Nursery Online - Latest News
Shops or showrooms?

I've just been reading about a new showroom which has opened in Milton Keynes, demonstrating electric cars. The Electric Vehicle Experience Centre opens tomorrow in the main shopping area.

The showroom is funded by a number of car manufacturers as well as the government's Go Ultra Low Cities scheme. Staff will offer advice on the most appropriate electric car for the customer’s budget, driving patterns and family size. There will be no hard sell; neither will the show room sell any cars; they will pass on details to dealers.

In the meantime, online sales continue to grow. This month’s ONS sales figures show that the volume of online spending increased year on year by 15.9% and by 1.8% compared to last month. So would it not be a good idea for nursery to copy this showroom idea? After all, like potential drivers of electric cars, new parents know very little about the things they are buying and are desperate to find out which is best for them.

Many parents buy more than one pushchair. I can understand the purchase of an all-singing, all-dancing travel system followed by the purchase of a much lighter stroller. I can even understand them adding a cheap, simple buggy for a trip. But many parents end up buying four, five or even more similar pushchairs, simply because they can't find the one that suits them.

Would parents use slings more with expert advice on which one is right for them? Sling libraries certainly think so!

Should car seat suppliers pay shops to display and advise on car seats, rather than have them attempt to compete on price with online retailers; which in effect means giving their time and expertise for free.

Parents need to learn about the products they need, not just by 'likes', celebrity endorsement and social media. They need to see and handle the products and make their own decisions.

I can't see how retailers who provide this service can make ends meet without help.

- Cathy

PS: Our Distributors Spotlight has gone down very well with two important leads coming direct to me with hours of it going out. Shows our Spotlights are read and acted on!

Our next one is Pushchairs and Accessories. So much choice! Help retailers choose your products by advertising in next week’s Spotlight. We need bookings and copy asap, so contact Gilly today!

Next up is Home Safety with a copydate of July 28th followed by Rainwear - oh don’t say summer has gone already? However, it is the hard truth that retailers need to start thinking about the winter months. What can they offer their customers to protect the kids from the wet and cold? Copy by 4th August please

Then we’re into our Kind+Jugend previews. Not only are these are avidly read by visitors who use them to plan which stands they need to investigate, but also by those who for various reasons cannot attend. We already have a good number of overseas companies interested, and we will be sending out a Special UK only issue. With the Pound in its low state and interest in British products at an all-time high, now’s the time to shout about your products. And don't forget, we're not just targeting UK buyers but 80 other countries as well.

As usual, contact Gilly on sales@nursery-online.com or Lyn on 01304 374169 or 07971 700979 or email on lyn@nursery-online.com

Prince Lionheart’s ILLUMIPAD™ changing pad makes the final cut for 2017 Kind + Jugend Innovation award!

Prince Lionheart are delighted to announce that their ILLUMIPAD™ changing pad has made it to the final round of the 2017 K+J Innovation award!

Prince Lionheart designs, manufactures but not just anything – they make products that matter, is safer or just plain better. They also invent products to make parenting easier such as the NEW and Innovative ILLUMIPAD™ changing pad.

We can all identify with the anxious night time changes, trying to keep baby sleepy whilst feeding and changing nappy. Let Prince Lionheart alleviate that anxiety a little with our innovative changing pad with integrated LED light that illuminates the changing area without disturbing Baby. Cushiony changing pad with contoured sides for comfort.

The specially-designed, super-luxurious ILLUMIPAD™ cover is of durable construction, comes fitted with a built in silicone light shield that diffuses light and keeps any wayward wetness from contacting the light source in the changing pad. Push light on, push light off or push and forget about it with the auto-shut off timer.

ILLUMIPAD™ changing pad - let there be light!

TWIST’R™ Nappy Disposal System – outsmarts odours!

The patented twist technology and specially-designed odour trapping bags of the Prince Lionheart TWIST’R™ Nappy Disposal System keeps odours on the inside, so everyone can breathe freely on the outside! The bag removes quickly and easily from the top – no cutting/tying/kneeling required.

Pre-order both products NOW! Don’t be the last to bring innovation to your customers!

Contact Prince Lionheart on 020 8997 7054 or at uksales@princelionheart.co.uk or ukmarketing@princelionheart.co.uk for further information.


