For Mom

Unique Baby Gifts: 5 St. Patrick’s Day Newborn Gifts that You Won’t regret

As a mother of three and the owner of Estella, a baby gifts brand, it was very easy to go overboard on events like St. Patrick’s day and buy my then little kids things that I would later regret.  Things that seemed like great ideas at the moment, but I would either get sick of a day after the event or that would out last their utility, like the christmas, St. Patrick’s or Valentine’s day onesies and tee shirts.

With 3 kids to shop while working in kids fashion, I have seen a lot of these, made lots of mistakes and had a lot of success too!  I have ended up with junk as well as items that both my kids and I have loved and cherished.  Here are a few unique baby gifts that I would recommend for St. Patrick’s day:

  • A Well Made Irish themed Baby Toy
Irish Baby Rattles

Lucky Clover Organic Baby Toys by Estella

You can get baby our very own hand knit organic cotton Lucky Clover baby toy rattle. At $16 it won’t break the bank and baby will love it beyond St. Patrick’s day.  It is fun & safe for baby and will never be overbearing, like a loud green St Patrick’s baby romper would be.

  • A Classic Baby Dress in Green
Bonpoint Baby Romper in Liberty Fabric

Newborn Baby Romper by Bonpoint using Liberty Cotton

Another suggestion is a beautiful dressy outfit, like this baby romper by Bonpoint in a green floral Liberty of London print fabric.  A classic dress like this will allow baby to show their Irish pride on St. Patrick’s day and their beauty well beyond St. Paddy’s day.

  • Elegant Baby Shoes in a sophisticated green
Baby Shoes in Metallic Green

Dressy Green Baby Shoes

I also recommend some baby shoes or accessories that you love in a green that you can not only live with, but enjoy after St. Patrick’s day.  I love these green newborn ballet style shoes by Caramel Baby & Child.  Not only would they go well with the Bonpoint dress, but they are so versatile that you can put them on baby with any outfit.

  • A Green Unique Baby Onesie in Green
Baby Onesie with Dino & Green Accent

Noe Zoe Baby Onesie

If you’re looking for something more casual, screams green more, but is still a keeper, this organic cotton baby onesie by Noe Zoe is perfect.  I love the graphic and would put it on baby on St. Patrick’s day and on any day.

  • Green everyday accessory for Mama & Baby
Newborn Swaddler by Aden & Anais

Baby Swaddle in Metallic Green by Aden & Anais

If you’d rather treat yourself and baby, I love this newborn baby swaddler by Aden & Anais.  This shade of green is elegant and the metallic is fun.  This will last not just through St. Patrick’s day, but through many and for many other babies too.  Things like this gave me and my kids joy well beyond events like St. Patrick’s day.  I kept some of these pieces and now that my kids are older, it makes me so happy to encounter them again. I hope you like my baby gift ideas. I wish you and little darlings a happy St. Patrick’s day!

Posted by Estella Editor in Aden and Anais, Baby Accessories & Toys, Baby Clothes, Caramel Baby and Child, For Mom, Liberty of London, 0 comments

Alder & Co, Estella Retailer & Portland’s finest Boutique, coming to New York

For years, Alder & Co has been providing the Portland area with priceless treasures from around the globe. Customers love Alder & Co for those unique items that they simply can’t find anywhere else from women’s dresses to jewelry and baby gifts. It is known as a magical place where people can find that particular artifact to complete the outfit, gift or project. Alder is a space of timeless and transportive things that are as useful as they are beautiful.

With collections from around the world, Alder & Co carries different types of products from small batch independent brand names. Find ladies clothing, accessories, apothecary, home items, jewelry, baby gifts, paper, textiles and a little bit of everything else. Unique brands such as Klorane, Context, Nkuku, and Polka Dot Club don the shelves of this special Portland Oregon boutique. Estella is thrilled to be among the select group of brands at Alder.

Alder carries some of Estella’s most innovative baby gifts including its new Short Sleeve Organic Baby Romper with Whale. Handmade in Peru with 100% breathable certified organic cotton, this one of a kind romper features a graphic navy blue whale image and stripes on a cream background. This nautical romper comes in short sleeves and short legs and is perfect for Spring & Summer babies.

