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Mini Boden fall 2017 by Kate Brightbill

A couple things happened this week at just the same time... the kiddos received a REALLY fun package from Mini Boden, and my at-home-try-on glasses arrived (because the last pair of glasses I ordered was from 2008, and it's time!!). 

Boden's spring line just so happens to have the most adorable adventure / superhero / to-the-rescue theme... and the girls just so happened to love trying my glasses to pretend they were in disguise. (They also appreciated having solidarity with Jack, because he recently got his own real pair!). 

The Boden outfits plus the glasses gave gave us an idea: we will write a mystery book! The story is inspired by their cute Boden clothes, and they are the detectives trying to solve the mystery in their book, using glasses as their disguises.

 Copyright 2017

Copyright 2017

The girls BLEW ME AWAY. We haven't finished our story yet (it may take a month, to be honest!!), but it has been so much fun to brainstorm and write and illustrate together!! Sophie is in charge of the story, and I am her editor. Maggie is in charge of illustrations, and Sophie and I are her assistants.

The story stems from a concept on Maggie's new sweater: a picture of a kitty ... saying WOOF! We decided that just like the picture, the culprit is a dog disguised as a kitty so he can sneak ingredients from the ice cream shop.

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So our story's setting begins in the shop (inspired by Powder shaved snow, which we got this weekend and WILL get again!): 

 Sneak Peek: Copyright 2017 ;)

Sneak Peek: Copyright 2017 ;)

We're drafting the whole story together, and then we'll do a final copy. We're loving the project. We have so much SF inspiration to pull from, so we're using it! I'm enjoying watching the skills they are learning at school applied in their storytelling. :) Kids are just amazing and are far more capable than I give them credit for.

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StyleSmaller // #minibodentotherescue
StyleSmaller #minibodentotherescue

Here's a little info on the outfits we put together from Boden, and in case you'd like to shop them for yourselves, be sure to use our 15% off coupon: 2E9T on any full-priced items, and also includes free shipping and returns on items over $49 (expires 1/29/17).

StyleSmaller + Mini Boden // #stylesmaller #miniboden
StyleSmaller + Boden // #miniboden #stylesmaller

Sunglasses . Lucinda Jacket . Vintage Dress . Leather Boots

I also promised a giveaway, and it's a good one!!! 

We've teamed up with a few of our favorite blogs to celebrate the new Mini Boden line and to host this fun giveaway. Be sure to visit their sites for more cute styles and heroic fun. The Chirping Moms have a DIY cardboard rescue boat and superhero accessories. To go along with the accessories, Lay Baby Lay and Hello Baby Brown have DIY superhero capes. Hello Happiness visited local heroes to say thank you, and I Love You More Than Carrots has a yummy rescue themed snack and hero masks. Seven Graces is sharing why her kids are her heroes. For more spring style inspiration, visit Jordan & Co, Fancy Ashley, and Walking in Memphis in Heels

#minibodentotherescue 

*Product was provided in exchange for post. All opinions are our own.

Rockets of Awesome by Kate Brightbill

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I heard of this brand on Instagram, and then again from a friend.

"You love kids' clothing brands! Have you heard of Rockets of Awesome?" she asked. 

My response, "Yes... but it's not for me. I'm too picky to let someone send a box for the kids that is already curated, and I don't want to pay and go through the drag of returning it all" (oh how little I knew then!).

We both agreed. It's not for us...

But pictures kept popping up on my social media feeds of kids wearing amazing pieces of clothing with @rocketsofawesome tagged. I saw an ad on Facebook. This brand is SO CUTE. My children would love it and I knew it. Maybe it IS for us.

THEN-- A few weeks ago, Rockets of Awesome shot an email over to me, "would your girls be interested in trying a box of our clothes and seeing how they like it?" I didn't want to sound too eager, but uhhh, YES, they would!! 

I finally learned all about the brand and how it works, and I love it even more now because of the following:

  • NO shipping fees.
  • NO up front payment taken. 
  • Return bag with shipping sticker is included and I can process any returns by myself online, then just hand it over to the mailman. I'm not EVER charged for the pieces we may not want, because we have five days to return using the online system!

I'm honestly planning to order more boxes, friends. It was so good, and so easy. The pieces change every season, so there's SO much less chance of the girls matching everyone who shops at the same stores at school. 

