Friday, September 28, 2012

The Holiday Gift Guide Part II: Trains, Fairies, and Lil' Artists

If you missed the first part of the Tansy Dolls Holiday Gift Guide, you might want to check it out.  For one, there are some great shops listed that you should check out!  And two, you can earn an extra entry into the Holiday Gift Guide Giveaway by sharing Part I on your Facebook wall.  What's that?  You didn't know there was a giveaway?   Let's see if we can remedy that!  One lucky reader who enters the Tansy Doll Holiday Gift Guide Giveaway will win $30.00 to put towards any ONE shop featured in the 6 part series gift guide. All you have to do is click here and enter by following the directions.  As each part of the gift guide goes live, there will be additional ways to earn entries, so you'll want to keep checking back!

Here's a reminder of the schedule:
Sept 14 - Waldorf Inspired Toys
Sept 28 - Transportation, Fairies, and Lil' Artists
Oct 12 - Clothing and other Wearables
Oct 26 - Tiny Treasures
Nov 9 - Pamper Thyself
Nov 23 - TBA

Today's gift guide is inspired by three fabulous children that I am blessed to have in my life: Max, Stella, and Aria.  If you've been following along on our blog you probably recognize the names.  But just in case you don't...Max is Cady's son, Stella is Lesley's daughter, and Aria is my daughter.


Max is a train aficionado and has a huge train collection.  Amongst his train collection is the usual suspects...Thomas and his friends, but Max has branched out over the years to include Dinosaur Train, Lego Trains, and various other train toys.  He loves trains so much that for at least a few years there he believed he was a train.  I think that belief is starting to wane, but I don't know that his love of trains ever will.  In fact, if anything I think his love of trains is growing as his knowledge about real trains expands.  If you have a train lover in your life, you'll want to check out these great train items I found.

Gary Murphy of Circatoys makes these fabulous wood toys from simple shapes that can be assembled and disassembled with threaded nuts and pegs for hours of creative and imaginative fun.  They are so beautifully handcrafted, that I seriously think I want a set just for myself.  The train and cart set is $59.00 and comes with 53 pieces. He doesn't appear to have a Facebook page, but he does have a website.  Check out some of his other designs at

You have two options if you think this would be a perfect gift for your little train lover.  You can either purchase the completed playhouse for $195.00 or the pattern for $18.00.  I think this would make a perfect hiding or nap spot for any train enthusiast!  And if your kid is not particularly into trains, she makes them in other themes as well.  I'm rather partial to the pirate ship playhouse!  Check out her Facebook at

3. On-the-go Train Mat by Beeps' Peeps
When you're a serious train lover like Max, you can't let traveling slow you down.  This on-the-go train mat features two bays to hold your child's favorite trains (fits Thomas, Brio, and other similarly sized trains) and a raised bridge!  Follow Beeps' Peeps on facebook at

4. Train Tunnel Kit by toolboxkids
For just $14.00 your train lover can design and paint his/her own train tunnel!!  Seriously, how cool is this!?  Shhh...don't tell Max, but I think this is going to be one of his gifts.  It combines several of his interests: Trains and Crafting.  Also check out the Aircraft Carrier Playset Kit!  Awesome! Follow toolboxkids on Facebook at

5. The Bigger-than-life Train by ForeverAfter
If you really want to make a HUGE impact, get your train lover this HUGE wooden train!  The engine is 16 1/2" long, 11.25" wide and 14 1/2" tall to the top of the smoke stack.  With the two cars, the length is just over 43".  At $175, the price is pretty fabulous for a toy that will surely be passed down for generations.  You can even pick your own accent color, so no worries if you train lover prefers a different color over blue.  And you should definitely check out the other products.  The wooden camera and play-food are simply fabulous!  They do not appear to have a Facebook page, but I'm sure they are happy to talk to you via Etsy. 
Stella is a gal of many interests so it was hard to narrow it down to just one, but I decided to go with fairies and gnomes.  She really does love them but the real reason I went with that particular theme is that she reminds me of a garden fairy or maybe a little sprite herself; delightful and impish at the same time.  For her fourth birthday, she had a grand fairy garden party complete with toadstool floor pillows, wands, and birds' nests.  I rather sort of think that fairies, gnomes, sprites, and all those little mystical creatures embody the very innocence and wonder of childhood.  I also think that the items I found will help bring a little more magic into your child's world.

