The Biz: Feature Articles

Teething is a challenging time! Sleepless nights and seemingly endless bouts of crying are difficult enough to struggle through; add in the fact that a teething baby chews on everything in sight, and you’ve got a source of concern. Parents also worry about their drooling infant wearing cold, wet shirts. In the past, parents used feeding time bibs to catch the drool and water-filled, chilled teething rings for chewing. Now there are more trendy tools available! Per Bambini, Dr. Bloom, Inc., ZoLi, Inc., and Amberizon offer fashionable, creative teething accessories that soothe parents and babies alike.

What better way to add that certain something to a gift-giving occasion than infusing it with real magic, particularly for children who delight in being “in the know” and periodically having the spotlight? That includes “children” of all ages, since adults also marvel at well-done magic that can bewilder their friends. The Giggle Guide® reveals magical products from Giddy Up™, Toysmith, Fantasma Magic and Bright Products, Inc. that work like a charm to spellbind your customers and conjure up spectacular sales!

Have you ever heard of the Snuggie®? How about Pillow Pets™? Chances are not only have you heard of these products; you probably have one in your home! The Snuggie® boasts sales in excess of $100 million; quite impressive since the brand has only been around for a few years. Pillow Pets™, on the other hand, have been around a little longer —about 7 years— and look to be one of the must have items for Christmas this year. What’s so appealing about these products? How are they thriving while so many other businesses are struggling? More importantly, what lessons can we glean to share in this success? The short answer: advertising.

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Is anything more desirable to new parents than a full night’s sleep? Parents are always looking for ways to enjoy a restful night for themselves and their children. The Sandman seems to be catching a few more zzz’s himself, since innovations in children’s sleep products have more families nodding off peacefully! Help your weary customers get the blissful shut-eye of their dreams with soothing products from sleep specialists SwaddleDesigns, Cloud B, Good Nite Lite, and The Gro Company.

There is nothing more precious than a sleeping baby, especially when mom and dad can rest assured their little one is sleeping safe and sound. Sharing the commendable goal of educating parents about the importance of safe sleep environments are HALO Innovations, Greenbuds, Angelcare Monitors and BreathableBaby. These top-notch companies have developed high-tech products specifically designed to make sleeping safe and serene for infants and parents alike.

“So use…your imagination,” wrote Cole Porter. This remains excellent advice today! Imagination, that glorious key ingredient to a happy childhood, builds a strong foundation in the architecture of a fertile, young mind. Children who nurture creativity find unique solutions to life’s challenges as they grow into adulthood. The Giggle Guide® celebrates the creative sparks that ignite children’s imaginations with a look at crafts and activities from Supereditions, Aliquantum-International, Peter Pauper Press, Faber Castell’s Creativity for Kids and Bead Bazaar.

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Bows Arts

Welcome to “Imagination Theater.” Not since Jim Henson created Kermit the Frog from a fuzzy robe and golf balls have there been such innovative options for creative puppet play for children! By offering a variety of fanciful products from Maxim Enterprise, Apple Park, Puppet Hand and Folkmanis, you can bring the world of Imagination Theater into your store, and introduce a whole new generation to the magic of puppets, theaters, and story time.

Today is America Recycles Day, a nationally-recognized, annual celebration which promotes recycling programs and practices. Slowly but surely, the attention has paid off. In 2007, it was proven that the amount of waste disposed straight to landfills has decreased from 89% to 54% over the past 30 years! In honor of America Recycles Day, The Giggle Guide® is featuring terrific children’s products from Twirls & Twigs, Lisa Austin Design, and Nahui Ollin. These companies reuse a variety of materials to create purses, headbands, bracelets, wallets, dresses, shirts, and baby blankets and more!

Society continues to move forward, and if businesses don’t follow the global lead, they will be left behind. The juvenile products industry, inch by inch, is going organic and placing Fair Trade practices squarely on its business radar. By supporting Fair Trade, organic, and eco-friendly transactions across the globe, both the environment and low income economies are given a fighting chance at sustainability and growth. Every day, more and more children’s businesses are becoming part of the Fair Trade phenomenon, including: noted*, mirasa design, One World Projects, and Maggie’s Functional Organics.

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