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November 25th, 2010

Black-Friday-With-BC HAPPY BLACK FRIDAY - Ready! Set! Get Clickin’ – it’s time to shop and save with our Black Friday and Holiday Gift Guide merchants. We know you’ll find beautiful gifts for your family and friends. Please take a brief moment to Tweet this post on Twitter or share with your friends. Let’s keep everyone inside where it’s warm to shop today. Go Go Go!!

Our Boutique Cafe Holiday Gift Guide – Promos and Discounts for BLACK FRIDAY:

Rosa Dolce Designs: Promo Code “BCHGG” for 25% off!

Glow Baby: 20% off your order with Promo Code “boutique”

Hip Fabric: “BC10” for 10% off your entire purchase (excludes shipping)

Girly Things Online: Use promo code “LAUNCH10”

Jilly bo Billy: Promo “Holiday20” for 20% off the already reduced prices!

ggrightsize.com: Free Shipping! Promo Code “33139” til Dec.31/2010

Margarita Bloom: 10% Off! With Promo Code “MBLUV”

Lola and Clementine beautiful fabrics

Kickboard USA!: 15% Off! With promo code “BOUTIQUECAFE”

You Can Make This: 10% off your order with promo code “BoutiqueCafe”

Apple Pie Accessories: Get 10% off by using code “BoutiqueCafe” when ordering

My Lucky Wish: . Enter Promo Code “BCHOLIDAY”

Bugalug:15% off for BC readers with Promo Code: BC15

Amy Michelle Go Totes: through Dec.31st!

Boutique Graphics: 10% off using code “CAFE”

Olive & Ollie: 10% Off with Code “holiday10” at Check out

KIOKKO Bebe Couture:. Use Promo “BOUTIQUECAFE”

Above All Fabric: Use Code “CAFE” for

Laurie’s Gifts: Visit for special holiday offers!

Fabric Shoppe: Great Prices on Fresh Designer Fabrics, Shipped Daily

Jewelry for Gifts: All jewelry comes to you in a beautiful foil gift box perfect for gift giving!

Boutique Cafe: $5.00 Off a Boutique Cafe Ad “MARKET” ad placement! Use Code “HOHOHO” with Paypal payment

The Magnificent Two Dollar Black Friday/Cyber Monday Listings:

MamiGirl Boutique: Use code “THANKFUL” at Etsy cart checkout

Dizzlepop: through December 3!

Receiving Cuddles: (*All orders for Christmas that require shipping MUST be in before the end of November)

Young Crafty Wife: 15% off code in my Etsy store, use “Blackfriday” in checkout!

Made-2-Matche: (We also have a frequent flyer program that allows you to earn free customs.)

M2MBoutique: We have a 10% off coupon “m2mbooutique” is the coupon code

Jilly bo Billy: Everything is 50-80% off, PLUS FREE Shipping Canada and US. Sale ends Sat midnight PST

Maya Papaya & Tony Macarony: in my store. Check-out code “BCAFE15”, valid until Sunday Nov 28

Studio Lara: One Day on select items!

The Nutmeg Tree: 30% off Baby Outerwear 25% off Crochet Ballet Slippers 20% off Ornaments!! AND best of all… FREE SHIPPING through Cyber Monday Nov. 29th!

Fun PersonaliTees: Use coupon code “20OFF” when you checkout at our Etsy store and you will receive

Fat Quarter Shop:20% OFF your order at the Fat Quarter Shop! Use code “blackfriday” during checkout before midnight Monday, November 29, 2010.

Fabric Hound: 40% off most reg priced merch- BF40 displayed in listings, 10% gift card for yourself when you buy (buy $100 GC, get $10), orders of $100+ get 10% off stackable coupon for later…Shop now!

Sweet Girl Boutique: 15% off with Promo Code “BLACK15”

So Fun Fabrics: All books are 15% off, all patterns are 25% off and all Moda pre-cuts are 25% off! Most fabric has been marked down to $6, $6.50 or $7 a yard. Sale prices are as marked – no promo code to bother with!

Fashionable Fabrics: Modern Designer Fabrics and Sewing Patterns at some of the best pricing on the internet plus 5% off everything in the shop till Dec 2nd. Use code “boutiquecafe5”

Ri Lala: Thanksgiving SALE from 11/26-11/28. I am giving a (after discount, shipping amount will be refunded through paypal) and FREE gift with your purchase*

Details by Des: Use Promo Code “BLACKFRIDAY15” to save 15% on all purchases made today.

Servane Barrau Designs:10% 20% 40% off select items Black Friday – see site for all the savings!

Kiokko Bebe Couture: with code “BLACKFRIDAY” (valid until Nov 29th )

Little Bits by Lisa:20% discount on all purchases made from my website or Etsy and Ebay stores on Through Cyber Monday. However, hair accessories shown on my website are not included in this sale. Once your purchase and payment and have posted, your 20% discount will be refunded.

***MORE Promos and Discounts coming in throughout the day – keep checking back! (to include your shops promo discount for Black Friday contact daria@boutiquecafe.com)


I love the pitter patter of little Foxpaws

May 11th, 2009

Foxpaws Shoes“Unique and fashionable bite-sized shoes for the little ones in your life.” Sound yummy? Foxpaws Shoes are that and then some! These little treats for tiny toes are quite possibly the most stylish shoes my little fashionista owns. (Even at 1 1/2 she loves jewelry, shoes and sunglasses so yes, she’s a fashionista already!)

Foxpaws Shoes are designed using the highest quality materials and “luxury comfort soles” so fashion beautifully meets function for little feet. The effect is the perfect accessory for any outfit, whether it’s his favorite jeans and t-shirt or her favorite party dress. You can bet no other tot will be sporting the same pair of shoes, and while that may not matter as much as later in life, it’s never to early to make a fashion statement.

Foxpaws ShoesMy little Livi received the Classic Giraffe shoes in size 6 (18-24 months). When I opened the box I swear I’d never seen such a fabulous pair of infant shoes in my life! Though a loafer style they reminded me of one of my favorite pairs of heels: black patent leather stiletto with a patch of leopard print over the toe. Before I know it Livi will be borrowing those heels, but until then she can strut around town in her Foxpaws. They are a little big for her now so we haven’t had any photo opps yet, but believe me, when she finally fits into them we’ll be snapping pics left and right!

What I love about Foxpaws Shoes is each one is truly one of a kind because of the authentic and unique real leather hides used in their construction. And though the website gives you a good idea as to the superior craftsmanship, it is best appreciated up close and personal. Trust me, these shoes are going to last many play dates and parties and will be passed down to the next lucky little girl.

Foxpaws ShoesFoxpaws Shoes carries a couple styles for boys but it’s the Cheetah Peek-A-Boo and Sleek Snake Boot that have me wishing they came in sizes larger than 24 months! What makes the company—and the shoes—even cooler in my book is their efforts to help abandoned and disadvantaged children in South America through the Orphanage Support Services Organization (OSSO). Foxpaws sends private donations to OSSO with each order to help sponsor children and orphanages in need. Foxpaws Shoes isn’t just another pretty shoe; it’s a shoe with style and substance!—Emily

* Promotion! Foxpaws Shoes is currently offering customers $10 off their order plus free shipping! Use code foxpaws09 when checking out. Hurry! This offer is for a limited time only!

Bruz Wear protects your explorer’s little knees

May 7th, 2009

BruzWearThough it’s been 30+ years since my sole method of travel was on all fours I sometimes find myself crawling around chasing after my little ones (usually emitting some sort of growl while they burst into fits of giggles). After following them around for only a few minutes my knees start to complain, and while I swear little kids are made of rubber I can only imagine how tired their little knees get especially when exploring our entry and kitchen area, which is covered in a sort of marble tile. That’s where Bruz Wear comes in and saves the day!

Bruz Wear was born from one family’s need:

The day after he was born, our son Nicholas was diagnosed with Severe Hemophilia A, a bleeding disorder caused by a lack of clotting protein. Watching him crawl in discomfort with black and blue knees sparked the idea of a padded clothing line.

The minute to minute emotional roller coaster that is hemophilia is accompanied by an amazing community of people who have perservered against unspeakable odds. Meeting and talking to these people inspired us to take the next step to make Bruz Wear a reality.

BruzWearThe Bruz Wear line consists of super cool pants with hidden pads in the knees. You’d never know they were there because they’re hidden behind fun, colorful “patches.” (Check out the blue pants with butterfly knee pads!) I thought the padding was there simply to make crawling more comfortable but there’s more to it:
We believe in the importance of play and we believe that baby and toddler pants should be built to encourage kids to crawl, play and get dirty. During this development phase, a child’s knees are no stranger to cuts and bruises. Bruz Wear pants, with their machine-washable knee pads, give children the confidence to take that next step while, of course, looking cool.

So really you’re helping inspire confidence in your child by making playing, exploration and even those falls a lot less painful!