 1. Fairy in a Bottle Necklace by GeekOUTlet
For just a mere $20.00 you can give your fairy loving child a fairy in a bottle to wear around his/her neck! You select the color.  This one would be great for older children, especially older children who like to play video games.  While I think any fairy lover would appreciate his/her own little fairy to tote around, these particular ones are inspired by the fairies from The Legend of Zelda.  And you HAVE to check out her other items if you consider yourself a geek.  She also carries Super Mario Bro. stars, resident evil, and Harry Potter themed jewelry (think potions) and other geeky gear.  Personally, I think my stocking NEEDS the glow in the dark glass orb galaxy necklace!  Don't miss out on updates, follow

2. Gnome Doll by Riley Construction
What fairy garden is complete without a few gnome friends?  Each gnome is $48.00 and is made from a combination of wool felt, ecofelt, and fleece.  And while you're in her shop you should pick up some mushroom dolls!  So cute!!  Follow her shop on Facebook at

3. Little Mushroom House and Gnome by Rjabinnik
The whole shop is filled with delightful hand carved wood toys, painted with food grade paints, and finished with beeswax.  The prices vary but you can pick up a single figure for about $9.00.  These mushroom house and gnome sets retail for $16.60 for each set so make sure to select the color you want.  It also looks like the shop takes custom orders, but give them at least a month; so order early! Their Facebook page is

4. Big Gnome Tree Fort by Willodel
Carved from Aspen and sealed with beeswax and natural oils, this 9.5" tall and 7" wide tree fort is sure to delight your child.  This particular one costs $82.00, but she makes a variety in different shapes and sizes so you should check out the entire store.  Now, I wonder....can she make me one in my size?  Follow Willodel on Facebook at

Lil' Artists
If you've been checking out the Art with Aria blog posts, then you probably already know that I have a little artist on my hands.  Since she was a very young child, she preferred to create her own pictures and drawings rather than use coloring books.   Our walls are plastered in artwork and our shelves packed with art supplies. My child is easily distracted by noise and activity but sit her in front of paper and hand her some paints and she suddenly becomes engrossed with her task at hand.  If you have a little artist in your life, you'll want to check out some of these great supplies! 

A tube of five 4oz tubs of play clay retails for $21.99.  The play clay is made from gluten free flour and organic essential oils. This set includes lavender, sweet orange, bergamot, lemongrass, and geranium.  You can also buy cardamom and chamomile separately.  Or you can splurge and pick up a pack of all seven colors plus a maple roller and 3 cookie cutters for $38.00.  Follow her on Facebook at

A pack of seven hazel crayons retails for $13.33 or you can grab just one for $2.08.  These wax crayons are made from locally sourced Hazel.  The chunky size makes them perfect for little hands to hold and almost impossible to break!  While Aria has never really shown an affinity towards crayons, I think these ones just might make her change her mind.  If you happen to be a crafty parent, check out the wood buttons.  *drool*  Follow the shop on Facebook at for updates.

Every artist needs a special little tote to carry along his/her art supplies.  This little tote retails for $46.47 and is made from recycled and repurposed materials. me a favor and don't buy this particular one!  Aria's favorite animal happens to be an elephant so I rather think this one was made just for her.  ;)  The shop is actually a social cooperative located in Venice, Italy and they specialize in reclaimed and repurposed household goods and accessories.  Check out their fish backpacks, seriously adorable stuff.  Follow their Facebook page at

This kit retails for $29.95 and comes with six earth colors and biodegradable mixing cups.  The powdered paint is made primarily from naturally colored clay collected from the ground and is both eco-friendly and non-toxic.  Powdered paint gives you flexibility in making your paint in the consistency of your liking. Follow the shop on Facebook at for art ideas and updates.

$10.00 will get you four colors of your choice.  We haven't tried modeling beeswax, but this one will definitely be in Aria's stocking this Christmas.  Modeling beeswax becomes pliable with the warmth of your hands and inspires creativity and imagination in children and adults alike.  Twinkle of My Eye doesn't have a Facebook page, but the shop has impeccable feedback.

How fabulous were these finds?!!  Who needs to shop big box stores when there are so many great small businesses out there selling high quality and unique products?  If you shop at any of the stores or "like" any of their Facebook pages, be sure to let them know you heard about them through the Tansy Dolls Holiday Gift Guide.  Make sure to check back for more lovely gift ideas on Oct 12.  I'm excited about that one.  Time to showcase some of my favorite handmade clothing and accessory shops as well as discover new ones!  And don't forget to enter the Holiday Gift Guide Giveaway for a chance to win $30.00 towards one of the shops listed in our 6 part Tansy Doll Holiday Gift Guide.


  1. Great idea to create this list, ladies! You are saving me a ton of time searching for gift ideas. Thanks!

  2. Oh my goodness - The Gnome Dolls by Riley Construction!!! Eeeeeek! I may have to adopt a couple (because, seriously, how can I choose e just one?) - Lesley

  3. The modeling wax is such a neat idea!

    1. I know, that modeling wax is so cool, right?! I'm getting some for Aria for sure! :D

  4. You're very welcome, Jessie! It was fun to put the list together.
    Leslie, right?! They are super cute. The mushroom dolls are cute too!!

  5. Thank You for the wonderful info.
    I LOVE the Gnome Houses...
    BIG HUGS to You...

  6. Those are also a good gift ideas it can also good gift for kids and for moms because it is also a perfect home decor.