Month: March 2009

Let’s shower, baby

I realize that baby showers are about celebrating the impending arrival, but it’s also about giving the expectant mom some props as well, right? That’s why I’m loving the Sweet Dreams Boy baby shower invitations from mom-owned Pretty Printing which strike the perfect mix between cute and classy. Owner Connie Feiner was a buyer for Ralph Lauren and Michael Kors before starting her printing business and the pedigree definitely shows. Her simple yet sophisticated designs are printed on sturdy card stock with original graphics. You customize the message and the type, but we’d go with Connie’s recos.  While, sure,...

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Just when you thought there was nothing new in children’s rainboots

You all know we’re kind of shoe nutty around here (our children’s shoes archives are ridiculous) and sometimes we feel like we’ve seen it all. But direct-from-Sweden CMP fave Vincent has come out with new children’s rainboots called Klas and surprised us with their ingenuity. The idea is that most rainboots sized for earlier walkers are smaller size, but not lower in height. So basically you’ve got an awkward, off-balance kid trying to stumble through the rain with boots over his knees. But these – they’re lower. So with any luck, you’ll spend more time jumping in puddles with...

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Pacifier clips so cute you’ll kind of hope your baby takes a pacifier

If you’ve got a pacifier fiend in the family, then you understand the importance of binky clips. And if you’ve got a shutterbug in the family, then you understand the importance of cute binky clips. The handmade pacifier clips from CuckooBoo are just adorable — a cute fabric-covered clip secured (very well) to a coordinated ribbon with a snap at the end to hold the pacifier or a toy. You’ll find designs from retro vintage woodland creatures and cars to a funky little skull and crossbones sporting a pink bow. These are the kinds of things that do get...

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Double-dare you not to love this book

When The Daring Book for Girls came out, I bought copies not just for my own girls, but for their friends.  If I could have afforded it, I would have gone around handing out the book like a missionary. Authors Andrea Buchanan and Miriam Peskowitz are back starting today with a new compilation of how-to and how-come tidbits that every girl ought to know.  From inspirational stories about daring women throughout history to step-by-step directions for classic games and cool tricks, The Double-Daring Book for Girls takes the daring phenomenon to the next level for our female future leaders....

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Bumbleride Indie Twin – Redefining the Double Stroller

I had forsaken double strollers because, let’s face it, they are gigantic monstrous beasts that can hardly be tamed by one poor mother. The front-to-back strollers made me feel like I was pushing a huge shopping cart, and the side-by-side strollers inevitably tick one of my kids off because they can’t agree on the canopy or the seat position. But when I met the Bumbleride Indie Twin, it completely changed my mind about double strollers. Set up like two really swanky side-by-side single strollers, the Bumbleride gives each kiddo separate footrests, hoods, and backrests, along with a super comfy...

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Pigs on Wheeeeeeeeels

Sure, siblings are going to have their own likes and dislikes, but overall, picking toys with a wide appeal that would have lasted through all three of my kids would have been one brilliant move. So learn from my mistake, mamas, and snag one of these super cute new wooden pull toys from Manny & Simon. Constructed from post-industrial recycled wood and painted with bright, cheerful non-toxic paints, these little ducks and pigs and animals on wheels are great for little ones right up through toddlers. There’s also just something really cool about a pull toy that doesn’t require...

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The Storytelling Shoe – Who even knew there was such a thing?

Just when I thought I’d seen every sort of soft soled baby bootie out there, I was introduced to Scooterbees. And being the obsessed but still picky shoe nut that I am, I fell instantly in love. These truly eco-friendly baby booties are made in San Francisco of recycled fibers from soda and water bottles. The soles are completely water resistant and anti-slip, thanks to a cool, but extremely safe ThermoPlastic Elastomer material (just go with me on that) and the amazingly soft lining is made from bamboo. But the best feature, you know, if I had to pick...

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Dutch treat

I admit to having a bit of euro envy these days, especially after seeing how many cute things are happening with children’s clothes across the Atlantic. Our Dutch friend Kellie Smits at Buisjes en Beugels, or BB+++,  isn’t helping matters much with her new spring/summer kids’ line that features easy, wearable, but still striking pieces for girls and boys. If I had a little dude around I’d have him in this funky “earthquake” shirt (shown below) in two seconds. But since I’ve got two girls to clothe, I have to go with the cotton jersey Conny dress or the...

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Tea parties on the other side of childhood

You know what is a sign that a mom has it all together? Perfect hair. And freshly vacuumed floors. Thank-you notes sent in a timely manner. I have none of those. I do, however, have children who seem to like me and charming linen tea towels like the ones from Brooklyn-based Jewelweeds. When I hang one of my favorites I feel like I have paid attention to myself, to my home, to the life that I live as a mom. Green and graceful, Julia White’s eco-friendly linen designs are inspired by a childhood spent outdoors. She considers the environment...

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Baby layette wishlist: 1. No chemicals 2. Makes the SIL jealous

It never seems to matter how many adorable baby layettes I’ve got, I still end up choosing my favorite and using it more than anything else. Had I received the amazing Dimples organic baby layette, it would have easily been the one I was washing and drying every single day. Made in New Zealand from beautifully soft organic cotton, the infant layette set features a blanket, sleep gown, and hat (oh that adorable baby hat). The bumblebee detail is just as cute as the set itself. No doubt it’s on the pricey side for a layette set, but if...

