Category: Bedding + Blankets, Burps + Bibs

Two Tinas Are Better Than One

I love the idea of a stunning high-end baby blanket as the perfect shower gift, except for one thing: What do you do with a blanket that’s too pretty to use? Enter Two Tinas, a small company just starting to make it big (hello Nordstrom!) with their gorgeous but still 100% baby friendly designs. Bright cotton fabrics, like their brand new “Rocket Man” (pictured) combined with a lovely plush underside are accented by the company’s signature and distinct washable felt initial. Truth be told, these blankets are still cute enough that I’m wary about letting my son actually use it. But based...

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The Incredible, Invisible Bib

I have long come to grips with the necessity of the bib. I have not, however, been swayed by the bib to match the outfit concept. To me, the bib and the outfit are entirely individual entities. Until now, that is, courtesy of the matching bib sets from Bibs and Match. The idea is pretty simple — the bib attaches right to the onesie with a snap so you don’t have to mess with food residue in velcro. You can even attach the bib before you put the onesie on the kid if you’ve got a squirmy one. Once...

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Bubalah!

My grandmother used to call me Bubalah, and so I was probably predisposed to find the Bholu Bubalah Critters utterly charming on name alone. I mean, come on — of all the Yiddish endearments my grandmother used, Bubalah is probably the most wonderful of all. Bholu comes with a great back story, too: Put together Australian designer Jodie Fried and female artisans in India, and the result is a fair trade and climate-neutral company making sweet baby gifts you won’t want to resist. Find the Bubalah Critters as well as their hand-embroidered swaddling blankets and throw pillows at Pajama...

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Peekaboo Just Got A Little More Challenging

My almost one year-old’s favorite game is easily "Where’s Sage? There she is!" which is played as she pulls a blanket up and down over her face. Um, I mean chess. Her favorite game is chess. But for the rest of you with average children who enjoy the trite game of peekaboo, may I suggest upping the stakes? Alex Casey Baby is now offering Portland company Baby Star’s sweet Little Dipper blankets and coordinated snap suits. The fabric is a super soft cotton and the prints are fun and funky. But most importantly, it all matches. So children up...

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Quilts as Cool as Your Taste in Baby Clothes

I have a terrible time parting with my baby’s clothes when they’re outgrown. I end up tossing favorite ones in a bag for, um…stuffed animals? Dolls? Quiet moments alone with a bottle of Chardonnay? I don’t know. But I don’t want to get rid of them. So of course I’m loving the Baby Clothes Quilt kit from mom-run Ticche & Bea. The kit comes with everything except Martha Stewart to sit there and do it for you. You’ll get minkie squares to alternate with the squares for your own gorgeous (of course) kids clothes, plus batting, a backing, pins,...

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Wrapping the Baby Like a Burrito. An Organic Burrito.

I’ve been a champion of swaddling since my first baby. Transforming a wiggly little newborn into a baby burrito does wonders to settle him–and me–down. Since my new baby boy is the wiggliest of all three of my kids, I keep a swaddling blanket handy at all times. The new Organic Solana Swaddle Wrap is easily one of my favorites. CMP has already tipped readers off to Solana’s oversized squares of sheer, breathable knit cotton which are so large and stretchy that even a swaddling novice can get it right. But now there are several styles made from 100%...

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Classic Baby Gifts to Replace the Stuff Your Great-Grandma Never Saved

Not every mama in my life has the same taste in baby gifts that I do. Shocking, I know, but some of my friends really do prefer smocking and gingham and sweetness and light to some of the more, um, contemporary items I gravitate to. One of the really nice labels that I’ve recently discovered for classically oriented newborn gifts is pears + bears. They’re best known for their traditional girls’ and women’s dresses, the kinds that make my Southern in-laws’ hearts go pitter pat. As for me, I gravitate towards their adorable baby gift selection, and particularly the...

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Go Ahead and Get Picky With That Crib Bedding

The greatest time suck of my pregnancy was, oddly, spent on crib bedding websites. Javis-Davis, easily our fave custom crib bedding company (see our rave here) has just cut down the time you’ll need to spend looking for nursery bedding. Or wait – maybe they’ve made it longer. Because they’ve just come out with a fabulous online design studio that let’s you virtually assemble fabrics from their collections to see how it will all come together. It is absolutely practical and absolutely addictive. Go! Play! Now! I just spent an hour on there last night, and I’m not even...