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Whisbear team meets the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge met young Polish entrepreneurs in Warsaw. Whisbear The Humming Bear was among ten companies invited by the British Embassy to attend the meeting.

Whisbear won the main prize in the Warsaw-London Bridge contest and the award was presented by the Duchess herself.

The meeting with Kate and William was held during the Warsaw-London Bridge conference in Warsaw on 17th July 2017. The highlight of the event was a personal conversation between the owners of Whisbear, Kate and Prince William.

"We were expecting a distinguished Royal Couple, but in fact we met the wonderful, cheerful, young parents, who appreciated our work to improve babies’ sleep. The most touching part was the moment when the Duchess said “Thank you” for sending one of Whisbears to Kensington Palace to celebrate Princess Charlotte's birth two years ago," says Zuzanna Sielicka.

The Royal Couple received special, personalized gifts including, of course, Whisbears for Princess Charlotte and Prince George. When receiving the gifts, Kate turned to her husband, Prince William, and with a gentle smile said: "We have to have more babies now!" This little joke made everyone giggle and was later that day widely covered by international press.

The Duchess also received a CD with songs dedicated to mothers, and a white top with the slogan "I'mperfect". Those gifts are the part of the motherhood empowering project called I’mperfect. The project is a result of cooperation between Whisbear and Polish artist Riya Sokol. There was something more - a letter to Kate from Whisbear founders: "I can only say that it was a very personal letter from the mothers to another mother," says Julia Sielicka, one of Whisbear’s co-founders.

Just before the arrival of the Royal Couple, the start-ups participating in the meeting in The Heart Warsaw had a chance to present themselves to the influential representatives of the Polish and British business, as a part of the Warsaw-London Bridge competition. Whisbear competed in the "HealthTech" category and won the main prize. Zuzanna Sielicka personally received the award from The Duchess. "This is an honour for me, my sister and for our company. This added even more confidence to my belief that women's businesses are increasingly appreciated,” says Zuzanna Sielicka.

The meeting with the Duke and Duchess was held at the Warsaw-London Bridge conference organized by the British Embassy in Poland, and took place on 17 July in the "The Heart Warsaw" - the European centre for corporate-start-up collaboration. The Warsaw-London Bridge was meant to strengthen the cooperation of young Polish companies with the corporate market in the UK and to bring together the Polish and British business worlds. Whisbear was invited by His Excellency Jonathan Knott, the British Ambassador to Poland, but the final decision was made earlier in London at Kensington Palace.

Founded three years ago by two mums and sisters - Zuzanna and Julia Sielicki Whisbears - The Humming Bears is an award-winning start up which produces soft toys helping to soothe babies and children in 23 countries around the world, including Great Britain.

www.whisbear.co.uk


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Ergobaby introduces new OMNI 360, the ultimate all-in-one baby carrier

Award-winning baby carrier brand Ergobaby, designer of premium ergonomic baby carriers, is launching its newest innovation, the OMNI 360 Baby Carrier!

Ergobaby has listened to parents from all over the world, and worked with babywearing educators and doctors to develop the new OMNI 360. The
Ergobaby OMNI 360 is an all-in-one baby carrier, designed for the ultimate baby and parent comfort, as well as ease of use.

As Ergobaby’s most versatile carrier yet, it offers four carry positions and enables parents to quickly and easily switch baby to face out, or in while on the move. The OMNI 360 Baby Carrier adjusts from newborn to toddler (7-33lbs), without the need for an infant insert. Like each product in the Ergobaby range, the new Ergobaby OMNI 360 supports baby in a hip-healthy “M” shape position, at all stages and in all positions including outward-facing. Additional features include lumbar support waistbelt, extra cushioned, crossable shoulder straps, and a large, detachable storage pouch.

