Monday, April 28, 2008

More 3D sea life animal puzzles

So far this 3-D clown crab plastic puzzle seems to be the favorite among the four new sealife and coral reef puzzles in Tapir and Friends online gift shop. But don't overlook his three equally fun friends!

. . . the octopus puzzle . . .

. . . the chambered nautilus puzzle . . .

. . . and this charming, lifelike sea turtle puzzle! A plastic nautilus is hard to find. We had one (non-puzzle, about the same size) but it was (sadly) discontinued by the manufacturer. We were overjoyed to find this puzzle nautilus soon after we had to retire the page for our other nautilus. Although this is a puzzle, it is hard to find the breaks once it's been assembled. The details and design make it an excellent replica for school projects or for a collector of sea animals or shells.

Each animal puzzle has roughly 20 three-dimensional pieces that have to be fitted precisely or the puzzle simply does not go together. These are fun for adults, buy you may need a very young friend to help with the finishing touches. Kids take to these animal puzzles like sea turtles to water. The pieces are flexible and have interlocking parts. We have many animal types for hours of fun. And once you're finished, you can either take it apart again or keep it around as an attractive animal replica! Have fun!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Our plastic animals are loved and hated in England

It was a dark and stormy night on the River Tyne, near the North Sea and not far from the Scottish border. A box had been opened . . .

. . . scary creatures had been unleashed . . .

. . . and we received the following e-mail:

Thanks for this; it arrived safely and my son has really enjoyed playing with them (personally I hate them, but I must learn to overcome my phobias!)

Best wishes


Thanks, Jonathan! People like you make our day!

Sue, Sheryl, and Lee

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Realistic plastic jumbo shrimp . . . YES!!!

Jumbo plastic shrimp or prawn

Received them today. They look great. Thank you very much! I will have to order more in the future. Thanks.


When we first got these shrimp in stock, we presented one to a marine biologist friend over dinner. He couldn't take his eyes off the plastic shrimp. I don't remember how much of his dinner he had a chance to eat, but he DID love the fake shrimp! It's been a favorite with us, too. At 9 inches in length, it's quite impressive.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Paddlefish jewelry - just when you thought you'd seen it all!

This unusual fish comes in a beautifully detailed hand-painted pin, believe it or not! We also have the paddlefish in gold finish, bronze finish, and the original pewter casting. I think the painted ones are amazing!

The paddlefish lives the American Midwest and can be found in the Mississippi and Missouri River systems as well as in the Great Lakes. The mouth looks small here, but it can gape wider than the height of the fish. These fish are extremely ancient, showing up in the fossil record 300 to 400 million years ago - about 50 million years before the dinosaurs. American paddlefish reach a size of several feet long, while those in the Yangtse River of China are found up to about 9 feet. Rumors tell of Chinese paddlefish reaching sizes of 23 feet long, but these stories are not substantiated.

Check out our web site to order paddlefish jewelry!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Three sizes of stuffed manatee

These three adorable stuffed manatees are avialable online at Tapir and Friends. Please take a look! Our home base is in Astoria, Oregon, USA, but we'll ship them anywhere in the world. We love our overseas customers as well as those in the US. We strive to make every order easy for you. Please check out Pavel's unsolicited letter below this post!

Tapirs happily received in the Czech Republic


I got everything from you. It is great. Thank you for
easygoing purchase. Tapirs are beautiful.

Kind regards.


Friday, April 18, 2008

She likes our plastic frogs

Subject: very pleased with my order!

Hi -- my boys love reptiles and amphibians, and I found your site through a Google search. I recently received my first order and I am very happy with the quality of the items, particularly the tree frogs. There is a world of difference between your products and the products offered on some other websites (which can be quite disappointing in real life). Thanks so much, and we will be ordering again soon!


Awesome 'possum

Here's what Bettye wrote today about one stuffed opossum sent by Express Mail:

Subject: RE: Fulfillment of Order #17427

He's AWESOME!! Thank you

Bettye, thanks for your e-mail. We love him/her, too!

:) Sheryl

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Is this the plastic salmon we've all been waiting for?


