Feature Articles: Behind The Brand

Since it began in 1996, Green Frog Art has established a reputation for melding high-quality construction with distinctive designs for low prices not just within the juvenile furniture industry, but with parents across the country as well. Today Green Frog is working harder than ever to continue to innovate and improve its products for parents and their children. Under a new management team, Green Frog is continuing to build relationships with customers and provide them the furniture, accessories, and décor they can proudly and confidently bring to their homes.

Maple Landmark has been making eco-friendly, educational wooden toys, games and gifts since 1979 in Middlebury, Vermont. Many people know them for their NameTrains, but they craft a wide array of children’s products including heirloom wooden baby toys, toddler toys, board games and gifts. The Giggle Guide® recently caught up with Maple Landmark for a look behind the scenes of this topnotch brand:

Seattle-based Satsuma Designs loves babies! Every design, business decision, daily detail and inspiration comes from their mission to create cozy, all natural and useful products for little ones. Satsuma Designs’ products are made from all natural fibers that treat baby and the environment with a soft touch. They use an assortment of natural materials that include bamboo, organic cotton and more. Recently, The Giggle Guide® caught up with owner Jennifer Porter to learn more about this bestselling brand.

In the past 5 years since the founding of Little Crown Interiors, co-owners and designers Naomi Alon and Gerri Panebianco have created 100 unique, one-of-a-kind nurseries, children’s rooms and playrooms. The duo’s latest project is an adorable, traditional boy’s nursery in the historic, oceanfront enclave of Long Beach, California. Taking cues from the gorgeous 100-year-old craftsman home, as well as their extensive design experience over the course of 100 projects, Little Crown Interiors created baby Mackinley’s nursery with a historically inspired color palette and an understated music theme.

Tatiana and Company celebrates the 16th anniversary of its Kissy Kissy brand by thanking the consumers and retail partners who have contributed to the company’s success. Built on the softness and durability of Peruvian Pima cotton, the brand is a go-to for parents and gift-givers who want beautiful, high-quality baby clothes and accessories. In addition to building a loyal consumer following, the brand has been a pioneer in introducing Peruvian manufacturing capabilities and its unmatched Pima cotton to the rest of the world. We are honored to have founder and owner Roxana Castillo share with us some personal reflections about her experiences in the children’s business.

No Slippy Hair Clippy CEO and co-founder, Annie Salyer, is a leader in the girls’ hair accessories market, with her eyes focused on global expansion. But the energetic exec still has a strong sense of what made the company tops with customers. Salyer recently answered a few questions about No Slippy’s brand recognition in the marketplace, plus she gave The Giggle Guide® a preview of some of the newest, exciting designs.

I met the President of HABA USA, Lea Culliton, when she first started marketing the German toy brand in the U.S. and she was comparing options for print advertising to the trade. Early on, I could tell that Lea was precise, organized and understood the relationship of carefully-defined marketing budgets, rates and circulation. She was smart, honest and direct in her decision making and was willing to make a year-long investment in advertising. I admired her as an astute businesswoman. After over 10 years, my opinion of Lea has proved constant. We developed a business friendship based on mutual respect. Many others also value her as a leader in the children’s industry.

Product. People. Price. These have long been the triple threat in success. Old marketing texts told me that one can have two, but usually not all three. ZoLi is an exception, as this top notch company offers the best of all three. Julia Shaw shares a personal look behind the ZoLi brand that she founded with her husband Chet Hong to provide young families with environmentally-safe, functional and sustainable product solutions, with a primary focus on a variety of feeding aids that feature modern, colorful and contemporary designs with easy practicality. I believe their success story has many more interesting chapters and look forward to seeing their future.

Having met Mike Berens several years ago while he was selling children’s apparel at trade shows, I contacted him with interest in 2011 when I heard he was the Sales and Marketing Director for Donita Fashions, a new brand of girls’ dresses from Indonesia soon to be launched under his leadership in North America. I made an appointment for Mike to preview the brand to me in Los Angeles, and was excited to hear about all the plans for selling the collection to specialty stores. But what really took me by surprise was when I saw the buyers’ reaction to this new brand over three seasons exhibiting at KIDShow Las Vegas. The buyer audience was SRO and Mike and his national sales reps were selling furiously fast throughout the show, staying busy until the lights were turned off!

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