Month: December 2008

Overlap baby hats: The bomb

I’m not sure what’s worse – struggling to put your toddler’s hat on, or taking it off only to see the ribbing marks practically branded on his forehead. Well thanks to my kid’s new Overlap baby bomber hat, we’ve got neither of those problems anymore. Hand made from washed and felted recycled sweaters by mom Leigh Anne Hilber, the hats are soft and warm while still allowing your little one’s head to breathe. I love the added detailing on the ear flaps, along with the ties that can be left open or done up under the chin if you’ve...

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Message to Serena & Lily: Stop adding so many cool items to your site. Love, our wallets.

CMP readers know that Serena & Lily is our one of our favorite destinations for all things nursery and fancy. But now they’ve expanded their offerings beyond their signature bedding and decor to include all kinds of incredible baby gifts and goodies from other cool companies. I love the ceramic dish set, handmade by California artist Alex Marshall, personalized, and BPA-free of course. Or go for one of the baby holiday bundles–one of S&L’s stroller blankets paired with a soft friend, at a great discounted price–if you’d rather get something cuddly. The only problem you’re going to have now,...

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Gift tags from Pretty Bitter: Self-adhesive and self-deprecating all at once.

Because I’m spending less on gifts this year than in years past, I’m putting a little more into the presentation – nicer wrapping, nicer ribbons, and hopefully less dog hair underneath the Scotch tape. I’m also looking for gift tags that make a statement before the gift is even open. I think the holiday gift tags from Pretty Bitter should do the trick. Of course that statement might be something like  To________, If you don’t want this, I’d like it back. Or perhaps Get ready to fake excitement. Buy them in blue and they’re Hanukkah tags by the way....

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Words that won’t make your tween roll her eyes

Sometimes when I talk to my ten year-old daughter, she’s so busy sighing and trying to stay awake despite my obvious stupidity that she doesn’t exactly hear me. But when she pulls her new necklace from Pickled Tink out of her stocking, this year, she’ll be too smitten with how pretty it is to remember to scoff at the positive messages on it. It’s like pop art meets typewriter keys, in a rainbow of colors and patterns. So go ahead and pick loved and joy and any of their other words (or ones of your own) while building a...

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1,2,3,4 Tell me that you love (my napkins) more

I have this dream. In this dream, my house is always organized, dog hair is contained on the actual dog, cushions are kept on the couch, and I frequently host elegant cocktail parties attended just by adults who speak about current events in hushed tones. This dream isn’t coming true anytime soon, but just in case, I’m going to be prepared with these awesome cocktail napkins by Butterfly and Company. Each napkin is unique, so guests can easily identify their drink, and I love the numerical theme. Even if you never get to entertain real live adults, you can...

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We need your help to save handmade toys in the US, Europe and Canada from the CPSIA

Update 12/13: We’ve created a Save Handmade Page to keep you posted on ways to help and latest news around this important issue. Stop by any time! Update 12/14: The act was in fact not passed by the CPSC which is a regulatory agency but by congress – apologies for any confusion. We interrupt the tidings of comfort and joy to bring you some heartbreaking news. Of course we’re all for strengthening the safety standards of mass-produced toys made in China, and banning toxins like phthalates and lead. But this year, Congress passed the ill-conceived Consumer Products Safety Improvement...

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All the Wisey-er

There are plenty of products out there that claim to make life easier for parents when really, it just seems like they take money out of our pockets and fill up the landfills. That’s so clearly not the case with Wisey, a company that is truly smart (ha!) about designing useful, eco-friendly products for parents. Their bag turned playmat makes an impromptu picnic or park day easier, particularly with the waterproof outer shell. And the infant footmuff keeps babies warm in the stroller with a very sleek, thoughtful design. But my newest obsession is their car bag (pictured) which...

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Giving a whole new meaning to “clean up your toys”

I am going nuts for the handmade LEGO(ish) soaps we just discovered from the California-based etsy shop, Washable Art. They are adorable, they’re original, and hello? They are $5 a pack. No wonder she can’t keep them in stock. I can’t think of a better stocking stuffer, or impromptu gift for surprise holiday guests of all ages. Besides, they just might be the first ever toy pieces that you don’t end up finding under the couch for months to come. –Liz [via indie fixx] If the item is sold out, check here to see all the goodies available then...

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Hanukkah clothes that are actually cool? Who knew?

Trust me, finding cute Hanukkah clothes is as difficult as finding the correct way to spell Hanukkah. (Or is it Hannukah? Chanukah? Channuukkah?) So check out the super cute infant and toddler tees with handcrafted Menorah appliqués from Littleuni.com, who we already love for their more secular tees. They’ve just added holiday themed designs, like trees, ornaments and stars to their collection which are worth a look, even if you tend to hate holiday themed designs. You can either have words like Happy and Joy embroidered over the appliqué or personalize it for your kids. And the t-shirts are...

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Seasons greetings, tied up with a bow

Sometimes you want a little glitz in your greetings, and sometimes you just want something cool, simple and smart. Thanks to Hoote + Annie’s new online shop, you can grab the holiday card of your deconstructed dreams. The Noel or Ho3 card, each with a real organza ribbon, are equally perfect to tuck in with teacher gifts or to send to friends with good taste, probably because designer Tammy Cantarella has more design sense in her pinky than I will ever possess in my lifetime. The cards and envelopes are 100% recycled paper, too. Though I’m pretty sure that...

