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f&f Family Journal

Giving The Perfect Holiday Gifts For The Little Ones

by Kari Weingart

As the holidays approach, you most likely have a list of “littles” that you are going to need to purchase gifts for. When it comes to toys for children, there is no shortage of available choices on the market. The problem that arises when there are so many choices is that there are simply so many choices out there that present health risks for children.


Even with extra government regulation and child safety standards, the regulations that do exist lack the level of protection that ensure all toys are safe for all children. So how do you find a great children’s gift the child will love, while at the same time ensuring that they are made of natural materials, safe for them to use and something their parents won’t be concerned about them playing with? Look at our line of Heritage Holiday Gifts.

Our curated line of holiday gifts has something for everyone. Whether you are shopping for an infant or a toddler that is mobile, curious and actively exploring everything the world has to offer, we have something for everyone’s life stage and interest that is sure to be a memorable gift they’ll love.

These gifts promote the healthy development of children, stoke the fires of imagination and make-believe and give peace of mind to the discerning parent as each item is crafted, with love, from the most responsible and safest materials on the market.

Fawn&Forest believes in the value of family, the beauty of nature, and the wholesome joy that can be found in simple living. This list of holiday gifts is another example of our commitment to these values. If you are looking for the perfect holiday gift but aren’t sure where to begin your search, contact us anytime. Our team of dedicated customer service representatives is here to help you with anything you need.

 

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Tips for Choosing The Best Organic Baby Blanket or Quilt

by Kari Weingart

A baby feels safe and comfortable when wrapped in the right organic blanket, whether it be cotton, muslin, merino wool, or bamboo.

Tips for Choosing The Best Organic Baby Blanket or Quilt

What to look for when choosing the best organic baby blanket including what materials are the strongest, softest, and healthiest for you and your new baby.

As they transition from the safety of your belly to the outside world, babies love the feeling of being wrapped up snuggly in a cozy swaddle blanket. There is a reason the first three months of a baby’s life are often referred to as the “fourth trimester.”

The best baby blankets offer, not just comfort, but also security and peace of mind for those early months and beyond. With the amount of time your infant spends sleeping, choosing the right blanket becomes an important choice for you as a parent.

If you’ve been on the hunt for a baby blanket before, you’ve likely come across blankets labeled as “organic.” Wondering why organic fabrics make all the difference? Read on to find out everything you need to know about organic baby blankets and how to find the perfect option for your little one.

Why Organic Material?

Synthetic fabrics are often less expensive to produce, and non-organic materials will always be cheaper. But if it's soft, what difference does it make? Well, a baby's delicate skin is thinner, more porous, and more sensitive than an adult's, putting them at greater risk of absorbing residual pesticides, insecticides, growth hormones, or whatever else has been used during the manufacturing process.

When talking about baby food, an organic label indicates the food was produced without using chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or other artificial agents. The same is true of natural fabric materials, like cotton, wool, and bamboo.

Organic blankets are made from fabric free from any of these dangers. The organic label means that a blanket does not contain any genetically engineered substances or synthetics - and the material it's made from has been grown without pesticides. Beyond that, it's more likely to come from a source where sustainability is a priority.

Choosing The Right Organic Fabric For Your Little One

A baby blanket should be made of gentle, breathable, and certified-safe materials to make sleep more comfortable on your baby’s sensitive skin - and give you peace of mind. With that in mind, as you look for a baby blanket for your little one, pay special attention to labels stating that the blanket is GOTS certified, which means that the fabric meets the Global Organic Textile Standard. Below are some of the gentlest and safest organic fabrics that parents love.

Organic Cotton Knit

With a soft weave, organic cotton is lightweight enough for the summer months and warm enough to work as a layer in the winter for multi-season use. Its range of options and gentle touch for baby's sensitive skin makes it the perfect choice for infants and toddlers alike. And, if you choose a dye-free fabric, the natural ivory cotton of a knit baby blanket makes a lovely background in photos and is just the right size to use in the stroller.

