10.23.2014

Modern Safari-theme nursery


Modern Safari -theme nursery does not have to be kitchy. Large hand-painted wall murals of jungles and monkeys hanging from trees are a bit outdated. If you like the idea of Jungle-theme, or African animals-theme nursery, but want to keep it stylish and tasteful, you can rock it with a few simple rules.


  • Keep the color palette simple, up to 2 main colors + 2 accents sprinkles throughout.
  • Add textures to keep it interesting and within the theme. Go with textured sisal-type, or soft faux-animal skin rug would work quite well. Add woven storage baskets or a cool lamp.
  • Stay with modern interpretation in fabric and artwork
  • Keep wood in lighter tones to resemble warm African palette.
Here is the mock-up for a Safari-theme nursery I came up, share yours!

Credits: Bedding -NewMomDesigns, Artwork - The Animal Print Shop, Basket and Fury Stool - Target




8.07.2014

Custom Baby blanket - Crabs

I love custom designs. Here is a little visual about my design process. My favorite part is when I see a complete product! 
This particular design was based on my client's love for crabs! As we kept exchanging visuals and ideas, she told me she likes a more flowy design. 
That was it! 






8.01.2014

Roundup: Woman's Sleepwear

I recently found myself without a decent looking sleepwear for summer. Sure, I got tons of wife-beaters and old t-shirts, but let's admit - once you pass the breastfeeding period and your children sleep all though the night, there is really no excuse for looking drap and un-sexy in your sleepwear. So I set out to find myself a comfortable (!) and good-looking, feminine summer sleeping outfit.

 I toss during the night, and I really hate to get all tangled up and twisted in loose pajama pants or a nightgown. I quickly learned that during summer my best oprion is a fitted long tank top and shorts.

I am sharing my findings here in case you need to update your sleepwear too.

What do you wear to bed? And what qualities are you looking for when selecting sleepwear:
fiber, price,cuteness, sex appeal, comfort, classic feel, luxurious feel, elegance? Tell me in comments below!



Top row: 1 2 3 4
Bottom row: 5 6 7 8

7.10.2014

Swimwear for little girls

You know what I realized this morning while packing my daughter's backpack for a day camp?
My poor baby does not have a decent swim suit!
After taking swimming classes twice a week during the whole school year, her 1-piece was mercilessly eaten by the chlorine in the pool. It is now a stretched-out, pale pinky thing that barely resembles that cute little bright neon pink/white striped swim suit with a saturated navy trim, I purchased just last year.

"My little princess deserves beauty"- I declared, and started a search on a mighty Internet.

I needed something stylish ( of course!), not too childish, not overly sweet or cutesy, NOT anything with Disney characters on it, and not expensive.

Here is my round up of little girls swimwear that are cute, bold and most importantly AFFORDABLE!
Because you know you going to buy her a new one next year!

Tell me your favorites in the comments below ;)





1     3  4  5  6  7  8

7.08.2014

Organic Skin Care you will want to eat!

My good friend Romana, a certified make-up artist and cosmetics guru, just recently introduced me to a new line of organic skin care - Eminence.

This is something out of this world, you guys!

Just browsing their extensive collection of divine cremes and moisturizers, and masks, and serums, makes my mouth water!

Literally.

Persimmon & Cantaloupe Day cream, Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant, Citrus & Kale Masque...

Hmmm.... Yummy...

Are you hungry yet??

If you are not sure where to start, here are a few TRIED and APPROVED products YOU WILL LOVE!!






  • Clear Skin Probiotic Masque- for oily skin 
  • Yam & Pumpkin enzyme peel, 5%
  • Pear & Poppy seed microderm polisher



    They also send you small samples of other products to try, along with your order. So follow a good advice I once received from someone :

    "Don't be stingy on products that touch your skin, especially your face"

    I am ordering a few things right now and let you know my favorite.

    Please share your own experience in the comments below!

    Disclosure: All opinions are mine only. No gifts or money has been exchanged for this post. Simply sharing my experience.






    7.01.2014

    Mojito - Turks and Caicos style

    Sweet and tart wave of mint and lime slowly brings the long awaited coolness...
    Hmmm... I can still feel the breezy warm air, and the hot sand stuck under my fingernails...

    Every time I take a sip of a good Mojito, I get transfered to the beautiful island of Turks and Caicos.

