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Indy “Talk” Shop


Kickstarter Campaign Launches Today!

Indy “Talk” Shop, a new creative educational toy startup for kids ages 0-3, produces toys that easily guide playtime with your kids for better bonding and learning. The company is launching a Kickstarter campaign today (February 28).

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As You Read, You Play, and You Learn, Naturally

Based on new research in child development and play methods, Indy “Talk” Shop is creating a line of playboxes that is qualitatively different. Each playbox comes with an original story about a cute yet clumsy dragon named “Indy” and a matching classic toy, such as a puzzle, blocks, train sets, etc. Each story guides a reading-while-playing experience that prompts playtime with your kids and enables an interactive dynamic between parent and child to enhance developmental areas that are critical for their growth. While essential for a child’s early learning, the playboxes also offer parents the tools they need to help their kids learn.

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Indy “Talk” Shop’s Kickstarter campaign offers backers an opportunity to donate the first playbox in a series, Indy and the Farm (an original story with a matching farm puzzle), to one of three New York-based national charity partners that support the education and advancement of children: K.I.D.S./Fashion Delivers, Family Health Centers at NYU Langone and Room to Grow. When you support Indy “Talk” Shop through the campaign, you will also buy Indy and The Farm for children in need.

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About Indy “Talk” Shop

Indy “Talk” Shop is co-founded by Frida Matute, M.A. CCC-SLP, a New York-based medical pediatric speech-language therapist, and Alex Adarichev, an architect and designer. Frida’s inspiration comes from tying her clinical experience, research and love of watching kids and parents learn together. Their five-person team has been working diligently to make this launch a success.

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Indy “Talk” Shop’s method is to embed tips and hints into the story’s pages, treating text with graphics, punctuation, capitalization and bold-faced type, so parents can read to their kids in a sing-song voice. This technique is “dynamite for language development,” says Patricia Kuhl of the Institute for Learning and Brain Science at the University of Washington. The combination of embedding tips for parents and encouraging an animated reading of the story while playing with the matching classic toy helps kids naturally repeat core vocabulary words and sounds. It also lets children practice early cognitive skills like problem-solving, matching and categorization.

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Play research has been going on for years, although not all toy companies are embedding this research directly into the design of toys Like Indy “Talk” Shop is. “Preschool children learn better when an adult is involved,” says Dr. Jenny Radesky, a pediatrician specializing in child development at Boston Medical Center. In other words, guided play is best for kids’ development, to help parents and kids bond, learn and play more effectively. “When parents keep the conversation going, rather than simply trying to get their children to hear as many words as possible, they are preparing their children for later language and school success,” say Kathy Hirsh-Pasek and Roberta Michnik Golinkoff, child psychologists and researchers at Temple University. Further research explains that healthy brain development relies on guided play between kids and parents. Indy “Talk” Shop playboxes guide parents through a playtime interaction that will make a difference in their kids’ development, whether they have five minutes or an hour to play.

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Comotomo


Solving an entire laundry list of unresolved “bottle issues” for parents.

Comotomo makes baby bottles that feature innovative and sensible design to most closely mimic natural breastfeeding. Their naturally shaped, soft, silicone nipples are ideal for babies who have trouble transitioning from nursing to bottle-feeding.

Comotomo “designer junkies” have set out to rid the world of too many plain and uninspired products by

  • listening to frustrated moms desperately searching for a bottle their little ones will take
  • not ignoring the issue of “nipple confusion” mostly ignored in product designs
  • banishing bottles that look and feel so foreign to natural nursing
  • solving the conundrum of trying to clean out narrow-necked baby bottles

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Award Winning Design

The result is a baby bottle that won an IF Product Design Award in 2010, which both parents and children love. Little ones can hold onto the skin-like, soft and squeezable body that is like no other bottle in the world. Parents appreciate the wide-neck design for brushless, stress-free, cleaning bliss.

“What we realized was that there is a giant void in the market,” the Comotomo design junkies say. “This inspired us to make something really fantastic. Something that truly makes moms lives a bit easier, and babies a wee bit happier.”

These green, BPA-free bottles are equipped with truly innovative vents that are smartly designed to prevent colic, while eliminating annoying leaks.

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Teether, Too

The Comotomo design junkies go back to basics with the baby teether, made from silicone that is not only safe and completely non-toxic, it has the perfect blend of soft and flexible texture -the most “bite-friendly” material out there, they say.