Organic Muslin

Organic cotton muslin blankets are excellent receiving blankets and organic swaddle blankets for little ones. Due to the loose weave used to make the muslin fabric, muslin swaddle blankets are uniquely breathable and offer a safer option than thick quilted blankets. Muslin is one of the softest fabrics available for organic cotton swaddles, so it’s an excellent choice for baby clothes, burp cloths, and many other baby products.

Organic Merino Wool

Merino is a breed of domestic sheep characterized by very fine, soft wool. It’s a gentle, breathable fabric that can help maintain temperature, making it a great choice for a blanket to use during cuddle time or solo sleep. Additionally, merino wool is 100% biodegradable, and its fibers have a protective outer layer that resists dirt and prevents stains from absorbing, making it much easier to machine wash.

Organic Bamboo

Not only is “bamboo baby blanket” fun to say, but bamboo fibers tend to be even lighter and more breathable than cotton, perfect for your baby’s delicate skin. Bamboo fabric is also quite durable, hypoallergenic, and machine washable, and because bamboo is a sustainable material, bamboo blankets are also one of the most eco-friendly options. That said, some bamboo is processed in a way that introduces toxic chemicals to the material, so be sure to pick brands with the OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 certification.

Safety First! ...And Second, And Third...

Safety is essential when choosing a baby blanket. In addition to the obvious things to avoid, like blankets with loose tassels, fringes, or ribbons that can become choking hazards, safety also extends to buying an appropriate blanket for the season.

Infants are not yet able to regulate their body temperatures, so choose a heavier blanket for winter and a lighter one for summer to prevent overheating. When purchasing a winter blanket, do not get a quilt or anything soft and heavy. Even when made from a breathable fabric, the dense design can contribute to SIDS – Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Instead, a knitted pattern offers ventilation and breathability.

As babies get bigger, they transition from a swaddle blanket to a sleep sack. The wearable blanket allows your little one to kick, wiggle, and move around without the risk of suffocation. Baby sleep sacks are also convenient for you as a parent, letting you slip one right over their baby clothes and pajamas, so you can keep it on as you feed and soothe them at night.

Other Things to Consider

The number-one concern when shopping for a soft baby blanket is, of course, making sure your baby is warm and comfortable. However, a few other factors can help narrow your choices down a little more.

Durability

If you're going to spend the time, effort, and resources to find the absolute best, high-quality blanket for your baby, you expect it to last. A good, well-made blanket can stand the transition from shower gift to nursing cover to stroller blanket, all the way to play mat for tummy time! The blanket they snuggle with as a baby eventually becomes their security blanket for naps during their toddler years and beyond. Take a close look at the blanket’s stitching to ensure it won't unravel within a year, and choose something machine washable. A good blanket will travel from the crib sheets to the car seats and back, withstanding any everyday mess.

Reusability

If you're like me, you like to hold onto treasures from your baby's earliest days. Baby blankets become heirlooms that will forever remind us of when our children were tiny, and when you choose a blanket based on durability, there's a good chance it will have a life beyond your first baby's infancy. Picking a unisex or gender-neutral pattern is not as important as choosing a color and pattern that can go with any decor. A blanket with a gaudy design that's fun for a baby shower, in my experience, will not see as much use as a blanket with a softer color palette.

Environmental Friendliness

We all want to make sure that the world we leave for our children is better than we found it. One of the many small actions we can take is to choose eco-friendly baby products whenever possible. Choosing organic material is a good start, but you should also favor sustainable materials, like cotton or bamboo.

An OEKO-TEX label can be helpful for choosing the most eco-friendly options. If the blanket you're looking at is labeled STANDARD 100, every thread, weave, and button has been tested for harmful substances. Their STeP certification label shows that the manufacturing process included environmentally friendly production, sustainability, and socially responsible working conditions.

fawn & forest

fawn&forest's collection of organic cotton baby blankets and quilts has the perfect options for your little one's comfort. Find muslin baby blankets to keep your tot warm in their crib, cover their little face while running errands or taking a walk, or swaddle them for the comfiest sleep. Our baby swaddle blankets and sleep sacks offer that same comfort, with just the right amount of warmth to soothe your baby.

