Saturday, May 26, 2012

Linen - The Fabric...not the Dictator....

When I started the research for this post, I was quiet honestly amazed at the history of linen.  I guess in today's world we tend to take things at face value--many times never knowing the beauty and substance of the history.  I could write several posts about linen, but my goal today is to keep it brief, and yet informative.

The use of linen has been documented as far back as 4,000 years ago.  
It was used to wrap The Pharaoh's of Egypt when they died.  Most times the linen is still intact and shows no wear (not that they're out dancing around in it when no one's around...); 

It's mentioned in the Bible, Proverbs 31(often used as pages in books through history); 

Even some caves in the country of Georgia, a part of the Soviet Union, as far back as the 4th Century. 

The point is, linen has been around a long long time, which speaks to how well this fiber can perform.  Linen is actually a by-product of the plant, Flax.  It's a complicated process to not only grow the plants, but render the plant in a usable form to make the linen fibers.  Great care must be taken when weaving because the fibers are not elastic and have a tendency to break.  Suffice it to say, that's one of the reasons high quality linen is often very expensive.  You can find Flax growing in many parts of the world, but top quality flax is primarily grown in Western Europe. Bulk linen production has moved to Eastern Europe and China, but  if you want high quality fabrics you'll need to visit the niche producers in Ireland.  Their linen fabrics are legendary.

So what makes linen a preferred fabric in many instances?  
        Attributes of linen are:
  • It's a very durable fabric in many respects, and in fact is stronger wet than dry.
  • It has a very soft "hand" (the way it feels when you run your hand against the fabric), and gets softer with more washings.
  • It's resistant to moths and beetles. 
  • It resists dirt and stains.
  • It has no lint or piling tendency.
  • It can be dry-cleaned, machine-washed or steamed.
  • It can withstand high temperatures, and has only moderate initial shrinkage.
  • When properly prepared, linen fabric has the ability to absorb and lose water rapidly.
        Disadvantages of linen are:
  • It wrinkles very easily - that being said, the tendency to wrinkle is often considered part of the fabric's particular "charm".  It's poor elasticity prevents it from springing back readily, which explains why it wrinkles so easily.
  • Constant creasing in the same place in sharp folds will tend to break the linen threads. This wear can show up in collars, hems, and any area that is iron creased during laundering. 
  • Mildew, perspiration, and bleach can also damage the fabric.
  • Linen can be very expensive.
All this being said, linen can be combined with other fibers to maximize the beauty and attributes of the natural fiber, but enhance the performance with the introduction of man-made fibers.  You'll find several items on Adorable Baby Clothing that are either all linen or a combination, or even man-made fibers woven to look just like linen.  Some are casual, some dressy....but the most important factor, is their style and comfort, and "wearability"! 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Pay Attention to Your Dreams....

Hero's never really look the way we imagine them....sometimes they are the least likely person we encounter.  What's more startling, is how many children do the most amazing things.  This story is about a little girl, who didn't let her medical diagnosis, or her tender young age,  stop her from making a dream come true.

This is a story about Jamie Bacigalupo, who was  diagnosed with benign rolandic epilepsy or BRE, at the tender young age of 5.   This lively vibrant little girl, out of the blue, exhibited the symptoms with no warning.  It took countless days and weeks in the hospital to confirm the diagnosis, and prescribe the proper treatment.  Through it all she exhibited an amazing optimism and resiliency.  During one of her stays in the hospital, an anonymous group stopped in one day with a "healing dog", and some small presents.  It made her stay seem bearable, and because of what they blessed her with, she came up with the idea that she'd like to make sure other children were treated the same.

If you've even been hospitalized, you know first-hand that it's a scary place, and no matter how nice the nurses and doctors may be --  a place you want to leave ASAP.  And, if you put yourself in the shoes of a child, you can only imagine what it must be like for them.  Jamie,  no doubt had her "moments", but out of all she endured, came the birth of an amazing idea, turned non-profit organization, to benefit other children.


With the help of her mother, the organization Angels4Epilepsy, a 501(c)(3) Charity, was born April 2010.  Her goal was to put "goodie" bags together, and deliver them to children confined to hospitals in her area that were there because of a seizure related diagnosis.  She and her sister started saving their toys from the happy meals from McDonalds, and her mom saved money to buy snacks for the bags.  Since it's inception the charity has grown and been awarded two grants from Pepsi Funds totaling $30,000.  Jamie, along with her family, and volunteers in Indiana, Texas, Florida, and Ohio, have been delivering bags with custom teddy bears from either Build-A-Bears, or TG Bears. Aside from the awesome cuddly bears, they fill the bags with other goodies and essentials for the children in the hospitals.