Key features of the Ergobaby OMNI 360 Carrier:

  • Flexibility: Accommodates all carry positions: front facing parent, front facing out, hip, and back
  • Adapts to baby’s growth: Newborn to toddler (7-33 lbs / 3.2-15 kg), no infant insert needed
  • Exceptional comfort: Longwear comfort with lumbar support waistbelt and extra cushioned shoulder straps, crossable for a snugger fit and easy
  • adjustability. Cushioned, adjustable head and neck support for baby
  • Ease of use: Easily switch baby to face out or face parent
  • Ergonomic design: Supports baby in a hip-healthy “M” shape position at all stages and in all positions. Acknowledged as a "hip healthy" product by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute
  • Everyday convenience: Includes a new large detachable pouch for storage, and a tuck-away baby hood for sun protection (UPF 50+) and privacy, e.g. for easy and discreet breastfeeding
  • Premium quality: 100% Premium Cotton and machine washable

The new collection is available available in four colours: Pure Black, Pearl Grey, Midnight Blue and Khaki Green from July 2017.

www.ergobaby.co.uk


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The wild and wonderful world of magnetism

The magic of SmartMax continues to grow with two new and exciting ‘My First’ sets. These adorable magnetic construction toys are designed to encourage logical thinking and imaginative play for children from the age of 1+.

Cute, creative and clever, ‘My First: Safari Animals’ will take very young children on a wild adventure with all their favourite animals: crocodile, hippo, lion, rhino, elephant and giraffe. With their bright, beautiful colours and soft plastic feel, these one-of-a-kind fun tactile toys will truly stimulate any child. As the magnetic bars are interchangeable, an opportunity to mix up these well-known creatures is a great way to test their knowledge and understanding.

Designed to encourage logical thinking, as well as creativity and hand-eye coordination, the unique ‘My First: Animal Train’ set will enable every little one to build their very own train whilst gaining an understanding of magnetism. The simple, yet effective design enables children of all ages to engage with the product, and allows them to build their own unique train in a multitude of ways.

A toy that educates and entices, and as all parts are 3cm+ SmartMax is super safe and will keep those tots twiddling for hours! ‘My First: Animal Train’ is sure to steam ahead.


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Welcome BabyBjorn Bouncer Bliss Cotton!

Swedish family company BABYBJÖRN is launching a new addition to the Bouncer Bliss collection!

Welcome new Bouncer Bliss Cotton, it has the same unique bouncing action, no batteries needed, for babies from newborn up until 24 months, with a new cover made of 100% cotton, featuring a stitched pattern design and a grey frame to compliment softer interior styles. Available in: Black, and Anthracite. RRP: £134.99

BabyBjörn creative director and founder, Lillemor Jakobson, has collaborated with the BabyBjörn product development team and in-house design team to design the Bliss for families of today – together the team monitored major fashion trends and styles as well as listening to desires of parents.

"We wanted to create a new design as a tribute to our classic bouncer from 1961. We are so happy that so many families love our bouncer. We wanted to create a soft and contemporary look and feel that suits the style and personality of our customers, in colours that work in many homes," Lillemor says.

The Bouncer Bliss is currently available in a soft mesh in three fresh, modern colours: powder pink, cocoa and anthracite and the addition of black and anthracite cotton will give families of today more choice for their baby and their home. The gentle rocking creates a sense of bliss and calm, not just at the beginning of a baby´s life, but later as well. BabyBjörn believe that a baby who gets a safe, comforting start to life, feel the benefits for a long time to come. Proper support for a young child’s back, neck and head, is essential and the Bouncer Bliss is for use from 0-24 months.

The soft and natural rocking, completely powered by the baby means no batteries or cords are required. This encourages babies' aerobic motion, as he rocks in response to his own movements. Avoiding bouncers that rely on batteries will also eliminate the risk of babies developing a dependency on movement for sleep.

When the baby is playing, or resting they can watch their parents get things done, learning at the same time as they develop balance and motor skills.

"Many families we meet see the bouncer is a lifesaver. In my family we bring it everywhere, when we travel, go to our friends, and around the house," says Björn Engström, Vice president at BabyBjörn.

www.babybjorn.co.uk


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Sound asleep?

Not for 90% of parents who worry about the hygiene of rented travel cots when travelling, a new survey reveals.

Just the thought of travelling with a baby can be daunting enough, particularly for first-time parents, but one particular concern which worries 90%* of parents is the safety and hygiene of a rented travel cot. These are the findings, as revealed from a national survey conducted by premium travel cot brand BabyHub, creators of SleepSpace – a revolution in design and a multi-functional safe space for babies and toddlers.

