Too Scoops Kids


Children’s Retail Today congratulates you on Birthday Number One!

365 days, 154 posts, 321 comments and 10,867 views later, Too Scoops Kids is celebrating its first birthday with a Blogiversary Celebration this Saturday, September 21 in Atlanta, GA – and everyone’s invited! Check it out here.

This has been an amazing year for us and we want to share the excitement with our readers and favorite brands targeting little girls.

091913_TooScoopsKids_ButtonToo Scoops Kids (TSK) is a blog dedicated to what founders Lysi and Jenny call “the pint-sized fashion star.” A one-stop-shop for fun, fashion and family, Too Scoops Kids offers high quality, one-of-a kind content that engages moms and women from all walks of life with trendsetting commentary and options for affordable clothing and accessories for little girls.

“Our goal is to develop custom packages for brands that want to target the millennial mom who loves fashion, family, and fun,” they say. “TSK values our audience and we welcome all brands that seek to enhance the quality of life for our families in an original and innovative way.”

091913_TooScoopsKids_BlogiversaryInviteLysi says visitors can expect fabulousness, and Jenny says you’ll find “honesty, fun, a true glimpse into the life of a real life millennial mom, that loves life, adores her family, believes in being who you are without excuses, and is a sucker for a good-time!”

Talia from Pink Pearl PR tells me TSK is planning to launch an online boutique -and a few of their own designs- over the next few months. Great birthday present, girls!

WubbaNub


Soft and cuddly, these pacifiers are just the right size for little hands to grasp and hold.

091813_Wubbanub_PinkKittenMissing Pacifier Syndrome. A few years ago, new Mom Carla Schneider was hoping to enjoy her first vacation with her baby –and eventually, she did … after she found a way to soothe her little one’s non-stop fussing and crying. Crafty Carla put the hotel’s complimentary sewing kit to good use, attaching her baby’s favorite plush toy to a pacifier –and that’s what it took! Not only did she solve the “missing pacifier syndrome,” she created what is now known as The Original Plush Pacifier!

091813_Wubbanub_BabyGiraffeAward Winner. A Creative Child Top Choice Award winner in 2011, 2012 and 2013, WubbaNub pacifiers are not only loved by babies and their parents, but by celebrity moms, too. Available in children’s shops and online, distributed in hospitals, NICU and well-baby units nationwide, WubbaNub also won a National Parenting Seal of Approval Award in 2012.

Patented Design. Innovative Improvement. Made with a Soothie™ medical grade, Latex-free pacifier, WubbaNubs are BPA-, PVC- and phthalate-free and the durable one-piece construction won’t let germs hide in any nooks or crannies.

WubbaNub has created a reputation in the parenting and children’s industry for being dedicated to nurturing babies in the safest, healthiest way possible.

091813_Wubbanub_YellowDuckCarla’s patented design  is just the right weight and size, making it super easy for baby keep near the mouth. The plush animal not only helps, but adds a little comfort for baby and makes it easy for parents to find it in the car seat, baby sling, carrier, stroller or diaper bag!

Plus, they’re adorable! I do wish Carla would make a little goat version, though!

IMPWEAR


091713_IMPWEAR_03Made by a Mom in Seattle, IMPWEAR introduces an oil cloth collection that’s just right for kids of any age!

Back in 1992, creative Mom Tracy Krauter stared making a line of reversible wear for her three active boys. She called it IMPWEAR and sold what she calls the “quality hand-me-downs” at local street fairs.

Made in the USA. Now, Tracy and her IMPWEAR crew are making aprons, tablecloths, reversible bags and more, made from a versatile oil cloth.

It’s the fabric that excites.

091713_IMPWEAR_01The lightweight fabric has a polyurethane coating that’s BPA-free, PVC-free, phthalate-free and toxin-free, which means it’s not only safe for food, but safe for kids, too. “This ‘oil cloth’ comes in the same zesty prints with irresistible draping and washability,” Tracy says.

091713_IMPWEAR_04Perfect for any kitchen, garden shed or kids playtime, IMWEAR’s oil cloth collection is available online at www.impwear.com, at local shops and market events and wholesale –great for gift shops, catalogs or garden nurseries (I especially like Tracy’s yoga mat bag!).

Giving Back. Tracy was a park ranger in a former life, and believes in the value of untouched wilderness for our kids. In support of her cause, IMPWEAR donates 10% of each sale to non-profit organization Forterra, the largest conservation and community building organization in Washington State, dedicated to protect, enhance and steward the region’s communities and landscapes.

How Roland Rolls


Award-winning actor/artist Jim Carrey is breaking new ground, for himself, his fans –and for a little wave.