Her story is amazing, because the dream of a little girl is alive and growing.......inspiration for us all.  Even better news, Jamie has been seizure free long enough that the doctors are considering weaning her off the medication she's been taking!

If you'd like to help out, please contact Judy Bacigalupo (Jamie's mom) to find out what you can do.  You, too, can make a difference in the life of a child and even be a hero to someone!

Pay attention to your dreams - God's angels often speak directly to our hearts when we are asleep.  
~ Eileen Elias Freeman

Sunday, May 20, 2012

To blend....or not to blend.....

In today's world of fashion, fabrics run the gamut of 100% natural fabrics to amazing blends of man-made material with the natural.  There are those who prefer the all natural, and they definitely have their place in the  garment world, but with the technological advances, blended fabrics can often offer amazing benefits. 

 Why?  Primarily to produce better performance & cost.  Blending fibers can improve the characteristics that are poor in one fiber, by blending it with another type of fabric that excels in those characteristics. Fabrics become more wearable, cleanable, and last longer.  In today's rising cost of everything, those should be reasons enough to consider buying garments that are constructed of blended fabrics!

For instance, when polyester is blended with cotton, the polyester contributes more strength, wrinkle and shape retention; while the cotton produces comfort as it provides absorbency and heat conduction.  Viscose when blended with cotton improves it's luster and softness and there by enhances it's appearance.  Cotton & polyester blends combine the best of the properties of both fibers to provide a fabric that has easy care qualities with the comfort afforded by the moisture absorption characteristics of cotton.

Another very durable yet soft fabric is wool. Wool comes from sheep, goats and even Angora rabbits. For over 12,000 years it has been used in clothing . There are various types of wool such as chenille, flannel, felt, tweed and melton. Wool is warm and absorbs moisture well. The advantages of 100% wool, is the beautiful appearance, warmth retention, wearability, soft to the touch, and desirability in cooler climates.  The disadvantages would be: cost, must be dry cleaned, stains easily, has a tendency to stretch with wear, and show signs of abrasion with wear.  All these factors of course are influenced by the weave of the wool.  

However, when polyester is combined with wool, the excellent shape retention of polyester is the foremost contribution to worsted fabrics  whether wet or dry.  The result is a more cost effective garment, that will perform better in the long haul for the wearer.

The short of the story is, it all comes down to the overall quality of the fibers being combined, and the type of weave used to create the fabric.  We've all bought, at one time or another, inexpensive clothing, only to be disappointed the first time we wore it, or cleaned it.   

At Adorable Baby Clothing you'll find a variety of fabrics, and combinations of fibers in the fabrics.  The one thing that is upper most in what we carry is the over-all quality of the fabrics the garments are constructed of. 
We will never intentionally sell an inferior garment, realizing that most families have more than one child, and hope to pass down the garments they've invested in.  The clothing you'll find on the website are chosen for their quality, style and price.  We're not always the least expensive, but we stand, with confidence, 100% behind the quality of the garments you purchase.  After all....we think you already have enough to do!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Crayons + Walls = Disaster??

I recently saw a post by a mom who'd just found her walls decorated by her little ones with crayons.  I remember my youngest and her experiment with my RED lipstick......but that's another post.  

So crayons and must happen at least once in every home.  You'd think there would be a "How to Get it Out" manual given to new mother's at the hospitals when they leave with their little bundles of joy.

I did some research and this is what I found (in no particular order & I can't vouch for any of them--except the repainting....I've done that more than once!):

1) you're supposed to use the hair dryer on hot, to melt the wax and wipe away the crayon as it melts (not sure that's the best plan).  And then once you've removed most of it you're supposed to use a dish washing detergent with a damp sponge to wash away what's left........hope you have really good paint on your walls!

2) Hmmmm.....alright....the instructions said to spray a little on a paper towel or a cloth and wipe off the crayons......anybody out there ever try this?  Oh, you
do need to wash the oil off after the crayon is removed....
WD-40 does make a pen they claim isn't as messy and will remove crayons, glue, stickers....might be worth investigating. 

Other  oil  based products that supposedly do the same thing are mayonaise, baby oil, non-stick cooking spray, and hand lotion.
3)  Mr. Clean Magic Eraser - I've bought them before (not for crayon removal) and they did a pretty good job on what I bought them for, so this is something you'd have to try yourself and see if it would do the trick.  The secret behind these types of erasers is a material commonly called melamine foam. With just a little water, melamine foam can dig in and destroy stains that other products can't touch.

4) Toothpaste (the brand doesn't matter).......rub and scrub....and the marks are gone!  Good for filling nail holes to by the way. 