Whale Baby Rompers

Whale Baby Romper in Organic Cotton by Estella

Also available at Alder is Estella’s new Sleeveless Organic Infant Romper in baby blue. This one-piece knit romper is backless, solid colored with a contrasting cream band on the chest pocked and on the thigh hem. Also handmade with 100% soft organic cotton, this irresistible baby romper is sophisticated and elegant.

Sleeveless Baby Rompers in Blue

Backless, Sleeveless Baby Romper in blue by Estella

Alder also carries Estella’s popular Whale security blanket. This baby security blanket was so popular that it served as the inspiration to the Whale Short Sleeve romper that Alder now carries. Measuring 14 inches squared, this baby lovey is small enough for toddlers to carry around and find comfort in during bedtime, naptime or when they’re feeling out of sorts. With a whale image and a three dimensional tail, it is also fun for toddlers to use for imaginative play and for infants to explore.

Whale Baby Lovey

Whale Security Blanket by Estella

On April 1, 2017, Alder & Co will be opening its Alder East location in Germantown, NY and will bring Estella and its core collection of women’s clothing, jewelry, accessories and baby gifts to this charming New York town. This upstate site will carry not just some of the same special items found in the Portland store, but will include a fusion of goods from local New York brands to give it a truly local feel.

The grand opening will be held at the new Alder East location at 222 Main Street in Germantown from 2 – 6 P.M. Mark your calendar and get ready for something new. Join us in welcoming Alder to New York, check out their new store and hopefully you will fall in love with their aesthetic, like the Portland community has.

For more information about Alder & Co., give them a call at their Portland location at 505-224-1647 or email them directly at info@alderandcoshop.com

Posted by Estella Editor in Articles, For Mom, Lines We Love, 0 comments

Pregnancy: The Beauty of a C section

https://www.instagram.com/p/BKuNNILgsb-/?taken-by=estella_nyc

Like most mothers-to-be, I did everything that the Dr. told me to do in order to avoid a c-section.  And I successfully avoided it on each of my 3 pregnancies, but after looking at this video, I feel like I missed out!  It just shows that no matter how it happens – natural birth or cesarean, child birth is truly a miracle! Share if you like it.

Posted by Estella Editor in For Mom, Pregnancy, 0 comments

In the News: The Top Baby Names of 2014

Baby Clothes - Organic Bamboo Collection

Curious to know the top baby names of 2014? BabyCenter just released its annual list; the three most popular baby names for both boys and girls are the same again, and Sophia claimed the top spot for girls for the fifth year in a row! Here’s the top ten:

Most Popular Girl Names:

1. Sophia
2. Emma
3. Olivia
4. Ava
5. Isabella
6. Mia
7. Zoe
8. Lily
9. Emily
10. Madelyn

Most Popular Boy Names:

1. Jackson
2. Aiden
3. Liam
4. Lucas
5. Noah
6. Mason
7. Ethan
8. Caden
9. Jacob
10. Logan

What do you think- any surprises? BabyCenter also analyzed the inspiration behind rising baby names, whether it be sports stars (Jeter is up 82%) or movie characters (Elsa jumped 29%). Check out the entire list of the 100 most popular baby names over on BabyCenter!

Baby One-Pieces - Organic Bamboo Collection

Posted by Estella Editor in Articles, For Mom, 0 comments

Tips + Tricks: Traveling with Babies & Toddlers

Traveling with Kids

For those of you with upcoming trips or lots of traveling for the Christmas, New Years, and beyond, we chatted with mom of two and frequent traveler Ashley of Hither & Thither on how to make the process as seamless as possible. In just 2014, Ashley and her family traveled to Italy, Seattle, Hawaii, Florida, among many other places, so she’s got plenty of experience to pass along… Enjoy!

1. Traveling is always stressful, but even more so during the holiday season. As a frequent traveler, are there any ways to make the trip even slightly more pleasant?

The goal: More time, less stuff. In an ideal world, I’ll have finished packing well in advance so that we’re not rushing around at the last minute. We’ll get to the airport well in advance of our departure, and we’ll come back on a Saturday rather than a Sunday to start the week relaxed. In other words, there will be plenty of time. I’ll also have arranged for diapers and a few other things to be shipped ahead to the hotel or house where we’re staying, and have streamlined our suitcases to the bare minimum. Nothing is worse than shlepping around an excess of stuff, especially with young children who can’t yet carry their weight.