Here's the process:

Your child takes a little style diagnostic. They let the brand know their likes and dislikes, color preferences, and needs/wants. The brand curates a special box for them with mix and match pieces that are perfect for the season. The box has a great balance of tops, bottoms, and dresses, and each also includes one accessory.  The items are priced between $12-$36. Anything the kids don't like (nothing in these boxes! only one pair of jeans was too big, but they'll fit eventually!) can be returned using the process above. So simple. 

What's in a box, you ask? Wellllll- let me give you a peek inside our boxes:

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Fun fact: I had to try taking these photos over the course of several different days because whenever I'd stack some outfits to photograph, Sophie or Maggie would come and grab part of the outfit to wear to school. When I went to snap shots, I'd realize they'd worn it and I'd have to wash it again after school. Hahaha.

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As far as style preferences go, I gave Rockets a few tips: my girls love pink, ruffles, sparkle, and fancy. They wear blues well, and generally aren't big on orange. Both girls tend to like their pants snug and their tops looser, or a frilly skirt and a fitted tee. The shoes obviously don't come in the box, but the three pair of shoes pictured can really be worn with any outfit in the box, or some brown boots. If we're planning wardrobes for a season, I love to have versatility in the girls' footwear, and the clothing definitely works with what they already have in their shoe closets already. 

So here's how the kids wore some of the pieces throughout a couple weeks:

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And these are their favorite outfits for dancing. ;)

 

Thank you for the amazing boxes, Rockets of Awesome! We love your brand!

xoxo

--Boxes provided for review. All opinions are our own.-- 

Neighborhood Shop: Tea Collection Berkeley by Kate Brightbill

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Tea Collection created its first neighborhood shop! Local bay area friends can now shop Tea's beautiful products in person. I'm definitely the type of shopper who appreciates this. Though online shopping is my favorite, I also really like to be able to feel the fabrics and appreciate the prints in person when a new season is released.

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StyleSmaller Tea Collection

The fall collection is inspired by Japan. You can read about the inspiration from their travels on the Tea website, which is something so unique and lovely about Tea. There is always a cultural influence, and the influence is not simply imagined... it is experienced by the Tea team as they travel the world to see the destinations for themselves.

 Paper cranes in variety of colors in the window. 

Paper cranes in variety of colors in the window. 

The neighborhood shop is lovely, and I found some new favorites while browsing, so I obviously decided to share them with you, as well as 15% off of everything you shop at Tea with the code STYLESMALLER15. (new customers only, ends 9/1/16).

Stay tuned for a Tea Collection giveaway early next week as well! 

Tea Collection Neighborhood Shop @ Kid Dynamo: 2108 Vine Street, Berkeley, CA 

StyleSmaller || Tea Collection #teacollection

onetwothree | four | five | six | seven | eight | nine | ten | eleven | twelve

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Thank you to Tea Collection for partnering with me on this post. I receive clothing as a Tea Ambassador. All opinions are my own. 

Wearing & Giving: Tea Collection by Kate Brightbill

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My kids wear Tea Collection clothing more than anything, and it's time I tell you why we love it so much (and offer some Tea for you to win!).

The brand is San Francisco-based (big points right there ;). Tea pulls its inspiration from new destinations every year, and creates clothing for children inspired by travels. The summer line is inspired by Italy's Almafi coast... the sparkling Mediterranean Sea, florals and fruit, ceramic tiles, and bright striped umbrellas. Here's the kicker: their inspiration is created by Tea staff actually traveling to the destinations, and experiencing the culture first-hand.

Tea catalogs read like magazine editorials, with real families wearing new Tea pieces in the cities that inspired the line. The catalogs are beautiful, and the projects are clearly created with heart and passion behind them. They tell stories of introducing their own children to family they have never met who are living across the world, and enjoying family meals together and experiencing life in homes and communities of grandparents and aunts and uncles. This heart behind the brand, and their investment into appreciating cultures across the globe is what truly sets Tea apart from the others. They also give back with their buy one give one program.

Now, all of this is great, but a key question: how cute are the actual clothes? Do I actually even want to buy them? You can put all your heart into projects and have terrible products, BUT!! Good news here! That is NOT the case. 

