Sunday, May 16, 2010

Pattern Showdown!

The spring/summer season inspires gorgeous patterns in fashion, decor, and accessories. Baby and kids style is no different. Many of our favourite brands have brought it this season with exciting, fresh new patterns in diaper bags, carriers, baby books, etc. On the flip side, some of our favourite brands have not upped their game - they are resting on their proven patterns or they have introduced new patterns that aren't that awesome.

Here is Babybot's pattern scorecard:

The top of the pack is easily Petunia Pickle Bottom. PPB designers absolutely dominate the pattern playing field. Every year PPB has a gorgeous collection of patterns that are somehow even better than the previous year's patterns. How do they do it? PPB is clearly influenced by high fashion, seasonal trends, and personal style. They bring an elevated aesthetic to everything they design and they don't feel that mom should have to dumb down their style simply because they are a mom. From diaper bags to onesies and swaddling wraps - Petunia pickle bottom's patterns are beautiful, fresh and second to none.

There are a couple of brands who are killing it this season and are giving Petunia Pickle Bottom a good race!

1. Beco baby carriers are known for their incredibly ergonomic design but they also have major cache due to their eye-catching and organic (yes!) cotton fabrics and prints. This year, they came out with several new prints that introduce colour and hipness to the baby carrier world. They have topped their patterns from last season (although we miss the ultra hip deer argyle pattern!) and they remain uncontested as the most beautiful baby carriers out there!

2. Rag & Bone Book Bindery has created new patterns for their baby books and brag books. It is extremely difficult to find style centric, modern baby books but thankfully Rag & Bone has many options to choose from! These books are all impeccably made and the choice of cover styles will appeal to diverse aesthetic tastes.

3. Olli & Lime from the UK consistently offers a clean, simple aesthetic to their bedding and decor stylings. This year, they complimented their George and Billie lines (which are still extremely stylish and relevant) with their gorgeous new 'Charlie' line. They keep it neutral, fresh and avoid, pink, blue & frilly at all costs. Lovin' it! (Babybot will be adding the charlie line very soon - stay tuned!)

Our B-list is strong and have great showings in the pattern space. They got shut out of the A group because they haven't really upped the game with their patterns and have been resting a bit on their proven lines.

Skip Hop is our only B+ of the group because their patterns are still chic and we love affordable style! The graphic impact of their pattern collection can't be denied and they are stand outs in the diaper bag space.

1. Litto Kids baby bedding patterns are intricate, beautiful and whimsical. The colour choices are warm and rich and every detail of this bedding has been considered - it is refined! Litto Kids offers some of the most unique and interesting bedding out there and we love that it's not over-played. These patterns are a couple years old but they still stand up among today's crib bedding options.

2. Ok, we gotta talk about Dwell Studio. No one is saying it but everyone is thinking it...what the heck happened? Dwell came out with new patterns last fall and aside from the lovely 'Owls' pattern (ranked in our B category) the new patterns were not nearly as modern and fresh as some of the styles they dumped. They thankfully kept some of their proven patterns like Transportation which also ranks in our B category.

Some of Dwell's new patterns fall into the C category for several reasons. The Paper Dolls pattern has potential but the pastel palette just doesn't say modern. The Sparrow pattern is floral, ornate and busy. It's more classic which may have been the intent but classic is not what Dwell Studio is known for. Compared to Gio Lemon (which was dropped as a crib bedding pattern) these new girl patterns aren't nearly as fresh and modern.

Looking at Dwell's patterns as a whole - it's a solid C ranking on our scale. The pattern collection is not cohesive, there is a huge hole left by the loss of Motif Robin and the modern, graphic appeal that has differentiated Dwell for so long is just missing. Dwell Studio's home collection is stellar so we have high hopes for their next pattern refresh for baby & kids.


  1. This is awesome! Love the pattern showdown.

  2. Those Petunia Pickle Bottom Bags are AMAZING!! Great post!