Our flagship store in the Virginia Highlands is a sunny spot where we get to create our little Blabla World. We’ve recently spruced it up a bit by taking out a wall and adding a new checkout counter! It really changes the whole vibe of the shop. If you’re ever in the neighborhood we hope you’ll stop by and see us!
In Atlanta, Spring has Sprung, along with a lot of pollen! Inspired by the lovely weather and our new grass pillows and play pads, we wanted to fill our Spring window with bunnies, flowers, and, of course, grass!
We always hope to create a whimsical experience, and we want our windows to reflect the fact that our products are hand made. For this window, we used larger-than-life grass blades, and some groovy 70’s flowers, each hand cut, and hand painted, one by one by Laura in our design studio. The minute you walk into the store you feel like you’ve shrunk to ant size and are in the middle of an undulating grassy field.
To add to the Spring Fever we included a few of our favorite bunny dolls, jumping and hopping. Giant Pierre holds our Pierre Rattle and our “Peekaboo, Pierre” baby board book, which makes the perfect addition to any Easter basket!
At least twice a year, we undertake one of our most fun enterprises at Blaba…
The Catalog Shoot! I (Susan here!) thought I would share the goings on from behind the scenes of our most recent happening.
Once a new collection is created and the products are finalized, we start thinking about how to create lifestyle photos for them. The rainbow pillow and jumbo rattles from our Spring 2017 line are quite graphic and we thought situating them in a 70’s decor would be something fun to do.
Susan: We created a mood board with Kristen Bach our photographer and this inspired the thinking for acquiring props and wardrobe. I always see it as a treasure hunt to create a feel for the photographs. What could be more fun than looking online for vintage kids’ clothes? For this shoot, the fun search for 70’s kids’ fashion and accessories was underway! Kristen’s props and styling are always inspirational! One of the favorite aspects of working with her is to see what she comes up with. Slinky glasses. Roller Skates. 70’s gym shorts.
Kristen: Throughout the year I collect pieces that I find from thrift and vintage shops that I know could work with Blabla’s shoots. Sometimes it takes just one prop to inspire a shoot. I have a growing collection to choose from. I have found you can never be over-prepared.
Arriving at the farmhouse where the shoot was to take place, we found Kristen putting last minute touches on painted backdrops.
Kristen: I went to art school for drawing and painting so at my commercial shoots I can’t help to take part in the styling and curating of all of the visual elements that go into each shot. This shoot I wanted to have a fun pop of pink in the background so I painted a simple pattern on a sheet of backdrop paper. I feel that the company Blabla pays so much attention in their handcrafted goods that the attention to detail should never be overlooked.
The models show up. The kids aren’t professional models. Kids of friends, kids who come into our store, or Kristen’s shop in Athens, GA, Treehouse Kid & Craft, The kids for this shoot were fantastic! This Mom Jana (wearing bell bottoms totally dressed the part) was a real help in getting the model’s hair just right, teasing it for that 70’s big hair.
This model Josie actually got a bad splinter from the rough wooden farmhouse floors and was off to the doctor straight from the shoot. She was a trooper while in front of the camera!
We pulled baby girl wardrobe for this beautiful baby based on a photo of its face, not getting crucial gender info, so had to nix the pink tutu’s on the set. Fortunately, we had unisex onesies for Henry.
Part of Kristen’s talent is her ability to work with the little ones. She is always super patient with the kids.
She comes prepared with camera, styling props, reflector, snacks, water, and usually supplies the models too!
Her daughter Maypop, who has been a face of Blabla since she was 2 years old, just turned 7. We kinda want her to stop growing up! But truly a pleasure to see her grow into a beautiful young girl, and always a character in front of the camera.
Kristen: Since we have been working together for 5 (!!!) years I love seeing the growth in my work and in Blabla as a company. When I started photographing for Blabla, the product line was mostly just dolls and a couple of hats and booties and now the collections have grown so beautifully! I love seeing small companies grow and being a part of the magic. I think it is a perfect match. I love working for a company that will entertain some of my silly and colorful ideas, that is where the magic happens!
Because of the recent devastating floods and landslides in Peru, over 90 people have lost their lives, more than 110,000 Peruvians have been displaced and many hospitals and clinics have been destroyed.
Thankfully our artisans are ok, but our hearts go out to all the families in the hundreds of towns, villages, and cities that have been affected. From now through April and May, 20 percent of the profits from the sales of our alpaca dolls, Machu and Picchu, will be donated to Save the Children Peru, a charity with whom Blabla Kids has had a long relationship. Purchase from our website from now until the end of May and 20% will go directly to Flood Relief through Peru.SavetheChildren.org