MADRID, Iowa- Eight years ago the operator of a Des Moines daycare had a problem, too many broken toys.
“I had a whole basket for toys that were broken and I asked my husband to fix them, he decided he was going to make the kids new toys for Christmas,” said Stacy Bannor, co-owner of Bannor Toys in Madrid.
Stacy’s husband Jesse Bannor to the mission to heart.
“I worked in mortgage, I had a day job, I enjoyed woodworking as a hobby, a stress reliever at night,” said Jesse of the toys he made. “The kids loved the and the moms loved them and they were asking about getting more, we decided to try selling at a craft show.”
From there they went to Des Moines Farmers Market, and some shops in the East Village. They sold on Etsy before they got their own website.
Now Bannor Toys is closing in on a one million dollars in sales for the year, for the first time. Stacy said the company doubles in size, about every year, since it was founded in 2011.
Summer of 2018 the Bannors purchased an old building in Madrid, and remodeled two floors into a woodshop, assembly and shipping area, and a corporate office.
“It’s just a handmade small family-business,we interact with customers on Instagram and Facebook on a daily basis,” said Stacy. They become more than customers to us, we know their kids names, we get to see pictures of the kids opening their toys.”
Stacy said she and Jesse are happy with the move from Des Moines to Madrid. They enjoy the small-town family atmosphere in their shop. The Bannor kids, and employee’s kids can walk from school to the shop after school to check in with parents, before walking over to the Madrid Library.
In 2013 the company was approached by Norstrom’s Department Stores to sell a wooden baby rattle. They make them shaped like each of the 50 states, with kids’ names on them.
“They find us, we haven’t reached out to anyone really,” said Stacy. “We tend to get emails randomly and it turns into something big, so we’re just gonna go with the flow.”
For more info on Bannor Toys click here.