Monthly Archives

November 2015

BABY & KIDS FASHION

Printspiration: Fall Floral

November 24, 2015

The holidays are here, and they sure are full of color! For this month’s Printspiration, I’m showing off a fun, colorful Fall Floral. I will be the first to tell you how much I love wearing dark fall colors (a.k.a. BLACK). But as timeless as those dark fall colors are, I also believe that fall deserves just as much pop as spring and winter! That was the real drive behind the festive print below. Enjoy!

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Prinspiration

Prinspiration

Prinspiration

Katherine Sig

 

BABY & KIDS

10 Tips for Capturing Holiday Photos

November 18, 2015

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! To many that means sweet treats, holiday decor, whimsical music, gifts with over-sized bows and everything jolly, but to me it means an opportunity to enjoy a side passion of mine. Most of you know me as Mud Pie’s Baby Designer, but I have a hidden talent aside from designing over-the-top Christmas outfits…that’s right, I LOVE taking photos. From portraits of friends and family to places and lifestyle shots, I am always looking to capture moments that turn to memories. And what better time of the year to do just that?

One of my favorite purchases – well besides my princess poodle, Olive – was my camera lens, a Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L. It has brought a recollection of the best moments throughout the past years.

It’s the season to gather your family, and dress your kids up in a delightful outfits (even if they “don’t wanna”) for that perfect holiday photo. The digital world has turned this event into a hot trend. With that being said, I want to share my passion, and 10 tips for capturing holiday photos!

1.    FIND A CALM AND RELAXED ENVIRONMENT
Keep the room comfortable.  Kids get easily distracted when they are in a space they aren’t familiar with, so pick a comfortable spot.  Make sure the location is kid friendly—put away anything you think a kid could get into!
2.    HAPPY KIDS = HAPPY YOU
Make sure to schedule the shoot during your kid’s happiest time. It’s not a good idea to schedule a photo shoot with a stranger during nap or eating time.   Make sure the child is well rested and has a full belly.  This seems like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised to see how many people end up scheduling the shoot during nap time and then complain when it doesn’t work out.
3.    COME PREPARED WITH SURPRISES
I have a small checklist I go over before I leave for a baby shoot. These items are MUSTS when photographing kids.  Always, always, always bring bubbles… the kids love them!  I also ask the parents to have their favorite toys handy- just in case.  I hate to say it, but bribery works.  Come with a stash of cookies or lollipops… it works every time.
4.    HAVE AN ASSISTANT
Bring a friend or ask the mom to have someone on stand-by to help out.  Although we want mom there for the breakdowns, it’s not always a good idea to have her there during the shoot.  If a kid gets nervous they will cling to mom.  It’s best to start in a room away from the camera and then distract the kid from their mom.
5.    CHOOSE YOUR OUTFIT WISELY
It’s important to choose a cute outfit but nothing that outshines the kid.  Here are some of my favorites Holiday outfits from Mud Pie!

Mud Pie Kids Outfit

Christmas Car Footed One-Piece | Santa Tunic & Legging | Christmas Longall | Ribbon Tree Tunic & Legging
Reindeer Jumper & Tights | Tunic & Fur Legging SetSanta Tutu One-Piece

6.    DON’T HAVE HIGH EXPECTATIONS
They are kids. They won’t always act the way you think they will.  It’s okay. Better luck next time.
7.    PICK GOOD LIGHTING
Natural lighting is the best.   If possible, choose a spot with a large window where a lot of natural light comes in or take the shoot outside.  I prefer when it’s cloudy, so everyone is not squinting and eye colors pop.  If you happen to schedule the shoot on a cloudy day the pictures will turn out even better.
8.    MAKE THEM SHINE
Don’t forget PROPS!  Although the kids are cute by themselves, props add a little dimension to the shoots.  Here are some of my favorite holiday props from Mud Pie.

Mud Pie Props

Pom Pom Hat and Reindeer Hat are Sold Out.  A similar option is below.

Striped Glitter Dot Leggings | Cookies For Santa
Santa Stocking & Hat Set | Holiday Daddy & Me Bowtie Set | Red Organza/Grosgrain Bow  | Knit Tree Hat

10.    PICK SOME GOOD JAMS
Kids love to dance, clap and sing along.  I  make sure to always bring my iPad and a speaker to all my kids shoots.  Some of the songs that get the kids smiling are… Uptown Funk, Call Me Maybe and Shake It Off.
10.    BE PATIENT
Some shoots take one hour some four.  Be patient. It will pay off!

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Good Luck and HAVE FUN!

sliceofpiesignatureToday only, when you order $75 or more on our website you get a FREE 2015 Ornament Frame.  You must add the frame to your cart and use the coupon code ORNAMENT.

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FASHION

Retailer Spotlight: A. Dodson’s

November 11, 2015

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During the season of thanks, Mud Pie is grateful for those who have stood behind us over the years: our 16,000 retailers. They continue to take pride in the brand as they display Mud Pie throughout their stores. We are welcoming a new initiative to show thanks to the back bones of Mud Pie. A handful of times throughout the year we will spotlight a retailer on the blog and on our social media channels.

This month we’re saying thanks to A. Dodson’s – a southern charm store with a side of urban grit based out of Virginia. Opened by Alison Dodson Anderson in 2003, the retail store now has three locations in Norfolk, Suffolk and Virginia Beach, VA.

MeetAlison

Before we get into the delightfully inspiring interview, we want to talk about a little something special to A.Dodson’s. The store has been nominated is one of the Quarterfinalist for Independent Small Business of the Year Award, and let us just tell you…Anderson and her team pour their hearts into the local communities through the stores Round Up Program (more information below). If they are honored with this award, the store is putting the cash prize right back into the community, standing behind its belief that if “we win, you win” mentality.