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Time to Pack Up the Wool Blankets

Call me a blanket snob, but it drives me crazy when a blanket isn’t finished as perfectly on both sides. Considering most babies kick the thing all over the place, why even bother picking out a beautiful fabric if all anyone is going to see is the solid underside? Mairzey Dotes, who we discovered here last year, is tackling this grave issue head-on with their new line of handmade reversible blankets. Filled with cotton batting, they soften nicely with every wash. The Mockingbird/Polka dot combo is striking for Spring and the Paisley Dot is a great gift for a...

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Burp Cloths That Don’t Encourage Spitting Up – From You

I confess, I’m not much of a fan of burp cloths. The fabrics are either too scratchy or too foo-foo, and the nice ones don’t exactly make you want to employ them for their intended purpose. I’m happy to say however that I’ve finally found some I like, if only a few months too late for my own little ex-puker. Baby JaR run by sister team Jessica and Rachael is best known for their plush, lush Snuggler Blankets that are big with the glitterati coughNicoleRichiecough. But they really get burp cloths right by employing a super soft cotton twill....

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Crib Bedding For Those Not Getting a Big Refund Next Month

People are always asking us for cheap ways to decorate the nursery. Um…hand-me-downs? The truth is, most inexpensive nursery bedding looks and feels inexpensive. But once in a while, we find something with a boutique feel at big box store prices, like the new nursery collection from MiGi. Four different themes offer up mixy-matchy options in everything from sheets and blankets to mobiles and room accessories. The MiGI Pinwheel collection in particular has a fun, retro-modern feel and it’s hard to beat the $179 price tag for a six-piece cotton crib set. And for just 25 bucks, the Splash...

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Cool-ing Up the Nursery

We love Skip*Hop because everything this mom-run company makes is smartly designed, good-looking, and generally affordable. Well as of yesterday, after having conquered the world of diaper bags and feeding accessories, Skip*Hop has come out with some pretty snazzy looking nursery decor. Not that you want to get too matchy-matchy, but you could. If you wanted to. Because the two collections include everything from crib bedding and pillows, to a lamp and a soft wall pocket organizer. (There they go again with that smart thinking thing.) I especially dig the Mod Dot collection, Damien Hirst fan that I am,...

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The Modern Mama’s Teddy Bear Motif

While I wanted to avoid baby gift thank you notes that were too babyish, I found that scribbling heartfelt words of appreciation for the squeaky rabbit toy across note cards bearing funky geometrics, was definitely a thematic disconnect. If you’re ready to to embrace the duckies, embrace the teddies, and – let’s face it – embrace parenthood – but you’re not ready to sell your soul to Pooh, we’ve found a brilliant option in the new kids cards from the always exciting BINTH design studio. Nursery-friendly creatures are framed like modern cameos, and the striking color combos printed with...

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Pillowcases That Could Keep You Up Giggling

I have so much respect for designers who really do innovative things with nursery bedding. And if it’s got a sense of humor – all the better. I mean, who says kids sheets have to be all about super heroes or butterflies? So of course I was instantly taken with the Sleepyhead Pillowcase found at the always surprising (and veddy veddy British) Twisted Twee. the embroidered outline provides a convenient guideline for sleepyheads right alongside their stuffed companions. Who are evidently never quite as sleepy. Chose from either an insomniac bunny or insomniac bear. Hey, if you can get...

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Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Drool Catchers

No doubt that when the punk subculture began back in the mid-70s, the hope was that one day the iconography would be co-opted and mass produced on waterproof baby bibs, then sold through major retailers for $5.95 plus tax. All cynicism aside, the new Urban Chaos bibs from Bumkins are pretty darn cute, and Phthalate and PVC free to boot. Why shouldn’t mamas on a budget get cool prints to remind them of their Doc Maarten-wearing days too? Now before you get mad at me, true hipster parents, it’s not real punk. C’mon – the skulls are smiling....