    It took a few days of stalking our beach bartender, but I finally had a receipe for this divine drink that I am sharing with you today.

    Perhaps, this weekend, when the grill is finally taking a break, and everyone is so stuffed -they can't move, this refreshing drink will be just what you need.




    Turks and Caicos Pineapple Mojito

    You will need:

    • Lime
    • Ice
    • White rum ( Bambarra Silver is what he used)
    • Mint
    • Special sugar syrup
    • Juice of your preference
    • Shaker

    First, prepare the Special sugar syrup ( you can keep the rest in the fringe, indefinitely)
    Combine white sugar+brown sugar+honey with water ( 1:1 sweet mixture to water)
    Slowly simmer until everything melts into a slighly thickened laquid/ syrop

    Cool.

    Now, you are ready to put the drink together!

    1. Combine in a skaker:  8 leaves of mint + 1/2 lime juice+ 2-3 ice cubes 
    2. Shake, shake, shake to break up the mint with ice
    3. Add another1/2 lime juice, 5 tsp of syrup, 4 tbsp rum
    4. Shake, shake, shake to mix all together.
    5. Fill the 3/4 glass with ice
    6. Pour the mixture from the shaker over the ice ( up to you to strain or not, I actually like the pieces of mint in my drink, so I dont strain)
    7. Top of with a splash of Pineapple juice 
    ENJOY!













    6.24.2014

    Turkey Meatball Soup

    The summer so far has been kind to us. Its hot, but not humid,with a nice breeze. And after all the BBQ's and grilled steaks on the weekend, I crave something light, delicious and nourishing...

    Turkey Meatball Soup fits the bill.





    This is how I make it:

    Turkey - around 3/4-1 lb
    1 Large carrot
    2 Med. onions 
    2-3 potatoes
    1-2 stalks celery
    1-2 cloves of garlic
    Salt, pepper

    1. Put a pot with water on the stove to boil
    2. Grind your turkey + 1 onion + garlic, add salt, pepper to taste
    3. Once the water comes to a boil, start forming small turkey balls, around 1" dia, and add as you go to the the boiling water. Reduce heat to med so its simmering nicely during this process.
    4. If you have any scum rising to the top, remove it with a spoon, until you have a clear broth.
    5. Add stalks of celery, peeled carrot, 1 halved onion, circled potatoes ( circled potatoes are potatoes diced into circles for my kids-  you can do it the grown up style - "quartered")
    6. Add salt, pepper, bay leaf ( optional) and finely chopped fresh herbs of your preference. I like dill+cilantro, my classic version.
    7. Reduce heat to low and cover partially with a lid. Leave for 30-40 min.

    Voila! You have just made a delicious, light, healthy soup from scratch!

    You can also add cooked rice, or small pasta directly to the serving bowl, to beef it up a little. But that's totally optional.

    I hope you are proud of yourself.

    Enjoy!

    6.20.2014

    DIY Facial Mask that fights pimples

    Did you know that a good facial mask does not necessarily require a trip to the salon?
    Just 2 ingredients that I guarantee you have in your kitchen, can help you dramatically improve your facial skin.

    Introducing....

    OATMEAL+EGG WHITE FACIAL MASK



    It comes together so easy!!

    Simply grind some oatmeal into a powder. ( I used my NutriBullet.)
    Separate the yolk from the egg white. ( Discard the yolk or use it the custard cream)
    Beat the egg white with a folk until foamy.
    Add 1-2teaspoons of oatmeal powder to the egg white, until you make a mass resembling baby food. The consistency is up to you - it should be easy to apply to a face. ( I ended up with 2 spoonfuls  per 1 egg white)
    This masks will help to fight skin inflamation and nourish it with nutrients it needs. I love the fact that it contains no chemicals and is completely natural.



    Still, you will most likely have too much of the stuff, so share it with your friend, mom, sister!

    After applying it your clean face, wait 10 min, than rinse. I find it easier to use paper towel to remove.

    Apply moisturizer. Best if used 2x week.

    My skin felt velvety and smooth all day..I am not kidding!

    Try it today and tell me if you liked it in the comments below!

    6.17.2014

    Swaddling Memoirs

    There was a moment at the hospital I remember so clear like it was yesterday.The visiting hours were over and I was in a room by myself with a tiny baby in a clear shoebox-like container next to my bed.

    While she was peacefully sleeping, I had a mini tsunami of emotions swirling in my gut.

