Extinct Toys – Josh Finkle






Extinct Toys

This is a project that really warms my heart. A series of handcrafted animals that are simply beautiful: Cut and carved from wood, sanded silken smooth, endearingly sly and with lots of attitude. They are heartbreakingly cute and streetsmart. And sadly, very extinct.

The concept is thoroughly imagined and executed. Designer Josh Finkle introduces four newly extinct animal species, to show us the beauty of what we just had, and that is now lost. He presents us with the Tasmanian Tiger, the Quagga, Stellet’s Sea Cow and the Pig-footed Bandicoot. Each animal is crafted from different kinds of non-endangered wood, bringing out its natural fur and color pattern. They come to you in a box that also is a graphic information booklet.  They stand on little wooden disc podiums that can be covered with glass domes, completing the image of long gone animals from dusty Natural Science Museums.

I really, really would like to have them all. My personal favorite is the Tasmanian Tiger. Just look at his face…

This is what Josh Finkle says on his homepage about the extinct toys:

They are handcrafted wooden toys of recently extinct animals. I selected these four creatures for their beautiful shapes and patterns. Choosing an anthropomorphic approach, I designed them with simplified, humanistic shapes and statures. Once unfolded, the packaging becomes an information graphic about the animal inside. These toys are meant to incite wonder and interest in creatures that existed only a short while ago.

Josh Finkle is an industrial designer living in San Francisco, CA. He currently works in the Toy Lab at IDEO. Previously, he was a designer at Little Tikes. He is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University’s Industrial Design program, and Honorable Mention winner in I.D. magazine’s 2010 annual design review student category. 2009.

Visit his homepage:      http://jfinkle.com/

Work process:



3-D foam models come to life.


Tasmanian Tiger waiting to be reborn.





Cardboard box folds out into a fact sheet about the animal.



The final product – ready to reconquer the World.

06-josh finkle designer wooden toys animals


Josh Finkle with another of his projects.


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