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Swaddled, Snuggled, and a Little Spoiled

When you think of swaddlers you don’t think of anything particularly luxe. Mostly I conjure up the pilled receiving blanket we swiped from the hospital (shhh). Or at best, some ugly yellow thing that you find on your friend’s baby registry. But then I discovered the Baby Bonkie swaddle blankets at the trendsetting West Village kids, and suddenly swaddlers have even more appeal as shower gifts. Lovely designer fabrics from edgy to sweet are lined with a soft-as-anything chenille. But they aren’t just pretty, they’re practical – they close with velcro so I imagine that after a late-night feeding,...

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Fine Drooler-y

Now that I understand that every nanosecond of a child’s life (especially that first child – sorry siblings) will be photographed and documented, I can make a helluva good case for getting chic with the drool bibs at my friend’s baby showers. Plastic ones are nice and all but…no. No, they’re not. What is nice however are the swanky bib/burp sets courtesy Febe Bebe. Each one is handmade in Canada with just beautiful fabrics, and backed by about the softest minkie fabric in existence. They’re thick enough to do the job they’re meant to do, and absolutely the kind...

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Armored & Dangerous

I cannot tell you how glad I am to be out of the spitty drooly baby stage. Or maybe I should say my shirts are glad. Even with the loads of burp cloths I collected over almost four years of parenting, I still ended up with cruddy spit-up on my shirts, and I’m not talking about just the shoulders.  But with my new fantastic find, the Burp Armor Burp cloth, new parents (and their clothes) can breathe a collective sigh of relief. Created by a dad who was tired of burp cloths sliding off his shoulder, the Burp Armor is the Mercedes of burp cloths. Well really it’s more like an...

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Sleeping More Beautifully

It seems that while baby blankets are bequeathed to new moms in abundance, quilts and toddler pillows are overlooked. Blink your eyes and your infant is now a kid whose cold feet are sticking out from under that baby blanket. That’s when you turn to Jesseca Bellemare, mom/designer extraordinaire behind Quilt Baby. Her lightweight quilt and blanket sets feature modern cotton fabrics that reverse to contrasting prints or even just neutral solids. So when a wet spot of unknown origin appears on one side, just flip it over. Eh, who will know. As the mom of two boys, Jessica...

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No Designer Fabric is Too Good for My Kid’s Poopy Butt

Lately, I’ve got a new baby gift plan. Along with something the mama’s requested from her big baby superstore registry, I like to surprise her with something handmade and gorgeous and still essential. The beautiful baby accessories from Baby Dry Goods fit that bill in style. Run by a mom/designer with high standards and a great eye for fabrics, there’s a nice selection available online at A Bella Boutique. The diaper/wipes consolidating attaché is a good choice that a mom’s not going to get ten of at her shower. You can even coordinate with all kinds of blankets and...

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My Blanket is Smarter Than Yours

Calculating the formula for the seasonally correct baby blanket is almost as complicated as the quadratic equation. Do you get a winter baby a heavy blanket that can only be used for a few months, or do you give her something that she can use later, even though the new mom might stash it away somewhere and then totally forget about it? My brain hurts. But thanks to Ellabalou blankets, the new offering of moms Kerri-Lynne Menard and Laura Sternbenz, we’ve got a solution. The lovely colors alone are enough to make me love them, but even better, they’re...

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A Little Separation Between Your Kid and the Dining Room Table is Never a Bad Thing

Just because my daughter can feed herself does not mean she actually gets all the food in her mouth. Hence our love affair with Bibbitybop’s Placemats. These hearty vinyl-covered placemats come in such fantastic fabric choices that you can set them out for drinking-aged company as well. But when the kids are around, they’re just perfect. Especially at such great prices – just $25 for a set of four. The placemats (and extra special unleaded bibs) are handmade by Toronto mom Alice Hiller using locally sourced materials. Not only do they wipe clean and won’t stain, but you can...