Vote A.Dodson’s November 23-December 13

CLICK HERE TO VOTE A.DODSON’S

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Did we mention how fun it was to interview Anderson and her team? So much cheer and joy for what they do each day! And boy did they have Mud Pie smiling the whole way through. Thank you A. Dodson’s for kicking off our retailer spotlight initiative! Enjoy!

The Interview:

What inspired you to open a retail store? “Retail is in my blood.” Anderson grew up playing in her grandfather’s general store. Her mother also owned an Antique Store that she spent most of her childhood in. After growing up around family business and retail, Anderson moved to New York City and began working for brands like Anthropologie. The city and industry, combined with her childhood, inspired Anderson to venture out on her own retail journey. She decided to move back to Virginia in 2003 where she would create a local retail shop that would serve the community close to her heart.

How many employees does A.Dodson’s have? “About 32 as of this morning.” A. Dodson’s normally ups its numbers during the busy holiday season. The store appreciates all of their teams’ hard work. Some key players include: Rachel – Marketing Director; Amy – Creative Director; and Lexi – Executive Assistant

Describe the feel of A.Dodson’s. A. Dodson’s mission is to offer a transformative experience by touching all five senses. When a customer first walks in, the store offers them toffee that people say they travel miles to taste. There are candles lit to enhance smell. The touch sense is ignited as customers feel the fabrics, textures and products. A. Dodson’s has created an atmosphere that makes customers fall in love, which in turn betters the shopping experience. Many will linger in the store for hours and walk multiple laps because they are invited to a charming and rustic-chic atmosphere – the interior is hypnotizing!

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Tell us about the Round Up Program. The Round Up Program began from requests for donations and gifts. Anderson felt like this method wasn’t going anywhere for the store, so she thought she would initiate a program asking customers if they would like to max their change to go towards a donation. The thought to “Take Less, Give More” is the heartbeat that drives the program. When the customers “Round Up” their total at checkout, the store matches their gift and presents the donations to local missions, selected by fans each month. 4 years, 54 non-profits, and $43,194.50 later, what began as “Round Up” has transformed into an awarding lifestyle.

Click here for more information!

Round-Up

What is your favorite Mud Pie item? “Too many items to pick just one!” The Anderson Dress is her go to piece. Anderson believes it is flattering on anyone and has the perfect fit. Also, the Fall 2015 blanket scarves. For Spring 16, Anderson is looking forward to the Chambray Shirt Dress. As a store, they believe that the March of Dimes baby socks are the “best fitting sock ever!”

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Top selling Mud Pie collections? There is not just one collection – Mud Pie is across the whole spectrum. Anderson feels that the more they carry, the better story they can tell with it. To mention a few, the clutches and handbags are always a huge hit. The mango wood boards are also a hot item.

What ignites your passion for retail? “Always the customer!” Anderson lives, breathes, sleeps and eats retail. The customers experience ignites her. In more recent years, the Round Up Program has furthered that passion.

What is your escape when you want to create new visions for your store? Going to markets and seeing product gives Anderson new visions. She and the team are constantly attending market and shows from Dallas to Vegas to NY and beyond! Anderson is also inspired when she walks the streets and feels the atmosphere in different cities. She believes that getting out of your element and feeling slightly uncomfortable in a foreign place is a great means of inspiration.

What is your go to item in your own closet? BedStu Boots! (available at the store). Those plus leggings and cozy tanks – year round staples!

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Your favorite style tip? Anderson’s niche is classic, chic lifestyle. She believes in making every day life, from home to fashion, functional. She relates to outfits and decor that moms can easily throw on and wear. Having kids of her own, she knows the importance of functionality.

Dream vacation? Motorcycling through Vietnam with her husband.

What is your dream job? “I’m living my dream career.” Anderson wakes up doing what she loves every day, but as a kid she dreamed of being an Olympic Jumper. She still holds her passion for riding horses close to her.

Get even more of A.Dodson’s:  Shop Online // Facebook // Instagram // Pinterest

And remember – vote A. Dodson’s for Independent Small Business of the Year Award!

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LoveMudPie Signature

BABY & KIDS

Prematurity Awareness Month

November 6, 2015

Prematurity Awareness Month

 

You can only imagine how much Mud Pie loves little ones. We are, of course, a company that specializes in baby and kids fashion! Let’s talk about something close to our heart…something that moms, dads, brothers, sisters, everyone should be aware of: premature birth.

About 380,000 babies are born too soon every year, making prematurity the #1 cause of infant death and disabilities in this country. Despite medical treatment in the United States, that gives the tiniest babies a better chance of survival, there are still numerous health challenges and lifelong disabilities faced.

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November is the month of thanksgiving, and we are so thankful for all the healthy and happy sweeties in the world! But November is also Prematuirty Awareness Month, and a time to give every baby a healthy life. March of Dimes and Mud Pie are committed to improving the health of babies by preventing premature birth, and you can help us by doing the following:

1. Purchase Mud Pie socks and/or soft headbands. For every purchase, we will make a 10 cent donation to the March of Dimes. Shop all socks and soft headbands HERE!

2. Go to facebook.com/marchofdimes to show your support for babies and families on World Prematurity day. Pledge Purple for Preemies at marchofdimes.org.

3. Support World Prematurity Day on November 17, 2015.

4. Come to Mud Pie’s Sample Sale, December 2-4, in Stone Mountain, Georgia.

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We believe in happy and healthy babies from head to toe. Thanks to the support of our retailers and customers, Mud Pie has donated $362,500 since 2013 to the March of Dimes – one dime at a time. We have committed to continue our partnership in 2016 with an additional minimum commitment of $150,000.

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