     It was a mixture of excitement, relief, happiness and fear - all melted in one big pot of soup.

    Do I pick her up?

    But why? She is sleeping..

    But why not??? I want to hold her!

    What if I break her? What if she cries and I wont be able to sooth her?

    Now how do I pick her up..? Uhhhmmm...

    I could not imagine that a few months later, I would be able juggle three hundreds things simultaneously with a baby propped on my hip.

    And to help me get there I will forever be grateful to one person - my mom.

    She was there almost everyday  and she taught me everything. First and foremost - SWADDLING!

    Thank you , thank you, thank you - goes to the large squarish cotton sheet we call swaddling blanket!
    Thank you for gently embarrassing my baby in your soft, cozy layers. Thank you for your great artistry of re-creating that safe, little space she called home for 9 months, thank you for soothing her in your breathable comforting cocoon.

    Once I mastered the technique of swaddling, which my dear mom has faithfully kept in her memory for 26 years, just so she could pass it on to me, my life has gotten so much better!
    I learned , in a few swift moves, to turn the screaming, cranky, so-want-to-sleep-but-I-can't baby, into a quiet little burrito, snoozing away into a sweet sleeping babyland....Aaaah!

    Now, whenever I see a kicking and screaming tiny little baby, a couple months old, and trying so hard to fall asleep in his/her designer little onesie...I think to myself: :I could wrap that little thing into a nice sleeping bundle like a pro!"

    "So what is this magic swaddling blanket you are talking about?" - you ask me.

    Well, it is just a simple large sheet of fabric.

    BUT... there are some rules:


    •  It must be natural fiber, like cotton, in order to breath and not overheat the baby

    • It must be large, in order to wrap the baby correctly and to last a while

    • It must have a cool, hip pattern on it, because your baby deserves to look like a STYLISH burrito!
    There are a lot of debates out there on whether you should swaddle babies these days. But if you ask me, it is a matter of a personal choice. To me it was an easy and natural way to sooth my kids. I saw that they needed it, and I gave it to them, in accordance with basic safety rules, of course. Like, never put your swaddling baby on its stomach. Duh??!! Or don't wrap your baby too tight. Again, duh??!!

    And when the need for swaddling decreases, you will see it, you will feel it.
    The baby will fight you, will kick more, will cry...And you will know- he/she has outgrew swaddling.

    But even when that happened to me, I found myself using the swaddling sheet in so many other ways!


    • Covering the baby during nap time - lightweight and breathable, it was perfect for naps in an air conditioned room-  the baby wasn't cold and wasn't sweating either.


    • Covering up during breastfeeding. There comes the time for all breastfeeding new moms out there, when you are so exhausted and sleep-deprived, you don't care who sees your breasts anymore. The baby needs to eat? HERE. But let's face it - normal people, that are not super exhausted or sleep deprived,  feel just a little uncomfortable. So cover up with a light, cotton sheet, mommy!


    • Cover up in the stroller, cover up from the wind, cover up from the sunlight.


    • Set up an instant changing station anywhere.


    • Throw it in the diaper bag for "just in case". 

    My swaddling sheet was the single most used item I had. 

    With the exception of a sound machine, which my son still uses to this day and he is 5! Ha!

    But if you out looking for some good swaddling sheet options, check out our new, ORGANIC cotton swaddling blankets with modern, fun, stylish patterns. Our swaddling sheets are large 36x40 and will work hard for you well after the baby's swaddling love affair is over.

    Plus, our swaddling blankets come with 2 sizes ( what??!) baby hats in coordinating design, which makes this the ULTIMATE baby gift option if you have a baby shower to attend!



    And to complete this swaddling memoirs of mine, I will leave you with this link to get your swaddling skills up and going! 

    Get your swaddling blankets here and practice right now!



    6.12.2014

    NewMomDesigns FAQ


    I get a ton of questions from the Etsy crowd on a daily basis, and while I love chatting with my potential customers, I thought I'd make it easier for everyone ( hello, shy people!) by creating FAQ about my fabric and products.

    Go ahead, see if your question is answered below.

    FABRICS


    • Is your fabric woven or knit?
    All the fabric we sell are woven. Please visit our Spoonflower shop for other variaties of fabric.

    • Is this fabric CERTIFIED organic? If yes, what agency has certified it?
    My 12 designs here are GOTS certified, the issuing agency is OneCert.