George received the metal kids pants with terra knee pads, and while they’re still a little big (this kid has no butt to hold anything up!) they look really cool and he was super disappointed they wouldn’t stay up. He was rarin’ and ready to play! The foam pads are machine washable and the pants come with a drawstring waist. (Sadly that drawstring still wasn’t enough to keep George clothed.) The high-quality fabric looked and felt durable enough to outlast even the most adventurous explorer and the knee pads have enough foam to save the knees without being bulky—it’s amazing they’re even there! If only they came in adult sizes so I could slip a pair on when it’s my turn to be the super scary monster…

Bruz Wear...Bruz Wear

The owners, ever conscious of those in need, hope to someday provide every child diagnosed with Hemophilia a Bruz Wear gift set. Until then you can show your support by purchasing Bruz Wear for your little ones. (Sizes range from nine months to size 6 toddler.) Their knees will thank you!

Visit Bruz Wear’s MySpace page for more information on how you can help support their cause. Their MySpace page also has a more in-depth version of the family’s story. Take some time to read it—it’s inspiring!—Emily

* Promotion! Bruz Wear is offering Daily Dish readers $10 off their purchase! To receive your VIP discount use the following link to shop Bruz Wear’s line: http://home.comcast.net/~bruzwear/2009vip.html. Offer expires May 30, 2009.

Swimwear that has you lookin’ all retro glam

May 5th, 2009


Along with my jacket/coat addiction I have a swimwear addiction. Not so much do I love to wear them as much as I am obsessed with trying to find the perfect suit! I have my swimsuits for swimming. Then I have my suits for water-skiing. Then I have my collection of suits for laying out. And then there is a bundle for hot tubbing and the list goes on.

With summer approaching, my swimwear search begins. Awhile back there was a standout suit to me I discovered on limericki.com. The eliza one piecer. The cut was something reminiscent of the 40’s, yet, the suit has distinctive updates that make it a real modern retro swimsuit. The cut is lower on the legs, like back in the day, but, the straps are a new design that give the suit some serious style. The olive green patterned material looks very Anthro-ish but 1/2 the cost you’d find there.

I put the Eliza one piecer to the test. I went hot tubbing with some of my closest friends and without soliciting comments…they made their own. They raved about the flattering cut. It really is a line that seems to flatter all areas. They loved the pattern and colors. They couldn’t get over that it was a modern fashionable looking one piecer—so hard to find! The only complaint…the embellishment on the strap that resembles a pretzel. However, nothing that a set of pliers can’t take care of! I quickly removed the buckle embellishment and the look definitely suits me better without the extra accessory. This suit is easily my new fave. It’s got a very flattering cut that is a modest suit that hides all that junk in the trunk and is fashion forward. So often the bikinis are the only option for a suit with cute material or modern looking, but, the eliza swimsuit is the new retro one piecer that definitely will be turning heads.-Amber

** Promotion Limericki is giving 10% off on any purchase to all Daily Dish readers. Please visit limericki’s website and use the code DAILYDISH to receive 10% off your order.

The apple of my eye…and my wardrobe

April 27th, 2009

Shabby AppleI don’t own many dresses. I have a hard time finding ones that cover what I want covered and yet are still chic and stylish (and fun and flirty and sexy…). A good dress is often hard to find, and one that costs under $100 even harder. Thank heavens two women had the same dress-finding problem or we might never have the fabulous fashion- and figure-friendly dresses from Shabby Apple!

After years of not being able to find stylish dresses that covered enough skin to make you really feel comfortable (without wearing a tank top, cardigan or long slip), owners Emily and CK decided to do something about it. They visited trade shows, marketplaces and designer studios only to discover the problem was not that department stores weren’t buying the right dresses, but that designers weren’t designing them.

Shabby Apple is proud to offer you fantastic dresses that allow you to look fabulous, without having to compromise anything else. A return to what dresses were always meant to be — a one-piece outfit. No need to add anything…no tank tops, no cardigans, nothing (except accessories, of course!).

Sometimes the site simply says it best! But even that “about us” doesn’t do Shabby Apple justice. The collection features dress for every occasion, from Easter brunch to Saturday-night soiree, and for every body. “Every woman deserves to feel beautiful in a dress, but not all of us look like runway models. [Hear, hear!] Shabby Apple celebrates the short legs, curvy hips, straight waists and flat chests in all of us.” They even have an online fit guide to help you find the styles that “emphasize your assets.”

Shabby AppleI received the Daisy dress, which can be found under Flirty. (Sounds like my kind of dress!) This crisp, white, hail-the-sunshine eyelet dress has one of my favorite features of all time: puff sleeves. And for my shorter torso the dress’ empire waist and A-line skirt is perfect! As pleasant a surprise as the puff sleeves is its length—it actually hits my knees! (What I lose in torso I make up for in inseam…) The Daisy is fully lined so no impromptu—and embarrassing—bra sightings, plus its rayon/cotton blend fabric means it travels well. The yellow grosgrain ribbon isn’t attached so you can change up the dress simply by changing the ribbon! Traveling well is a really, really good thing since I have yet to wear this dress outside our home so I’ll be making up for lost time by packing it for our cruise in September. (It’s almost May and we’re still experiencing 30-degree weather at night and the rare 60-degree day. Are you kidding me?)

Others can vouch for Shabby Apple’s drool-worthy design. I know for a fact Daria is all over the Lois Lane and envisions herself wearing it at the BlogHer conference in July. I’m debating whether to don A Sunday Afternoon or Tender is the Night. Perhaps I should get both just to be safe!

Shabby AppleIn true Shabby Apple style you can’t forget the accessories, the little fashionista or the mama-to-be. Along with the delectable dresses you’ll find scrumptious jewelry, handbags and shoes for you, the sweetest dresses for little girls and belly-flattering maternity dresses. Shabby Apple leaves nothing to chance, especially style!—Emily

* Promotion! Shabby Apple is offering Daily Dish readers 15% off their purchase! Simply enter code SABoutique when checking out. Offer expires May 28th, 2009. (Think of it as a Mother’s Day present to yourself—you totally deserve it!)

Basa Body does a body–and a soul–good

April 23rd, 2009

It’s one thing to find an all-natural product line that nourishes and heals the skin; it’s another to find one that also nourishes the soul. Basa Body does both and the story behind the company is worth telling in their own words:

Basa BodyIt began with a trip to Kenya where we connected with wonderful, intelligent women working hard to feed their families. We met with the women of Mombasa and visited the first small-scale coconut oil plant called Coast Coconut Farms where they produced pure organic coconut oil by hand. Determined to find a way to assist them in selling their oil and to help them grow their business, we came home and through the help of many good people, created Basa Body (named after the women of Mombasa). It is our hope that by sharing this natural healing lotion with their inspiring story, we can help lift these women of Africa out of poverty and help them become self-reliant.

Inspiring, isn’t it? Kind of makes you want to buy a truckload of Basa Body lotion!

Basa Body’s products are infused with organic virgin coconut oil, which nourishes, hydrates and rejuvenates the skin. The company works hard to keep their coconut body products 100% natural with no artificial ingredients, which means their great for sensitive skin. The line consists of lotion, a body stick and soaps, all made from 100% natural coconut oil and the finest natural ingredients. Basa Body products actually help the skin heal.

Basa BodyI received their Basa “Kiss Me” gift pack (see photo), which included the Basa Body Coconut Oil lotion, Basa Body Stick push tube, Mint Chocolate Truffle Soap and Cherry Chocolate Truffle Soap. The first thing I wanted to do when I opened the box was take a huge bite from the mint chocolate soap—it smelled that good! Plus it came in a cute candy-like paper wrapper, so can you blame me? I tested every product except the cherry chocolate soap (not a cherry fan) and the Basa Body Stick was by far my favorite. Though the soap smelled super fantastic and moisturized as I washed, once I rinsed my skin felt really grippy (i.e. squeaky clean), which is probably a good thing but I didn’t love it. And the lotion went on nicely and absorbed quickly…I only wish it smelled more like coconut!

Basa BodyBut the stick was awesome! For an oil-based stick, it absorbed really quickly and moisturized so well! I put it in my daughter’s upper arms where she suffers from dry skin and it immediately remedied the problem. Her arms (and my hands) stayed moisturized for hours! You can actually use it to treat skin irritated by eczema or psoriasis. Plus the natural antibiotic, anti-fungal properties of the coconut oil make it great for diaper rash. They say once you try it you’ll be hooked (right, Jyl?) and I am! And get this, the Basa Body Stick has been referred to by customers as the “Love Stick” because it’s a “wonderful, natural and safe personal lubricant. Try it and say goodbye to K-Y.” I’m sold!

Basa Body products nourish the body, while the company’s story and mission nourishes the soul. By the way, Basa not only purchases all their coconut oil from Coast Coconut Farms but also donates 10% of their profits to projects in Kenya to fight poverty. How can you not love Basa Body?

