Shadetree Toys is Back

Hello there.

Allow me to tell you a little about Shadetree Toys.

Shadetree Toys was founded in 2012, taking the name from the old hot rodding practice of working on something, outside under the shade of a tree. It was the same with the toys I made. All cutting, sanding, and shaping was done outside, in the fresh air. If you have one of my toys from back then, you will know they were painted in bright colours. The thought at the time was to attract children just as plastic toys do. In hindsight that was like putting a curtain in front of a beautiful painting, or a dust cover over an exquisite statue. The real character of the wood was hidden from the world. At the end of 2014 I lost my workspace and was unable to find another. Shadetree Toys looked like it would fade into memory. Heart-broken I moved on to other things, but something inside me had died and I wanted it back. So, after a couple of false starts over the next few years, at the beginning of 2018 with the help and support of my wife, Janice, we resurrected Shadetree Toys. We are still sticking to the Shadetree philosophy, cutting, sanding and shaping our toys outside, but this time the wood its self takes centre stage. No more hiding the beautiful patterns of the grain under garish paint schemes. We use only choice quality untreated pine, grown in sustainable forests in South Africa and natural colour stains to bring out the best the wood has to offer. The final step is polishing the toys with a recipe of raw beeswax and mineral oil to protect the wood and give it a luxurious feel.

We are striving to create the highest quality toys we are able to, and we hope that the become part of your family legacy.

Donovan Smith

Founder of Shadetree Toys.

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