Oh it’s been way too long since I posted anything here, I am terribily sorry. I think I’ve been caught in so many projects and haven’t had the time to do some of the things I like best, like sharing some lovely things with you. One of the projects that has been keeping me busy these days is all the sewing I’ve been doing for my kids. I thought it would be nice to share a few of those with you today and maybe inspire you a little to try and make something!
I usually create my own patterns and creations, however I’ve been using patterns created by fellow blog friends and it has been such a fun process. Here are just a few from the past couple of weeks …
I created this bathing suit from a legging pattern, The Fancy Pant Legging. If you are looking for an easy knit project with really amazing results check out the Titchy Thread website, the leggings are really cute, comfortable and a quick sew. The instructiona are easy to follow with tips on how to sew knits and photos to acompany them. The legging pattern is great for newborn and little kids- they make great PJ bottom or even summer shorts to wear under dresses.
The Roly Poly pinafore is another wonderful pattern, and really great to learn how to sew. This can be worn as a tunic, a top or an art smock- it can be layered over t-shirts and therefore worn all year round. The best part is that it’s reversible! Check out Imagine Gnats for all the details. Can I just add I had such fun dip dyeing my fabric.
If you are more experienced sewer, then I highly recommend the bubble shorts by Elegance & Elephants. It comes with an elastic waistband or a sailor looking front flap. These shorts are just too cute and the large pocket are great for stuffing all your little toys!!! You might want to see the other patterns on the website, it’s all so cute.
And well, I could not leave the boys out (although the Fancy Pant Legging is great for boys too) — check out Blank Slate Patterns for a great variety of boys patterns. I use the Coastal Cargo pattern and modified into a short for these. And can you tell I’m slightly obssesed with dip dye? I just can’t seem to stop, soon all out clothes will go through the process!
I’d love to know if you try any of these patterns- send over some photos! If you need help, I’ll be more than happy to help. Happy sewing!
Do you find it hard to shop for your little boys? Don’t you find there is always so much more choice for little girls? Whenever I’m looking for something for my boy I get side tracked and end up buying something for my daughter instead! I have to say, the boys market is getting bigger and better with every passing season. Little Hanbury is a brand new online store dedicated to the world of boys – no more getting lost! Although, my daughter would look great in all the cute styles…
Seriously, Little Hanbury is for boys between the ages of 2 and 10, and it carries all of my favorite brands from around the world such as Tootsa MacGinty, Indikidual, Quenotte, Nico Nico – just to name a few. You’ll find a great variety of tees and bottoms as well as some really cool accessories and shoes. Sarah, the owner has impeccable taste and has put together a really nice selection- the colors are great and the style mix and match nicely. The website is fresh, simple and easy to navigate through – I’m sure you’ll find a few outfits in no time.
Now I’m having a hard time just choosing a few items- my son might just have an awesome wardrobe this summer after all!
Don’t you just love it when it’s parents who are the creators behind children products? They have been in the same situation as you over and over again and know exactly what you need. Or even better, they create something for their own kids and have had so much success with it that they decide they want to share it with everyone. That is just what Agata and Arek have done! Not only are they architects, husband and wife and parents to Franek and Robert, they are also the creators behind Rafa-Kids.
They have created a range of children’s furniture – more precisely, a bunk bed and a toddler’s bed with high regards for quality and aesthetics. These beds look amazing, they are more than just a bed to sleep in – they were created with the child in mind and designed to encourage play, creativity and beauty as well as being functional and safe. The beds can be bought together or separately, however the bunk and toddler bed work so well together, they are a great space saver and you can arrange them in so many different and unexpected ways. Design at its best.
Now if only they shipped to Canada?
The good news is that they also carry a nice range of fun bedding for your kids rooms and these are available internationally. I have my eye on the duvet with the plane on it – I’m redecorating my sons room and I think these colors would be a great choice. How about the cloud one? Playful and unique, just the way I like things!
Lastly, if you love all things design, especially for kids, then I highly recommend you take a look at the Rafa-kids blog – it’s one my favorites…
Today, I would like to introduce you to yet another Montreal designer: Cara Carmina. Norma Andreu, the artist and creator is originally from Mexico City; however she now lives in my hometown and creates the most delightful dolls and accessories. I’ve had the chance to meet Norma and she is so sweet — I find that this sweetness comes across in her work. Everything you see in the Cara Carmina Etsy shop is handmade; Norma likes to experiment a lot and draw with her sewing machine making the loveliest detailed art dolls and different textile collages. She is also an illustrator and creates lots of different paper dioramas which are then turned into prints or postcards. In this shop you can expect to find lots of cloth dolls- you can request a personalized one too, lots of jewelry and cute accessories, even birthday cards or note books. You might find Norma has a thing for Frida Kahlo – personally I just love those rosy cheeks!