    • Can I get a sample of some fabrics?
    Yes, if we have a swatch/ small cuts of that particilar fabric in our studio, we will send you a free sample. Please contact us with your requests.

    • Do you have more than ___x___ yards of such and such fabric?
    Yes, sometimes the listing says 1 yard available only, but please ask me if I have more. Most times I do!

    • I'd like to purchase 1/2 yard of ___x___ fabric. Is it possible?
    All fabrics from the 12 designs here, can be purchased by fat quarters, 1/2 yards ( select 2 fat quarters)
    I always send fabric uncut, in one continuous piece.

    • How wide are your fabrics?
    All fabrics from the 12 designs here, are 58" wide. Others are 42" wide.


    CUSTOM PRODUCTS


    • What is the turnaround times on custom items such as nursery crib set or toys?
    If we are not crazy buzy, we ship all custom items 3 weeks after order.

    • Can you make Twin/ Full/ Queen/King size duvet from ____x___ fabric? 
    If your fabric is one of the 12 designs here, then, YES! We can make any size duvets!

    • Can I have a duvet and 2 pillowcases? 
    Our duvets come with 1 pillowcase. Any additional pillowcases are $20 each.

    • I want 2 different fabrics on my duvet. Is it possible?
    Yes, combination of any 2 designs here in one duvet, cost $10 extra. It's like getting a second duvet for only $10.

    • Can you make Twin/Full/Queen/King size sheet set from ____x___ fabric? 
    If your fabric is one of the 12 designs here, we can make TWIN sheet set ONLY! Sorry, our fabrics are simply not wide enough to accomodate seamless sheets of larger sizes.

    • Would it be possible to make this________ to fit my______?
    • In most cases, YES! We offer complete customization in sizes. Duvets, crib sheets, changing pad covers, pillowcases - all can be made according to your measurements.
    • Do you make crib skirts?
    Yes, we do. Although, we currently have no pirctures/listings for crib skirts, we have done many as part of complete crib sets. Let's discuss your crib skirt! Prices start at $75.

    GENERAL


    • How much is the shipping to____x______?
    Our shipping rates depend on the weight of the order. So if you need an accurate shipping cost, please provide your full address + the amount of fabrics/products you are planning to purchase.

    • Can I get a discount?
    YES! Excellent quetion! If you purchase multiple items, say, along with a crib bumper you want a blanket, crib sheet and a changing pad cover, PLEASE, contact us for a bundle price. We are happy to save you some green!
    • Do you take on wholesale accounts?
    We can only offer certain items from our store for wholesale. Please contact us with your requests. Please mention what items you are interested in carrying.




    6.11.2014

    Tooth Fairy Pillow - now with a note from a Fairy


    Our beloved Tiny Tooth Fairy pillows now come with a tiny note from a fairy! 
    She gently reminds to brush and floss.
    The note is really tiny+super cute! and slides right into a pocket/door on the back of the house.

    5.27.2014

    Etsy Talent - ISRAEL

    If you don't like to browse Etsy - we can't be friends. So much talent there, it is simply impossible to keep emotionally calm. Every other minute I'm like :

    "Oh, that is so cool!"

    or

    "Damn!, why didn't I think of it" ( pouting face)

    I add a lot of items to my favorites, and when i feel completely un-inspired  ( yes, those days happen),
    I re-visit my loooooong list of visual candy.

    During my last 'inspirational session', I noticed that many Etsy artists that I favored, work and create in Israel. What a talented country!

    Enjoy some of my favorite fashion goodies.

    Have you ever bought clothing from Etsy?
    How was your experience?
    What about shoes?

    Tell me in the comments below!










    ( All sources are on my Pinterest board "Etsy talent")

    5.20.2014

    3 tiny things to a better YOU!


    We all make big goals and resolutions at the beginning of the year ( remember New Years Eve?) But more often than not, by the time spring rolls around, our BIG and AMBITIOUS dreams and goals are likely to loose its glamor, and that special diet and that promising exercise routine slowly but surely, loose their grip. 

    Seriously. 

    Who wants to be stuck at the gym when the weather is finally up in the 70s, the birds are chirping, the sun is shining, the allergies are flourishing...well, I am getting off topic here....

     A-a-a-achoo!!!

    And before you know it, 10 pounds have crept back up to your waistline and settled cosily in their little houses: the Love handles.(the name is so romantically deceitful!) 