5) When all else fails, cover the marks with Kilz primer, and repaint the wall! They now make a water based product that will cover just about any stain and the clean up is easy.  It's just the thought of having to repaint an entire wall!

The list goes on and on.....I discovered a plethora of methods, and probably one's as good as another.  When my girls were little I don't think we knew all these things...or maybe it's because the internet wasn't invented yet (yes, I'm that old...)
  1. Baking Soda – make a paste with water and use it to gently scrub the mark. You could also just sprinkle baking soda on a damp sponge and rub.
  2. Shaving Cream – apply, rub in, then wipe off.
  3. Turpentine – dab some on a damp cloth and scrub into stain (don't breathe too deep and wear gloves so it's not absorbed through your skin).
  4. Lighter Fluid – apply as you would turpentine (does anyone have lighter fluid any more!?).
  5. Goo Gone – Same directions as for turpentine.
  6. Ammonia – soak a section of cloth in household ammonia then scrub into stains. You may also luck out with an ammonia based cleaner like Windex and a hot soapy cloth.
  7. Vinegar – soak a toothbrush in white vinegar and scrub (gently!).
  8. Powdered Dishwasher Detergent – make a paste with water and gently scrub area. Some detergents contain bleach so be careful on wallpaper.
  9. Powdered Household Cleaners – such as Ajax or Comet. Mix with some water or sprinkle on a damp sponge then scrub gently. (GENTLY WOULD BE THE OPERATIVE WORD HERE!)
  10. Hairspray – spray generously on walls then scrub off the crayon.
  11. Rubbing Alcohol – Saturate a clean cloth then rub.
If you have a method not listed here, I'd love it if you'd share!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Wonderland Suite - Trueheart Events

The Wonderland Suite ~
a star studded celebration 
of “Wonder-ful” fun presented with love 
to the patients of  

I'm thrilled to say that Adorable Baby Clothing is playing a very small part in a invitation only benefit event for the Children's Hospital Los Angeles.  I've worked with children in many ways over the years, and my love for them goes on.  It's heart breaking to see children in any hospital, so when I was approached by Amy Malin, of Trueheart Events (the organizer of this event), I was honored to be asked.  Of course these days you have to do your research to know if something is as good as claimed.....quiet honestly I was completely in awe of Children's Hospital Los Angeles, and Amy's organization, Trueheart Events.

Founded in 1901, Children's Hospital Los Angeles is the first and largest pediatric hospital in Southern California. The hospital is one of only eleven children’s hospitals in the nation – and the only one on the West Coast – ranked in all 10 pediatric specialties by U.S. News & World Report. 

  The Wonderland Suite was created to celebrate the start of Summer in style, while giving the deserving patients of Children’s Hospital Los Angeles the rock-star treatment.  They'll be joined by actors, musicians, dancers, athletes and entertainment industry executives in a real Wonderland theme--all complimented by fabulous lifestyle and family brands, just for their entertainment.  They'll enjoy lunch, treats, tea parties, gifts,'s going to be a magical event for all the children and their families. 

Trueheart Events has been in business for 16-years, and has produced thousands of parties tailored specifically to each of their unique clients. No matter how big or small your budget, they are experts at making your perfect party dreams a reality.  Their capabilities range from weddings, to corporate, charitable, and private parties.  Their client list includes celebrities, corporations, MTV, the Grammys, Oscars, Superbowls......the list goes on and on.  To sum it up....Trueheart Events has the knowledge, ability, and expertise to create the event for whomever, or whatever!

Amy says it best below....

 “I am so excited that we can support one of our favorite non-profits by creating a magical day for the beautiful and deserving children of Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.  We are grateful to our fabulous celebrity hosts and the amazing generosity of some of the best baby, family and lifestyle brands in the world for supporting this very special event.  Scott and I can’t wait for all of the fun and smiles to be had at our Wonderland Suite to benefit Children’s Hospital LosAngeles”, said Amy Malin, partner at TrueheartEvents.

If you're looking for a company that can put together the event of your dreams, you really owe it to yourself to speak with Amy

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Fabric of Royalty - Shantung & Dupioni Silk

 Adorable Baby Clothing's formal wear for children is a cut above the norm, because of not only the details, but the quality of the fabrics selected to construct them.  That being said, we have to be don't always appreciate the details the way you and I do!  Kids are going to do what kids do....and so with that in mind, our clothing is made with what "they do" in mind!  