The clothes deliver. They are gorgeous. Every season, there are beautiful and wearable play clothes lines in prints of all colors. I also noticed that every season, Tea also manages to create "that dress." The dress which will inevitably become a "most worn" piece in my daughters' closets. It's a piece that can be worn over and over but is somehow more loved and better than the rest. Example below: Maggie's every-day wardrobe of 2015. Seriously, she attempted to wear her white dress with flowers at some point every single day last year. She outgrew it and I nearly cried when we gave it away. Thankfully, our friend Jennifer at Sophie and Lili actually created a doll AND portrait {amazing, right!?} that Maggie can keep forever of her wearing this Tea dress!!! It's that special.

That was last year.

I'm happy to tell you, there are plenty of amazing options again this year. Here are my absolute favorite summer dresses for 2016:

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One . TwoThree . FourFiveSix . SevenEight . Nine

The fun isn't all for the girls, either. Jack's wardrobe is nearly all Tea tees and Tea pajamas right now! Everything holds up beautifully to his impressively fast army crawls across our floors, and washes beautifully in spite of his messy eating habits! 

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SO. Good news: I'm giving away an outfit set from Tea Collection to two different winners! You can take a look at the outfit sets: Girls // Boys // Baby Girls // Baby Boys (my favorite is this one) and enter!!

This giveaway will last until Friday 5/13/16, and you can enter three ways:

  1. Leave a comment here telling me which set you would choose. 
  2. Follow Tea Collection and StyleSmaller on Instagram. 
  3. Tag up to two friends on the Instagram post for two additional entries.

If you're not into giveaways, but you ARE into shopping with discounts, Tea is so kindly offering my readers 15% off of your shopping with code STYLESMALLER15, valid until 6/1/2016. (*Code is not valid with other promotions, or on third party merchandise). 

Good luck and happy shopping! xx

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Shop the Post:

Sophie + Kira Kids by Kate Brightbill

Kira Kids SS16

Kira Kids launched Spring/Summer 2016 tonight! The brand is perfectly comfortable, in patterns and silhouettes that kids love wearing. 

Kira asked Sophie to shoot with them for their lookbook, and they had the amazing Amber Mckee behind the camera, & styled by Lucia Tran (always fabulous), so we now have some incredible shots of my little seven-year-old (and that adorable gap in her teeth!!). Real smiles, real fun, and the shots show it. 

The lovely lady behind Kira Kids is the ever so sweet Christine, and when we chatted, we realized we went to rival schools one year apart. This bay area of ours is such a small world...  I love that a local has created such a fun brand for kids! 

Bonus to the line is that everything is made in California, organic, and printed with non-toxic ink. :)

Kira Kids
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Kira Kids
Kira Kids
Kira Kids

Thanks for the fun, Kira! xx.

Princess Slippers by Kate Brightbill

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I was thinking the other day about the princess stage.

Both of my girls have been in love with all things princess related for years. I recall a conversation I had with a friend a long time ago, telling her about how crazy it is-- I was climbing in trees and playing in mud at their age, but they have been about as girly as can be since day one. She gave some sage advice-- enjoy that princess stage, and embrace it because it doesn't last forever

I took her advice... we have embraced their passion! Our home has become a go-to spot for princess dress-up and fancy shoes sending tiny twirling girls into worlds of their own imaginations. They've performed countless shows, we've had family dance parties, they've made castle forts, all wearing their tulle and sparkles.

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The girls recently received beautiful heart slippers from A. Andreassen, which perfectly fit both of their idea of feeling beautiful like princesses.

They wear the slippers when they want to dance on their toes like ballerinas, when they want to dress up like princesses, or when they simply want to feel lovely while reading a book. They are sophisticated, comfortable, and whimsical. I also adore their traditional Norwegian heart-- My great grandparents were Scandinavian-- I learned how to make the woven heart out of paper as a child, so the heart on their little feet tugs at my nostalgic heartstrings. ;) The slippers are soft and buttery leather, light on the foot, and perfect for protecting little feet. 

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A. Andreassen has figured out a way to make slippers truly timeless. Lovely for tiny princesses and perfect for little girls who still love fancy but want a little extra chic for Christmas this year. ;)

p.s. The slippers also come in grown-up sizes! I love these and these!

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* Post is sponsored. All opinions are my own-- we are so flattered to be able to work with such a beautiful company.