Unless you've been looking for small plastic trout or salmon yourself, you would not believe how many queries we get for a plastic fish like this one! And finally we found it! Check it out in Tapir and Friends online store! We're calling it a salmon for reasons you can read on its very own description page (follow the link above), but if you need a small plastic trout, this could also be the fish for you. These toys or replicas have been extremely hard to find! The description, price, and order info can all be found via the link above.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Seven more pieces of hand-painted animal jewelry

Mountain Lion / Cougar Pin

I've photographed seven more pieces of our hand-painted, stunningly beautiful realistic animal jewelry and have added them to our new web site. You can visit this page to order and see our collection to date. These pins, made in the USA, can also be used as bold tie tacks. We also have the smaller tie tacs available in some designs. Please ask! (503) 325-3179.

Whippet Pin

Airedale Terrier Pin

Bluebird Pin

Hawk Pin

Lion Pin

Moose Pin

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Great customer service!

Hi Sheryl,

Thank you so much for the great customer service with this order! My daughter is very excited to get these animals and it will make her project a great success! She's been working all day on her report and I'm glad that we decided to add these for her! You've been so helpful, and I will try to let you know when we receive the order in case you're interested. I will definitely keep your website in mind in the future!

Thanks again!

Cindy in Michigan

Friday, April 11, 2008

Animal jewelry (fish jewelry) - yellowfin tuna and bluefin tuna - in colors bound to charm you!

These two attractive tuna pins can be found in Tapir and Friends Online Gift Shop. They are hand-painted in the USA. The yellowfin tuna (top) comes in a variety of paint finishes, some more subdued than the one seen here. These make wonderful gifts, and can be used as hat pins, lapel pins, and bold tie tacs. While the yellowfin tuna is still found abundantly, the bluefin tuna has been fished to critical levels. It might make a good mascot for fish-loving conservationists. Tuna are interesting fish in that, like the mackerel, they have warm blood, whereas most fish are cold-blooded. This gives them the ability to survive in a wider range of water temperatures and gives them great strength for swimming and for fighting the prospect of being caught. Possibly this is one of the reasons tuna have been so popular among sports fishers. They are also, of course, highly sought for food by humans.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

New plastic cockroaches and other insects!

Charming? Creepy? Useful? We have a number of new plastic insects in our online gift shop! Check them out in Tapir and Friends online animal store! Scroll down for our new plastic bees, plastic house flies, plastic praying mantis, plastic centipede and more. What fun!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Beanie Babies - second time around

I discovered the world of cute and lovable Beanie Babies a little later than many. I don't collect the collectibles or price check for rarity. One day Lee and I found a cache of used, great-condition Beanie Babies at a garage sale, and we were hooked. They were adorable. They had names. What fun! There were so many. The price was right, and we bought them for our online animal store. Putting them online was a bit labor-intensive because there were so many individuals, but it was fun. Then we saw that people were finding them, and that selling just the right beanie to someone who was looking for it made them happy. It made us happy to know they had found the one they were looking for!

At The Seattle Gift Show several years ago, I learned that the Ty company will only sell to brick and mortar businesses, not to online-only retailers. That's what we were at the time, so as far as buying new beanies, we were out of luck. Since then, we've moved into our own brick and mortar place (actually, mostly wood, on pilings over the Columbia River) but we haven't sought out the Ty company, we still look for great-condition used Beanie Babies that need new homes. We try to keep our beanie web page updated and give you the info you need about the tag condition. We have fun searching out beanies and enjoying them while they're in our shop. We sell them both in the "brick and mortar" shop and on the Internet. One way or the other, come check them out! We keep the prices at a stable $4.00 per Beanie Baby. Sometimes you can find the more unusual ones in our shop, and the price is still the same. We also carry Beanie Buddies when we can find them (the fur is SO soft it's almost unbelievable), Attic Treasures, Teenie Beanies, and other cute animals and characters by Ty. It's so much fund finding new ones!

When we moved into our store, I took the beanies out of their dark, dull plastic bins that had served well when we were only online, and I put them into a bright purple display box in our showroom. It's so colorful, it's a delight to walk into our shop each day and see their adorable faces looking at me! The picture below was taken in poor light at the end of the day. As soon as I can, I'll try to remember to get a nice new photo that shows the colors!

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