    You are tired before noon, and exhausted by 5pm, and your skin is drab and dull even under that expensive foundation you bought.

     The answer is easy!


    INSTEAD OF BIG RESOLUTIONS YOU CANNOT STICK WITH,

    CREATE NEW    small   HABITS FIRST!


    Here are the 3 simple things I will be doing for the next 30 days:

    1. DRINK MORE WATER


    More than 75% of people are dehydrated on a regular basis. I totally made it to that group!! 
    I only drink water when my mouth is actually too dry to open or speak.
    I won't bore you with all the health problems that can and do occur due to lack of water in our bodies, but I will tell you this:

    - If your ultra-smooth, super-expensive, Oprah-approved liquid foundation cakes on your face- you need more water!

    -If you find yourself paying visits to the porcelain throne without much success ( no need to be grossed out here- its all medical talk here)  - you need more water!  

    - If you feel tired and sleepy after that 3rd cappuccino-macchiato- frappuccino thing - guess what?
    YOU NEED MORE WATER!

    So be a darling and drink more water, ok?

    I will be taking it super slow, with 3 full glasses a day and work my way up to 5-6.


    2. DO LUNGES

    Sounds simple, right? And totally un-ambitious. "Shouldn't you write here WORK OUT FOR 45MIN EVERYDAY ?"- you ask me. 
    And the answer is NO. Because that would be another BIG goal. That will most likely fail after a few days. We want to stick with something small, remember? 

    Sure you can find 9 min a day to do 3 sets of lunges!!

    Your thighs will thank you. 

    ( But If you find yourself in a situation, where you are ready and willing to do 30-45 min workout, please DO IT. )


    3. WASH YOUR FACE BEFORE BED

    Every self-respecting woman knows that sleeping with your makeup is a big NO-NO! But we do it anyways. With a million excuses up our sleeve:

    Does BB cream count as makeup?
    I cried, and the tears washed all my makeup away.
    I need the smoky eyes tomorrow
    I am too tired ( well , that's a classic)
    I did not wear that much anyways
    I am lazy, I admit it!

    Well, well, well. We have all been there. Just pull yourself together, girl, and DO IT!

    Wash your face with a facial cleanser every night! No excuses! 

    Don't overwhelm yourself with a complicated nightly routine, with all the toners, and cleansers and serums and moisturizers... Just wash your face- this is our tiny rule to stick to.

     If you reach for a moisturizer after the wash, because your face feels like a dry tatami mat ( no pointing fingers please) - that's great! If not, leave it be! You did what you were supposed to for now, so pat yourself on the shoulder.

    So here there are, my 3 tiny things that will lead to big changes! 

    DRINK MORE WATER- feel better, energized, restore your bowels, plump up your skin.
    DO LUNGES- tones those thighs, butt and core.
    WASH YOUR FACE BEFORE BED- let your skin breath, restore and glow in the morning.

    Care to join me? Let's do it and share results afterwards!

    5.19.2014

    Love me some Neon...

    My recent Color Love... Neon+Neutrals
    All images are in my Neon & Neutrals pinterest board

    4.08.2014

    Help me name my new designs - Forest Green

    I have created these a while ago, but never had a chance to introduce them to the world. Part of the reason is that I cannot find suitable names for them. Will you help? I need a catchy simple name for each of the 3 designs below. Inspiration photos don't count.


    3.20.2014

    "How about we" make dates nights FUN again!

    Dating is usually associated with single people. But married couples need date nights too, sometimes more desperately than anyone! "How about we" is a dating site that originated for singles, but now not only it  helps you find your significant other, but it can assist you to plan fun and refreshingly interesting dates with your wife/husband!
    Members get exclusive, custom ideas straight to inbox( and good deal on them) on what to do when your mother-in-law takes the kids for sleepover. Anything from Brunch dates to Artsy dates to Skills dates, the selection is very rich and diverse - cool, fun dates customized for you!
    Husbands! Check it out now and plan your special date on the upcoming Mother's day. Your wife will appreciate the thoughtfulness and the effort you put into it. The site will do all the work for you, you just get the credit for it :)
     Yes, the flowers are nice, and so is a card, but trying something new together as a couple, on a date, surely beats anything!


