The Cradle

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The Cradle has been on my radar for a few months. I received a press release touting it as "the lifestyle destination for expectant and new moms." Pretty big billing I'd say. So I checked it out for myself. My take: If you've got questions about parenting and motherhood this is a wonderful resource. They offer advice by stage and topic as well as message boards and lots of opportunities to personalize the site to suit you and your family.

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But this month is all about fashion. So I asked Hilary Zalon, The Cradle's "Expectancy Expert" and Founder to talk about the latest trends in nursery designs.

Q. What kind of trends are you seeing in Nursery designs?

Softer Looks: This year, we'??ve noticed that while modern designs are still in demand, designers are adding softer touches. For example, Netto Collection, usually known for their furniture'??s straight lines, is introducing a '??Louis'? line which shows off some major curves. Svan, the company that makes one of our favorite high chairs (and scooter - I can'??t get my daughter off of it!) has just released a convertible bassinet/crib/toddler (or day) bed. The pieces have rounded corners, giving it a softer feel. And Nurseryworks has a new crib with spindle legs that give its modern look a traditional twist.

More Eco-Friendly Offerings: And To our delight, we'??re seeing companies being more eco-conscious than ever. More furniture lines feature sustainable wood and the list of organic bedding companies continues to grow (Q Organics, Pixel Organics), along with brands that have added organic lines to their offerings (like Dwell Studio).

Vintage Glamour: And the celebrity baby world has seen a renewed interest in the '??vintage glamour'?? look. Both Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Lopez have designed their nurseries to be classic and elegant, with chandeliers and detailed cribs. Colors are warm and rich. (No pun intended!)

Q. How can parents make the nursery an integrated room that flows with the rest of their home's interiors?

Today, parents aren'??t limited to nursery furniture and décor that screams '??baby'?? '?? if you have a contemporary style home, there are a number of companies (Nurseryworks, Netto Collection, LittoKids, ducduc, Oeuf, the list goes on) that offer beautiful, modern pieces. If your home is more traditional, there are gorgeous pieces from companies like Green Frog Art, Bratt Décor, Bonne Nuit (Angelina'??s reported choice for Vivienne and Knox) that look like they would fit in your living room!

Q. Who are some of your favorite kiddie designers right now?

We'??re crazy for product at The Cradle, and there'??s a lot to be crazy for right now. We love all of the designers we mentioned above and I personally love the new additions to the lines at Bloom, Serena & Lily, and Wall Art by Oopsy Daisy. Our latest find is a new company called Muu who offers modern pieces with interchangeable panels (different designs, optional personalization) '?? they'??re eco-friendly, too!

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