Whether it’s a family weekend away or a baby’s first holiday abroad, most parents are likely to need a travel cot, for sleep or play, at some point. However BabyHub has discovered that the majority of parents are likely to think twice about laying their little ones on a used or rented travel cot, with as many as 86%* of parents saying they were concerned about letting their baby sleep on a mattress that had been used many times before, and 87%* are especially concerned about the cleanliness and hygiene of rented travel cots.

Anyone with a small child knows that spillages, accidents and tantrums can often occur at naptime, and this takes an inevitable toll on the bedding and framework of a travel cot. When it comes to rented or borrowed travel cots, not knowing how many times they have been used, to what extent and if they have received the proper care and attention to keep them clean and to a safe standard is a prime concern for families on the move.

Despite these concerns, only 59%* of parents said they would always check the quality and upkeep of a hotel travel cot before they travel. Child Sleep Safety** guidelines advise that if you are using a second-hand mattress for small babies, to make sure the mattress was completely protected by a waterproof cover and is firm and flat.

Founder and Director at BabyHub, Catherine Curtis, commented: “We know that parents are increasingly concerned about using unfamiliar sleeping spaces for their babies, particularly abroad, and we have seen a steady rise in families investing in their own travel cot, which not only provides peace of mind for parents but a safe and comfortable zone for children that can last them for years. SleepSpace is all about making parent’s lives easier and babies’ lives safer. With its clean and simple design, SleepSpace is an effortless mobile cot, which can also be used as a play space too. It was designed for ease of use in homes and for travelling.”

The new SleepSpace, from BabyHub, is the ideal solution for keeping babies and toddlers safe, it offers a multi-functional safe space, and can be used as travel cot, play area, insect-free zone and children’s play teepee and it’s also the world’s first travel cot to feature a safe-to-use mosquito net cover.

So simple to use, SleepSpace can be opened and closed even while holding baby. And its innovative pyramid design provides style and structure for babies from birth to 36 months.

The elasticated fitted mosquito net cover can be secured at floor level, and is safe and roomy meaning it’s suitable for even standing babies. SleepSpace also comes with an extra padded mat, allowing a comfortable sleep for baby. The SleepSpace mattress is seam-free and fits a standard size travel cot sheet.

This truly portable space comes in four vibrant colours: Pebble, Kiwi, Tangerine and Ruby, and is ideal for use in the home, out and about and for family holidays abroad, it also comes with its own sleek carry bag. BabyHub SleepSpace is priced at £169 and The SleepSpace Teepee Pack is priced at £29.

For more information please visit www.babyhubshop.com

* The findings are a result of a national survey conducted by BabyHub through Survey Monkey with responses from 1,000 parents and families.

** Source: Child Sleep Safety guidelines are from The Lullaby Trust.


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The Judd’s outdoor adventure with smarTrike®

The team at smarTrike were delighted to see celebrity couple, Izzy and Harry Judd, share a cute snap of their family day out featuring the 5-in-1 Recliner Infinity, on photo sharing platform, Instagram.

The precious photo shared by musician and author, Izzy, was published to a wide-reaching audience of 196,000. Capturing her partner, Harry, lead drummer of much-loved boyband McFly, with his daughter, Lola cooling down on a warm summer’s day.

Izzy wrote: “Multitasking daddy #IWantLolasShorts #DadsOfInstagram #DaddysGirl.”

The heart-warming photo received an incredible 14,100 likes, creating invaluable exposure for the leading tricycle brand.

The 5-in-1 Recliner Infinity has been cleverly designed to adapt as children grow, from as young as ten months through to three years. Incorporating Touch Steering Technology and 5 unique stages, including a reclining seat for naps on the go and a padded seat for additional comfort, it is no surprise to see little ones enjoying the outdoors with smarTrike. With the likes of celebrity couple Tom and Giovanna Fletcher, TV presenters Holly Willoughby and Helen Skelton, and most recently Charlotte Coleman, all spotted with the brand’s cleverly designed trikes, it is safe to say smarTrike is fast-becoming a celebrity favourite!

Aviva Barach, Marketing Director from smarTrike, commented: “We were delighted to see Harry and Izzy Judd enjoying a family day out with their 5-in-1 Recliner Infinity. At smarTrike we are passionate about encouraging families to explore the great outdoors and spend quality time taking in the natural world we live in. To see another influential couple, like Harry and Izzy, making the most of their smarTrike in the height of summer is just fantastic.”


