete with a drive-thru.
Sharon also makes hand crafted fairy wings and tutu’s. Have a read and see what they get up to.
What was the impetus behind starting your own business, Sharon?
My husband handcrafted a beautiful pair of play-stands and a canopy for our children. Our friends and our local Steiner school liked them so much and we found ourselves receiving orders for them!
We now handmake beautiful Steiner wooden play stands and arches/canopies.Play stands are a fundamental feature in many Steiner/Waldorf play environments. Indoor or outdoor, they are often draped in silks and muslin or cotton play cloths and are commonly used by children to create endless imaginative play spaces from kitchens, ships, and cubby houses, to shops and theatres. Playstands encourage your children to play freely and creatively.Teachers use them for a multitude of uses in schools particularly for puppet shows and seasonal displays.
Our products are made from sustainable solid timber and finished with high quality waterbased finish which is non toxic and VOC-free. We go to the extreme to source products that are natural, sustainable, non-toxic and VOC free also. You can rest assured that our playstands are high quality, as well as totally safe for your children.
I also create exquisite handcrafted fairy wings and dragon wings for children and adults. I have always adored the mystery, magic, and beauty of fairies, dragonflies, and dragons. In order to transform into a fairy, dragon, or dragonfly one must possess ‘real’ wings. Upon searching I discovered this was not something that was easily bought. So, I set about making them.
Each pair of wings is custom-made to your desired shape and colour, handpainted with permanent watercolour paints, and hand embellished with high quality crystals, flowers, and feathers. All fabrics and ribbons are hand dyed and can be colour matched to wedding themes or dress fabrics. As the wings are individually handcrafted at least 4 weeks notice is generally required and possibly longer if a number of wings are required in the order. Wings are approximately $85 pair.
I hand make magical tutu’s for little girls from the finest quality diamond tulle. A large range of colours is available in any length from short and fluffy, to long and flowy. Tutus start at $40. Each pair of wings are a one of a kind piece of wearable artwork. Lovingly hand crafted and hand painted they are sturdy enough for hours of playful fluttering and can be hung on the wall for admiration as an exquisite decoration when not being worn.
How has being parents shaped/changed the way you approach your business?
Our business is very much a hobby business that has evolved in the past 2 years. I have always enjoyed craft but I didn’t realise how much I relied on tinkering away on all sorts of projects as my method of relaxation until our first child came along 5 years ago. He was a very demanding baby and I had no time for tinkering, and I soon found myself longing to be busy in craft projects.
Becoming a mother made me realise that craftwork makes me feel good, and is very important to my sense of achievement, so its something I just have to find time for. And now with two children under 5 we certainly don’t spend as much time as we would like creating, but we have found ways to squeeze it in whenever we can.
Has being a parent been a positive thing for your business? How have you overcome struggles?
I don’t think we ever overcame the lack of time issue, particularly during each babies first year. There were grabs of time here and there but never long enough to really get your mind into something. I found what helped most was to acknowledge and accept that our parenting style choice, and the fact that our gorgeous babes were very demanding. They were what mattered most at the moment and it would get easier in time. So while it wasn’t the right time for bigger craft projects during their first few years, we knew that little by little, our time would come again soon. And it has!
Now we plan the week ahead and take it in turns to have some time each week where we get to work on our projects, while the other looks after the kids.Having kids means you can do lots of other fun craft projects all the time. Our kids have a craft room full of boxes, cardboard rolls and bits and pieces, where we all regularly join in and make all sorts of creations.
What pieces of advice would you suggest to other parents thinking about embarking on a new venture?
- Make sure it’s something you love doing
- If your babies are demanding like mine were – don’t be too ambitious during their first year, it could lead to disappointment, but use this time instead for thinking, planning and pondering for the future!
Where can we buy your Playstands, fairy wings and magical tutu’s?
So far we have been selling our playstands, wings and tutu’s in our local area from Lismore to Tweed heads. We are happy to sell them outside this area if the buyer is happy to have them couriered.
To order or make an enquiry, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org