    3.04.2014

    Stylish Kids Fashion or Mini- Adults Clothes

    This may seem like a ridiculous question, but why do we call kids’ clothes, well, kids’ clothes? Take a moment and picture a little kid.
     What is being worn, from head to foot? Does she have sneakers and a pony tail or a messy bun and a statement necklace? Is he wearing aviators and skinny jeans or sweatpants and a tee shirt? Does it matter?
    Does a kid’s clothing item just mean it is sized for a two or five year old, or is the style of clothing distinctively different? Kids should be kids, right?
     That doesn't mean they will always be dressed in “play clothes,” but does it mean they should be coiffed and stylized? Should kids be wearing carefully designed outfits, often complete with accessories and hairstyles? Is the term kids’ clothes an archaic one or does it have to mean saccharine colors and juvenile cartoon characters?
    Of course, this subject isn't so black and white. But, you've probably noticed that there is a growing trend of dressing kids (from infants on up) in “adult” styles. Again, what does it mean? What makes it so that we know at a glance whether a kid is dressed as a kid or as a mini-adult?
    There seems to be an important distinction between a kid wearing the same kind of thing an adult would wear, such as a button down shirt or ballet flats, and being stylized like a mini-adult. While the line might not be completely clear cut and not all time is play time, do the clothes remind you that the child is a child?
    We also see this debate played out in the retail space. More and more companies are changing their tactics when it comes to kids’ clothes. The products themselves are different, but so is the styling. Little boys with hipster glasses and half-tucked Oxfords; girls with oversized scarves and mixed prints seem to be the new norm. Have you noticed how advertisements have changed?

    How do you define kids’ clothes?



    All images are on my Pinterest Board "Stylish Kids"

    2.19.2014

    Gender Neutral Nurseries and Kids' Rooms


    Decorating nurseries as “gender neutral” has been a growing trend for a couple of years now, 
    perhaps linked to more parents’ decision to wait until birth to find out the sex of the baby? This trend toward neutrality can also continue as the child grows, with gender neutral kid rooms, especially with shared spaces. When it comes to decorating for kids, what does gender neutral mean? What picture comes to mind when you think of that phrase? 

    For some families, neutral is the keyword. With tone-on-tone whites or grays, for instance, the color scheme is distinctly neutral. These neutrals provide a soothing, calming space and work well for both sexes and varying ages, making it also a good fit for shared spaces.

     
    Sometimes, gender neutral means not focusing on traditional colors of blue for boys and pink for girls, but using other colors for either sex.

     
    You can also play with using traditional colors in nontraditional ways.


     

     Remember the shared spaces mentioned above? Certainly, having kids share a room is nothing new! There has been increased interest, though, in how to decorate those rooms to make them enjoyable for both kids, whether boys, girls or a mix. Usually when having a little boy and girl share a room, the palate centers on a neutral color, such as white, with small pops of color.

     
     Another great way to decorate a gender neutral room is to base it around a theme, instead of a color. For kids, neutral themes such as safari, circus, chevron, woodland, or zoo would all work well, as would a favorite children’s story, such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar or Brown Bear, Brown Bear.



    What is your favorite nursery style?

    2.18.2014

    Random Polka Dot fever

    You probably are aware of the Polka Dot trend that has been going around, but the latest twist on that is Random Polka Dot. And it not necessarily dots- could small specks, brush strokes, splash stains, or any other small shapes scattered in a random pattern.
    Now, to keep up with this, go ahead and get yourself a Random Polka Dots dress, or a pair of shoes, or a pillow, or even a manicure with littlest random  polka dots!


    1. 23  4 5  6. 7 8 9 10 12

    2.06.2014

    What's the big deal about Organic Cotton?

