Thursday, May 13, 2010

Dragonfly Wands

We are enjoying the famous California sunshine here while we make our silk dragonfly wands. First, we dye the stuffed dragonflies in our own recipe of non-toxic turquoise dye. Then after they air dry, we spray them with emerald green to create their spots. The dragonflies are then attached to the wooden wand with a satin ribbon and ready to fly! They are perfect for flying through the sunlit spring days.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Happy Easter!

Here are some of the fun things we are up to for Easter. We've made a Nature Table, complete with fresh lilac branches, wooden bunnies, washi eggs, and of course, silks! And while we were dying our Easter eggs, we used the same food-safe dye to color some silk animals!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

What DO All Those Toys Do When the Owners are Away?

According to Timeless Toys in Chicago, it looks like they have a lot of fun without us!

Check out their clever video on their website - Timeless Toys

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

National Mom and Pop Day!

By Jay Jay
In honor of National Mom and Pop Day yesterday, we here are celebrating all week. Sarah's Silks has been a proud Mom and Pop operation for 15 years now. Sarah and Mike are here with us everyday, running the business and collaborating to make the best products possible.

Here an interview with one of our retailers run by mom Tracy Coe. Hazelnut Kids is a great online resource for natural toys of all kinds. What I love about them is that they provide so much information about the companies they represent. We are proud to be part of their business. Read on to learn more about Tracy and Hazelnut Kids.

Sarah's Silks: It’s obvious that you put a lot of effort into your business, how do you juggle being a mom and entrepreneur? Any tips for other working moms or small business owners out there?
Tracy: Work/Family balance is always a challenge. Some days work wins and some days family demands more attention. The home office (the dungeon, my family calls it) is where it gets tricky. I can't walk by the computer without checking email and then I get sucked right in and forget I was supposed to be finding clean socks for the kids! I hate giving advice to anyone, but something I do constantly is remind myself that my children will only be young once and I will have plenty of time to work when they no longer want me around.

Sarah's Silks: How did you get into the toy business?
Tracy: By accident, like most things in my life. When I was pregnant with my second child I began to read a lot about natural parenting and becoming more aware of the dangers of most children's toys, especially plastic ones. I was introduced to a wonderful lady named Sheri who created Hazelnut Kids just for parents like me who were looking for toys made of natural materials like wood, wool, organic cotton, and of course, silk. I was a loyal customer for four years and an advocate of safe, natural toys. So when Sheri decided to move on to other things my phone rang and here I am!

Sarah's Silks: What is the mission or philosophy behind Hazelnut Kids?
Tracy: provides a place for parents, grandparents, and friends to shop for beautiful, natural toys that are safe and feed the imagination of children. We are huge supporters of land conservation and donate 1% of all sales to local land conservancies as well as have one tree planted for each toy sold.

Sarah's Silks: At Sarah’s Silks, we believe in the importance and the magic of imaginative play. What other toys do you sell that really inspire open-ended play?
Tracy: The first toys to come to mind are the playkitchens and playfoods because my children have spent hours role playing with them. They pretend they are at the farmer's market, they take turns playing waiters and cooks in a restaurant, and we've been able to make some great math lessons playing market.
I have great memories of Sarah's Silk's also. Simple playsilks have been capes, skirts, a leg cast, you name it! And just yesterday, my daughter rediscovered her silk streamers and took them outside because it was a lovely day.

Sarah's Silks: I really love all the creative projects you have on your blog. Can you point us toward one project that you might take on for Easter?
Tracy: Not so much a project, but we love your idea of using a lime green playsilk instead of messy grass for the kids' Easter baskets. I'll be snagging two of them today before I head home.

Visit Tracy's website at Hazelnut Kids and her blog here.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Waldorf Philosophy at Home

By Jay Jay
The first time I walked into a Waldorf preschool classroom, I wanted to cry. Truly, when you step into one of the classes, you can see what a nuturing, warm environment it would be for your child. I wish that I had had that experience in my youth at schools! Please take a minute to read this blog interview with Sarah Baldwin at Bella Luna Toys. She very eloquently gives the reader a great overview of Waldorf early education as well as some excellent ideas for incorporating some of the best of these philosophies into your every day life. Even if your child doesn't attend a Waldorf school, we can all benefit from some of the thoughtful advice she has. Please check out the blog right here.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Fairy Skirts at Play

By Jay Jay
Our fairy skirts are one of the most popular items here at Sarah's Silks. I think it's a combination of the beautiful colors and soft, sumptuous silk that is so appealing to girls who love to dress up. A customer bought our skirts to use as a costume for the children's play. Here are a few pictures of the woodland fairies. Thank you, Dee Dee, for sending us these pictures! We love seeing the silks in play...