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The Baby Show Returns to London Olympia for its 15th year!

The UK’s biggest pregnancy and parenting event, The Baby Show with MadeForMums, is returning to London Olympia from Friday 20th to Sunday 22nd October for a 15th year. The event offers new and expectant parents a huge choice of parenting must-haves all under one roof.

Over 200 exhibitors will be showcasing their latest and best products with the like of Mothercare, iCandy, Tommee Tippee, Peg Perego, VTech, Chicco, Stokke and Britax.

Emma’s Diary will have their essential Collect-by-Car service to save parents carrying their purchases around all day, while the fully equipped Tommee Tippee Feeding Area is ready and waiting for when little ones get hungry. MadeForMums will be hosting a brilliant buggy testing track where parents can give each brand a whirl over to see which buggy they like best!

The major baby retailers will be there, as well as smaller, boutique brands launching their products for the very first time. There really is everything parents will need for the exciting journey ahead of them – all at fantastic discounted prices.

Wing Yan Lee, Marketing Manager at The Baby Show, says: “As soon as people find out they’re expecting, a visit to The Baby Show is an essential day out. Whether you’re going for the fantastic discounted prices of the big ticket items, or you’re just browsing for what you need, the show is a wonderful opportunity to shop the widest range of products all under one roof – and listen to some of the UK’s top parenting experts while you’re there.”

Speakers taking to the MadeForMums stage so far include breastfeeding specialists, Vanessa Christie and Clare Byam-Cook, birth expert Beverley Turner, sleep experts, Andrea Grace, Chireal Shallow and Lucy Shrimpton and author, baby First Aid guru, Tracey Taylor from the British Red Cross and entrepreneur and baby weaning expert, Annabel Karmel. And, if one is looking for more personal and confidential advice, experts will be on hand through the show to answer your pregnancy and parenting questions privately in the One-to-One with the Experts area. The British Red Cross will also be running regular half hour, free of charge, workshops where parents can receive essential advice on what to do for their baby in an emergency.

Highlights of The Baby Show at London Olympia include:

  • Over 200 trusted brands offering visitors the chance to thoroughly test and try before buying.
  • Exclusive show offers and competitions from top parenting brands.
  • The chance to listen and ask advice from the UK’s top baby experts.
  • Catwalk shows with all the latest fashions in maternity, baby and toddler wear.
  • Purpose-built baby facilities ensure visitors have a hassle-free day, including the Tommee Tippee Feeding Area where parents will be able to take advantage of heating and sterilising equipment, complimentary baby food from Babease, plus a comfortable space for quiet feeding.
  • The MadeForMums Buggy Testing Track enabling parents to test-drive every buggy to ensure it’s perfect for their lifestyle.
  • A Changing Area with complimentary nappies and wipes.
  • Emma’s Diary free Shop & Drop and Collect-By-Car services allowing visitors to leave their shopping bags and pick them up when they are ready to leave

For more information visit www.thebabyshow.co.uk


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The bedding you can’t Liv without

There has been much excitement at the Little Green Sheep HQ this week after discovering that Hollywood actress, Liv Tyler is a fan of the brand.

The news comes after the star posted an adorable photo on Instagram featuring the beautiful bedding from the coveted Wild Cotton collection.

Sharing the photo with her 1.5 million Instagram followers, the star - who gave birth to Lula last July – received over 48,000 likes from her fans. The photograph shows Lula celebrating her first birthday whilst laying on the 100% organic Fitted Sheet, in the beautifully illustrated mint melange rabbit print. Liv Tyler and her husband Dave Gardner are the latest celebrities to be spotted using products from the beautiful Wild Cotton collection and join George and Amal Clooney, Alex Jones, and Storm and Ronan Keating in the growing list of famous fans.

The Wild Cotton collection was launched in December and features organic bedding and sleepwear, which is inspired by nature. The range includes sleepsuits, sleeping bags, knitted blankets, bedding sets, gift sets and cot and cot bed sheets. The items have gorgeous illustrations featuring rabbits, bears and woodland and are available in mint and pale grey. Wild Cotton has been created using gorgeously soft, GOTS certified organic brushed cotton, making it sumptuously comfortable and of outstanding quality. Best of all The Little Green Sheep is supporting the Woodland Trust with 25p of every item sold from the collection.