We picked our favorite baby and toddler blankets crafted with exceptional eco-friendly and organic cotton fabrics, durability, and beautiful patterns and colors. Explore our collection of blankets made with the highest quality materials, from organic cotton to fine merino wool with an extra-soft feel, all chosen to help your sweet pea drift off to sleep in comfort.

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If you enjoyed this you may also be interesting in why you should get an organic mattress for your baby crib. You may also enjoy reading how to make your child's room feel safe and more


Nursery Works Is At The Intersection Of Cutting Edge And Ultra-Chic

by Kari Weingart

When it comes to shopping for nursery furniture, it’s easy to see how one may feel that there simply isn’t the quality in the industry that adult bedroom furniture exhibits. Nursery furniture, by definition, is temporary furniture. Your baby will outgrow it (rather quickly in the grand scheme of things), and you will be upgrading your child’s room in a short span of time. Because of these factors, many nursery furniture manufacturing companies choose to go the easy route, cutting corners and producing furniture with a lack of inspiration.


Nursery Works is the exception to this rule. Nursery Works is a purveyor of cutting-edge juvenile products. Created for the ultra-chic, Nursery Works aims to bring high design into the nursery.


Their designers work in close collaboration with highly skilled American craftspeople to build each piece. Their products are made in low production runs which allows them to use methods and materials that would be unavailable in typical mass production. This quality can be easily seen. Many of their solid wood cribs, for instance, are bench-made in small local shops in the United States.


They take pride in presenting new materials to the children’s industry that raise the bar in design, quality, and functionality. With every product they make, they strive to find new materials and processes. Of particular importance to them is using the highest quality non-toxic, recyclable acrylic, CNC-milled maple, 24K gold-plated aluminum, custom marble/granite and powder-coated stainless steel materials.


When you are choosing furniture for your baby’s nursery, you deserve original, unique furniture designs made from the highest quality, natural materials available on the market. Nursery Works is dedicated to their craft and pledges to bring you only best in class nursery furniture that will make your baby’s nursery look one of a kind and ensure their healthy, happy development.

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Why Your Baby's Crib Has To Have A Natural Crib Mattress

by Kari Weingart

It would seem logical to assume that a new crib mattress would be safer than an old one. After all, as years go by, we continue to regulate more and more. There is even a certification for crib mattresses, so how could they be less safe? The truth is they are.

You would think that since crib mattresses are regulated and certified by a giant safety seal they would be safe. That's not entirely true. 

The University of Texas did a study and found that

  • New crib mattresses release about 4x as many VOCs (organic chemicals that have a high vapor pressure at ordinary room temperature.) as old crib mattresses.
  • Body heat increases emissions.
  • Toxic chemical emissions are strongest in the sleeping infant’s immediate breathing zone.

Part of the cause of the problem is the manufacturers. Manufactures want to make as much profit as possible, manufacturing as much product as possible, so as long as it passes government regulations, they feel they’ve done their jobs. The real problem though is that the regulations are not very strict.

So why should you buy an organic crib mattress? Is a healthy crib mattress necessary for your baby's health? In short, yes.

Here are just a few of the unhealthy components found in a standard crib mattress. 

Why You Should Get A Natural Crib Mattress

1) Brominated Fire Retardants

These fire-retardant materials are cause for concern wherever children may come in contact with them. This applies to sofas and any other soft furniture where they may be present, as well.

Countries in Europe have banned harmful chemicals like flame retardants entirely. These retardants get stored in the human body with every exposure, making them bioaccumulative (the gradual accumulation of substances, such as pesticides, or other chemicals in your body).

In experiments with mice, PBDE's lead to problems with the thyroid, developmental problems with learning and motor skills, and cancer.

PDBE's are in numerous places such as televisions, computers, carpets, and couches, so it is worthy of taking note of this and whenever possible trying to limit your exposure.