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Going Soft

After having two babies, I am a certified blanket snob. There’s just no reason to settle for a mildly soft blanket when there are so many amazing ones to pick from. Take this simple yet gorgeous velour blanket from Satsuma Designs. Now I was instantly sold on its velvety texture alone, until I realized it’s good for the earth and for your baby too, thanks to thoughtful bamboo construction. If you’re not familiar with bamboo–at least as a fabric and not a wallpaper motif in your local Chinese restaurant–it’s known for its anti-bacterial qualities. Plus it’s also odor fighting and super absorbent, which...

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The Best PR That Wool Could Ask For

American parents tend to have this hang-up with wool. Maybe generations of itchy grandma sweaters have made us skittish about the fabric but the truth is wool, especially for babies, can be amazing if used properly. So when we were given a first look at the new Cariboo Organic Purtec Wool Blanket, we were excited to see if it lived up to the fanfare. Oh boy, it did.  Cariboo, if you’re not familiar, is the New Zealand company that’s makes the stunning high-end sustainable wood baby furniture you drool over in Cookie magazine. I assure you their blankets do...

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Giving New Definition to The Soft Shape Sorter

You don’t have to be a parent too long before you realize that kids instinctively like sticking things in other things. Without delving into the old electrical outlet chestnut, let’s just say there’s truth in the stereotypes. So I’m totally smitten with Brooklyn artist (and devoted Auntie)Maro’s clever Live-and-Learn pillows at her shop, Deseta. Each beautiful, entirely handmade pillow is actually two pillows in one – the larger square contains a contrasting square, triangle or circle which pops right out. The set of three (in four different cool color combos) makes terrific decor for a modern nursery, and then...

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32 Degrees Out? How Did That Happen?

I am definitely not the together mom that has the warm stroller blanket out and ready to go for the first cold-weather day. And so here it is, December, and I’m still looking for a great sleeping bag kind of a thing to work with all the different strollers that we’ve somehow managed to accumulate. The Buggy Blanket from Brooks Pond was new to me and so I checked one out. Nice! This is definitely one for the practical moms who still prefer their baby gear with a side order of chic. It’s wind/water resistant, works with all different...

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Baby Gifts That Give Back

If you hear the words "fair trade" thrown around but never really knew what it was, let us ‘splain: It basically means that you’re buying from people who take care of their artisans and workers by paying more than minimum wage, providing benefits, and guaranteeing good working conditions. In other words, not so much the 9 year-olds doing 80 hour weeks in sweatshops to bring you everyday low prices. We’ve seen a whole lot of fair trade gift shops but sometimes the concept is better than the actual items they sell. Not so with Fair Indigo, a shop with...

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On the Outside Chance That No, You Don’t Feel Like Feeding Your Baby in the Bathroom

Heading into the home stretch with baby #3, I’ve been starting to think about all of those upcoming feedings. Nope, not the ones that will jolt me out of bed every hour on the hour, but the ones that take place during the day. In public. With other people around. Because even now, I’m still not adept at nursing discreetly in public. So I was thrilled – in that hormonally-induced, overly effusive way that pregnant women are – to get to try out the nursing covers from Amuse Me Baby. I love everything about them, from the cheery prints...

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DaScoop on DaBib

With Baby #1, I made the mistake that some parents do with gear, putting aesthetics ahead of practicality. Let’s just say that a cream-colored cashmere cardigan on a baby is only worth it if it’s $7.99 at Daffy’s, and that a gray flannel sling in the summer is just stupid. So this time around, I’ve been sticking with more products that work as they should, and DaBib has been right there with me for the ride. The defining characteristic of the two styles, Giggles and Hugs (okay, so it’s a bit cutesie) is this very smart scrunchy collar –...

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Shockingly, Bigger Babies Get Cold Too

Nothing like a chilly night to make parents thankful for those smart little sleep sacks–unless you’re like me, and your enormous 10-month-old has surpassed the weight and age limits on all the sacks out there. But hooray Köhlrbaby, hero to all parents with large babies and tots up to 24 months old who still need, want, or must have a sleep sack. Made in Vancouver by designer Jill Koehler, the sacks are constructed with super-awesome fleece and cleverly accented with a cute sheep whose ribbon tag feet occupy idle sleepy hands. Choose from their Organic line or their Napsacks,...

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