Happy Birthday Nonchalant MOM! 8 years old!

It's hard to believe that 8 delightful years have already gone by, but we wanted to CELEBRATE! We will have some giveaways and fun things going on this week so stay tuned! To start things off and as a THANK YOU to all of our wonderful customers and FRIENDS we are offering 20% off the ENTIRE STORE -- now through November 8th!! It's time to get those things you have been looking for and get 20% off... use code: 'birthday' at checkout and you will see your discount.

A trip down memory lane...
very first photo shoot on our beach 2004! (paulina quintana t-shirts... remember those!?)

the original homepage image! created by Wayne Kogan

very first Makié product shot... not so bad...
We started that first season in 2004 with: Makié, Lucky Fish (I just sold her leftover samples!), Erica Tanov (more of her collection below), Marimekko and Lucky Wang... and we grew from there! I would wait for all the product to come in and then we would do one big photo shoot! We also made a fantastic fold out catalog (we would rush to get it out on time... but then we hardly even had a mailing list!)

Erica Tanov kids - 2005 (or 06?!)

Erica Tanov again... wasn't it just the cutest clothes!

for awhile we photographed product on the mannequin, but then we weren't in love with that headless look!
For our second catalog I had hired Rose Kauffman to work with me, she is a graphic designer and also helped by packing boxes with me. We packed boxes out of our guest house and worked on the website at our kitchen table... those were the days!! (UPS hated our driveway!) Then a few years later Rose and I opened a store together in our town, it was great to share a store space together with a friend like that, she even lived upstairs from the store.

makié FW 06

makié FW06

my Swedish Aunt made these pillows for me to sell in the store - she wove the textile herself! (I have two of these left - click here)

this amazing toy collection was from Amsterdam, now defunct, they are still BEAUTIFUL!

Rose made this homepage for me in 2008 (franny!)
We always had the 'tips and information' on the website but in 2007 we started the Nonchalant Mom blog... this became a much easier way to be in touch with our audience, share new ideas and inspiration with everyone. I do my best to blog 4-5 days a week and for a time there in 2007-08 my husband had a popular 'Nonchalant Dad' following! He certainly had a 'different' viewpoint and it was fun to have that on the blog (click on nonchalantdad in the labels section to see his blogs). To-date one of our most favored blogs was about what to eat during breastfeeding - I still stand by that list and it's super helpful for any new breastfeeding mom - click here to view.

styled photos that were super popular!

these were cut-out dolls I made... LOVE their look!

Two years ago we made these dress-up dolls that were very popular, we have decided to do something like this again each week in the blog... I love to do these, it just get's the creativity pumping and shows you how to mix and match the collections together... I always try to make them work so that you do not have to wear them all together (although I KNOW there are a few Makié devotees out there).

one clean day in the store (2009?)

my inspiration wall... it rarely looks this clean, but this photo shows you I CAN do it! (but too many post-its!) - that small black and white photo at the center of two boys has been with me for more than 15 years... it's always inspired me!

And now we are so happy and thankful that we are still going strong (stronger than ever!) - thanks for taking this trip with us down memory lane... I can't believe it's been 8 years... but I can't wait for what's ahead.... surprise!

shop nonchalant mom between now and Novemeber 8th 20011 and get 20% off if you use code: 'BIRTHDAY'!! 

Thank you all for a wonderful 8 years!


scosha - friendship bracelets

sometimes when I see new things for the shop I just get crazy over them... and this is one of those cases! I met these guys at the last Designers & Agents show in NYC, Schosha Woolridge who is Australian by birth and now lives in Brooklyn. I knew when I saw her pieces that they would be perfect for everyone! I honestly want to give them to all my friends... isn't that what a friendship bracelet is all about? So we decided to share a special price:

10% off for 6 or more...
15% off for 10 or more...
20% off for 15 pieces or more...
(not to be combined with other sale or special offers)

These delicate little pieces make great gifts for the holiday season for just about anyone, they are completely unisex! (but there is even a 'larger' style that is perfect for guys!) - I like to wear them together with the friendship bracelets that I already have, or just beautiful stacked with three, four or more together!

Get some for yourself or share them with your friends! prices range from $26 - $89!!

Shop Scosha at Nonchalant Mom here!


the changing style of parenting - with one parent? sound familiar?

1970's TV show - A Family Affair

Over the last year or so my husband has been traveling a lot... about two weeks of every month he is away. During the first year there were a lot of ups and downs, family coming to stay with us to help (we don't have any family in our area so this meant a bunch of travel for the Grandmas), and just plain figuring out how to work this deal. Because it certainly takes a 'system', if you get it to go right it can be really delightful, if it goes wrong, it's not pretty.

Lately I have noticed while waiting at gymnastics, watching my son play soccer, and after school activity pickups that there are so many parents who have a counterpart who is traveling, works in another state, or even one woman who lives here in Rhode Island while her husband words in California. I have also heard that sometimes families have had trouble selling their home, so the family stays behind while one parent goes off to work in another state or even in another country. There is a military base here in Rhode Island so some of these are military parents, who never complain or say anything about being home alone with their kids, the others, well we like to complain a bit. Because it's not easy, working, making lunches, doing it all... but when the system is working it can be so much easier and happier for everyone. I have found that if you can find a way for it to work for you, it can be smooth and relatively easy, but I do think that you have to prepare yourself a bit.

It's weird but you would imagine that you would find a whole bunch of playdates and just make that work but really, it's almost easier if you corral your group and keep them under your hat (so to speak). I certainly do not know everything but I wanted to share with you some of my tips that I have found work well for us over the last year and half of doing this...