Non-Natural Crib Mattresses Use Cheap Glues

Why do you want to avoid cheap glue? Simply put, cheap glues contain a number of harmful chemicals that are toxic to children, and standard crib mattresses contain a disproportionate amount of these glues to keep it firm and rigid.

Non-Natural Crib Mattresses Have Polyester Fabrics

Fabrics and batting in crib mattresses are often made with polyester. Polyester can cause respiratory tract irritation and severe skin rashes. 

Conclusion

It's not hype, buying an organic crib mattress could be one of the most important purchases you'll ever make for your baby or child to ensure their safety while they sleep.

An organic crib mattress helps increase blood flow and relieve pressure so your baby can get a good night’s sleep. Organic baby crib mattresses are made with non-toxic materials so your baby will avoid sleep interruptions due to exposure to chemically treated fabrics.

 

 

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Designing A Creative Kids Room To Inspire Imagination

by Kari Weingart

Unlike your bedroom, which is primarily used for sleeping, dressing, and relaxing, your children’s rooms are much more versatile. They serve not only as places to sleep and dress, but also places for creativity, imagination, learning, and active play. 

For pre-school-age children, a bedroom is a good spot for reading before bed and playing with toys after a nap. As children start school, their bedroom will become a more socially-oriented space as they begin to use their rooms as a place to play when they have playdates with their classmates.

The ideal kids’ room offers a safe environment with sturdy furniture and non-toxic materials. Laid out correctly, it will also cultivate play and learning experiences. Apart from furniture, your kid’s room should include plenty of educational items like books and games, as well as movable objects that a child can feel, stack, and manipulate. Items for creating art and music or playing pretend are also very enriching. All these things are valuable pieces in your child’s overall educational program. 

With this in mind, today we want to share with you a few creative kids’ room ideas you can use to morph your kid’s room to help inspire their imagination and development.

Install A Chalkboard

Installing a chalkboard or using a can of chalkboard wall paint is a quick and easy room upgrade that will be something your kid will use for many years. Any time the mood strikes, they can grab a piece of chalk and draw out whatever they are imagining on a blank canvas that is always there for them.

Create A Theme Bedroom

One of the greatest things about being a kid is learning about (and becoming obsessed) with so many new things. One great way to inspire your kid’s imagination and give them a stage to make-believe and really enjoy playing in their room is by designing their room in the theme of their current favorite thing.

Create A Fort In Their Room

One of the most amazing opportunities to inspire imagination in your kid is by giving them a fort in their room they can use to play in. Forts offer endless opportunities for playtime, allowing them to take ownership of the space and design it exactly the way they want. They will have countless opportunities to make-believe and imagine great play scenarios that will keep them engaged and entertained for hours on end.

 

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Great Holiday Decorations The Entire Family Can Get Involved In

by Kari Weingart

With the holidays upon us and kids getting holiday time off of school, it’s time to focus less on the day to day hustle and bustle of life and enjoy more time with our friends, family and loved ones. One of our favorite pastimes during this time of year is working on holiday-themed arts and crafts projects the entire family can participate in.


There are many fantastic decorations you can make to give your home a festive holiday look that utilize things in our natural `surroundings. Here are some of our favorites.


Pinecone Wreaths

Bring a little bit of the outdoors to your front door. Start by laying out the pinecones in around a wreath frame. Then, hot glue all of the pinecones to the frame, starting with the main circle. Continue to glue the pinecones around the entire frame. You may need to use a little wire and extra hot glue to secure a few pinecone tips that are hard to line up.                                                                      


Chalk Paint Ornaments

You and your kids can custom-make your own ornaments by painting them with chalk paint, then writing on them with chalk. You can doodle on a holiday design, or personalize them with your names and special dates (birthdays, anniversaries, and so on).

Cut some wood from your backyard into circles and then paint it with chalk paint. Once it dries, let your kids get to work on a holiday masterpiece. Hot glue a ribbon to it for a holder and you will be able to display your beautiful ornaments on your Christmas tree.

