If a 50-year-old wooden toy chest could talk to a 5-year-old toy chest, what would it say? Would it reveal a lot about the children who stashed their toys inside it and who later abandoned it on the attic? A toy chest’s resurrection as a companion for those once-children’s children will unleash memories of toys long ago.
Remember the Old Toy Chest?
It was the era of black and white TV. Will Rogers, Hopalong, Dale Evans, and the Lone Ranger hugged the limelight. Manufacturers of wooden chests saw an opportunity and designed chests from pine with pine knots and called them toy chests. Brave exploits of cowboys that a little boy adored were painted on the outer sides and tops of the wooden toy chest.
The artwork depicted indians and cowboys astride galloping horses. Inside the toy chest were the wooden choo-choo train, wooden wagon, little wooden boats, puppets, a peg board, a milk truck, rockers, and colorful tops.
There’s an old well-worn, kiddie-sized baseball mitt carefully wrapped in moth-eaten linen and an old wooden bat. A pair of toy soldiers, the remnants of a set of 12 continues, to keep watch. These are the toys of yesteryears. The old wooden toy chest remembers that the little boy who used to own the treasures often hurt his finger when the lid dropped without warning.
For the little girls, the simple wooden toy chest housed wooden dolls, and dollhouses, an enamel tea set with one cup chipped at the brim, and a porcelain doll. There’s a picture book and frayed ribbons. All those little adorable girlie things have had their time.
The ancient toy chest can’t keep its eyes off the new toys the kids are having fun with. Amazing replicas of real cars and airplanes that was unheard of in his time. But it’ll brag that in those times, children had more play than TV and computers. These old chests have been retired, but if any baby boomer catches sight of one circa 50’s toy chest, he’ll have a flood of memories.
The New Wooden Toy Chest
There were numerous lessons learned from the past. The modern version has a safety catch to prevent the lid from hurting little fingers. These are made from cherry oak, and if you want a sweet smelling toy chest, you can request for a cedar base. You have to pay extra, of course.
A personalized wooden toy chest? Yes, the suppliers can provide laser engraving of your child’s name on the front of the box. Just imagine how your child will remember all these when she or he grows up. The same chest can be passed on to your grandchildren in the future. Who knows? You might have a valuable heirloom. Just make sure you don’t forget where you hid it when the kids have flown the coop.
You can also have that pirate chest for your little boy who is always running around in his pirate cape and eye patch covering one eye, pretending to be Captain Hook. It’s a sure thing he will adore this pirate-inspired wooden toy chest. Or if you have a little princess, you can give her a chest with dainty artwork over a pink or white painted toy chest.
Ask your parents about their wooden toy chests. They’ll tell you that their parents bought them those chests to keep their toys out of sight after they had their fun. So the old toy chest will wink and say “that’s our reason for existence”, but you know it’s more than that. A child can be taught good habits early, like putting their toys and other things in the proper places – toys in the wooden toy chest and books on the bookshelf.