It would be amazing to dress a little one in 100% Shantung or Dupioni Silk, but let's face it....we'd probably drive them and everyone around us (including ourselves) crazy trying to make sure nothing happened to that very expensive outfit!  And, so, the solution is to make those garments out of fabrics that look and feel expensive, but in the end are very cost effective, and hopefully will withstand what our little ones "do" while wearing them.

Shantung Silk is one of those amazing fabrics, that through the advancement in technologies, is now available in synthetic blends, that to the eye and hand are almost indistinguishable from the authentic fabric, and yet afford us the opportunity to dress them in exquisite suit's and dresses, without the cost and mental wear and tear of putting them in the real thing.

So what's the big deal about shantung silk? 

Through the centuries, silk has been coveted as the "creme' de la creme" of fashion fabric.  Silk has always been the fabric of choice of kings, queens, and the rich and famous.  The luxurious texture of the fabric, with the crisp feel and brilliant lustre are often seen in formal gowns, suits, wedding attire, and the heirloom christening gowns.

 Silk Shantung, which was first manufactured in the Shantung providence of China, can almost appear flowing, and  has a fair amount of body and crispness, which has contributed to it's popularity  in  flower girls’ dresses, bridal gowns, christening gowns and suits,  or any special occasion that calls for an exquisite outfit.  The major difference between a shantung and dupioni silk is the size of the "slubs", or the textural fibers you see incorporated into the weave of the fabric.

The suits and dresses you'll find at Adorable Baby Clothing that have the word "shantung" in their description are either polyester weaves, or blends of polyester and cotton.  What this means to you is, you will be buying a garment that looks like it costs many many times more, at a fraction of the cost, and yet, I dare to say, most likely will be the outfit you pack away carefully to keep for future generations.  The fabrics look like the real thing; feel like the real thing, and perform like the real thing.  The details and embellishments will absolutely amaze you!

I invite you to take a look if you haven't before.  If you're looking for a baby gift-- trust me, it will be the one that's treasured for years to come.....and if you're looking for the perfect outfit for your own little won't be disappointed.
And don't forget..........FREE Shipping on orders of just $40.00 or more!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Why Buy a Boy's Suit from Adorable Baby Clothing?

Let's face it......boys don't really like to put a suit on, but when  there's an occasion that they need one, finding it is just about as difficult as convincing them to wear the suit.  Most mom's are concerned about the price first, the fit next, and then the quality.  At Adorable Baby Clothing, I've worked hard to keep all that in mind and provide boy's suits in a large range of sizes and colors, to satisfy the most discerning buyer.

The difficulty of buying clothing from the internet is really understanding the quality, the feel of the fabric, and figuring out whether or not the item will fit properly.  I get it!  So first let's talk about the quality.  

The manufacturer that produces the boy's suits you'll see on Adorable Baby Clothing, is Lito.  They've had nearly 40-years of manufacturing boy's suits, and other special occasion formal wear for children.  So....that being said.....they KNOW kids and what works and what doesn't.  

The boy's suits come in a wide range of sizes starting at 6-9M all the way up to a size 14.  The colors are as comprehensive as any line I've found, so there's bound to be one that catches your eye.  Beyond that, the details! Oh my!  Nothing has escaped Lito's attention when it comes to details.  Each suit is designed and constructed to give your little guy the best look available.

The jackets are fully lined.   The tailoring of each one is exacting so the overall look is refined and sophisticated.  You can see, even the tie,  which is included with every suit, is specifically chosen to compliment the color of the suit.  The long sleeved shirt, is a poly-cotton blend so it "breaths" while being worn, but resists wrinkling, and launders beautifully.  The pants all have a finished waist in the front with elastic in the back for a great fit (the larger, boy, sizes have a button and zipper front w/elastic in back).  

Now you're wondering what in the world is the fabric.  It's polyester...oh wait....don't run away!  You would never know it.  It has the finest hand, and looks like a very elegant gabardine.  The beauty of choosing polyester as the fabric, is it moooooves with your little resists wrinkling (how long do you really think he'll sit or stand still?), and it resists staining (you know he's going to spill the RED punch down the front of himself at some point!).  The point is, he's going to look great, be comfortable, and most likely if he has a little brother, you'll be passing it on to him when he's big enough.

Below is a guide on finding the right size:

For the most part, if you're buying a high quality suit, such as the ones we carry, you can usually buy the same size he wears in his everyday clothing.  The exceptions to this would be if it's going to be a month or so before he wears it, or if he's about to outgrow the size he's been wearing, you may want to consider buying the next size larger.  Below are some tips for determining the correct size he'll need:

A -- Chest - measure all the way around the chest just under the arm pits.

B -- Sleeve Length - measure from the top of the shoulder-blade where the bone that sticks out from the shoulder all the way down to just past the wrist.