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A Very Merry Pop-Up Christmas

With my husband-the-pilot’s schedule always up in the air (literally) I’m often RSVPing to our neighborhood parties and kid’s gatherings at the last minute. Still, I don’t want to show up empty-handed. So when I find a great holiday gift that can work for almost any kid in a pinch, like the  Christmas pop-up book from our friends at Handsome Devil Press, I always snatch a few up. This fun, festive 8-page holiday book tells an adorable adapted version of “The Night Before Christmas” about Christmas at the zoo with all the animals preparing for Santa’s arrival. My kids are...

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Smarter than your av-er-age bear

With Tedde.com it was love at first site. Heh. Like the website itself, the stuffed bears they sell are quirky, cool and full of personality, each one sprung from the über-creative minds of different artists then brought to life by hand with embroidery, hand-stitching, knitting, crocheting and felting so, just like your kid, they are totally one-of-a-kind. The bear I received to review was Flat Frank (shown) and, I have to confess, I was a little confused. As his name suggests, he is absolutely flat, (“What the what?”) but then I realized, any child would love to snuggle up...

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A-lines for winter get an A+

I am still regretting (just a wee bit) giving away the beautiful Kice Kice dress I had in my hands last spring to a CMP readers. With that on the brain, I checked the site to see if they had anything going on for the season or whether I’d have to wait out the Winter to get my daughters in one of their swingy, beautiful A-line dresses. Well hooray for the organic wool O dress (available at Nonchalant Mom) which translates the label’s trademark shape for the cooler weather. I can justify the not-entirely-a-bargain price tag with versatility–it looks...

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If you are among the very young at heart

The whimsical jewelry from DC shop Finch Metal absolutely speaks to my inner child. And I think what it’s saying (I speak a little bit of Sterling) is buy me, please. DC artist Jill Antonishak finds inspiration in icons like paper airplanes, pinwheels, jacks and kites, turning them into adorable, lightweight pendants and earrings all at great prices. It’s like the kind of gift that you can give you your best childhood friend and stir up some happy memories. I also love that the items are all made with a strong commitment to do-gooding; Jill uses reclaimed silver for...

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Yes Virginia, there is a baby carrier designed for napping

With my first baby, The Nap was sacred. With my second, napping was important, but it was no longer worthy of capitalization. Now I’m on the go with the older two so often that I’m happy if the baby sacks out in his carrier for fifteen minutes.  Problem is, most babywearing contraptions aren’t really conducive to getting some shut-eye. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that the soft structured Action Baby Carrier has a sleeping hood. Cradle that drowsy baby against your chest, secure the hood to the shoulder strap (don’t worry, there’s plenty of ventilation), and go about...

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A toy hybrid car? How very 2008.

Dear Santa, This year, I’m asking you to avoid the following toys: Dolls in midriff-baring clothes, licensed-character clothing and anything so cheap it breaks before New Year’s. And, most of all, lay low on things that need batteries. Need a hint? Consider bringing us imagiPLAY’s cool-looking, eco-friendly Pushalong Hybrid Car found at stellula blue. Sure, it doesn’t make a “vroom, vroom” noise, but the one my son can make with his lips is much more endearing. It doesn’t climb the walls on its own, but its grab-it-and-go design and rubber wheels, would be able to maneuver anywhere he can...

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PLAY + SOFT = Awesome

One of the best things about feelgood design’s PLAY + SOFT line of  kids’ furniture is that it is so cool-looking, I wouldn’t want to hide it in the playroom or in one of the kids’ bedrooms. One of the worst things is that that their stuff is cooler than any of the furniture I have in my home. Made from their own soft, eco-friendly material in a bunch of fun colors, PLAY + SOFT elevates the lowly play mat or kid-size chair to “Whoa”. I want to collapse on the softly rolling waves of Sandscape or sit with...

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Don’t leave the hospital without your Brella

I may not be a fan of matchy-matchy outfits, but coordinated stationery ensembles are the sort of matching that I can appreciate, as long as they’re done well.  No pastel teddy bears or scary clowns, please. Brella Baby has hit the mark with their new Brella Bundles.  Their signature collection gift set includes a baby memory book, coordinating journal/photo album, and two sets of boxed note cards–everything a new mama needs to start documenting in style. What I love most about Brella is their use of modern colors and elegant designs. After all, these books really are for mothers...

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A Method to your holiday madness. Literally.

I’m the person who walks by a candle shop or perfume store and starts sneezing uncontrollably. So just imagine how well I do trying to find a nice subtle holiday scent that doesn’t make me run for a box of tissues. Leave it to our favorite light green company, Method, to create a line of reusable tin ornaments that are easy on the eyes and my nose, filled with compostable scented wood beads in winter berry or spiced pear. Grab a few to hang in the kitchen, bathroom, or heck, by the chimney with care, and retire those nasty fir scented...

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It’s time to dress up right

Being a novice knitter myself, I have a deep appreciation for the time and effort that goes into creating a pair of children’s mittens–a project I’ve yet to successfully complete.  Trouble is, even if I did manage to finish a pair, my daughter would complain of impending frostbite before she’d finished packing a single snowball.  Yarn by itself is no match for wet snow. But the M’uppet Mittens by Zooni found at My Princess Closet have solved that problem quite nicely.  These hand-knitted and crocheted deep purple mittens adorned with lavender posies are lined in cozy fleece.  I love...

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