Easy and intuitive to grab and hold, the four prongs are sized to mimic baby hands. The teether is just long enough to reach the back molars, and sensibly sized to prevent choking.

At Comotomo, a beautiful product doesn’t just look good, it elegantly enhances your experience.

Mommas Baby


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Ivy Norton is a mother of three who knows how difficult and expensive it is to raise babies. While she doesn’t help you watch and care for your children, she can advise you on the best baby products you should consider purchasing.

“I started Mommas Baby to help other parents find deals, provide parenting tips and review some the new products coming out,” Ivy says. “Having wasted so much money myself with inferior products, I’m here to help you save money and buy only the best.”

The Los Angeles, California-based Mom conducts product reviews, writes how-to articles and finds deals on merchandise. First time moms can especially find Mommas Baby useful, although plenty of fresh, up-to-date guides for experienced parents are available as well.

A few recent entries include:

Ivy’s been reviewing the best baby products since 2012, so check out Mommas Baby.

10 Must-Know Trade Show Facts [Infographic]


Prepare for the upcoming trade show season!

Stacey Woods, Business Development Manager at mobile commerce solutions company Pepperi, shares this handy dandy infographic to help you prepare for Playtime New York February 12-14 and any trade show you’re planning to attend in 2017.

“The top 10 must-know facts include how many attendees have buying authority, how many of them are first-timers, how many have buying intent, and much more,” Stacey says. While you’re at it, take the opportunity to stop by and meet with Pepperi at the shows – if you have the chance!

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Top 40 Kids Fashion Blogs


Children’s Retail Today is on the list! 

Happy New Year to me! Anuj Agarwal, founder of Feedspot, just let me know that Children’s Retail Today has been selected by the company’s panelists as one of the Top 40 Kids Fashion Blogs on the web.

“I personally give you a high-five and want to thank you for your contribution to this world,” Anuj says. “This is the most comprehensive list of top kids fashion blogs on the internet and I’m honored to have you as part of this!”

Best Kids Fashion Blogs List

The list features the best kids fashion blogs from the thousands in Feedspot’s index using search and social metrics. Anuj and his team plan to refresh this data once a week.

The Top 40 are ranked based on following criteria:

  • Google reputation and Google search ranking
  • Influence and popularity on Facebook, twitter and other social media sites
  • Quality and consistency of posts
  • Feedspot’s editorial team and expert review

So, this explains the nifty award on CRT’s home page! Thanks so much, Feedspot.

CRT Stats Update

Here’s an update on CRT’s stats you see on Feedspot’s Top 40 list. CRT typically publishes once a week, on Wednesdays. According to WordPress, CRT has more than 800 followers; an average of 115 people view the site on a daily basis. Get social with CRT on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. For a handy list of children’s fashion trade shows, click here. If you’re wondering what childrenswear folks think of CRT, read our testimonials.

What is Feedspot?

The Feedspot Blog Reader is a fast, easy and simple way to keep up with all your favorite blogs and websites in one place. Through Feedspot’s apps and website, you can also discover new blogs and website, too – Feedspot reviews a plethora of blog types, picks the best and lists them for you on their blog. I know I’m going to check out a few of the other Top 40. Pretty cool, huh?

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Good Dog in a Box


Animal lovers are launching new business today on KickStarter.

Sisters Jenn Merritt and Kim Merritt-Butler grew up with two poodles, Fluffy and Muffin, who taught them the love, companionship and wonder a dog adds to life.

Today they’re launching a new business, Good Dog in a Box on KickStarter. “Our subscription boxes are not just a toy of the month club, but instead provide dog owners with the equipment and education to help improve the behavior of their dog and their relationship with that dog,” they say. “Each month our boxes provide training tools, training exercises and a unique online component with training videos and games that isn’t being done anywhere else.” Jenn and Kim want to help keep family dogs at home, rather than dumped at shelters because of “bad behavior” or biting, and to keep children from getting bitten by dogs.

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Good Dog in a Box is specifically for families with kids and dogs.

Dog bites among children ages five to 12 are a serious problem in our society. Many dogs labeled as “biters” are ending up in shelters at an alarming rate. Jenn, who’s a professional dog trainer and Kim combine a positive reinforcement training base and a little home-school experience with the huge popularity of subscription boxes to offer a unique product line that has safety as well as fun implications for families with kids and dogs. In addition, Calm Dog in a Box is for anxiety ridden and stressed out dogs that is being produced in partnership with Thundershirt.