Mother’s Day is around the corner. Give a gift that gives back by purchasing Basa Body’s “Kiss Me” gift pack. At less than $30 it’s the least you can do!—Emily

* Promotion! Basa Body is offering a special discount and giveaway! Use the promo code “momitforward” when ordering for 10% off your purchase and an automatic entry to win a $250 Disney gift card!

Kids Konserve: Free of waste, full of style

April 15th, 2009

Kids KonserveBy now you may have already seen the fabulous Waste-Free Lunch Kit from Kids Konserve. I’ve seen it reviewed on a handful of my favorite sites and yet I can’t get enough of this lunch kit that helps kids “choose to reuse!” And with Earth Day less than a week away, I felt this was a timely review for our Daily Dish readers.

Did you know:

  • The average child generates 67 pounds of lunchtime trash per year?

  • 38 billion plastic water bottles end up in landfills each year and take 700 years before they start to decompose?

  • Trash is often mistaken for food and eaten by ocean life?

  • 1.5 million barrels of oil are used in making plastic baggies and plastic bottles each year?

Those are some pretty sobering statistics, but one company is doing something about it—and helping kids do their part to reduce, reuse and recycle.

Kids KonserveI received the Kids Konserve Waste-Free Lunch Kit in the super cute butterfly print. Before my girls even knew what it was they were fighting over who would use it first. I have never seen them so excited to take their lunch to school—heck, they were taking it even when it was chicken drummies on the hot-lunch menu! The kit includes a food cozy (a sort of thin, foldable plastic sandwich holder), two stainless steel round food containers, a stainless steel water bottle and cloth napkin inside a recycled cotton sack. The combination of the stainless steel and fun green and white print make for a pretty darn stylish lunch kit and a much preferable option to the old Barbie standby!

Kids Konserve uses food-grade stainless steel, the cleanest non-leaching and safest material in which you can place your food. And the reusable containers mean you’ll cut back on the use of plastic baggies, plastic water bottles, paper napkins, juice boxes…I could go on and on. That also means cutting back on the $$$ associated with all that uncool, landfill-filling stuff. I found my girls actually packed themselves healthier lunches when using the Waste-Free Lunch Kit. Go figure! And feel free to use the lunch kit items together or separetely. Those round containers are the perfect size for on-the-go snacks for little ones.

Kids KonserveYou have to check out Kids Konserve’s new Party Pak. This awesome waste-free kit is great for classrooms, picnics and birthday parties and includes (25 each): plates, tumblers, forks, knives and spoons in three cotton drawstring bags. I love the idea of not buying Costco-size packages of paper plates and plastic silverware!

Help your kids (and you) “choose to reuse” by incorporating the Waste-Free Lunch Kit from Kids Konserve into your daily school or daycare lunch routine. See? It’s not that hard to make a difference!—Emily

** Giveaway Kids Konserve is giving away one Kids Konserve lunch kit! To enter please read the story about Rose and the “Garbage Patch” and share your voice for change. All comments will be entered to win. The drawing will take place on Earth Day, April 22, 2009.

* Promotion! Kids Konserve is offering Daily Dish readers 10% off their purchase! Simply enter the code “boutique” when checking out from KidsKonserve.com. Offer expires May 31, 2009.

Join Our Spring Savings Guide

March 5th, 2009

Welcome to Spring on Boutique Cafe – our New Spring Savings Guide is now reserving spaces to promote your stores, boutiques and websites with exclusive promotions for our Boutique Cafe listeners. The Spring guide will go live March 19th – June 1st.

If your company is interested in joining our Spring Savings Guide and offering a discount code for our audience, simply email daria@boutiquecafe.com and we’ll send you all the information you need.

Do you need a mommy stationary makeover?

January 28th, 2009

HauteMammas“We can’t fix what’s inside your closet or restore your body, or jump-start your mommy-mush brain but we CAN stylishly put you back together when communicating with the outside world!” What? I’m supposed to communicate with the outside world? I have four kids and tend to stay at home in my pj’s until at least noon. Okay, it’s not that severe but I will admit my correspondence with friends, family and acquaintances could use some style. HauteMammas totally understands.

HauteMammas.com helps you create custom calling cards (okay, I SO want a calling card!), note cards, thank-you notes, permission slip pads, address and gift labels, babysitter pads and even pet sitter notepads. Okay, I’m not a pet lover but I’m almost considering one just so I can use a pet sitter notepad! I received samples of their gift labels, a set for gifts from me and a set for gifts from the Hill family.

HauteMammasTo be honest, the Pink Pump gift label was not my style but I loved the fun design of the Enjoy Wave for family gifts. I was determined to see past the stiletto and check out HauteMammas other designs and I’m glad I did! I found a ton of designs I thought were super cute like the Spring Dots, Enjoy in Le Fleur Blue (tag rather than label) and the Merry Christmas Red & Green Dots. Once I saw those I moved on to the calling cards, and yes, I just HAVE to have one of these, especially the Pink Sorbet Polka! How great it would be to have something to give to playdate moms and family friends. Sure beats scribbling your name down on a scrap piece of paper (grocery store receipts in my case).

HauteMammasI checked out HauteMammas’ pet sitter notepads—there’s even a space for detailing play time! And for those of us whose pets consist of toddlers and pre-teens, the babysitter pad outlines everything your sitter needs to know…and then some. I would have liked a few more options in the thank-you notes and note cards, but the site has enough other fun products to keep my happy.

Your New Year’s resolutions may not have included a stationary makeover but it’s still the perfect time of year for one. Show off your hot momma style with some help from HauteMammas.com!—Emily

* Promotion! HauteMammas.com is offering Daily Dish readers 10% off their order. Simply enter code “Cafe 10” at checkout.

Belli does a body (and baby) good

January 12th, 2009

Belli skin careThis review is going to answer the age-old question, “Does stretchmark minimizing cream really work?” Actually, it’s going to also answer the questions, “Does body firming gel really firm?” and “Is there an eye cream that can make my eyes look like they got at least 6 hours of sleep?” You’d think the answer would be no because that’s a lot to live up to, but the answer is YES, YES and yes!

First, the info. Belli is a line of skin care products that “pamper and protect.” With three collections (Pregnancy, Motherhood and Baby) Belli meets the needs of each stage using the highest quality, safest formulations. For example, Belli Pregnancy is the only skin care line in the world that is teratology screened. What does this mean? It means the company has “[searched] through over 16 million medical research articles in over 5000 international journals, excluding ingredients linked to birth defects or other problems with pregnancy.” Belli Motherhood is LactMed screened so it is free of ingredients harmful during breastfeeding, and Belli Baby is screened for xenoestrogens (chemicals that can act like hormones and interfere with normal development of the reproductive system). Before Belli I didn’t even know xenoestrogens existed!

After learning about Belli’s background and philosophy I knew I would be reviewing a quality product. I felt no need to test their body washes and lotions; I was pretty sure they would live up to Belli’s reputation. (It has a great one, by the way—just Google Belli skin care.) And I’m currently not pregnant—been there, done that—so the Pregnancy line was out. That’s okay because I really, really wanted to test Belli’s Stretchmark Minimizing Cream, Body Firming Serum and Eye Brightening Cream...for purely selfish reasons of course. I have four kids, you know.

Belli skin careThe Stretchmark Minimizing Cream is supposed to “reduce stretchmark length and irregular surface area by up to 52% and stretchmark depth by up to 72%.” Now, I’m not sure the percentages and you better believe I won’t be gracing this review with before and after photos, but I do know I saw a slight difference in my stretchmarks after using this cream. I started using it in November and it took a little while for me to notice a difference, but then again I was only using it in the AM and the directions say AM and PM, so theoretically it would take about 8 weeks…which is where I’m at and where I’ve finally noticed a difference. I don’t suffer from the red type of stretchmarks but I do have those faint white lines and a few smooth, shiny type stretchmarks (TMI, I know) and this cream managed to lighten the faint white ones and tighten up and fade the other. I wasn’t a believe until week eight but now it’s a “YES” in answer to “Does stretchmark minimizing cream really work?”

Belli skin careNow for the Body Firming Serum...again, no before and after photos on this one either. Belli’s firming serum is designed to “lift and firm your breasts, buttocks and abdomen” and help “restore, repair and nourish slackened skin.” Good to know because after nursing four kids I’ve got some serious slackage going on. I applied the serum to all three areas and though I didn’t notice a big difference in the buttocks and abdomen (fortunately I don’t need too much firming in those areas) I did see a difference in my breasts…or rather, my husband did. (Okay, I did too but it’s much more fun to say he did!) I am being totally honest when I say he made a comment that let me know the Body Firming Serum was doing its job. After engorged milk ducts and gravity taking their toll I didn’t think anything would help but this stuff did—that’s a big “YES” for the “Does body firming gel really firm?” question.