Jim Carrey – known for his fabulous portrayals of interesting characters in films such as Man on the Moon, The Truman Show, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective  and How the Grinch Stole Christmas, among others, is self-publishing his first children’s book.

Carrey’s created a charming, fun to read, beautifully illustrated book with Roland the wave as a metaphor for the inter-relatedness of everything in the world.”

~ Jane Fonda

091213_HowRolandRolls_BookcoverOn September 24, How Roland Rolls is available wherever books and e-books are sold, as well as on the How Roland Rolls website. An enhanced e-book will be released at the same time, along with a four-song EP that is available through iTunes. Major booksellers are also embracing the wave, so to speak.

“It’s a story about a wave named Roland who’s afraid that, one day, when he hits the beach, his life will be over,” Jim says. “But when he gets deep, he’s struck by the notion that he’s not just a wave — he’s the whole big, wide ocean! It shows humanity’s interconnectedness through the metaphor of a wave in the ocean.”

The personal story behind the book. “When I was a child,” Carrey shares, “my parents were smokers and I had a deep fear that they would pass … and then what would happen to me? I think that’s a common fear for children – the fear of loss. It’s an early existential crisis, if you will. But when we realize that beneath the surface of things – the activities of our lives — we are all connected, all one energy, that fear of loss gets softened. At times, it disappears entirely. At least that’s been true for me.”

091213_HowRolandRolls_JimCarreyIllustrationAs a parent -and now a grandparent- (Yikes! Where did the time go?!) Mr. Carrey reflects on the time he spent reading to his daughter, Jane. “I believe the closest we get to heaven in this world is when we get completely involved in something we love. One of those moments is when we read to our children. It’s total freedom from self, from our worries and problems. We always feel terrific afterwards, and so do the kids. For them, it’s an experience of focused, enveloping love.”

All in the family. Illustrated by one of Jim’s friends, Rob Nason –who’s also an award-winning illustrator and animator- How Roland Rolls is dedicated to his grandson; the four songs on the EP are performed by Jim and his daughter, Jane; and the book itself is being released by his company, Some Kind of Garden Media.

 Philosophers and scientists struggle to understand cosmic consciousness, but Jim Carrey explains it with elegant simplicity to the child in all of us.”

~ Deepak Chopra

Cinders: A Chicken Cinderella


091113_CindersByJanBrett_BookcoverWhile reading the current issue of Country Woman Magazine recently, I was introduced to Jan Brett, an award-winning author/illustrator who also happens to breed award-winning chickens.

Jan is renowned all over the country for her beautiful illustrations in children’s books –and when I saw the cover of her newest tale, Cinders: A Chicken Cinderella, I just had to tell my Children’s Retail Today peeps about it -and about Jan, too.

Cinders is Jan’s take on the classic fairy tale, complete with a little hen who’s transformed into a beautiful and mysterious guest at a ball during one magical night. Her fanciful illustrations capture the grandeur and glamour of eighteenth-century Russia, where Jan traveled herself. Together with her funny flock of chicken characters, this Cinderella story is whimsical and original. A feast for the eyes, one might say!

“I want kids to be able to open my books and feel as if they could walk right into the pages.”

-Jan Brett, in Country Woman

Charmed by Chickens. The Massachusetts-based author is currently touring the United States for her new book, visiting towns in New York, Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, Alabama, Georgia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, New Jersey and New Hampshire (phew!) –visiting book stores, schools and libraries, giving book talks and illustration demonstrations at each signing. It’s something Jan does every fall, to meet her book-reading fans in person.

091113_CindersByJanBrett_TourBusIf you’re lucky enough to live in a town she’s visiting, sign your kids up for Jan’s “Lunch on the Bus” contest, where your child and three friends have the chance to win lunch with Jan on her tricked out traveling machine. Visit JanBrett.com for more.

091113_CindersByJanBrett_JanWithChickensWhile you’re checking out her online footprint, learn more about Jan’s stories that have been incorporated into school curricula across the country and download free educational activities for teachers to use with their students.

Imagine Childhood


Everything under the sun that encourages the wonder of play -for people of all ages, really.

091013_ImageChildhood_Catalog_natureThe first thing you will notice when you visit Image Childhood is the gorgeous photography.

Browse through this family owned and operated company’s Seasonal Catalogs and you’ll lose yourself in the magic of each season, just looking at all the fun and interesting toys, tools and activities that encourage exploration, creativity and play. Imagine Childhood specializes in high quality, environmentally conscious products that allow children to experience the world through their own senses. And for co-founder Sarah Olmsted and her team, the best way to learn is through interacting with nature and our natural environment.

