Wood Shop Toys
320 1st Avenue S
Seattle, WA, 98104
Magic Mouse Toys
603 1st Avenue
Seattle, WA, 98104
Are you one of those people that have had it up to here with today’s toys for kids, and refuse to spend one more penny on an X-Box accessory? My personal opinion is that kids will play with anything so long as it is fairly cool, which is why you should head on down to the Pioneer Square district of Seattle if you need to buy a Christmas gift for a youngster this year. There are two really great toy stores in this downtown neighborhood that are not to be missed. From the awestruck looks of the kids that are always in the store, it is a safe bet that most children would enjoy products sold from these two retailers.
The first is Wood Shop Toys, a family owned toy store on 1st avenue. I believe that when Wood Shop Toys first opened in the seventies, it carried its namesake more exclusively. Now, in addition to the large selection of carved wooden toys, you’ll find some of the more popular toys, as well. But the wooden toys are so cool – I beg you to check them out. They are the kind of thing that someone can keep in the family for generations, unlike that plastic junk that breaks after a month. The wooden toys are classic looking, especially the paddling ducks. They carry great toys around Christmas, and for those that celebrate Chanukah, this is a good place for carved draedels. You will also find a huge selection of plush stuffed animals, books, and puppets (as a boy working for his father, the owner used to put on puppet shows in the store.) Perhaps that is one of the most special things about Wood Shop Toys: you get a real sense of love and family while you are there, and the toys seem to convey that attitude – which makes them great gifts. I have taken cousins there before, and wasn’t sure whether they would scoff over the wooden toys (there was a time that I believed their game boys actually grew out of their hands.) But they loved them – I think it was because they were so different and handcrafted. Kids appreciate more than we give them credit for.
The other toy store that is a must see is Magic Mouse Toys, also located on 1st avenue. This retailer also takes a more eclectic approach to toys and fun. Kids and collectors will love this place: it is truly a treasure, with a huge selection of imported, one of a kind toys. Some of my favorites were the sailboats, the hand carved chess sets, and the amazingly intricate wooden dollhouses. Doll collectors will find a great selection here, especially on doll clothes. If you need a Christmas train, you can find one here. There are some really expensive toys here, but there are also some very reasonable choices- it all depends on what you are looking for. It is a really classic toy store: most of the toys are beautiful, hand made, and durable. I wouldn’t feel bad about spending a little extra on a cool toy from here, because I know that it would be last a lot longer than something from Toys R Us. Also, because shopping here doesn’t give you that painful headache that mall toy stores always give me.
Both of these stores will provide you with choices that you won’t find at department stores- and parent’s will appreciate gifts that don’t have anything to do with the TV for once. Plus, it is fun to look around both of these stores, and they are right down the street from one another.