Discussing the recent excitement, Mark Nicholls, co-founder of The Little Green Sheep, said: “We are so pleased hear that a celebrity of Liv Tyler’s calibre has not only heard of the brand, but is choosing our products. We’ve been thrilled with the success of the range and are very excited about what’s to come for the collection and our work with The Woodland Trust.”

For trade enquiries contact The Little Green Sheep team on trade@greensheepgroup.com

For more information about The Little Green Sheep visit www.thelittlegreensheep.co.uk


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New communications partner for BreathableBaby

World-wide leader for breathable bed linen, and the inventors of the original breathable cot liner – BreathableBaby – has joined forces with Kaleidoscope Communications to further raise the profile of this best-selling brand.

With over 17 years producing quality baby products, BreathableBaby is an expert in innovative performance fabrics and its products are made exclusively using Air Channel Technology (ACT). This science allows air flow access inside fabrics, ensuring that they cannot be compressed to form an airtight seal, allowing continual access to air, as well as allowing temperature control.

Over the last year, the company has consolidated its range of liners and co-ordinating accessories in classic shades of grey, soft pink and blue with new prints including Twinkle Twinkle and the hugely popular Tiny Tatty Teddy.

Rachelle Harel, from BreathableBaby, comments: “In the time since our 2012 launch, BreathableBaby UK had focused its marketing activities on growing awareness among the trade, and it has fast become a popular stock item for nursery retailers across the country. We now intend to implement a targeted consumer-facing campaign in support of this and Kaleidoscope Communications is the ideal partner to help us raise the brand profile.”

For more information about BreathableBaby products, contact Rachelle at rachelle.harel@breathablebaby.com or call 07976 773486.


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Onco - happy baby happy home

Onco was started by two sisters, Alice and Connie, who recommend various tried and tested products that they have found useful or would have found useful for their five kids.

With Onco branded travel and weaning products they have now become distributors of their Onco products, including their award winning baby car mirror, and now exclusive UK distributors for two exciting American brands Squeasy Gear and Oogaa.

Squeasy Gear is a uniquely designed reusable silicone food pouch which makes easy feeding on the go. The great thing about these reusable pouches is that they have a no spill, no leak insert which really encourages children to eat and feed themselves which as you know promotes healthy eating kids. The Squeasy Gear pouches differs from other reusable pouches on the market as you can turn the bottle completely inside out and clean the bottle/pouch thoroughly which in the long run means a more durable long lasting bottle.

The Oogaa range of silicone feeding goods have the potential health and safety benefits of being plastic free. Not only are they safe for kids to use, they are stylish, fun and practical for the whole family in an vibrant range of colours.

Onco provides a personal service with a minimum order amount that can be spread across the various brands.


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Live births decreased slightly in 2016

The latest figures on the birth rate have been announced by the Office of National Statistics.

There were 696,271 live births in England and Wales in 2016, a small decrease of 0.2% compared with 697,852 in 2015. The average number of children in England and Wales decreased slightly in 2016 to 1.81 children per woman down from 1.82 in 2015.

In 2016, fertility rates for women aged 30 and over increased compared with 2015; this continues the long-term rise in fertility rates for women at these ages since the mid-1970s. The fertility rate for women aged 40 and over has now trebled since 1990 and is at its highest level since 1949. The fertility rate for women aged 35 to 39 has trebled since 1980 and is now at its highest ever level since the beginning of the time series in 1938.

In contrast, fertility rates for women aged under 30 decreased compared with 2015. Fertility rates in both the under 20 and 20 to 24 age groups are now at their lowest ever level since the beginning of the collection of data in 1938. The largest percentage decrease in fertility rates in 2016 was for women aged under 20 (5.5%).

In most developed countries, women have been increasingly delaying childbearing to later in life, which has resulted in rising fertility rates among older women. This may be due to a number of factors such as increased female participation in higher education and the labour force, the increasing importance of a career, the rising costs of childbearing, labour market uncertainty and housing factors.

Rising fertility rates at older ages have affected the average age of mothers’, which has been increasing since 1975, reaching 30.4 years in 2016.

See here for more information.


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