Best handmade toys (2000)
Sweet Lily's Toy Company
Janet Banks hated her job as a graphic designer and longed for something simpler. One day, she opened up a book about wooden toys and hasn't been the same since. Though she remembered her grandfather making such toys when she was little, Banks had no woodworking experience, so she taught herself and recently quit her hated job to concentrate on building toys for her Sweet Lily's Toy Company. And what does she build? Wooden jack-in-the-boxes with latch tops that flip open, yo-yos composed of a single disc and dowel and painted bright colors, wooden puzzles and an Advent tree with 24 ornaments to attach each day until Christmas. She's pretty busy playing, but catch her if you can at local festivals or log on to her Web site, www.sweetlily.com.