Belli skin careLast but not least is Belli’s Eye Brightening Cream, which “revives and illuminates tired eyes…[and] hydrates delicate skin, lightens dark circles and minimizes the appearance of fine lines.” Really? Does it really do all that? Well, it does at least do two of the three: minimize the appearance of fine lines and hydrate the delicate skin around the eye. As for the dark circles, I’m not sure this eye cream did the trick. Of course I’m a seriously sleep-deprived mom so it didn’t have a snowball’s chance, but I have used another eye cream that did seem to help with dark circles better than Belli’s. I will say it did have a more immediate effect perking up my eyes once applied than others have, and that’s a big bonus if you’re heading out the door and need a quick pick-my-eyes-up. For me this eye cream was only a “yes” in response to the “Is there an eye cream that can make my eyes look like they got at least 6 hours of sleep?” But if you read the customer reviews you’ll find the Eye Brightening Cream was a resounding “YES” for others.

Kudos to those who’ve stayed with me this entire review. I hope it was worth it! Now, Belli’s higher price tag may make you think twice, but once you’ve thought twice, make the investment. Your body—and you—are totally worth it! My believe? A little investment now saves me a much bigger investment (i.e. surgery) later.—Emily

* Promotion! Belli is offering Daily Dish readers 10% off their order. Simply enter code “BELLIVIP10” at checkout. You will also automatically become a Belli VIP member and receive a coupon for 15% off your next purchase! Offer expires October 1, 2009.

Say so long to so-so diaper bags…

December 16th, 2008

SoYoung Mother...and hello to SoYoung Mother. It’s been far too long since my last diaper bag review and you know how much I love diaper bags (almost as much as I love jeans and a great pair of heels). I can’t think of a better way to break the diaper-bag dry spell than by reviewing a bag known for fighting something called “discom-babe-ulation.”

What is “discom-babe-ulation?” You may not know it by its official name but if you have little ones, you’ve experienced it. It’s “the state of panic that you experience when your baby starts to scream in a public place and the black hole of your diaper bag has swallowed the one thing you need to calm him down.” If you’re like me, you know this state very well.

To fight the state of discom-babe-ulation you need to be well armed. The SoYoung Mother diaper bag comes equipped with a wipeable, water-resistant microsuede exterior and one of its best weapons, a shallow bottom eliminating the frustrating search for the ever-elusive pacifier or Goldfish snack pack. The gingham interior, which is totally cute, has both mesh and see-through pockets, the latter able to be wiped down in case of bottle leaks or stuck-on fruit snacks. With pockets for everything from diapers and wipes to formula packets and a change of clothes, you can stay calm and organized when the world around you is falling apart.

SoYoung MotherI received the SoYoung Mother diaper bag in the yummy chocolate brown with baby blue trim. And yes, I noticed all of the above fabulous features. I also noticed the cell phone pocket was within easy reach (a total must-have for me) and it came with important accessories like adjustable stroller straps and a machine washable and dryable (yay!) changing mat. I do wish the mat would have been slightly padded but it did roll up compactly and fit nicely inside the bag.

Though I loved the idea of the matching collapsible cooler bag with insulated lining, I didn’t love the cinch top. It took a little work to loosen and tighten; I think I’d prefer a zipper closure instead. And the SoYoung Mother diaper bag doesn’t hold quite as much as my favorite Amy Michelle bag, that’s probably a good thing and something for which my bag would thank me! One totally unique feature of this bag is its large outside flap, which you can use to carry a baby blanket, baby sling or carrier, or even a yoga mat for that post-natal yoga you’ve been meaning to try.

Besides that easy-reach cellphone pocket, what I love most about the SoYoung Mother diaper bag is that it doesn’t look like a diaper bag. (Kind of reminds me of those days when the only snacks I carried around were a pack of gum and a protein bar.) And get this, it fits most laptops so it’s the perfect bag for all you mompreneurs out there! The SoYoung Mother diaper bag is available in two delicious colors, chocolate brown with baby blue trim (oh, how I love my job!) and cherry red with chocolate trim.—Emily

* Promotion! SoYoung Mother is offering Daily Dish readers $25 off their purchase and an extra cooler bag! Simply use code “DAD” (without the quotes) at checkout. You can say “so long” to this offer after January 31, 2009 so don’t wait too long!

Korbie lets you take the nursery with you

December 9th, 2008

The Daily Dish is all about the latest and greatest products for parents and their children, but once in a while what’s new to us may not be new to some of our readers. Today’s product review features the Korbie all-in-one baby bag, but apparently it’s not a new concept, or so a Twitterer told me when I mentioned writing this review. But that’s okay, because it’s new to me and it’s probably new to many of you!

KorbieThe Korbie all-in-one Baby Bag combines a diaper bag, bassinet and changing table for the ultimate on-the-go bag. The diaper bag features include stain-resistant nylon, adjustable shoulder strap, saddlebag design so it can straddle the back of the chair (sans bassinet), insulated bottle pockets, zippered front pocket, two large sections (hence the saddlebag) with two interior mesh pockets and a zippered interior pocket.

The bassinet features a UV-coated nylon with adjustable and removable canopy, hinges that securely lock the bassinet when open, carrying straps to carry your babies short distances, removable and machine-washable terrycloth pad and a 3-point harness. You can use the bassinet as a changeing table or remove the changing pad and use it on its own.

KorbieSo here’s my take on the Korbie without actually having an infant within its weight requirements (I have very “healthy” babies). The overall concept is fabulous. I love the idea of having a portable bassinet when you have a very little one in tow. It’s great for short or long trips—any type of travel where it would be handy to have something other than one of those large portable cribs (as long as your little one can’t roll over or sit up). I was able to remove the bassinet easily, though that is some serious Velcro, and I even set it up without reading the directions. It popped right open and the harness gave me no trouble.

The canopy, though extremely lightweight, seemed pretty sturdy and when completely open covered pretty much the entire bassinet—I like being able to shield my little one from head to toe! You do want to make sure you here the bassinet lock in its open position, and I would even test it by lifting it up by the handles before placing your baby inside. I do wish the main rib of the canopy, which you can remove by pulling it from the release button, had some sort of “stop” on it so the rib didn’t slide around in the fabric. I lost the rib for a second after removing the canopy and had to cinch the fabric so I could pull it out again.  But overall, I thought the bassinet design was a pretty ingenious one and seemed sturdy enough to handle even the “healthiest” infant.

KorbieAs for the diaper bag, I wasn’t sold on it as far as using it solely for a diaper bag. I’ve reviewed a lot of bags and so I look for certain things. One of the most important is a comfortable shoulder strap, and the Korbie’s strap is way too narrow and lacks any padding whatsoever. I can imagine a sore shoulder if you’re toting it around with the bassinet and packed full of baby gear. The saddlebag idea is a unique and handy one, but I’m not sure it’s worth the work of trying to rip open the Velcro flap at the bottom—that sucker takes some serious effort! The two sections are very generously sized but only have two mesh pockets for organizing your gear. The Korbie needs a few more interior mesh and/or divided pockets, especially since the bag is so deep.

And that was my other not-so-favorite thing. Of course the Korbie has to be rather long so it has room to carry the bassinet, but its length makes for a really deep bag. I’m just not sure how easy it would be to find things in such a “generous” pocket. And the large front flap doesn’t really have a place to go when lifted to access the pockets—it kind of gets in the way. It took me a minute just to figure out how to maneuver it so it wasn’t blocking my line of sight!

But even though I didn’t love the Korbie as a diaper bag, I still love it as a great all-in-one travel bag. It is extremely well made, durable and the fabric will hold up to a lot of wear and tear—a great thing for travel gear. The idea of a portable bassinet and baby gear at hand is an ingenious one. You should stick with your current favorite diaper bag for everyday use, but if you’re on the go a lot, whether it’s to the local park or the Disney park, the Korbie all-in-one Baby Bag will make it easy to take the nursery with you. And when traveling is easier, everyone is happy!—Emily

* Promotion! Korbie is offering Daily Dish readers $50 off the retail price! Visit Korbie.com and use the code “bcafe” (without the quotes) at checkout. Offer expires December 31, 2008.

JOIA makes sure nursing is a “joyful” experience

November 18th, 2008

JOIANursing covers are all the rage, and why shouldn’t they be? They allow moms to nurse in public without the worry of “over exposure” and with a little style. You might think nursing covers are pretty much all the same, and you’d be right…until you discovered the Mommy Cover by JOIA.

JOIA’s Mommy Cover will have you wondering how you survived nursing this long without one. Sure, it has a neckline designed so you can watch baby while nursing, but this one is flexible so you can roll it up much easier than other brands. The soft, silky neck strap is not only softer on the skin but also adds a chic touch to this already chic—and fully reversible—cover. The adjustable buckles are fashionable and functional, and the cover is made from machine-washable and dryable 100% cotton fabrics. But what really leaves the “other” covers at the bottom of the diaper bag (i.e. totem pole) is the Mommy Cover’s patented retractable reel system.