Tamé is a Montreal based label and they just recently launched their baby collection. I’ve been a fan of their kid’s leggings and woman’s jewelry for a while now, but these new baby designs are adorable. Some basics for everyday use with simple cuts, however the color choices are great and the added hand painted geometric shapes makes these items that much more special. Oh, and you won’t believe the price point! So check out their little Etsy shop and they ship worldwide.
Over the month of December, I had a chance to go to a few craft fairs in my hometown of Montreal and I thought it would be nice to share with you some of my favorite Montreal designers and illustrators in the coming weeks. Today, I’d like to introduce you to Moon! And Sparrow – custom designs and illustrations for children and other silly people. I have fallen in love with Sandra Dumais’ illustrations and I just think they work so nicely on so many of the products she has to offer. The pirate wolf has to be my favourite; I think my son would keep him close at all time for some extra protection. Her little Etsy shop is filled with lovely prints, cards, plushes, some of tees, even cute wall decals and so much more. You can check out the Moon! And Sparrow website for lots more details or just shop directly on Etsy.
It’s starting to get cold here in Montreal and so going out to play for hours is a thing of the past! I don’t know about you, but my son needs to move, run and jump and with the winter months ahead that isn’t always possible; I always thought he could use a punching bag to get all that buddle up energy out. So you can’t imagine how pleased I was to discover these Eco-Bonk bop bags and for so many reasons! These aren’t your typical inflatable bop bags, not only do they provide all the fun in the world by pushing them and having them bounce back, but they happen to be sustainable as well. The covers are removable and made from 100% organic Cotton, as well as being printed with water-based inks. The inside is made from biodegradable Vinyl, all made in the USA and a percentage of the proceeds will go towards supporting the Wildlife Alliance. Seriously, does it get any better? You can be reassured you kids are playing with a safe toy for them and the environment. So which is your favorite character? I think mine is Abigail the elephant.
There is a lot more information on the website and the Eco-Bonks can be bought online through the website as well. It’s always nice to support small family business and I was lucky enough to meet Donna, the co-founder and brains behind Eco-Bonk at the NYC gift show, it was such a pleasure talking to her and seeing the passion she had for the product. I just know my kids would love these and they are the top of my gift list this year.
They are announcing rain for the entire week here in Montreal and maybe even a little snow. I thought if I told the rain to go away, it might just come another day! Here are a few of my favorite cloud shaped pillows, which would brighten up any kids room even on the greyest day. How about that print, it is so sweet it makes wish it was raining!
Rain, rain go away, come again another day!!!
Suvi Ainoa is one of my all-time favorite children’s clothing lines and I thought I would share with you a sneak peek of the fall/winter 2012 collection. The creative soul behind this brand is Yanyan, a very sweet mom of two cute kiddos who recently went back to working in the corporate world, but still manages to produce the loveliest of collections in her spare time. The collection comprises of simple items with the most unexpected and darling details.
I just love the silhouettes with the wide cuts for comfort and ease. The quality and craftsmanship is impeccable, I know because my daughter has a dress which is simply stunning, from the details to the quality of the fabric and the good fit, we love it! Everything is made in the United States, except for the knits which are handknit in Finland. Now this collection isn’t available just as of yet, but there are some summer items left in the shop and they are on sale if you’d like.
And in case you were wondering Suvi is a Finnish girl’s name, which also means “summer” and Ainoa is another beautiful Finnish word, which means “the only one”.
Today I’d like to share with you my family’s love for the Kiki & Coco in Paris book. You’ve probably heard or seen the images floating around the web already, but since we recently purchased the book and the fact that my whole family really enjoys it, I wanted to tell you about it!
Kiki & Coco in Paris is a sweet story about the strong bond and friendship between a girl and her doll while visiting Paris. What had me and my husband interested, was how the story was told through photography and we hardly had any books illustrated in that way. Stephanie Rausser was able to bring Kiki & Coco to life with her unique photographic style; she has a way of bringing humor and vivacity to all her photos. I think the kids feel a certain connection to the characters because of that.
We originally got the book for my daughter’s birthday but I have to say my son loves it just as much if not more. It helps that the story is happening in Paris and both my kids dream of going there one day to visit our family, which we hardly ever get to see. My daughter dreams of getting her hair cut in a Parisian salon and my son can’t wait to have a drink in a café. They both talk about how they are going to climb the stairs of the Eiffel tower.
Another reason why I was compelled to buying this book is Coco the doll. I can’t express how much I, yes I, love this doll. I’ve been a big fan of the Jess Brown dolls for a while now, I’m not sure I quite have the right vocabulary to express how amazing these handmade dolls truly are, they are perfect in every way!
