Raredevice is carrying a cool piggy bank by Los Angeles designer Pamela Barksy that would make a great gift for new parents or that feisty four year-old. The ceramic piggy was cast from a mid-century mold and has a rubber stopper on the belly for easy access to cash/coins. An added little surprise: you will find an envelope containing anything from a few coins to a hundred bucks in each bank placed in there by Pamela herself! The wondrous piggy comes in a sleek matte finish in creamy white or pea green.
It's back-to-school time and all the sales and ads for new school clothes and supplies just make me impatient for cooler days and that unmistakable smell of Fall air. I'll be disappointed when this cooler than usual end of August weather ends and the hot weather returns (and it probably will). I don't have to deal with bookbags and packed lunches quite yet, but for those who do, these decorated Mobi sandwich bags might be a fun way to pack your kid's sandwiches for the first few weeks of school. And I say the first few weeks, because at $4.99 for 20 zippered bags, it's expensive. I'm a Costco bulk shopper for this kind of stuff and I also wash and reuse whenever possible, but I can totally see packing the kid's lunch on the first week of school with these bags for some added fun.
See all the designs at the Mobi online store.
A baby was a pretty simple thing for me to grasp: the breast goes in one end, unpleasantness comes out the other, and holding on to the wiggling body and limbs can be quite the adventure. To that end, I was a big fan of swaddling up my infant to improve my baby handling skills, and was lucky to find out that there is a lot of evidence to suggest swaddling is a good thing. It makes them feel secure, leads to less fussing as they're reminded of being in the womb, and even more importantly I'm not scared of that magical squirm that makes it feel like I'm going to lose my grip.
Sadly I'm just now finding Cozy Cocoon products; who doesn't want leopard-skin swaddling? Any time I get to put a baby in something that gives them cute ears I'm having a good time. The Sweat-Pea product that's open at both ends for more movement is also great. These swaddling cocoons are reasonably priced, and come in many varieties so they are comfortable even in warm weather.
I spotted these on Daddytypes and I love love love them. Not so much because the flash cards are about modern design ("B is for Bauhaus", "D" is for Dada", etc), but more because a designer dad created these for his kid. As a fellow designer, I'm totally jealous that he had the time and motivation to create these really well designed Flashcards - something that I would love to do, but like so many projects, never seem to get around to. Hell, I can't so much as get motivated most times to do arts and crafts projects with my kid. For someone who does this type of thing for a living, how lame is that?
Check out the cards at Jargon Boy.
I find myself in the surprisingly satisfying part of my life where I have left the beaten up T-shirts behind and now spend my time figuring out how to make my minivan safer. The problem is that with two children, who are getting into the stage of their lives where they can open almost anything in front of them, rides in the car can easily degenerate into madness. Taking your eyes off the road isn't advisable, and turning around to see what they have managed to get their hands on is even worse. Keeping your eyes on your children while driving is one of more stressful parts of parenting, and anything that makes that job easier is much appreciated.
The Automobile Monitor is an elegant solution, and at $150 is worth the price to keep you and your children safe. The product consists of a small camera that you can mount anywhere in your van, and a display that affixes to the dashboard. This lets you make sure you know exactly what your kids are up to without having to turn around or take your eyes off the road for more than a second. There is even a night vision feature so you don't have to turn on a light and wake your children or hurt your ability to see the road clearly. As the number of kids in your family grows, so will the number of car seats and the size of the van. This ensures that you'll always know what's going on while driving without having to take your attention off the road.
Something sweet to keep baby’s head warm now that Fall draws near? These hand-knit noggin covers from Petunia Petunia are that lovely mix of cool design with a crafty, homemade appeal. I love the curly cue that seems to spring up and out from the top - think Alfalfa - and the nice thing is that you can leave it as a curly cue or twist its shape into whatever you want. The website suggests the hats for boys, and they are perfectly appropriate for them, but I can see my baby girl wearing the apple green one with a corduroy dress and stockings.
At Petunia Petunia.
After baby proofing doors, putting safety plugs in your electrical sockets, and making sure everything sharp or dangerous is out of the reach of little hands, you may think that your baby is safe. But how much thought have you put into the paint of their nursery? Kinder Paint is specially designed without any of the harmful chemicals that can be found in standard paint, and is specially formulated for children who may be extra-sensitive to even mild chemical ingredients. This paint has no VOC, no ethylene glycol, no acrylic copolymers, and no antimicrobial agents. You can look up what these chemicals can do to the air quality and safety of your house if you feel like a good scare, but it may lead to you repainting your entire house.
This paint is safe for your child, and the fewer chemicals in your house the better. Plus, I like the colors. As bonus the paints make it easy to hide scuffs and "accidents" if your little ones get into the crayons.
I'm not at all into wall units for kids' rooms (like some of the Pottery Barn Kids line of storage and media furniture), but if I had an extra $630 to spend (ha!), I'd seriously consider this new Eiffel bookcase. I love the idea of having enough storage space to shove ALL the toys away in one place, completely out of sight, behind doors. The modular design of nesting rectangles surrounding the open shelf space makes it feel open and not such a big, solid piece of furniture on your wall. And I love the open center for showcasing favorite toys or books.
I've accepted the fact that our apartment isn't going to be the decluttered space that it once was (I'm an organizing fiend and hate clutter), and that it's just going to get worse when the second one comes along. I suppose you adjust, relax your rigid standards, and let's face it, I'm way too tired and lazy to go picking up after the toddler all day just to have a clutter-free apartment. But when I look at furniture like this, I start fantasizing about the organizational possibilities (such a geek, I know).
Limited quantities will begin shipping in early October from Sparkability.
The Tubmobile just looks like way more fun than should be allowed. I am dying to go for a spin myself. How fun to just cruise around in your own little padded bumper cart. Industrial grade wheels allow for solid 360 degree movement as the joyriding gets going throughout the house. Kids are going to love giving turns as much as getting them in this home version of the teacup ride. Even with the 3 ˝ ” padded walls the Tubmobile is definitely a riding toy for a single story home or, at least, keep it to the first floor. Safety first!
Online at Sensory Edge.
I can barely find any info about Danish design firm, Collect Furniture, except that they recently presented their collection of children's furniture at the 2006 Copenhagen International Furniture Fair. I'm sure the furniture isn't cheap, but I really love the bold, dramatic colors and lines of this chair and desk set, and the thoughtful details of built in storage that they incorporate into their designs. I'd love to be able to declutter and get rid of yet another bin of toys and art supplies by the toddler's table and store her art supplies right there.
This chalkboard table and chair is equally gorgeous. I like the contrast of the black chalk surface and the chair's white canvas seat (removeable for washing). The table top lifts up as well to store dusty chalk away.
And one last item to show is a little stool that turns into a wagon when turned upside down. The 4 wheels peek up from the stool's surface as a design element and can be used to push toys and other stuff around (though I suspect that no kid can resist using it as a riding toy).
See other designs at the Collect Furniture website.