On one side of the Mommy Cover you’ll find a retractable reel sewn tightly into the fabric. The reel holds a thin cord with a Velcro tab on the end. You simply pull the cord behind you with one hand, grab it with the other and insert the Velcro tab into the other side of the cover. You now have a nursing cover that withstand even the wiggliest, busiest baby (and curious older sister).

JOIABecause I am no longer nursing I passed along the Mommy Cover to my good friend Kelli. Here’s her take on it:

Aside from the satin strap looking cute, I wasn’t sure it would stay in place…but, it does! The Mommy Cover made it so much easier to nurse in public—I wasn’t worried about my baby pulling the blanket down for full exposure. I do feel like the setup screams ‘I’m breast feeding right this minute!’ But I love that I get to peek at my baby; she has fresh air to breathe and no blanket covering her face.

Nursing should be a joyful experience whether you’re doing it at home or at the mall. The less you have to stress about flashing a stranger or overheating your baby, the better. JOIA’s Mommy Cover takes the work and worry out of nursing so you can enjoy (there’s that word joy again!) this special time with your baby.—Emily

* Promotion! JOIA is offering Daily Dish readers 30% off their orders! Simply enter code “boutiquemom” at checkout. Offer expires November 30th. This is a FABULOUS deal—I guarantee you’ll be less than “joyful” if you let it pass you by!

Today it’s okay to be Cry Babyz

November 13th, 2008

Cry Babyz’s philosophy is: “No matter how innovative a new design is, if it isn’t created with the finest, top quality materials from start to finish, it isn’t worth bringing to life.” With a philosophy like that and a chic product line of baby accessories, customers are smiling.

Cry Babyz offers burp cloths, diaper pockets, paci (pacifier) pockets, onesies, pacifiers and oilcloth bags made from not just the finest materials but fashion-forward ones as well. I love how their burp cloth sets are color coordinate yet don’t use a lot of the same fabrics you see everywhere else. Plus their made from a twill weave, which is thick and absorbent.

I received the Swirls Paci Pocket, which went really well with my red patent-leather Amy Michelle diaper bag. I love a good pacifier pocket, and though the pocket had a little too much length to hang on the outside of my bag without touching the floor, it was perfect attached and thrown inside the bag. You can still find it easily and it will keep a pacifier freem from dirt and lint and who knows what else. The cool thing about this pocket is it’s reversible; turn it inside out for a totally different look. You can hang the Paci Pocket from a stroller, shopping cart or even a carrier or car seat—now that’s when the extra length comes in handy!

I also love their Itty Bitty oilcloth bags. The mid-size car of diaper bags, they are a bit larger than the diaper pocket but smaller than a full diaper bag. The bags are designed to hold one baby bottle, a travel size wipe case and two to three diapers. They are made using oilcloth and laminated fabrics and are fully lined with a coordinating designer cotton fabric.

With Cry Babyz, the only thing you’ll be crying about is how hard it is to decide which burp cloth set or Paci Pocket to buy! Good luck with that one!—Emily

* Promotion! Cry Babyz is offering Daily Dish readers 25% off their orders! Simply enter code “The Dish” at checkout. This is a great offer; it’s the perfect opportunity to stock up now on some great baby gifts!

Peace, love and the pursuit of a comfy tee

November 11th, 2008

I admit it, I am a t-shirt lover. I own a few button-down shirts and I continue to buy button-down shirts thinking I’ll actually wear them at some point, but alas, I always go for a favorite t-shirt instead (unless it’s Sunday and I’m dressing up for church). And when I come across a soft, comfy tee that has a great design in great colors I simply have to have it. That’s probably why I love PeaceLoveMom’s entire collection.

Sure, PeaceLoveMom has comfy tees in great colors but they also have some rockin’ designs. And by rockin’ I mean really cool designs that are all about mom. The three moms behind PeaceLoveMom are all about “creating designs that will both inspire and empower mothers everywhere” and the collection “represents a collaboration and true celebration of motherhood.” We definitely need more celebrating of motherhood, and these tees do it with style.

PeaceLoveMomI received the Lucky Mom Mint Tee, which is all about feeling lucky 24/7 because you’re a mom. While I don’t necessarily adhere to that way of thinking, having four kids (five if you count my DH), I truly love the design. The first thing I noticed about this cute cap-sleeve t-shirt was the slightly glittery ink used in the design; it was sparkly without being blingy (I don’t do bling). The design itself was awesome (I don’t do cheesy) and I loved the little graphic on the back of the neck. The fit was flattering and comfortable, probably due to the 100% soft cotton jersey, tapered waist and longer length. And I can attest to its washability since I’ve worn and washed this t-shirt just about every week! It became one of my faves overnight, and that’s saying a lot since I have quite the collection of t-shirts.

If you’re gearing up for some cold weather you’ll love PeaceLoveMom’s Cozy Mom Thermals. They also have a few tank tops, fuller-cut tees and a fun kids collection. I am totally loving their hat collection too!

We really ought to remind ourselves to enjoy the journey that is motherhood, and PeaceLoveMom is a great way to do so. If you’re having one of those days, just throw on your favorite pair of jeans paired with your favorite PeaceLoveMom tee, add a smile and you can at least fake it til you believe it! I love the “Language of PeaceLoveMom,” which you can read on their About Us page—and you really ought to read it. It’s a wonderful reminder about why we should celebrate motherhood 24/7.—Emily

** Giveaway PeaceLoveMom is giving away one of their Grateful Mom grass green thermal tees(a $50 value)! Please leave a comment telling us your favorite PeaceLoveMom tee and your favorite thing about motherhood. (Don’t forget to include a valid email address for our drawing.) Then post the contest on your blog and let us know for an extra entry! We’ll draw the winner from the comments and contact her via email. Deadline: November 20, 2008 (midnight). The winner will have 24 hours to claim her prize or a new winner will be chosen.

* Promotion! PeaceLoveMom is offering Daily Dish readers free shipping! Simply enter code BOUTIQUEMOMS at checkout. Offer expires November 30, 2008.

D-Lux 57 aprons are D-licious!

November 6th, 2008

D-Lux 57Though we did an apron review only a couple weeks ago, it’s never too soon to do another one! Fashionable aprons are all the rage and it’s no wonder why. With all the fun designs and flirty styles, every girl should have at least one hostess-with-the-mostess apron. If you are still on the hunt for the perfect apron, look no further than D-Lux 57. These aprons are some of the most delicious ones you’ll find!

D-Lux 57 aprons come in three sizes for three ages of cooks: adult, tween and little. You can coordinate to create the perfect mother/daughter set or even grandmother/granddaughter set! The aprons are fully lined so everyone’s party clothes are protected from spills and splatters. D-Lux 57’s 100% cotton fabrics, which come from the quilting market, are of the highest quality, made in the USA and known for their soft feel.

D-Lux 57From vintage to modern to retro, the fashion prints on these aprons are some of the yummiest around. Two of my daughters (the 11-year-old and 1-year-old) and I are now the proud wearers of D-Lux 57 aprons. (Well, I’m the proud wearer…the other two have to wait for theirs until I can buy a third for the 8-year-old.) But before I could be wowed by the aprons I found myself adoring the matching fabric keepsake envelope in which the aprons arrived. The envelope, made of the same high-quality fabric and craftsmanship, is an ingenious way to store these aprons. The hooks in my pantry are getting a bit crowded and the keepsake envelope means I can stack the aprons neatly on a shelf or in a kitchen drawer. Plus they make for great gift packaging, and I always love a product that comes in its own packaging!

D-Lux 57Once I got past the sweet little pouch and pulled out my Dottie Aqua & Brown apron, the drool started, and it continued until I had opened the tween-size Wild Safari and the little cook Asian Kids aprons. (I think I’m experiencing some flashback drool right now…) The fabric was just as soft as promised and the prints just as delicious. The style of the adult and tween aprons seems like it would fit a variety of body shapes and sizes, and the kimono-type styling of the little cook apron was the perfect variation on a theme. I am dying for my baby to get a little older so she can toddle around the kitchen—or the craft table—in her D-Lux 57 apron!

D-Lux 57’s delicious aprons are already getting noticed. Check out this YouTube clip from a recent Desperate Housewives commercial depicting Bri wearing the Pink Pears apron.

D-Lux 57 just introduced a new line of laminated plasticware that includes trays and bowls and coordinates with their beautiful aprons. True to D-Lux 57’s own words, “Cooking never looked so good.”—Emily

* Promotion! D-Lux 57 is offering Daily Dish readers 10% off plus free shipping on their order! Simply enter code BCDD101130 at checkout. Offer expires December 31st.

Here we go loop de loop, here we go Loopa bowl!

November 4th, 2008

Loopa bowlSometimes I feel like the pretzels and goldfish crackers I give my little ones do series of loop de loops around the family room and in the car. I find pretzel twists under the car seat and goldfish tails inside the media cabinet. Even when I give them a little snack cup with a lid that swivels just large enough for little fingers, those crackers manage to escape. Aside from duct taping your busy toddler to the barstool, a parent doesn’t have many options…until now.