1) Don't stay up late at night... midnight is tops, never later!
2) Every once in awhile go to bed when your kids do just to catch up with sleep.
3) As soon as your counterpart leaves the house, clean the entire house top to bottom so that you know what, where, how everything is going on (you will feel more in control of your environment).
4) Each time before my husband leaves we sit down together and talk about how we are a family unit and we like to help each other out, and while dad's away we need to be especially mindful of being helpful, getting up, getting dressed, brushing teeth (it helps to be specific)... routines without being told is really helpful. They usually remember this for the first few days and some of it really sticks.
5) lay out lunch boxes at night ready for the morning.
6) each morning on the way to school we talk about what the day has in store, music lessons, phy ed, doctors appointment... etc... so that everyone knows what is going on and you can better remember things.
7) when you drop them off at school/bus take a moment and go an get a coffee or treat yourself, it will only take a few minutes, and it will do a world of good for your day and your psyche..
8) make lists! because it's harder to remember everything when it's all coming at you.
9) food and dinner becomes much more simple, but I try to take the opportunity to have night's out or special dinners, these have become really fun for me and the kids. You know what a foodie I am and from time to time I take them to a 'fancy' place.. it's just fun to see them sit up straight, behave super well and mind themselves just because they know we are in a special place.
10) most of all you have to find a way let go of your anxiety about getting everything done and enjoy the moment with your kids, because chances are you won't get it all done!
11) my friend Nancy swears by an app that her whole family has called "Cozi Calendar". Everyone can insert appointments, add things to grocery lists and it's super interactive. This sounds really helpful and getting everyone onto one page, especially for older kids, is perfect!
12) hire Mr. French! (if you were born after 1970 you may not remember this...)

I have to say that I can appreciate those who single parent all the time, my own mom was a single parent for most of our lives and I certainly remember the times when it wasn't easy... but I also know that she was more 'alone' than we are today - no internet, no blogs, just trying to do it all by yourself... not easy!

If you have great ideas on your 'single parenting' please share them with us so that we have a resource, so the next time you find yourself parenting alone... you won't be!


WOVENPLAY!! just arrived!!

Wovenplay is finally here... in the store... Hurray!! I love this collection and if I had my way I would dress my kids in Wovenplay all day LONG! I will tell you my favorites right off the bat... the deerskin vest... Sander scooped this up and has had it on every day since!

on the street... NYC baby....

and I love the stripe pieces, the stripe raglan and the stripe gide skirt -- great pieces and great pieces together! (go STRIPES!)

But really I love it ALL!

visit the collection at Nonchalantmom NOW!

bloesem kids craft project - halloween sun catchers

I thought this was a terrific Halloween project! You can see the whole story at Bloesem Kids by clicking through here.

Leave it to Irene to find this terrific project and how cute! It came from Jennifer Kirk - who is a new crafts contributer at Bloesem Kids - it all looks very easy and all you need is some recycled plastic and some sharpies! (my favorite!) - so get to it and find the directions here.

see complete instructions at Bloesem Kids- click here

eco-kids winners!

delayed reaction!! I put the winners of the eco-kids play dough and finger paints in an emailer but forgot to write a blog... we are still looking to hear from winner - WESLEY!! -- you have won a set of eco-kids finger paints!!

send us and email so that we can send them out to you!


halloween - some ideas... via Real Simple

couldn't get more simple than this....
I promise not to get into this too much as I am sure that you are already over your head into Halloween, but I got an email from Real Simple that outlined some easy things you can do at the last minute... and if you are like most people it's ALL last minute! (I haven't even got the FABRIC yet!). We do carve pumpkins each year, but this year, to avoid sagging pumpkins on Halloween, we will make them later on this week. I saw a very cute one with ping pong eyeballs but I can't seem to find to photo at the moment.. I will keep looking! But these... I can think of a few ideas with this basic and easy premise:

As for costumes, these are pretty cute ideas and don't take much work!
what an angel!

take coffee filters and tape them to hangers bent into the shape of wings (or just use old fairy wings!)

in case you can't see close up that's a nipple on a pink bottle cap! (+ felt ears)

raining cats and dogs!
more pumpkin decorating here

Don't forget to send us your photos and we will do another Halloween costume contest this year!! Send them to me at: carina nonchalantmom com



Hugo França at R 20th Century

If you are in New York City before Novemeber 5th you MUST go to see the Hugo França Instillation at R 20th Century. The casulo (Portuguese for cocoon) series of environments are carved from the trunks of awe-inspiringly large Brazilian trees. This series offers the viewer unique access to França's immersion experience of literally climbing into the tree, transporting the viewer to França's perspective by bringing them inside these massive natural forms. It's beautiful and amazing and certainly worth a visit to the Gallery.

these rings are my favorite, what could be more subtle and gorgeous!

R 20th Century Gallery  |  82 Franklin Street  |  New York NY 10013
www.r20thcentury.com  |  212 343 7979
M-F 11-6  |  Saturday 12-6


NEW: lem lem scarves!!

Two things I wear WHEREVER I go... a lem lem scarf AND my clare vivier bag! I just added some new lem lem scarves that are truly delightful! Whether you like the merino scarves or the cotton ones both are accented with the lem lem signature neon colors! (love that...) and as for Clare... she is a bit busy and a bit behind but it's no sweat, the new foldover clutches will be here soon, some with neon trim, some with bright colors and some just simply chic! (well they are ALL chic!) in the mean time who doesn't need a La Tropezienne bag!