By Lauren Rollheiser - Tuesday, September 4th 2012
PlanToys is an innovative collection of educational green toys that are bright, affordable, and as safe for little ones as they are for the planet. This line is full of new and traditional toys, from long-time favorite pull toys to one-of-a-kind dollhouse designs. Each toy is designed to inspire children’s imaginations, engaging them in educational play that will provide physical and intellectual stimulation and development. The educational value of PlanToys has been recognized with the prestigious Parents’ Choice and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio awards.
The diversity of businesses that offer juvenile products made in the U.S.A. is broad, but each has the same interests at heart. It’s for the kids. A few of the companies that have made the commitment are The Fig Orchard, Heather Hill Clothing, Funkie Baby and Nest Designs. Their products range from beautiful hair accessories and designer clothing to baby necessities and organic one-pieces. All are proud to proclaim, “Made in America.”
The Spring/Summer 2013 Playtime New York show, held August 4-6, 2012, proved a winner for all involved with 13% more visitors than the previous year’s Playtime event. 90 international brands, of which two-thirds were from the U.S., were on hand to strut their stuff and strut they did. Once again, Playtime New York brought together all key sectors of the children’s universe including clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, décor and gifts. With so much to offer, Playtime has positioned itself as a must-visit trade show. Here’s a peek at some of our favorites: Luna Leggings, Baby Baazaar, Cutility and Everbloom.
As retailers, it’s hard to ignore the green revolution. More young families are demanding natural, organic or sulfate-free products. Nowhere has “clean and green” been more in demand than in cleaning products. New parents need the strongest stuff on the market to clean up the messes, but want those products to be safe and gentle as well. It isn’t easy for retailers to wade through the growing waters of products marked “natural” or “organic,” so we’ve helped out a bit and feature a few favorite brands: BuggyLOVE, Better Life,Dapple and Fresh Wave.
Kidz On Safari is a North American-based company designed to bring the African Safari experience to the Western world. Kidz On Safari realizes that very few North American children have the opportunity to go on an African safari. They want to give these children a chance to vicariously enjoy such an adventure, and interact with their favorite animals in the comfort and safety of their own home. Their casual eco-friendly clothing, plush toys, educational DVDs and music CDs provide an immersive global experience that opens children’s eyes to the diverse wildlife and experience of an African safari.
Organic cotton has gained popularity in recent years –– particularly in infant fashions –– because of its gentleness on both the skin and the planet. The market for organic cotton and other environmentally friendly clothing is full of both established and emerging companies. It pays to do a little research and find out which ones have the most cutting-edge styles, the most creative designs, and state-of-the-art “green” manufacturing practices. Here are a few worthy of retail consideration: Pickle Peas, mini mioche, Itsus Eco and Bungalow BeBe.
The 5th edition of Playtime New York (August 4-6) will offer a selection of merchandise showcasing 90 American and international children’s brands. Vendors will exhibit infant and children’s clothing, shoes, accessories, baby gear, toys, and deco/design products. The theme of this summer edition is “DREAM,” which will be explored in exhibitions, events and trend spaces to provide fantastic creativity throughout the event. Several companies are participating in Playtime New York for the first time, in addition to returning favorites. The Giggle Guide® previews a few must-see brands, including Rayil, Hazel Village Toys, Sammi & David and Sweet Petunia.
Anthem of the Ants is a well-loved girl’s clothing company creating vintage style garments for sizes 12 months to 12 years, all designed and manufactured in Los Angeles. Created by designer Lynn Keyes in 2010, the line was born from her love of denim and a desire to create items as unique and individual as the girls who wear them. Inspired from decades past and with attention to every detail, wash finish, buttons and trims; Anthem of the Ants crafts a well-made product combining vintage elements and silhouettes with a sophisticated, modern perspective.
Summer is the season of sunshine, but it’s also a time when baby showers reign. If you carry poème & poésie in your stores, there will be no need to include a gift receipt in the card. You will be offering something personal that goes beyond the obligatory oohs and aahs at the party. Saranga Weerasuriya designed the collection with her mother to reflect her heritage and family traditions. From mother to daughter, clothes and linens have been hand-sewn for each and every new arrival, boy or girl, in her family. Bloomers, shirts, gowns, blankets and swaddling cloths are a few of the signature pieces.
The Giggle Guide® attended the 4th Annual ABC Spring Conference and Trade Show in Las Vegas, and we’re pleased to report that we heard no complaints about the event that provided an all-in-one combination of business education, trade show, networking and plenty of good food, fun and industry fellowship. Packed with informational seminars and plenty of opportunities to network, the streamlined trade show portion included 187 booths. This year’s event showcased a variety of new and returning baby and juvenile brands. A few head-turners included Notch, Ergobaby, guavakids and SnoozeShade.