Loopa bowlI was mesmerized by the Löopa bowl the first time I laid eyes on it. The design reminded me of a past American Inventor where the winner designed a car seat that swiveled, protecting the baby in the event of a crash. I thought the design was nifty back then and when I saw it applied to a snack bowl, I thought it was ingenious. But would it work? Would snacks really stay put when my one-year-old new walker toddled around the house? And would my toddler’s booster seat remain goldfish-free? Designed by parents, I had high hopes…and I wasn’t disappointed.

Necessity is always the mother of invention when it comes to children’s products, and I am so glad the Brad and Melinda Shepherd’s little one “spilled Cheerios all over the back seat of the minivan for the umpteenth time” because it eventually led to the Löopa bowl. This spill-resistant bowl swivels and oscillates in all directions keeping snacks in the bowl and not under the couch, behind the computer desk or on the dashboard. The weighted inner bowl rotates 360 degrees so pretzels, fruit snacks and Cheerios stay inside even when held vertically, something my one-year-old loves to do. When not holding munchies it’s a great toy, even for adults. I often found myself twisting and turning the Löopa bowl, watching it swivel and spin. Yes, I’m easily amused but this thing is pretty dang cool!

Loopa bowlThe only time we had goldfish go flying was when my little ones literally swung that thing in earnest, and nothing could have held up to that test! And if your snacks are on the smaller side, like those toddler dried fruit snacks, they can get wedged between the innermost bowl and the piece next to it, locking the bowl in place. When that happens it’s pretty likely you’ll find dried fruit outside the Löopa bowl rather than in it. But overall, I’m totally sold on the design because preventing that “umpteenth time” means preventing a moment of insanity.

The Löopa bowl is available online for around $10 on and both online and off from One Step Ahead and .—Emily

* Promotion! Löopa is offering Daily Dish readers “Buy One, Get One Half Off” if you purchase a Löopa bowl from their . This is a really great deal on a really awesome product! Just enter code “boutiquecafe” at checkout. The offer expires November 22, 2008, so don’t wait!

Holiday greetings and holiday readings

October 23rd, 2008

Inventing MatildaWith the holidays soon upon us our Daily Dish review schedule is fully booked—good news for our readers! Once in a while we will give you a double shot of the Dish so we can fit in as many great gift ideas as we can. Today is one of those “once in a whiles.”

With the holidays comes holiday cards. If you’re looking for something other than Shutterfly photo cards (hey, I’m a big fan!) or off-the-shelf greetings, then Inventing Matilda is for you. Inventing Matilda caught my attention when I received her first email, part of which read:

Please browse my site for two minutes…twenty seconds…any amount of time you might need to deem the wares I am peddling to be unique and far from the currently marketed sappy rhyming stodgy paper has-beens. I promise you that if you take a look, you will find a new product that your style-conscious readers are itching to discover.”

After reading that, I was definitely “itching to discover,” and I discovered her fabulous holiday cards.

Inventing MatildaInventing Matilda’s custom holiday cards are unique, artsy and fresh…and worthy of the best spot on the refrigerator. Whether you include a photo or not, these cards will out-holiday any other cards your friends and family will receive this year…and probably next year as well (unless you go with Inventing Matilda for ‘09). My favorite designs are Vaughn, Little Holiday Bird and Derrick. Inventing Matilda also has birth announcements, just in case you receive a 7 lb. 6 oz. gift this year.

And for your holiday reading (and writing), give a gift that will truly give back. Sand Dune Books’ line of Between Me and You journals. Creating family keepsakes is a must-do these days, and Between Me and You: A few things I’ve been meaning to ask makes it easy to do so.

Sand Dune BooksInside each one are pages of fun—and sometimes funny—questions. You give the journal to someone you love and he or she returns it after answering the questions. Very little is handwritten these days so this is definitely something to cherish. Use the Dad, Mom, Grandpa or Grandma journals to learn more about your heritage, or hand your significant other the Honey journal and find out what he pictured his future mate would look like! I have the Girl journal and can’t wait to send it to my good friend so I can find out what’s been the most rewarding part of our friendship (though I’m not sure I want to hear what she thinks is my not-so-best quality).

Between Me and You keepsake journals from Sand Dune Books are a great gift idea, especially if you have friends and family who are hard to shop for. Of course it’s almost more a gift for you than them, but I’m more than okay with that!—Emily

** Giveaway Inventing Matilda is giving away one environmentally friendly e-card to 10 people! These e-card is a JPEG that can be posted on a blog, emailed to a friend or printed at your favorite, local photo processing center. Winners will have until the end of this year to take advantage of their free 5×7 design. Please leave a comment with a valid email address for our drawing. We’ll draw the winners from the comments and contact them via email. Deadline: October 30, 2008 (midnight). The winner will have 24 hours to claim her prize or a new winner will be chosen.

* Promotion! Sand Dune Books is offering Daily Dish readers 10% off their purchase. Simply enter code BoutiqueCafe in the Comments section at checkout. Offer expires October 29, 2008 so get your shopping done ASAP!

Everything’s coming up posies!

October 19th, 2008

little pink posiesAnother Daily Dish confession: I am secretly glad my girls have never gotten into the American Girl thing. Though the dolls are amazingly real, in my opinion the price of the dolls and accessories is pretty unreal. But the idea of personalizing a doll to look just like my daughter is still a fun one, and so I’m glad there are other options, one of the sweetest being little pink posies’ posy girl pendants.

little pink posiesThe posy girl pendant is little pink posies signature product and you can easily see why. These sweet little hand-painted wood doll pendants are customized for the little girls who will wear them. The artist was initially inspired by vintage peg and clothespin dolls and her son’s love of vintage wooden Fisher-Price Little People. For her, it was important to design something unique and that celebrated the individual personalities of the wearer. “A few brainstorms and a small army of painted dolls later, the posy girl pendant was born.”

My oldest daughter was the lucky “reviewer” of a posy pendant. Customized with her hair color, the first letter of her first name and her favorite colors, the pendant was an immediate hit! She wore it from the moment it arrived until she went to bed and then proudly wore it to school the next day to show her friends. It looked expertly hand painted and I could tell great care had been taken in crafting the doll. I was amazed at the tiny detailing—my eyes would have gone crossed had I tried to do it!

little pink posiesAlong with the posy girl pendants (I absolutely LOVE the Posy Girl Playset), little pink posies also has beautiful hand-stitched jewelry and hair accessories. We are definitely heading in to the holiday season and a posy girl pendant would make a great gift for your little girl this season. Plus, this personalized doll option won’t require you to increase the spending limit on your credit card!—Emily

* Promotion! little pink posies is offering Daily Dish readers free shipping on their order. Simply enter code “Boutique Café” in the “notes to seller” section at checkout and a revised PayPal invoice will be sent after checkout is complete.

“Olive” our new bedding from Olive Kids!

October 7th, 2008

Olive KidsYou’re probably learning more about me from my Daily Dish reviews than you’d like to but it can’t be helped. At Boutique Cafe we pride ourselves on our honest product reviews and with honesty comes personal information. Here’s another tidbit about me you can add to your file: I’m not big on character clothing or accessories. Though I caved on my toddler son’s Thomas backpack, you won’t find TV or movie characters anywhere else besides his underwear. Perhaps that’s why I love Olive Kids line of bedding and room decor.

Olive KidsOlive Kids was created to offer parents like me “an affordable alternative to the character based entertainment licenses.” The company believes kids’ rooms should inspire creativity and play and not serve as an advertisement for a TV show or movie. I couldn’t agree more! Though my baby girl isn’t old enough to realize it, she is now the proud owner of Olive Kids’ Tea Party bedding set. My mom was in town when I opened the box and she and I could not stop oohing and aahing over every single piece. From the darling super soft sheets to the sweet polka-dot and stripe comforter to the pretty pink sham with its plush-to-the-touch teapot, the set is perfect for little girls without being over-the-top girly (something else I’m not big on). The icing on the cake (pun totally intended) is the accent pillow with its yummy cupcake complete with sprinkles.

Olive KidsIf you have a little one who’s more transportation than tea party, he’ll love Olive Kids’ Trains, Planes and Trucks or Heroes bedding sets. But these sets aren’t just fun for kids. Parents will notice the attention to detail: comforters have outline quilting; shams have embroidery and soft plush; and cotton sheets have attached ribbon details. Did I mention you can get all of these things at a fraction of the cost for something similar from PBK (a.k.a. Pottery Barn Kids)?

If you already have your toddler’s or kid’s bedding you’ll want to check out Olive Kids’ great room decor. My top three picks are the floor pillows (and you can get these personalized!), canvas growth charts (also personalized), and peel & stick chalkboards. Plan to spend lots of time on their site—you’ll find lots to love at Olive Kids!—Emily

** Giveaway Olive Kids is giving away one of their awesome canvas growth charts! The winner will get to choose the design and name. Please leave a comment telling us your favorite Olive Kids product; include a valid email address for our drawing. We’ll draw the winner from the comments and contact her via email. Deadline: October 15, 2008 (midnight). The winner will have 24 hours to claim her prize or a new winner will be chosen.