Jenn is also a Tellington TTouch practitioner for companion animals, and has spent her 15+-year career promoting positive reinforcement training techniques and speaking out against animal cruelty. Kim calls herself a “serial entrepreneur”, starting her first company, Kim’s Khocolate, at the tender age of 11 – counting Apple, AT&T, The Rolling Stones and Range Rover as clients. Kim is the pet parent of two rescue cats, Mister Kitten Britches (aka Mister) and Momma June Bug Jones (aka Buggy).

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The NEW Angelcare/Sassy


“We’re pioneering design and functionality that is going to change the conversation about monitoring and baby care for years to come.”

-Tom Bratton, Angelcare CEO

This year, Angelcare Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiary Sassy Inc transformed as a company to create groundbreaking new products in baby monitoring and developmental toys. Combining the latest technological advances with scientific insight and modern intuitive design, the Angelcare and Sassy offerings deliver what today’s parents and caregivers want: peace of mind while helping their children thrive.

The Industry’s Top Innovators

Canada-based Angelcare assembled a team of the industry’s best minds to drive this unprecedented step forward in baby care standards. “Recruiting top talent was our number one goal for the relaunch,” Tom tells us. “We built our team from top global brands in a range of fields—baby, health and beauty, consumer electronics, technology/SaaS—to create this unique culture of innovation and thought leadership. When you get this caliber of people together, it’s amazing what they can create.” With a growth mindset and shared commitment to supporting children, parents and caregivers, the Angelcare/Sassy team focuses their combined insights and skillsets on transformative solutions that truly advance the industry standard.

Intentional, Science-Driven Design

Angelcare/Sassy taps into the desires and expectations of today’s millennial parents. From data-driven tools and a modern design aesthetic, to the latest technology and the best materials, Angelcare/Sassy brings baby care up to the minute and set the standard for decades to come.

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A Breakthrough in Baby Monitoring Technology

Coming in January 2017 to North American retailers, Angelcare’s new AC417 and AC517 baby movement, sound and video monitoring systems have a new sleek design and include the only wireless movement sensor pad on the market. They feature Angelcare’s new Activity Analytics for tracking baby’s movement. “Our new wireless sensor pad is all about simplicity combined with safety. Parents are going to love it,” says Angelcare President Jordan Riggs, “but the real game-changer is the activity tracking and reporting built into our new monitors.”

Current fans of Angelcare products know that their monitors are designed to sense baby’s slightest movements and sound an alarm if no movement is detected after 20 seconds. The new models offer this core alarm feature plus the ability to track, record and report on baby’s bigger movements (like restlessness, rollovers, and kicks). With this insight into baby’s activity level during sleep, parents are better able to adapt routines and respond to baby’s needs. The ultimate result is more peace of mind (and rest) for everyone. “Today’s parents use technology in all aspects of life,” Jordan says, “and at Angelcare, we provide moms and dads with easy-to-use monitors that help them care for baby, relax and enjoy the adventure of parenthood.”

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Sassy Set to Launch 100+ Products in 2017

Working with premier child development PhD’s and experts, Sassy renewed its focus to incorporate the latest research into all Sassy products with its trademark child-pleasing colors and shapes. The company is launching more than 100 new toys, feeding and baby care products in early 2017 that will help children thrive by focusing on developmental and educational needs.

The fresh offerings include an exciting range of new materials and bolder colors designed to help children play with purpose, as well as learn to solve problems, be flexible and self-motivate. From toys to teethers, bathing products to innovative cups, all of Sassy’s new products are designed to fit a child’s growing sensory perception, motor skills, and creativity.

“The Sassy team not only understands the importance of child development, they also bring a high level of style to the process,” says Sassy Vice President of Marketing Susan Hinshaw. “Today’s millennial parents demand more from baby and child care products. Sassy’s flair for stylish touches make the company’s new products consistent with modern aesthetics and compatible with on-the-go lifestyles.”

Today, Northbrook, IL-born Sassy is part of Angelcare Holdings, Inc., headquartered in Montreal, Canada, with development, design and engineering in Grand Rapids, MI. The company’s current product line includes developmental toys, feeding items, baby care products to help children thrive and industry-leading movement monitoring that gives parents 24/7 peace of mind.