The ever-popular Snack Happens™ Reusable Snack & Everything Bag is a must-have for back to school shoppers. Stock up on customer favorite fabrics like Hoot, Dino-Mite!, Cupcake Couture, and Whale Watching Blue, perfect for lunch bags, stowing supplies in desks or backpacks, and keeping snacks prepared for after-school activities. With zippered closures and lining sewn separately, these eco-friendly carriers make cleaning and reusing simple for busy families. No messy, noisy Velcro, plus they’re machine washable!
Buyers looking to tap into what’s new in the baby and children’s markets will find top products in one location at the AmericasMart July 10-17 event in Atlanta, including AmericasMart’s Children’s World and the Modern Baby & Contemporary Kid Juried Collection. BooginHead serves up useful products with modern flair, while HSP Nature Toys’ award-winning laboratory for kids teaches them how to plant and grow vegetables. Posh Play presents functional and beautiful products for the modern mom, and U.S. Toy Company turns an ordinary party into an event to remember. Visit www.AmericasMart.com today for details.
Summer lovin’ is here, so take advantage and fill your stores with waves of wonder! No more tying a towel around the waist; kids can wear their towels proudly with Kiki’s Nation. This innovative company designs pants, jammers, skirts and even bags all made of super-absorbent towel material. Under the sea has never been more fun than MerFins, imaginative beachwear that allows girls to experience Ariel’s world by morphing from legs to fins. Art meets fashion with Kaeli Smith Designs beautiful resort wear in vibrant colors, perfect for a summer BBQ or garden party. Babies stay safe seaside with sport & water wrap baby carriers by Beachfront Baby.
Time magazine’s “Curious Capitalist” Rana Foroohar penned these words that always seem to elicit sighs of relief from some quarters and cheers from others: “Made in the USA is making a comeback.” Having products made in The States not only supports local communities, but also provides other tangible benefits. Quality control is high on that list: a quick walk down to the factory floor can straighten out an issue. Small quantities of well-made products can be created without trouble. Plus, more customers are interested in purchasing US goods. Companies that continue to provide goods made in the USA, like Alex Marshall Studios, Little Korboose, Connor’s Kits for Kids, and Harrisville Designs, are staying strong.
Other than the child’s name, nursery decorating might be the most important part of a baby’s early identity. Retailers looking for a new profit possibility might consider carrying paints in addition to crib bedding and coordinating accessories. Dirt has never looked so clean and chic with the natural pigment of Green Planet Paints. Sweet ones will slumber peacefully with medical grade mattresses and pads by Moonlight Slumber. Creative and chic, Carousel Designs has over 100 options for a natural nursery. Stokke stocks some of the most versatile furniture on the market, including beds, dressers and diaper changing tables that convert as children grow.
When we eat food that is locally grown, we reduce our carbon footprint by cutting back on the cost and impact of importing food from far away. Reducing the need for long-distance trucking cuts back on greenhouse gas emissions so altogether it’s a win-win. Preserving local character is good every way you look at it. Many consumers subscribe to this philosophy so, by offering them clothing for kids that emulates these ideals, retailers can support their existing values — another win-win. Locally Grown Clothing Co. embraces the resurgence of farmers’ markets, local agriculture, and ideals of traditional craftsmanship and Americana.
“This year’s educational sessions were sponsored by Brixy® and were the best ever,” explains Larry Schur, president of All Baby & Child. The 5th Annual ABC Spring Educational Conference, held in Las Vegas from May 7-9, attracted the largest number of exhibiters and attendees to date for the spring event. “The three networking events were the main attractions, and we received an overwhelming number of positive comments about the quality of the events.” Over 160 retailers attended the conference, representing 301 buyers. Some companies that got in on the action were Kore Design, Ragtales, Béaba and Rubens Barn.
There’s a reason Bob Barker is always telling us to spay and neuter our pets. Pet overpopulation is no joke, and as people become more aware, fostering and rescuing dogs has become more popular. Carianne Burnley launched Petsapalooza LLC in 2009 to create high-quality fun toys for pet lovers that also teach about the importance of pet adoption. The idea for Petsapalooza came from Carianne’s love of animals, and also from years of volunteering at a local shelter and being on their Board of Directors. She knew kids loved animals and pretend play, so why not combine the two?
What does a new mother need most? A third set of hands? A night of uninterrupted sleep? Enough time for a quick shower? “Yes” is the answer to all these questions, but here’s an item that will also win an approval shout-out. Poncho Baby is the answer to how to modestly nurse a baby in public any time anywhere, even when Mom and tot are out and about. The innovative design that covers both a woman’s front and her back allows Mom to keep an eye on her baby while she’s feeding. It is also a very useful garment for nursing women to use when pumping breast milk at work.
According to a survey by the Consumer Reports National Research Center, if shoppers were allowed to choose between a U.S.-made product and something identical made abroad, 78% of people opted for the American product. The reasons? Many respondents cited a wish to keep American manufacturing strong. Others expressed concern about the use of cheap labor overseas, and still others felt that American-produced goods were better quality. The Giggle Guide® spotlights products made in the USA, including: Royal Baby, Dreamspun, Suoak and Polka Dot Moon.
“I was truly at my wit’s end,” shares Erin Kelly, founder of Hulabye. Like many other enthusiastic parents, Kelly was enthralled with every stage of her daughter’s growth… until baby decided that life was too short to stay still for a diaper change. The squirmy tot made diaper changes a challenge, but Kelly, who is also a physician, put her creativity to work. Her diligence to create a superior product has paid off: the Happy Changer, a vest design which secures baby safely to a changing pad, is a hands-down customer favorite.
Attending a panel discussion presented about how retailers can better work with bloggers and social media outlets, I remembered Marshall McLuhan’s famous quote from my college days: “The medium is the message.” He meant something about the medium influencing, and thus becoming part of, how the message is perceived. It kinda confused me then, just as I realized after the Q&A session that there is a lot of confusion about the ever-changing online media called “social.” Some retailers remained puzzled as to why anyone would be interested in what moms say about their families. One reason they should care is because many of these messages are influencing buying decisions and helping to build brands.