* Promotion! Olive Kids is offering Daily Dish readers 10% off personalized products. Simply enter code “BCPG08” at checkout. (Offer excludes sale items.)

Burpie Baby’s mess kit for moms

October 5th, 2008

Mess kits aren’t just for campers and scouts any more. Designed by the same mom who brought us the Burpie Baby 911, one of the only burp cloths I’ve ever seen multitask, this mess kit is a lot more stylish than the one your hubby has stored with the camping gear!

Burpie Baby Mess KitThe Burpie Baby Mess Kit combines three essential—and coordinating—baby items: bib, receiving blanket and Burpie Baby’s exclusive burpie. The burpie is what keeps this mess kit organized. It’s generous size converts easily to a pouch perfect for holding the bib, receiving blanket and even a few diapers and wipes. I’ve checked out the Burpie Baby Mess Kit and I am sold on the concept of having everything I need to keep baby clean wrapped up in a stylish burp-cloth-turned-carry-all-bag. No more throwing this and that here and there in to the diaper bag. Now you can just grab and go!

Burpie Baby Mess KitThe Burpie Baby Mess Kit even comes with 2-piece option (bib and burpie) or a 4-piece option, which includes a matching onesie, something I always forget to pack and always seem to need, especially if I’m trying to have an uneventful lunch with my girlfriends. With fun and funky patters like Party in my Crib, What a Doll and Sock Monkey, this mess kit will do a more fashionable job of keeping baby clean and your diaper bag organized than any ol’ mess kit you’ll find at REI (although that fry pan might come in handy for keeping the kids in line…).—Emily

* Promotion! Burpie Baby is offering Daily Dish readers 15% off their order. Simply enter code “café” at checkout. Daily Dish readers will also receive credit towards a future order if multiple items are purchased!

Blanket Clipz are Mom's latest multitasker

September 30th, 2008

Blanket ClipzYou know how much I love products that multitask as well as I do and when I find one I just have to share. Today I bring you Blanket Clipz, a set of stylish little clips that do more than just secure your little one’s blankie to her stroller. Sure, they do a fabulous job clipping blankets to strollers, car seats, bouncy seats and even shopping carts but they are also pros at turning an ordinary burp cloth or even kitchen towel into a bib or changing a receiving blanket into a nursing cover.

Blanket ClipzBut wait! (I’m starting to sound like an infomercial but they really are this cool!) You can use Blanket Clipz to attach a snack bag to a car seat or stroller. Now you won’t cause a traffic accident passing goldfish crackers to the back seat! We have a set of Blanket Clipz in brown with pink polka dots and we love finding new ways to use them.

pay for homework
My favorite Blanket Clipz superpower? Turning my toddler’s favorite blanket into a super cool cape! And don’t limit yourself to baby-related functions. How about clipping a dish towel to a cupboard handle? The possibilities seem endless!

At only $12 a pair and in great designs like zebra, pink camo and retro stripe, you won’t regret purchasing your own pair of Blanket Clipz. You’ll have one less task to do!—Emily

* Promotion! 3 Kids Designs is offering Daily Dish readers 20% off their Blanket Clipz orders! Simply enter code SUMMER at checkout.

Lil’ Squirtz is a lil’ frayed, a lil’ edgy, a lil’ funky and…

September 24th, 2008

Lil' Squirtz...a heck of a lot cute. Okay, that last part isn’t the best use of the English language but I’m talking cute as in “is it almost worth getting pregnant again just so I can use these adorable burp cloths?” cute, so anything goes! I have seen children’s accessories and clothing that make good use of fun fabrics but I have never seen anything like Lil’ Squirtz.

Lil' SquirtzI received Lil’ Squirtz’s brand new burp cloth set and their Burpie Box, a gift set that includes a burp cloth, one-piece and hat, all in their popular Little Monkey collection. What sets Lil’ Squirtz apart is a technique used to create the vintage-meets-funky-meets-fresh feel of their collections. I had to learn more so I checked out their About Us page:

Lil’ Squirtz was inspired by … a French appliqué technique called Broderie Perse (broh dur ee purse), meaning Persian embroidery. Broderie Perse is a highly regarded technique of cutting motifs or patches from printed fabric and stitching them onto a solid fabric. Traditionally, the raw edges are turned under or covered with decorative stitching. Lil’ Squirtz took this technique, which dates back to the early 1700‘s, and gave it a modern twist to make their own line of clothing, all which have a frayed – edgy – funky patch.

The burp cloths with their yummy chocolate brown color, fun accent fabric and monkey patch (hand cut) were so cool, so adorable I immediately put one in the basket on my children’s dresser just so I could look at it every time I changed a diaper. (My babies are too old to use burp cloths but that doesn’t mean I can’t still enjoy them—or use them to wipe little noses!)

Lil' SquirtzThe gift set with all its rich colors (custom dyed for Lil’ Squirtz with yummy names like marmalade, chocolate and blueberry), hip fabrics and frayed edges is so fabulous I’m going to hang on to it until my sister gets pregnant, and that could be more than two years down the road! (Yes, it’s THAT cute!)

So I’m thinking I “need” to add Lil’ Squirtz to my children’s winter wardrobe. The Melon + Little Monkey long-sleeve set will be perfect for Livi while the Chocolate + Bicycle long-sleeve tee is a must-have for George.

* Promotion! Lil’ Squirtz is offering Daily Dish readers two awesome promotions:
1. Get one free Burp ($12 value) with the purchase of any Burpie Box (no coupon needed)
2. Receive free shipping on orders over $125 with coupon code “boutiquecafe08”

All About Baby has terry that is so very soft!

September 22nd, 2008

All About BabyWe first featured All About Baby when we reviewed their adorable personalized frames back in January. The pink dot and lime green frame adorned with our daughter’s name still brightens the baby’s room and I am considering one of their cute hand-painted “Cookies for Santa” plates for the holidays. But those goodies are beside the point. Today’s Daily Dish brings out All About Baby’s softer side…more specifically their new collection of terry cloth accessories.

All About Baby’s new terry cloth line includes robes, hooded towels and gift sets. All of the products are 100% cotton and made with care. A few come in some really fun mod colors and patterns you can mix and match making post-bath-time or post-pool-time a lot more colorful! They also have an organic collection so you can wrap your baby in all-natural, super soft terry from day one.

All About BabyOur little guy has the hooded white terry cover-up with lime green trim, and even after washing it has retained its super soft terrycloth feel. Though we have to roll the sleeves up a bit he looks so grown up strutting around the house in his robe. It was a little big to use this summer at the pool but we’re looking forward to using it next year. And with it being made with high-quality materials and craftsmanship I know it will be in great shape when passed down to our littlest one in a couple years.

And don’t think All About Baby stops at personalizing frames! Feel free to personalize the organic hooded towel or four-piece gift case. Retail prices range from $30 to $70 and the styles range from adorable to super cute!—Emily

* Promotion! All About Baby is offering Daily Dish readers 20% off their order (excludes taxes and shipping). Enter code ABSD at checkout; expires December 31, 2008.

Planewear–dress your jet setter in style!

September 14th, 2008

In this world of $2 in-flight beverages and lack of free peanuts it’s nice to find something that actually makes flying fun. Planewear children’s clothing is designed with an aviation theme and will have you smiling all the way to the tarmac.

PlanewearThe collection is made from 100% Peruvian Pima cotton and uses organic colors derived from natural, ecological dyes offering your little one first-class comfort. With onesie designs like “Precious Cargo,” “First Class” and “Jet Setter,” plus coordinating pants, caps and booties, your “carry on” will be stylin’ whether her feet are on or off the ground. I loved having our little Livi strut her stuff in her Precious Cargo onesie and she always had someone commenting on her cute tee. The fit was great and the cotton was super soft. I’m just sad she outgrew it already. (Good thing there’s no extra fee for her being over the recommended weight limit!)

PlanewearPlanewear also offers toddler tees with embellished graphics and phrases like “Runway Model” and “I’d Rather Be Flying.” For preemies you can choose from “Early Arrival” and “Little Angel” (I have my own wings). I think my favorites is the bib asking the all-important question, “Chicken or beef?” Planewear’s designs are a great gift for anyone in the aviation business but their lighthearted and comfortable designs are perfect for anyone who wants to add a little high-flyin’ style to their little one’s wardrobe.—Emily

* Promotion! Planewear is offering Daily Dish readers 20% off their purchase! To receive the discount place your order via their 800 number and mention Boutique Cafe. To order call 1-866-759-2358.