2. Do you think there’s an ideal time to travel with little ones (early mornings, after dinner, during naptimes, etc.)?

I’ve always preferred to drive or fly when the kids are sleeping—it’s hard to spend over three hours on a plane without some respite. We were lucky that my son was a pretty dependable sleeper, once we had a routine in place. But I do think it depends on the child: if they’re likely to fight it, or if you don’t think you could get them to sleep in your arms, a red-eye (when everyone else is silent) might be more stressful than passing the hours in a noisy, light-filled cabin.

Flying with Babies

3. What are your top tips for flying with babies? Are there any must-haves you swear by and always include in your carry on?

I always pack our carry-on as if we’re going to have a day-long layover. Think of that when you ‘re deciding how many diapers, how many ounces of formula, how many changes of clothes or toys you bring along. I’ve written a post with some favorite tips—like having your partner board the plane and set up the overhead space while you stay off the plane and play as long as possible.

4. What are some of your favorite ways for keeping a toddler occupied on a long car ride? Any go-to toys for car rides/flights?

Almost every carry-on bag has included a reusable sticker bag, paper and crayons, a few favorite books, child-friendly headphones (screen-time rules go out the window, but audio books are great for the older toddler), masking tape, and lots of snacks. Here are a series of games I came up with for flights, all using Cheerios.

Traveling with Babies & Toddlers

5. If there’s a time difference between home and where you’re traveling to, how can you get your kids on a new schedule?

The trick is to set your clock to the new time immediately. Eat on the new schedule and expose everyone to as much sunlight as possible in the new timezone. That said, keep the old clock (the body clock) in mind and be prepared with snacks the make it past expected mealtimes (and a bed around expected nap times without suffering major meltdowns.

6. Any unusual or unexpected travel tips you’ve picked up over the last few years?

While not unusual, I’ve really found renewed enthusiasm for preparation after having kids—in all manners. Before a trip, we go to the library and check out books related to our destination and talk about what’s exciting or different about where we’re headed. We talk about what we’ll do there and what we’ll eat. It makes a big difference! If Hudson is happy and enthusiastic, we all win.

International Travel with Toddlers

7. Any major travel success stories? Or disasters (or just plain funny ;)?

Our visit to Paris with our son, when he was a toddler, was filled with laughable moments. From taking him to La Maison Angelina (a tea salon where we learned he is not a fan of hot chocolate) to watching him get on stage at a Marionette show, it was a memorable trip! I recall in particular being excited for him to ride on a vintage carousel at Luxembourg Gardens: Unfortunately, it was a bit of a fail (albeit a comically sad one). The vintage carousel has no standing place, as the horses move using suspension alone, and so children must ride unaccompanied. This mean that Hudson was too little to ride a horse and would only be allowed to sit in a carriage. Good thing, too, because it was so fast! As the horses whipped around, and children reached for rings, Hudson wailed and wailed and tried to break free of the ropes that tied him to his seat. With every turn, he’d see us and reach his arms out crying “off, off” making the tongue-click sound he used for horses’ hooves in between sobs.

It seemed to last forever. Finally, the ride slowed. I tried to play it cool, but I just wanted to go rescue him so badly. I started walking besie him but it wasn’t coming to a stop. Aron looked at me like I was crazy and started laughing as I found myself fast-walking beside the carriage for an entire revolution.

I immediately though about that book Bringing Up Bébéand the description of the cliché, hovering American parent who shouts “weeeee” like a food every time their child goes back and forth in a swing (guilty) and felt my cheeks grow flush.

Luckily, even the man with the rings took pity on Hudson and soon he took my place, walking beside the tear-streaked boy and trying to untie him before the ride had truly stopped. I practically ran once he was in my arms. I ran to the playground, which was closing, and pleaded with a slightly shocked gatekeeper for just one ride down the slide. What a ridiculous scene!

paris-with-kids

Thank you Ashley! Some more travel posts from Ashley that may interest you:

Gear to pack when traveling with a toddler.
Flying with a toddler or baby.
Trip planning – travel itineraries.

(Images via Hither & Thither)

Posted by Estella Editor in For Mom, Holidays & Special Occasions, Interviews & Guest Posts, Tips + Tricks, 0 comments