Feature Articles: Features

It is always inspiring to see the birth of new companies, but especially when our economy is struggling. In a time when it seems we are seeing more companies closing their doors, the birth of a new enterprise brings with it the anticipation of better things to come. Like a crocus that pushes up and blossoms through the cold snow after a harsh winter, Be{tween} Collection, The Tangerine Tree, coveRumps and Foamnasium are new companies that did indeed bloom, despite challenging times. It is the tenacity and spirit of these companies, three of which were started by women entrepreneurs, that lets us see something special… the promise of tomorrow.

When it comes to adding a bit of color or sparkle to hair, there are special waxes and glitter that turn up the volume in a safe, parent-approved manner that is easy to make disappear when no longer wanted. There are also products scented with natural botanicals so they are ecologically friendly and safe for use on little ones. Shoppers have responded enthusiastically to offerings from Hip Peas, Zach’s Wax, Lucky 11 and Pupazzo by Kushies. Now it’s your chance to offer these bath and body delights to your customers.

AmericasMart is the juggernaut behind the popular Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market. AmericasMart offers a convenient and accommodating venue for exhibitors, with over 4,000 permanent showrooms available, along with temporary exhibits. The first Atlanta show of the year is on now through January 16, 2013. Here are a few must-see recommendations: Choose Friendship, Hotline to God, Sister Chic and Moonjar.

Bibi & Mimi
SwaddleDesigns®

So many comforters, so few cribs on the retail floor. Nursery furniture stores always have a difficult choice to make for coveted display space. There are so many styles of coordinated crib soft goods available. Colors, textures, traditional or modern, and bold or neutral are just the beginning of many decisions retailers and parents need to make. For our latest bedding review, The Giggle Guide® looks at Bacati, The Little Acorn, Cotton Tale Designs, and Trend Lab.

Even after a toddler is comfortable using the toilet, accidents happen. Remember that potty training is a complex skill in which a youngster has to both make and understand connections between their body and that big, porcelain throne. We have found that items from vendors, including Intelligent Potty, Clouds and Stars, Earth Friendly Products and Tots on Mars all help make toilet training a little easier. Parents appreciate having a range of helpful merchandise available to smooth the road to freedom from diapers.

Designing a room that fully reflects the child who inhabits it requires vision and resources. There are so many choices and decisions to be made that it can become a daunting task. Furniture, bedding, wall art, toy storage and more are some of the components that will need to be selected. Companies that offer a range styles, colors, themes and designs make finding the perfect pieces and accents that much easier and can quickly turn a blank space into a room that appeals to both parent and child. Lazzari, Swankie Blankie, Nurseryworks and Studio Arts provide lots of options in toy storage, bedding, furniture and wall art that help turn a child’s room into a one-of-a-kind sanctuary.

Pedoodles
Michael Scott Studio

How can we help expectant moms get some peace of mind? By giving them what they really want: a break from the concerns and discomforts of pregnancy. Cares include nutritional issues while pregnant, facing the pain of labor, breastfeeding and attachment problems. Other problems concern discomfort; during and after pregnancy a woman’s body is never the same. Companies such as The Clueless Chick, Owie Pillow, MomBod Fitness and Belli are available to give mom exactly what she needs.

Nowadays, the choices in the shoe department are overwhelming. While choices are plentiful, however, they aren’t always high quality, and a new move toward well-made shoes is underway. But today’s kids won’t accept anything less than cutting edge style, so shoemakers have had to combine form with function in some innovative ways. The following companies are showing us that when it comes to quality footwear, there’s life beyond brown Oxfords: Joojos, Shupeas, SWYT Culture, and Shoemees.

In our trend-centric world, it is vital to be flexible. What looked good on Thursday can feel old-hat by the following Monday, so products that can be re-imagined are bound to have a following. With write-on/wipe off duvet covers and pillowcases from Doodle by Stitch, changeable hair personality via Infinity Bands and Flying Buttress handbags that can take on a new persona with a simple panel snap, making changes is part of the game. Life is never dull when styles can easily be updated, giving accessories a new look and enabling girls to be totally “with it” in ways to suit themselves and their ever-changing personalities.

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