Incognito diaper totes by Tushygear

September 10th, 2008

TushygearWhen shopping for travel-friendly baby gear you’ll find quite a few diapers and wipes totes and just as many changing pads but very few that successfully combine the two features. Tushygear is one of them.

TushygearTushygear’s on-the-go tote looks like a stylish little changing pad but is actually a wonderfully plush, generously sized pad with a pocket for up to three diapers and a case of wipes. I received the Small Blue Flowers diaper pad and I love its simplistic design with a hidden pocket I can access easily. I have a couple other totes that have both a changing pad feature and storage for diapers and wipes but it takes a lot of work to open the thing up and more work to pull out the gear. When it comes to diaper changes, the easier the better. Tushygear is definitely easier and better, plus it’s machine washable and made in the USA. I do wish it had a snap or velcro closure only because it can be hard to tie a ribbon with hand while holding baby in the other. With over 30 styles (love the Melrose and Organic Grass) you’ll be hard pressed to not have more than one favorite.

TushygearI have to also mention Tushygear’s blankets, burp cloths and changing pad covers. These babies are just as stylishly simple and pleasantly plush as the diaper tote. My favorites are the Surf’s Up blanket and the Big Fun Flowers changing pad cover. I’ve had my current cover for close to 11 years and I’m thinking Tushygear is a must-have for our changing table!—Emily

* Promotion! Tushygear is offering Daily Dish readers 10% off their order! Enter code TCG1 at checkout.

TinyNut offers unique and affordable birth announcements

August 26th, 2008

TinyNutMany companies featured on the Daily Dish were inspired by children, and TinyNut is no exception. When the owners gave birth to their daughter they wanted to share [the] news in a way that would be as beautiful and special as she was…[they] set about creating a photo announcement that … was as unique and striking as she was. ...” They received so many compliments they decided to do the same thing for others and TinyNut was born.

TinyNutOffering everything from “coming soon” announcements to birth announcements for multiples TinyNut helps you spread the word about your “little” celebration in a fun way.

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Their designs are fresh and unique and best of all, affordable (all designs are $1.39 or less!). I love the Family Tree and Tiny Boxes ultrasound announcements, and their Miracles Happen adoption announcement is simple yet beautiful.

TinyNut doesn’t want you to be limited by what you see online. They are more than willing to help customize your announcements so it is uniquely yours. They can accommodate any gender, color scheme and wording/font style, plus they offer an online proof so you can ensure your little one’s name and birth info are correct.

TinyNutAnother really cool option is the “print your own announcement.” Just approve the online proof and for a one-time fee of $34.95 TinyNut will send you a high-res photo so you can print your announcements at home, at your favorite photo store or online. And TinyNut even offers 8×10 enlargements of their designs so you can frame your special announcement for all to see. Make your announcements as beautiful and special as your little one by creating something unique from TinyNut.—Emily

* Promotion! TinyNut is offering Daily Dish readers 15% off their order; enter code “boutique15” at checkout. Offer expires December 1, 2008.

DLL Rainwear lets you ‘puddle stomp in style’

August 20th, 2008

DLL RainwearIt’s been almost two years since we reviewed a pair of fashionable rain boots (Plueys back in October 2006) and it’s about time we did another one especially with fall weather around the corner—the same corner around which school projects are hiding. The wait has been worth it when you see the downpour of designs from DLL Rainwear.

DLL RainwearDLL Rainwear offers more stylish puddle stompers than the weatherman has cold fronts, From the cutest styles for women (check out the Jeffrey Campbell Rainbow Gray ballet flat) to dashing pairs for men (Chooka’s Dueling Skulls could take on any size puddle) to a seemingly endless selection for children. We received DLL’s own Raining Cats and Dogs pair for kids and though my littlest is too young to give them an official test drive—or jump—I did give them a thorough going-over. Besides loving the playful unisex design, I found the 100% waterproof natural rubber boots to be super sturdy. The non-slip sole was a big plus (when you’re jumping in water this is an important feature!) and the pull handles are perfect for little hands. With boots as cute as these you know your little one is going to wear them 24/7 so they better be easy to take on and off!

DLL RainwearDLL Rainwear even has a few “Mommy & Me” sets, my favorite being the Orange Squiggle set. Of course you’ll want to protect more than your feet when it rains and DLL has you covered with their line of rain coats for both adults and children. And their prices are just as “sunny” as their designs with boots and coats starting around $30. DLL Rainwear lets you puddle jump in style—and on a budget!—Emily

* Promotion! DLL Rainwear is offering Daily Dish readers 15% off their purchase. Enter code BCAFE15 at checkout. Offer expires October 31, 2008.

Chapter One Organics: it’s all about creating a fresh start

August 17th, 2008

Chapter One OrganicsJennifer Murphy, a mom and entrepreneur, is on a mission to “produce fun, modern, and organic baby and toddler clothes from sustainable materials,” and she does so through her company, Chapter One Organics. And by providing customers like you with fashionable, sustainable clothing her company is also creating green jobs for women who face various employment barriers. Murphy is essentially giving both your little ones and women in need a fresh start.

Chapter One OrganicsChapter One Organics’ clothing line includes tops and bottoms, dresses, rompers, bibs and blankets in super soft organic cotton (made in the USA, fair labor, fair wage) and super fun designs. My little Livi received the Groovy Pink Dress and it’s by far one of the softest, grooviest dresses in her closet. I’m all about ease and comfort when it comes to children’s clothing and this Groovy Pink Dress fits the bill. I’m also in love with the Earthluxe Eggplant Top & Bottoms and Alphabet Soup Romper.

While your little one is enjoying his Organic Leaf Romper you will enjoy knowing your purchase has helped support a company that is a member of Co-op America, which “adheres to the highest standards to create a socially just and environmentally stable economy.” Chapter One Organics is truly “creating a fresh start for our future.”

The Green EatersMurphy also wrote The Green Eaters, a book for babies and young children that portrays five farm animal friends who dream of a better life outside of Dreary Day factory farm. While reading our family learned that even animals can dream of a fresh start, especially when they live on a factory farm. The five animal friends are granted that fresh start when they are moved to an organic farm. The Green Eaters was a simple yet engaging way for my children to learn a little more about organic living.—Emily

* Promotion! Chapter One Organics is offering Daily Dish readers 15% off online orders; use code 08GIRLSENSE at checkout. Offer expires September 18, 2008. NOTE: Any orders placed between August 14th and 23rd will not ship until the 25th.

Burpie Baby’s binkie bibs and burp cloths keep Mom, and her diaper bag, organized

August 10th, 2008

Burpie BabyWith the size diaper bag I carry I have to keep it organized if I’m going to find anything. With a pacifier pocket cliipped to the outside and a spare burp cloth next to the changing pad I felt I was good to go. But after reviewing Burpie Baby’s Binkie Bib and Burpie Baby 911 burp cloth I realize my diaper bag has more potential than I thought.

Burpie BabyPut simply the Binkie Bib is a multitasker, and I love anything that can multitask because it usually makes life simpler in one way or another. The Binkie Bib is a super soft, triple-layer bib (with waterproof liner) that doubles as a pacifier holder and triples as a pacifier pouch. I have the My Little Monkey design in pink (the bib comes in 12 designs) and I love the simple yet functional design. The bib is the perfect size for a drool bib and comes with a removable pacifier clip. Pull the ribbon through your pacifier’s loop and then clip to the bib so baby can find it when wearing the bib and Mom can find it when the bib is off. To convert the bib into a pouch just pull the bib’s ties and cinch the bag tight. Though it took a little coaxing to get the bib to cinch super tight it sure looked a lot cuter than my pacifier pouch. Plus my vinyl pouch wouldn’t work so well as a bib…definitely not a multitasker. The Binkie Bib even comes with a small loop on the back so you can use a link to attach it wherever you’d like (diaper bag, stroller, belt loop, etc.).

Burpie BabyAs much as I like the Binkie Bib I have to say the Burpie Baby 911 is my favorite of the two. Talk about multitasking in style! The Burpie Baby 911 is a generously sized triple-layer Burpie cloth (waterproof layer inside) with an exclusive glow-in-the-dark “emergency” pull-tag with toy loop and a handful of cute teether tags on the end. I have my What a Doll Burpie Baby 911 in my diaper bag with that cool glow-in-the-dark tab hanging just over the side so I’m ready for any emergency even if it’s during a late-night drive home from Grandma’s. I love the oversized burp cloth and the little tags at the end are great for baby to play with while doing double duty as the perfect place to attach a teether toy or two. With 19 designs to choose from you’ll be fashionably ready for any emergency!

My life is all about multitasking so I enjoy finding products that work as hard as I do. Burpie Baby’s Binkie Bib and Burpie Baby 911 help keep me prepared and my diaper bag organized. Perhaps I should pick up a set for my husband…—Emily

* Promotion! Burpie Baby is offering Daily Dish readers 20% off their orders. Enter code “burp café” at checkout. Offer is good on Binkie Bibs and Burpie Baby 911 burp cloths.

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