Dee Dee bought her skirts at Bella Luna Toys, please visit them for a wonderful selection of Waldorf-inspired and natural toys.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Good Ol' Stick...

By Jay Jay
The Stick! Is this the first toy ever? I think it is probably a close runner-up at least, the only competition I can think of being 'the rock'. I still play with sticks. You can poke, hit, draw, prod, and who knows what more with a simple stick. Sticks have been the walls of forts and fairy homes, the posts of leaf flags, the makings of a raft, swords and other dangerous weapons for probably as long as there have been humans. Now, this toy is finally being recognized! The National Toy Hall of Fame has inducted this ubiquitous little object. I think we can consider the stick as the first open-ended imaginative toy! What an inspiration for us...

Monday, February 1, 2010

Little Emma

By Jay Jay
Poor Sarah has been surrounded by boys for a long time! Not that boys aren't absolutely wonderful, but there is something special also for a mom to have a little girl, especially when you are the creator of silk fairy skirts and princess dresses. But now Sarah is lucky to have little Emma. Emma was adopted by Sarah's Brother-in-Law and wife last year, and has been a joyous addition to the whole family. It's exciting to have a little girl to dress up! One of Emma's favorite things in the world is her silk rainbow blanket. It was one of her special welcome gifts. Our soft, silky blankets often become a baby's lovey, and Emma has certainly been attached to it ever since her arrival!

Friday, January 29, 2010

String Games

By Jay Jay
I bet it seems like just yesterday for Sarah and Mike when their oldest son Josh was dressing up in all the silks and inspiring them to create more and more products. Now, Josh is a big 19 year-old and he is the one who has brought string games back to Sarah's Silks after much popular demand! Our string games are 100% Made in the US. We buy the nylon string from a manufacturer in the US. Then, Josh cuts them to length, seals the ends together and dyes them into a rainbow. We reintroduced them to our line in the Fall, and they have been a big hit. String games are a great way for kids to practice hand-eye coordination and dexterity without burning their eyes into a computer or tv screen. They are available at A Toy Garden or the new and improved Bella Luna Toys website.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Acorn Store

By Jay Jay
Ellen West at The Acorn Store was one of the first of our customers that I had visited. I was so impressed by the wonderland that is her little shop. The store is a haven for simple, creative toys in beautiful downtown Santa Monica, CA. Her space is small, but she certainly makes the most of every nook and cranny. You can't help but get swept away by the magic quality of her selections as soon as you walk in. But to be honest, the thing that was most impressive to me was Ellen herself. She is a sweet woman, and you can tell immediately that she loves children and her job. But don't let that fool you. She is very sharp, asks a million questions and truly cares about the products she promotes. I know that anything I buy from her store has surpassed her stringent quality, design and safety standards. We are proud to have The Acorn Store as one of our customers.

Check out the interview with Ellen at TD Monthly.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Remembering Haley...

By Jay Jay
The other day, we were working on our new catalog and trying to find a good picture of our baby blanket. Sarah started to tell me the story of Haley, one of Sarah's Silks' first models and friend of the family. Her story is truly inspiring. She was a fellow student at the Waldorf school here and a big fan of our silks. She was born deaf, but through hard work and a pure love of skating, she became a very accomplished ice skater. I hope everyone takes a minute to read about Haley's life. We all have busy days and nights, but it is good to take a break once in a while from your own life. Her story is touching and brings me perspective on my own life as well. Rest peacefully, Haley.

Please visit the website to read more: Haley's Story

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Time to restock! We are getting ready for the restock orders that retailers are working on right now. We dye all our sea and magic stuffed animals right here in our California office. It's fun when Carol has to dye big batches of fish and our other magic creatures. Here are some of the colorful characters hanging around while they dry.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Making Rainbow Streamers

By Jay Jay
Just a little insight as to how we make our very popular rainbow streamers. They are one of my favorite products, and I am so excited to announce that we will be introducing mini versions of the streamers for the Spring! My daughter was lucky enough to be one of the testers of the mini streamer prototype months ago, and she still digs it out every time she fancies a dance. Here is Zahira making 100 streamers in our office for one of our customers back in early December. We like to think that 'Santa' gave many of these streamers away this Christmas...