I recently got to see a few and hold one in my hands while I was at the Gift Fair in New York City, and I was blown away by the craftsmanship and all the details that go into making one. Now, I’m pretty sure I’ve passed on this love to my daughter, as she would like a Coco of her own. I think I might save up some money and surprise her for Christmas. If only I could win the lottery, I would fly the kids to Paris, now that would be insanely cool: the kids, a Jess Brown doll and Paris.
p.s. To buy the book there is a list of all the suppliers on the Jess Brown Blog. To see some the photos from the book as well as others that didn’t make the book, but are just at sweet, check out Stephanie Rausser Kiki & Coco’s slide show:
And if you’d like to see more Jess Brown Dolls and perhaps purchase one visit the website!
I am sure that with time you will discover I have somewhat of a dual personality! As much as I love vintage and colorful design items, I also have a love for all things white and natural. So it will come to no surprise when I tell you I loved Pi’lo’s collection as soon as I saw it, about a month ago at the NYC gift fair. To top it off, Pi’lo is a Canadian company from Toronto and so I felt even more compelled to share my discovery with you. Everything is handmade with natural fibers such as cotton, linens and felt by the lovely Heather Shaw herself and practically from her home — her studio happens to be just behind her house. There are lots of great items to choose from for your home and not only for the kids — I particularly love the lined paper collection as well as all the pillows, although I think my favorite has to be the tic tac toe game. You can discover lot’s more on the website and Heather even has an Etsy shop.
Fable baby & nursery is, thanks to Pinterest, my newest Etsy discovery. Every little thing is cute and useful in this shop. First, their fabric is all hand printed in the sweetest prints on organic cotton. Secondly, every item was carefully designed with the baby & mom in mind: the t-shirts are longer to prevent them from rising, the sleepers are knotted for easy diaper changes in the middle of the night and some of the pants come with feet to keep the baby’s toes nice and warm. Their hand knitted sweaters are adorable too. This design duo from Australia got it all right, timeless prints with high quality fabric for infants 0-2 years, what more could you ask for? Bigger sizes, please!!!
Who says robots are for boys? Who says pink is for girls? Definitely not EBK Robots, they like robots in all the colors of the rainbow for just about anybody! I was lucky enough to have won one of the prototypes of the blue Tag Along bags for my son. We had a lot of fun testing it out and giving the EBK Robots crew some tips, the reality is that we didn’t really have anything bad to say and to this day it’s our favorite bag! The good news is the bag is being produced now and it comes in lots of lovely colors, even a girl version, you know I’ll be buying my daughter one too.
The Tag Along bag is perfect for bringing toys or a snack to the park, a change of clothes to daycare, some crayons and coloring books to the restaurant, basically great for carrying your everyday items around all day. The messenger, in my opinion is great for the older kids (mine are 3 & 5) and again great for books, going to grandmas, the pool, you name it! And just to add to the fun, EBK Robots also offers some cute plush robots, you can match them to your bag or go crazy and the sweetest part is that they attach to the bag, so they too can enjoy the ride… Honestly, have you seen anything cooler?
Everything is handmade by 3 lovely ladies in Maryland, USA from 100% renewable materials, sturdy, easy to wash and made to last. You should also check out the blog portion of their website, it makes me smile every time a post goes up!
Summer is here, the sun is shinning, I can’t wait to jump in the ocean! How about you? Any fun plans for the summer?
Here’s a little round up of some of my favorite swimsuits for boys and girls from some of my favorite online shops. Hurry up some of these are on sale and only a few sizes are left!