    Why Organic Cotton Matters

     There is most likely cotton in every area of our homes, including our bedrooms, kitchens, closets, living rooms, even our medicine cabinets. Cotton is good, though, right? After all, Zoey Daschanel and Hayden Panettiere look so happy in those “Fabric of Our Lives” commercials.
    Unfortunately, things aren’t always as they appear. It isn’t hard to find the damning evidence against conventionally grown cotton. With just a quick Google search, I found copious research about the harmful effects of cotton production. When grown conventionally, cotton is actually considered the dirtiest crop in the world. Cotton covers 2.5% of the world's cultivated land yet uses 16% of the world's insecticides, more than any other single major crop.[1] Things are even worse in India, home to over one third of the world’s cotton farmers, where cotton accounts for 54% of all pesticides used annually – despite occupying just 5% of crop land.[2]
    On top of all that, the men, women and children who work in the cotton industry are continually exposed to these toxins. In many areas of the world, cotton is a hand-picked crop. Consider that a single drop of the pesticide aldicarb absorbed through the skin can kill an adult. This pesticide is commonly used in cotton production in the United States and 25 other countries worldwide.[3]
    And, we haven’t even touched on all the synthetic additives that cotton receives in the manufacturing process! Here’s a straight quote from The Organics Institute[4]:
    During the conversion of conventional cotton into clothing and fabric, many hazardous materials such as softeners, silicone waxes, harsh petroleum scours, heavy metals, flame and soil retardants, ammonia, and formaldehyde are used and added to the product.
    Conventional cotton manufacturing processes often result in large volumes of toxic waste water that carry away residues from chemical cleaning, dyeing and finishing. This toxic waste pollutes our waterways, depleting the oxygen from the water and destroying marine animals and disrupting the ecosystems.
    Most chemicals applied during the cultivation and processing of conventional cotton leave chemical residues in the fabrics, which could cause allergies, skin irritations, chemical sensitivities and other health problems.
    Thankfully, cotton doesn’t have to be produced in this radically harmful way! In fact, there is a growing number of farmers and companies who are choosing to produce cotton organically. Here’s more great information from The Organics Institute:
    On the other hand, organic cotton is grown in soil that is certified free of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Organic cotton farmers use environmentally sustainable systems that replenish and maintain soil fertility, promote biodiversity and natural pest control. They use natural fertilizers such as compost and animal manure that recycles the nitrogen within the soil.
     All the ‘nasty’ chemicals used in the processing of conventional cotton are prohibited in organic cotton processing. Only certain biodegradable, low impact dyes and oxy, hydrogen peroxide bleach is allowed in organic certification. Therefore, organic cotton is non-toxic and hypoallergenic, thus ideal for those with allergies and chemical sensitivities.[5]
    At this point, because conventional cotton has a higher demand and its production is often subsidized, it is artificially cheaper to buy than organic cotton. The price tag doesn’t show all those “hidden” costs of conventional production detailed above, though. If you want to have only truly natural cotton touching you and your family, you can start small by swapping out products one at a time. It may take a bit more time to find, but there are cotton swabs, bedding, clothing and other products made with only organic cotton. Have you found an organic cotton product that you love, or know of a good source to find them? Share your tips and thoughts in the comments!


    TAKE 15% OFF on ANY ORGANIC ITEM in OUR STORE! USE CODE: organic2014
    Expires 02/13/2014

    2.04.2014

    Color I love now - Radiant Orchid

    Since Pantone's announcment that the color of this year, 2014, is Radiant Orchid, I cannot help but notice it everywhere. It is rich, royal and absolutely gorgeous!

    What about you? Do you like it? Have you been inspired by it? Comment below!



















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    1.30.2014

    New Babysitter Tips and costs for hiring one

    Babysitters - what would we do without them? Are you terrified to leave your kids with a new person? 
    I was lucky enough to have 2 sets of parents ( mine and my husband's) who volunteered + kindly agreed, on other occasions, to babysit our kids while we were away. The kids love them and grandparents have had a chance to bond with them even closer. But if you are in a situation where no family member can help you out, be prepared with these neat tips to help a new babysitter. 





    Learn everything you need to know about how much to pay a babysitter here.








    1.28.2014

    Let's make cute baby things!

    There are some many great fabrics-by-the-yard in the shop, but what to do with them? Here’s a roundup of some easy and adorable projects,  thanks to the Internet.





    If you can sew a straight line, you can make this charming playmat. The Purl Bee has put together a tutorial, which even includes instructions for adding hand-quilting (a wonderfully peaceful task!)



    Contoured burp cloths stay put better and they’re easy to make. Hop over to “Floating on Cloud9” for the free tutorial and pattern. 



    Your little guy will be a little man when wearing a necktie onesie! There’s a free pattern and instructions. After you master the necktie, try a bowtie! 



    Fun twirly skirt for a baby girl!



    Soft Floor Cushion is a must when you have toddler around. They just love lugging it around, jumping on it, laying on it, hanging on it - you name it! Susan form "Living with Punks" provides a great tutorial!

    And if you looking for some fun fabric, don't forget to check out NewMomDesigns.