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Baby loves sushi

Babies these days have expensive taste. They’ve got designer shoes before they can walk in them and name brand clothes before they’re able to put them on themselves. But while they might not be quite off the boob and onto unagi  just yet, you can start priming them with these sushi rattles by Yellow Label Kids. These hilarious hand knit toys found at DC-based shop Cattiwampus are perfect for the infant foodie or the baby with cultured tastebuds. The two rolls and two sushi are created by world artisans using fair trade practices, I love that fit perfectly into...

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LunchBots – Eco friendly food storage with a heart of steel

As my daughter’s preschool starts preparing us for next year’s (eep!) full day schedule, I’m suddenly faced with the reality that we’re going to have to send her to school with lunch. Every day. I haven’t yet figured out how I’m going to get her to expand her palate beyond peanut butter sandwiches, but I do know what it will be served in — new LunchBots. These natural stainless steel food storage containers really are a terrific product. LunchBots are reusable, making them eco-friendly, and they offer up a smart alternative for moms freaked out by plastic these days....

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Organic baby clothes love baby and mama earth too

With my newest baby having especially sensitive skin and the hot summer just around the corner, I’ve found myself more inclined to clothe my kids in organics. And the lovely onesies from Earthy Beginnings, who we found thanks to Showroom Indie, are some of my favorites. Each piece is lovingly created by hand. The original designs are hand-printed with water-based ink on 100% organic cotton onesies and shirts made in the USA. I’m in love with the entire nature collection, which feature brightly colored birds, butterflies, or dragonflies (pictured). And there’s one more reason they’ll be just great for...

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Mad Men style hits the preschool

It was only a matter of time before Mad Men fashion trickled down to the youngsters and we started seeing tailored mid-century styles on the kiddos. I just didn’t think it was going to come from Europe. I just got a look at the 50’s inspired girls’ dresses from Blond & Blond at Zazou and am swooning. (Hear that sound? Yes! That’s it – me swooning.) Yeah so they’re like 65 bucks each plus overseas shipping. But I’m kind of thinking we could skip dinners for a few nights and grab a couple. That’s just how much I like...

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Any childbearing folks out there still have some money in the bank? Anyone?

Maybe you’re in the mood to daydream, or maybe you’ve had your near-limitless wealth stuffed in your mattress all this time (in which case: Hi! I’m available for adoption!), but either way, if you want to let your most fanciful kid decor fantasies run wild, head over to Kidtropolis. They don’t just custom-build beautiful kids’ furniture, they design entire kid-friendly spaces. So in the case of this amazing Magic Tree House, that means the treehouse itself houses the bed, but you also get… a tree trunk and painted tree canopy, as well as every piece of furniture and every...

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Viva La Revolution Foods

We’re all for whatever it takes to improve the quality of school lunch programs, and the progressive Revolution Foods has been a leader in California doing just that. Now, the rest of us in the country get access to clever, organic kids snacks and treats from them and yeah, I’m happy. The wholegrain Organic Popalongs were a big hit with my chip-loving brood and the kind of weird, squeezable squished fruit in the Organic Mashups will go over if your kids will eat things that aren’t beige. Haven’t tried the peanut butters yet but considering organic pbs don’t get...

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All along I was the puppet, I was the puppet

Why do babies seem to favor items that were never intended to be playthings? It never fails to amaze me how my kids spurn toys in favor of screwdrivers and old cell phones. But there’s one standby that I can always count on to charm a child: Hand puppets. And the ones from design group Noted that we found at Elsewares are some of the cutest I’ve seen.  Handmade by artisans in Nepal, these thick wool felt hand puppets feature a zipper closure at the bottom and are roomy enough to accommodate big hands or little hands. They’re adorable...

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Stupid recession – cruddy for small shops but good for deal seekers

We’re so sad to get word this week that two of our favorite web shops are shutting their doors. On the upside: Deep discounts for you. Brittain’s Betty Joy, one of our favorite stops for fun little handmade gifties is selling all of their accessories, children‘s toys and jewelry at crazy low prices – check out the tea towels for £4.50. Then my neighbors at Greenjeans Brookyn (ack, this one kills me!) are shutting their doors at least until the God of Bear Markets passes over and moves on. All of their spectacularly curated artisan and sustainable items are...

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New baby clothes with an old soul

I continue to be impressed with the ingenuity of the crafters out there and how many awesome things people are doing with upcycled materials. Our latest find: The new-again baby clothes from Frankenbaby Chicago designer (and cool Aunt) Virginia Tucker takes vintage tees and turns them from something outgrown and discarded into a baby one-piece that’s new and fabulous. She’s got a great eye for hip designs, and the workmanship she brings to them is really impressive. Obviously every handmade piece is one-of-a-kind, so if you see the Charirman Mao onesie or Doors L.A. Woman onesie of your dreams...

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Keep that toothbrush to yourself, missy

So here’s one for the germaphobes: My kids run around the house with their little toothbrushes, leaving them under the couch and next to the dog bowl, then put them back in the big glass on the sink right next to mine. Gak! I’m thinking it’s time for a toothbrush isolationist movement around here. I loved the Flipper toothbrush holder when we discovered it last year, but hadn’t considered using one for myself — probably because I’m not really a pink hippo or blue koala bear kind of a gal. But now they’ve got really beautiful adult toothbrush holders...

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