Part community forum, part storefront, imaginechildhood.com is a place where parents and kids can find their own definition of childhood.

091013_ImageChildhood_BookcoverIn fact, Sarah wrote the book on it. Imagine Childhood: Exploring the World Through Nature, Imagination, and Play- 25 Projects That Spark Curiosity and Adventure, published by Roost Books last fall, is what she calls “a celebration of childhood through the crafts and activities that invite wonder and play.” For Sarah, the 25 projects in the book offer stepping-off points for children to engage with the world. “They’re about the process of getting there,” she says. “They’re about the conversations that happen while making things together. They’re about getting to know the world inch by inch. They’re about exploring imaginary universes and running through real forests. They’re about living in childhood … regardless of your actual age.”

091013_ImageChildhood_Catalog_explorationPure Natural Wonder. Before starting Imagine Childhood five years ago, Sarah developed interactive education exhibits for the Field Museum of Natural History. And she uses this experience in presenting simple, economical projects for children and parents to enjoy together –without all the technological wonders of the modern day. Just the  pure, natural wonder of our surroundings, revved up with a child’s point of view.

091013_ImageChildhood_OakLeafFairyShop the Store. In addition to Sarah’s book, shoppers will find all sorts of treasures at Imagine Childhood, like this Oak Leaf Faerie, handmade on Bryn Du Farm in Colorado and dressed in plant-dyed wool felt, made from the farm’s own sheep! Also very cool: custom skin and eye color available upon request.

City Threads


This real American clothing company has been making clothes in the USA since 2002. 

090513_CityThreads_LogoCaletha Crawford is a well-known and respected childrenswear consultant based in New York. Once the editor of the venerable children’s trade publication Earnshaw’s, Caletha is also part of the the Children’s Apparel Consulting Group, a full-service, one-stop network of industry veterans that works with children’s clothing companies on branding, design, merchandising, production, sales, credit checks, order processing, back office, customers service, marketing, collections, PR and social media –good to know, in case you’re embarking on your passion for children’s fashion with a new product or business!

090513_CityThreads_02Made in the USA. Caletha recently featured Los Angeles, CA-based City Threads in her e-newsletter –an apparel company that started out manufacturing cool clothes for boys emblazoned with city names, and now caters to both boys and girls sizes 0 to 14 with a full complement of clothing for day and night,  including pajamas, underwear, layering pieces and fashionable sportswear that features innovative graphics designed to excite kids’ imaginations.

090513_CityThreads_05Spring 2014. City Threads is putting its spin on classic warm-weather must-haves for a spring collection that’s fun and carefree.

“The Spring ’14 line comprises t-shirts, polos, hoodies, shorts, dresses, one-pieces, swim trunks, pajamas and underwear for 24/7 style,” Caletha says. “The brand is devoted to comfort with soft, quality fabrics and an easy fit.”

With our Spring ’14 collection, City Threads has done what we do best by putting our signature trend-right twist on the iconic American style staples kids love to live in. Plus, the fabrics are comfy enough that kids won’t want to take them off.

-co-owner and designer Shayna Samuels

090513_CityThreads_06Outrageously eye-catching graphics spill over fronts for added visual interest on tees, tanks, swim trunks and shorts. Hoodies have 3D details like a shark fin on the back  that kids really love. And it’s the line’s swimwear that makes the biggest splash with moms year after year, thanks to its quality and durability –now with screen printing on swim trunks this season.

090513_CityThreads_04Popular with celebrity moms and parents everywhere, husband-and-wife team Shayna Samuels and Joe Willis runs this family business that makes its cool apparel in the United States. They also make padded footies, pants and hats, rounding out a collection that becomes a staple in a child’s wardrobe.

The Matching Dots & KNOCKOUT Tees


Be cool. Be glamorous. Be spotted! Our motto has this fun double meaning: wear spots and be spotted. Our customers are unique and original, and we make them noticeable!

090413_TheMatchingDots_02Made in the USA. Polka dots have made a royal comeback, thanks to Princess Kate being “spotted” leaving the hospital with newborn Prince George. And dots are being done in a fun, modern way right here in the US by The Matching Dots, a company that specializes in polka dot prints, featured in designs for girls and their dolls, as well as their moms and their little dogs, too!

090413_TheMatchingDots_04Fe Read and Augusta Justen have made their childhood dream of owning a business come true with their socially responsible clothing line that’s not only Made in the USA, but making a difference in the world.

