The Biz

How can parents get an adorable look with little fuss and lots of style? One way to go is to punch up an outfit with a kid-sized tie: it makes a strong statement and few things are more attention-getting than a charming child with a cute tie. The problem is that knotting a tie so that it lays flat and looks sleek can make even the most dexterous fingers all thumbs. Whodihoo owners Chris Vea and Rodney Ishihara developed their idea as a simple solution to a knotty problem: the Slicknot Tie, which utilizes magnets to allow for a perfect look every time.

Color blocking and mod styles are making a big comeback, and not just on the adult runways. There’s nothing cuter on a little girl than a flared dress or a tailored coat. The looks at Lisa Perry are sophisticated but with just the right amount of girlish whimsy, perfectly on trend for the grade school gals. As Lisa began designing clothes mirroring the art of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, people around her began reacting positively to her vintage vibe. With a focus on clean lines, geometric shapes, bold colors and minimalism, Lisa’s styles are chic updates to dated styles.

Do crabs fly? What do dogs think about the secrets kids whisper into their ears? When a little one scribbles wildly colorful lines and circles, is there a hidden meaning? Run these thoughts by your customers and take note –– at first their eyebrows may rise, but once they get their hands on the whimsical clothes from Doodle Do, shopping will move into high gear. Children’s imaginations inspire every garment and accessory this British company produces. Designed to bring out the extraordinary that lurks in every youngster, these are clothes for youngsters who need to play, run and simply hang out in garments that are comfy no matter what.

All Baby & Child, Inc. (ABC Kids Expo)
Playtime New York

Shropshire-based Funky Feet Fashions Ltd. combines the nostalgic charm of England with all that’s delightful for children. Since all of the company’s products are handcrafted in the United Kingdom, only high-quality designs roll out of the doors. While the company produces clothing, accessories, and other items, it is tops with bottoms — kids’ footwear, that is. FFF footwear is non-slip and designed especially for little feet. Demand for the footwear has been strong, causing the company to bolster its UK team. With phenomenal customer response, it’s easy to see why the company is expanding its footwear designs.

Kids are dirt magnets. Between dropped pacifiers, chewed-up toys, and snack-time on the floor, parents need to be one-step ahead of babies and germs. This is part of the reason why a growing number of child products are developed from silicone. Already known for its many industrial and medical uses, silicone brings an added dimension of safety and durability to kids’ products. From the innovative teething devices at Mello & Co. and RaZbaby to the products from ChooMee and 5 Oceans International that make mealtime a snap, silicone is helping parents keep kids cleaner and safer than ever before.

For softness, warmth without weight, and the luxe that is inherent to the material, nothing beats cashmere. This much sought-after fabric is what makes up the high quality items produced by LabelLamb, a Yorkshire, England-based company that offers very special clothes for special kids. Not only are the garments crafted from cashmere, but this is recycled cashmere, so it benefits the planet while being kind to the sheep who provide the yarn. Handmade with care and lots of love, items from LabelLamb are all one of a kind so there is never a chance of duplication.

SwaddleDesigns®
RuffleButts / RuggedButts

Swedish company Little Jalo has its eye on developing the finest in children’s products. Started by industry veteran Marie Sammeli, Little Jalo brings the best of kids fashion into line with the finest in materials and design. But Little Jalo’s Euro-style is not only popular on the continent. “We have had a very good consumer response,” Sammeli explains. The mother of four has a strong vision for the company’s products — beautiful, earth-friendly, sustainable creations — and knows how to meld it with the durability and quality that parents need.

What does it take to make that indecisive customer happy? Offer a comprehensive children’s collection that spans ages, genders and tastes. Honey Bunny brand products are a vast collection of affordable baby accessories that make grabbing and gifting super simple. They are all unique but complementary enough to mix and match. For the baby basics, Honey Bunny features rich flannel receiving blankets and contoured crib sheets. Thermal blankets littered with cute characters like giraffes, crocodiles and koalas will also be a hit.

Many parents know the feeling: You take your little girl to a party in a cute and frilly dress, only to find that she and her friends are more interested in crawling around on the floor pretending to be dinosaurs than they are in sitting demurely for photo ops. Kids will be kids, and get-togethers are meant to be fun after all, so it makes sense to choose some clothing pieces that kids can wear to events, but that can also stand up to normal wear and tear. Truffles Ruffles is a children’s clothing company that offers a variety of pretty, feminine dresses, pants, sets and accessories for little girls.

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