Giraffe one shoulder from Mini Rodini
Sailboat trunk shorts from Etsy shop Stroller Blanket Mom
Green polka dot tank suit from JCrew
Grey monokini from Tuss
Red 1960’s vintage swimming trunk from Etsy shop, Little Yolk
Black and White Striped bikini from Finger In The Nose
All Over Flower pattern from Old Navy
Grey swim shorts from Popushop
Dandelion one-piece suit from Stella Cove
Palm Trees print swim shorts from Zara
The geometric print one-piece from Munster Kids
Bikini bottom from Leoca
Fuschia bikini from Lttl by Lilit
Color Block one-piece from Dior
Floral Bikini bottoms from My Little Square
Red retro bikini from JCrew
Green striped trunks from Mini Rodini
Striped Black And white Bikini from KidsCase
Navy and white swimsuit from Agnes Valentine
Yellow and Pink bikini from Maan
Horse one piece from Popushop
Green striped bathing suit from Wovenplay
Blue and white board shorts from JCrew
Red and black swim shorts from Wovenplay
Mushroom print one piece from Etsy Shop Fleur and Dot
Grey liberty sun suit from Dagmar Daley
Vintage 1950’s red swimsuit from Ebay seller The Chuckling Duckling
For many more ideas and inspiration check out my swimsuit board on Pinterest: Kiddo… Splish Splash
Perhaps you’ve seen Maia Larkins gorgeous illustrations before; her work has been featured in Babiekins and La Petite Magazine, she has worked with Le Vestiaire de Jeanne, Anaïs & I and Suvi Ainoa just to name a few, and she recently contributed to the artist series of Mini and Maximus‘ super cool t-shirts. But did you know she has her own little Etsy shop, Club Oceanus and it’s filled with t-shirts, tank tops and dresses for girls, boys and even moms! I am a big fan of Maia’s illustrations and I just love how cool, simple and yet stylish these tees are. Don’t you find those are hard to come by? My daughter has the Bear Prince dress, which she wears as often as she can — it’s perfect for these hot summers days we are having (you can see a photo here if you’d like). And I think I’ll get my son the whale tee shirt – his favorite insult these days is “ tu es une grosse baleine furieuse” which means, “you are a huge furious whale”!!! I’m not sure where he got that from, but he thinks it’s pretty funny, so I think that tee is a must.
Oh Boy!!! Ajalor, where were you 5 years ago? I could have used a pair or two for my baby boy and girl. Have you ever seen anything so cute? Do you find it hard to shop for little boys? I know I do… I think I found my go-to shop for all my baby gifts need! These soft soled baby shoes are handcrafted in Canada, using 100% leather — the details are stunning, the craftsmanship is impeccable and the styles are ever so sophisticated. Did I mention the price is good, really good! These are just as great for modern little boys as they are for girls. I could use a pair myself! Now I only wish I had a baby shower to go to…
We are in the middle of a heat wave here in Montreal and I’m thinking to myself “why am I writing about knits, again?” Well, let me tell you a little about Misha and Puff: first I instantly fell in love with the lookbook when it first appeared online a couple of months ago — the photos, the color combinations and of course the styles caught my eye, and as I read up on them I became even more in awe! Misha and Puff is hand knitted in the US, more precisely in New England, furthermore all of their wool is dyed there too, giving life to beautiful, unique and custom colors. They use the highest quality of merino wool which is machine washable, soft and never itchy. How perfect?
Their first collection comprises of staple pieces that can be handed down for generations, I just love the one-piece and that skirt, too cute! Since everything is handmade as well as custom made it take 3-4 weeks to produce (plus shipping)… and to think of it, fall isn’t that far ahead! Now that is why I’m talking about knits today!!! I can’t wait to see what they have planned for next summer already, maybe this is a good enough reason to have that third baby already…
Harriet’s Haberdashery is my new favorite Etsy Shop. This grandmother has got some amazing talent and her little Harriet must be the happiest girl. Everything is handmade by Gramie Harriet with the utmost attention to details, quality and care. I really wish I could get this beautiful linen dress for my little Elsie; I love the details from the neon accents to the Peter Pan collar. And this dress isn’t the only thing I would love to buy — the Ikat dress is spectacular and so is the grey linen skirt, and I must mention the Parisian Blouse — it’s stunning! If your little one happens to have a Waldorf doll, you might find an outfit or two for her as well.
We received the cutest package in the mail a couple weeks ago from Hello Shiso, a really adorable line of accessories for your little ones. I fell in love with the hair accessories just from seeing them on the web and I’ve fallen even more in love now that I’ve seen them with my own eyes — the workmanship, the attention to details and the quality is amazing, I never realized how much work could go into making a hair clip. Now I only wish I had bought a few more!
Hello Shiso’s online shop is filled with fun and creative designs from hair accessories, jewelry and bags for you and your little ones. Everything is made with lots of love in their small design studio in Berkeley, California. You’ll see you’ll have a hard time choosing what to get. I know I did!
The kids and I went to our first Kid’s fashion show and we had so much fun! It isn’t often that a Montreal kids label hosts a fashion show and this time it was for the launch of the new collection of beachwear, Missie Sunshine Couture. I was surprised as to how well behaved my kids were, they were captivated by the cute kids strutting their stuff and it probably helped that the little models looked like they were having so much fun. Not only were the kids adorable, the clothing was delightful, full of color and lovely prints, it all looked so comfortable.
You can expect to find cover-ups in a variety of different styles, tunics, summer dresses and jumpsuits all made from gorgeous fabric from India. Every order is custom made, so you can choose whichever styles you desire from a variety of fabrics and colors, from simple to luxurious. Perfect for all your vacationing needs. I can just imagine my little Elsie in this little red flower patterned tunic/dress, now if only we were going on a cruise this summer or perhaps downtown will do!!!