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Rekindled love for the creative

I’ve always had a big imagination. As a little girl, I spent my days dreaming up stories, drawing, creating puppets for friends, and sewing my own wardrobe. That childlike enthusiasm never left me, and now my own kids have rekindled my passion for the creative. After ending my job as a child psychologist to move to New York with my family, I started searching for different ways to fulfill my ambitions. Once settled in my new home, I began working on my idea for Maple Forest.

I wanted to make something that was warm and inviting—igniting imaginative play while also having a purpose: next to being a stuffed animal, creating a safe place for kids to work through their emotions. I started to let my ideas run freely and soon six woodland creatures were born, inspired by love for Waldorf and Montessori. And combined with my passion for watercolors, slowly but surely Maple Forest began to come to life.

Creating a product from scratch can be an unpredictable journey, and I’ve had the most wonderful help you can find from Patti Gilstrap: the most versatile and kind woman I know. She owns her own clothing label and runs a studio in Brooklyn, New York. Check her out!

The watercolor design was brought to life by the very talented Niki Stage. Everything I think up, she makes real. Here is her amazing website:

Raccoon, Hedgehog, Fawn, Owl, Raven, Bear, Bunny, and Squirrel have become my friends, and every day my enthusiasm for expanding their world grows. After four years of having the privilege to call New York my home, we moved back to Amsterdam and Maple Forest has moved with me—ready to make children happy all over the world.


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