C -- Jacket Length - measure by placing one end of the measuring tape on the nape of the neck and taking the tape down to the base of the buttocks. This would be the correct length for a standard jacket. For a three-quarter length jacket or tail suit jacket you will have to measure down to just above the back of the knee.

D -- Waist - It is important to measure his actual waist -- not his hips. One of the best ways to achieve this is to have your son wear a pair of slacks that fit well. With them in the correct position on his waist, take the measurement just above the waist line of the slacks, and as close to the skin as possible. Most boys suits that are made for boys up to the age of 7 or 8, have elastic waistbands, allowing 2 or 3 inches of movement either way.

E --  Inside Leg - This measurement is taken from just below the crotch to approximately an inch past the ankle bone. Most boys suits will have slacks with an inch or two of extra length to allow them to be turned up to the exact length.

F --  Outside Leg - Starting at the waist measure down to an inch below his ankle bone. 

You can always exchange the suit if the fit or color isn't right!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Milk and Sugar = Seersucker?

I'm a child of the 50's, and I remember the seersucker fabric as if I had it on yesterday.  It was light weight, cool, and as I remember it, always pretty.  We looked forward to the warmer months because it meant we could wear seersucker.  And, as with all things, what was old is new again.  Seersucker came out strong this season and you'll see it in all lines of clothing, accessories, and even home furnishings.  At Adorable Baby Clothing, we were excited to introduce several items made exclusively of seersucker.

Now....what is seersucker?  It's a thin, puckered, all cotton fabric (a mother's dream!).  You'll commonly find it striped or checkered.  The word "seersucker" originated from the Persian words "shir o shekar", meaning "milk & sugar".  We surmised it was called that because of the resemblance of it's smooth and rough stripes being compared to the smoothness of milk, and the bumpy texture of sugar.

The fabric is woven in such a way that some threads bunch together, which is what gives the appearance of wrinkles in places.  The reason those wrinkles are important (No...not because you don't need to iron it!) is that it causes the fabric to be held away from the skin while being worn, so you feel cooler because of the air circulation.

History 101........Britain's warm weather colonies favored seersucker during the British colonial period for the very reasons stated above.  When it was introduced into the United States, gentlemen, especially those in the South, favored the fabric when the heat and humidity were at it's worst.  The fabric was originally worn by the poor in the U.S. until undergraduate students in the 1920s, in an air of reverse snobbery, and rebellion began to wear the fabric.  Seersucker became a staple of the successful and fashionable business man.  It was even the first choice for summer service uniforms of the first female US Marines during WWII!  A Capt. Anne Lentz, was not only fashionable, she believed in comfort and when she was charged with designing a uniform for the female Marines, seersucker won! To this day, the US Senate holds a day in June, named "Seersucker Thursday", and the participants dress in traditionally Southern clothing.
The most common colors for seersucker are white and blue; however, it is produced in a wide variety of colors, usually alternating colored stripes and puckered white stripes slightly wider than pin stripes. You'll find several colors at Adorable Baby Clothing for both girls and boys! Hope you'll take a look if you haven't already seen them.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Why Organza?

At Adorable Baby Clothing, you'll find some of the most amazing special occasion clothes for your children.  Aside from the exacting details that make them so special, you have to first look at the fabrics.  I have to admit when I started, I didn't know the importance of the fabrics, but they make ALL the difference!

I thought I'd compose a few short excerpts about some of the fabrics you'll find and what makes them so amazing.  First up.....Organza.

If you've looked at the flower girl dresses, christening gowns, and special occasion dresses, no doubt you may have noticed that the word Organza shows up frequently.  It is a luxurious fabric that may look delicate, but in fact holds up extremely well.  It can be embroidered, flocked, gathered, beaded......there are just so many amazing things you can do with organza.
Organza was originally a lightweight silk fabric. Today it is a plain weave  created by using nylon, polyester, and silk, or a blend of any of the three, to result in a translucent look.  The organza produced in India and the United States often uses a mixture of nylon and polyester to create usable organza that is both cost effective and smooth to the touch.  Chinese organza is still often made completely from silk filaments, while Italian and French organza is generally sturdier and often includes nylon filaments as a blend with the silk. 

The dresses you'll see on Adorable Baby Clothing that are constructed of organza, don't actually have any silk, but you'd never know it.  The fabric is exquisite--often luminescent, and the many details you'll find incorporated into the designs are truly little works of art.  

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Win One of TWO $50.00 Gift Cards!!

To celebrate the Adorable Baby Clothing makeover, we're giving away 2--Yes TWO--$50.00 Gift Cards!