Twig Ornaments

This one is a super fun one to do with kids: Use twigs, glue, and embroidery thread or twine to make custom ornaments that are inspired by nature. The best part of this project is that even if you live in a city, you still have access to tons of great twigs you can use to make your decorations.

Pinecone Owls

Nothing is more festive than pinecones during the holidays. What better way to make your Christmas tree look more natural than with an owl that is sitting in the tree keeping watch? With a little felt and a pinecone, your kids can whip one a creative, festive-looking owl that will make your tree look fantastic.

Milk Carton Gingerbread Village

While most people recycle their milk cartons that they accumulate at home, why not upcycle them? Use your empty milk cartons to create the cutest gingerbread village ever. Once built, you can store it and re-use it year after year. Even better, you can expand it year after year, building an exciting, ever-growing Christmas village.

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Kinship Family Journal

by Summer Robertson

Kinship Family Journal

 
I'm excited to share with you a project we've been working on this year, one that's close to my heart — the KINSHIP FAMILY JOURNAL.

The Kinship Family Journal is modeled after the collaborative family journal I created for my own family to document our family story. I originally divided the blank journal into months in which in we would draw & write about all the ordinary moments of our life together — the seasons and firsts, celebrations and projects and even books we've read, the weather and favorite recipes.

There is a certain authenticity captured when each member of the family contributes, the intricate details of time that could never be captured in a photo. It's incredibly special. 


We created The Kinship Family Journal so that every family can experience the same deep connections to each other and the world around them, document their family story and weave a beautiful family heritage.


We will be launching the Kinship Family Journal on Kickstarter in November! 

For more information, details on the launch & special discounted pricing for early backers be sure to sign up, HERE!


Get outside!

by Summer Robertson

get outside! fawn&forest

 

Get outside & enjoy the final days of Summer!

We're having an end of the Summer sale.
Use code GETOUTSIDE at checkout for 12% off.


Sale ends Monday, Sept 3rd at midnight PST.
*Restricted: Bumbleride, Monte, Stokke, Babyletto, Nursery Works, Naturepedic & Oeuf.
 


MID-SUMMER & WHEAT COFFEE

by Summer Robertson

fawn&forest heritage

Happy 1st day of Summer!
We're having a Mid-Summer sale through July 9th to celebrate! 
Use code SUMMER at checkout for 10% off.


Sale ends Monday, July 9th 2018 at midnight PST.
*Restricted: Bumbleride, Monte, Stokke, Naturepedic & Oeuf.
 



I shared a moment of the everyday heritage that I pass onto my children on Instagram recently. It resonated with so many that I couldn't resist sharing with you as well. 

"Wheat Coffee" — my grandma used to make my brother and I "weak" coffee when we were little (somehow translated to wheat coffee and well, it stuck). I thought it was the most wonderful thing in the world, coffee! She would pour a cup full of milk and dribble just a tiny bit of coffee in, just enough to lend some faint color & taste. We would sit and drink it sooooo slowly with her. —

To capture all the wonderful parts of our childhood, the unlikely rituals & traditions for our own children is heritage. Heritage doesn't have to be extraordinary, just meaningful. — My own children love wheat coffee made of a bit of Dad's leftover coffee, shaken cold with milk and has nicely replaced our warm tea during our morning reading time. #lessonslearnedfromgrandma ...

And the comments are just as wonderful! As it turns out, so many of us shared the same special moment drinking coffee as a child, more here!


Love to the Mamas

by Summer Robertson

spring at fawn&forest

 

“Life began with waking up and loving my mother's face” 
― George Eliot



Mother's Day is one of our favorite days of the year, naturally.
If you've had your eye on something for that special mama in your life ― or for yourself (!)
enjoy shopping our storewide sale. 

 

Save 10% off with code MOTHER at checkout.
Sale ends Monday, May 14th.

*Some brands are excluded including Stokke, Oeuf, Babyletto, Bumbleride, Monte & Naturepedic.
Cannot be combined with rewards discounts.