By now, all merchandisers who have an ear cocked to the public pulse show lots of green products. Sustainable fabric, environmentally-friendly packaging, and companies that truly embrace their workforce are good for everyone. Some green companies may have taken their path to differentiate themselves from others. They may find setting a positive example makes customers think more highly of them. Often, the company really likes making and selling goods that don’t harm anyone, either in the making or the end usage. The Giggle Guide® presents four companies with green profiles and offerings: Winter Water Factory, Bright-Brained Toys, trash-á-porter, and Dot&Co.
Happy Earth Day! Initially started to call attention to the necessity of protecting the environment and natural resources, Earth Day has evolved into a celebration that highlights the grandeur of nature and the various ways that we can all pull together to make the world a better place. Of course, many children’s companies have strong environmental policies they practice every day of the year. Companies like Prince Lionheart, Simple Nature, BooginHead and Tiny Tater Tees are bringing useful products to families while helping to build a better world.
There’s something special about handmade baby gifts because they’re so often handed down for decades and there’s always a great story. Your store can contribute to multiple generations of joy and warmth with Bunch & Rosa quilts. These quilters live and work in North Carolina and use traditional quilting techniques with a twist: their designs are totally modern. Unlike the delicate quilts of yesteryear that could only be neatly folded on the edge of a bed, Bunch & Rosa quilts use hand-sewn binding, ensuring the quilt can be loved daily and still passed on.
The first few months in a new baby’s life are a blur for everyone, but especially fuzzy for those poor parents whose kids don’t sleep. There are millions of baby sacks and swaddles out there, but learning to swaddle using a traditional wrap can be daunting and babies often wriggle free. The ergoCocoon range of swaddles from ergoPouch were designed to be both simple to use and difficult to escape from. Made from super stretchy fabrics, they allow a comfortable amount of natural movement for healthy hip development.
The March Playtime New York was themed beautifully around light through trends spaces, art installations and exclusive entertainment. Playtime New York continued to grow, selling out this year while hosting 120 international collections. This show is known for bringing together the best brands, both new and established. Here are a few that caught the attention of Editorial Director David Gaunt: California lifestyle brand Mini & Maximus has international appeal. Urban Infant carries the load for kids and parents on the go with convenient backpacks and lunch bags. Newcomer Mon Petit Atelier focuses on fancy dresses that inspire nostalgia. OmamiMini wows with modern outerwear and apparel from L.A. that complements a range of styles.
Last February’s KIDShow Las Vegas showed me a lot to love. The event continues to be the largest collection of children’s fashions and accessories west of the Hudson River, and offers a wide assortment of mid-tier to high-end apparel in a comfortable setting where buyers can review lines and write orders to assure well-stocked shelves and strong sales. Here are some of the brands and people that caught my eye and renewed my interest in the children’s business: We The Beautiful, Jo Ann Farese and all the brands she represents, GlitterTots Sparkle Screen and Ultimate Apparel, well represented by Karen Grasso.
What do you call a one-piece that is made from super-soft cotton and comes in patterns that radiate both style and a sense of humor? If you are Little Green Radicals, these charmers are Babygrows, available in a host of patterns. The Bella design is a cheery red, pink, purple and brown stripe with Bella the bunny appliquéd on the front, and snug ribbed cuffs on both arms and legs to keep little ones warm. Skin care is the newest LGR passion with offerings including Sleep Balm and Nappy Balm, as well as Shampoo and Body Wash, Scalp Oil, and Massage Oil, each formulated for tender young skin.
Michele Keeler is a triple threat in the design world, creating clothing, shoes, and items for the home. This is quite the impressive resumé for someone who became a professional designer by “accident.” It was 1996 and Michele was a single mom of two young children. Like many moms, especially those living on a single income, she faced the challenge of keeping her little ones in clothing that looked good and fit them well. Luckily, she had sewing skills and a good eye for fashion, so making clothing for her kids wasn’t just a task to endure, but a pursuit that made her happy.
Spring is just around the corner (it just doesn’t feel like it in some places!), and soon the air will be full of birds’ songs and croaking frogs. Green shoots bring back new hopes for a fresh start, and one great way to kick off the season is with earth-friendly pieces. Fred’s World, a Scandinavian company that produces attention-grabbing, comfy children’s wear, is poised for another blockbuster year. Part of the company’s attraction has been its very strict dedication to creating clothes that are wearable, adorable, and gentle on the planet.
Few things evoke images of softness and warmth like cuddly bunnies, so it’s easy to understand why Kasia Pysiak went with the moniker Zaikamoya (“my bunny” in Russian). Pysiak’s initial line was all about softness and style. Zaikamoya’s Fall/Winter 2013 collection was launched at Playtime New York to rave reviews. “I hear a lot of ‘I wish it was in my size’,” says Pysiak. Pieces in the collection are spun from organic cotton and revel in a neutral palette. It fits “bunnies” ages 0 to 4, but Pysiak is already eyeing up expansion.
“They are very soft, daddy.” This testimonial by a small boy lasers in on the primary focus of Lucky & Me undergarments: comfortable, breathable foundational pieces that make parents happy and little kids want to share their enthusiasm. Rochelle Perera, co-founder of Lucky & Me, set out to create undergarments that were soft, comfortable, and safe. She found a ready audience. “We’ve had a great response from the customer – parents who appreciate high-quality products love Lucky & Me underwear,” Perera exclaimed. Lucky & Me undergarments are all about the child’s comfort. They are tagless and the elastic trims don’t tug or pull at the skin.
No Slippy Hair Clippy®, the premier brand of children’s hair accessories, boasts impeccable quality and design. When searching gift worthy brands, No Slippy Hair Clippy is a perfect fit! Hair accessories are popular impulsive add-ons, ones that can be reordered all year around. The attractive MSRP range of $4-$10 will keep your customers coming back for more!