“Our unique and exclusive coordinating designs are proven to strengthen family relationships,” Fe tells me, who bonds with her own little girl wearing their coordinating Matching Dots dresses. Fe, who lives with her family in North Carolina and serves as managing director of The Matching Dots, has a background in business management working for non-profits, and has a soft spot in her heart for helping kids in need. “Philanthropy is a big part of our organization,” she says. “For every dress we sell we feed one hungry child in partnership with Stop Hunger Now.”

090413_TheMatchingDots_03Augusta also studied business management, but she decided to follow her passion to fashion early on, studying in Italy, London and Brazil before moving to the Portland, OR area and becoming the creative director of The Matching Dots.

“Behind each one of our designs is the desire to help strengthen family relationships,” they say. “We are very passionate about what we do and we feel delighted with the possibility of being part of your special moments.”

I’m tickled by the team’s explanation of why “dots” are so special –especially the notion that many believe something intrinsically “divine” or “perfect” can be found in circles.

090413_TheMatchingDots_KnockOutTees_01TEE Parties. Fe and Augusta are also the minds behind KNOCKOUT Tees, a line born soon after The Matching Dots with the goal is to help “knock out” hunger, child abuse and neglect, malnourishment, poverty and violence.

A percentage of profits automatically goes to address the needs of children, so by supporting both The Matching Dots and Knockout Tees, you are helping children in need. The company puts together events called TEE PARTIES every year to raise funds for specific non-profit agencies throughout the US.

Giada De Laurentiis’ Recipe For Adventure


The New York Times bestselling author and Food Network star cooks up a little something for the kiddies –and for their moms.

090313_RecipeForAdventure_NaplesGiada De Laurentiis knows a little something about travel. Not only was she born in Rome, growing up in Los Angeles where she now lives with her husband, Todd and their daughter, Jade, she attended the Cordon Bleu in Paris and works for a television network based in New York’s Chelsea Market.

Giada also knows a thing or two about how to fill the hours riding on a plane. In addition to perhaps working out new recipes for her incredibly popular television series, Giada at Home, she’s written a few stories about two kids who travel the world, learning about food and culture.

090313_RecipeForAdventure_ParisOn Sale Today! Giada De Laurentiis’s Recipe for Adventure children’s book series transports readers to famous food cities around the world. The first two books in the series, Naples! and Paris!, go on sale today; a third, Hong Kong! is also available.

090313_RecipeForAdventure_HongKongIllustrated by Francesca Gambatesa, the books introduce kids to Zia Donatella, who comes to live with the Bertolizzi family. And when she does,  little do Alfie and his older sister Emilia know what’s in store for them. Zia Dontella is determined to show the kids how a home-cooked meal is better than even the best take-out pizza or burrito. And when Zia’s plan actually transports Alfie and Emilia to famous food cities around the world, they learn first-hand how food can not only take you places but can also bring you back home. Each book includes recipes for those home-cooked meals.

Available on Amazon.com.

090313_RecipeForAdventure_GiadaLogoA Little Something for Mom, Too.  With the recent launch of the digital publication Giada, the very popular chef is re-imagining the very notion of a weekly lifestyle publication, with an editorial package that allows for on-the-spot content and is responsive to reader input.

The new media offers a blend of original and curated lifestyle content focused on food, beauty, fashion, home décor, health and fitness, travel and family life. In addition, there’s  Giada’s “hotlist” -what she’s listening to, reading or watching and  “Feel Good Food,” her weekly column devoted to her secrets for eating well and staying fit (she’s also written a new book by the same name, coming out this fall).

090313_RecipeForAdventure_GiadaIn addition, each issue will include recipes that readers can collect and save in a personal “Recipe Box” and share with friends via Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and email, as well as tips to up their style quotient and ideas for places to visit and products to buy. Upcoming issues will feature reader-generated content as well as editorial features created in response to reader feedback, making it a truly interactive experience for subscribers and Giada’s fans.

Giada has always had an exceptional level of engagement with her fans through social media. By publishing weekly and in a digital format, Giada is able to deepen that engagement, providing a more immersive experience for her highly mobile audience while maintaining the authenticity that is a hallmark of her brand. Giada is redefining what a magazine can be by creating an experience that has the immediacy of a social platform with the functionality of an app. We are thrilled that she has chosen to explore this exciting new space with us.”

-Pam Krauss, Senior Vice President and Publisher, Clarkson Potter

The inaugural issue of Giada is free. Available now for downloading from Newsstand on iPad; iPhone and web-optimized versions will be available later this fall. Future issues will be published every Thursday. Giada is powered by Paragraph’s publishing platform, that lets authors, publishers and other organizations create beautiful magazines for tablets, mobile devices and the web.

I bring all this up because I know a lot of my Children’s Retail Today readers are exceptionally creative and innovative –and Giada’s new products can really inspire new business opportunities!