Last week Belevation traveled to Kentucky, to the ABC Kids Expo, taking our place among the many companies exhibiting for the 1st time. The development of Belevation's maternity support garments is a mom and pop effort, but it was stunning to see the hundreds of mom innovators presenting their creations at ABC. Necessity is the mother of invention and the buck stops with mom, so she's on the front lines in the problem solving department daily. "Mom invented-and mom tested", from Atlanta, GA, was the Highchair Organizer, a cleverly stitched pouch that secures to the back of your child's highchair to hold all of those meal time essentials. Imagine knowing where everything is? Revolutionary!
Across the aisle from Belevation was BG Birthing Gowns by Cindy Lintel, a labor and delivery nurse from New York State. Inspired to make a more feminine version of the dreaded hospital gown, Cindy used her knowledge of the delivery process to create a graceful, versatile alternative for women. What a sweet and knowledgeable lady she is!
During the course of the four days at the KY Expo Center, Belevation bonded with our other neighbor Kemi, the designer of a new line of diaper bags inspired by African textiles, called House of Botori, based in Maryland. Kemi discovered that "although functional", existing baby products "always seemed to lack individuality." House of Botori is her response to that quest, as it honors her Nigerian heritage. Judging from the visitors at ABC, Kemi's colorful diaper bags will take their place among the most coveted baby shower gifts.
Then there was Dr. Jane of Tortle, mother of 4, who makes adorable baby hats in the most fashionable colors, but in her role as a neonatal pediatrician she educates parents about Flat Head Syndrome.
Positional Plagiocephaly, will effect "a staggering 40% of babies before age six months. Beyond the cosmetic issues, there can be trouble with binocular vision and long-term developmental issues."
According to Dr. Jane: "Positional plagiocephaly increased 600% in the last 20 yrs. due to 2 changes:" "1) In 1992 The American Academy of Pediatrics began its “Back to Sleep” program to reduce Sudden Infant Death Syndrome .(Incidence of SIDS have plummeted by almost 40%.)" "2) Infants are being placed in reclining carrying devices more than ever. Families on the go keep their babies in carriers, car seats, and swings for an extended time—frequently up to 20 hours per day."
Explore the Tortle site and google Plagiocephaly. Boy, this sure makes a case for more baby wearing; slings etc ... in your child's early months. Four amazing innovative mothers, each clearly with a lot to share for the benefit of others. If you want to fix a problem, definitely go ask a mom!
When I began researching Prenatal Yoga, it wasn't long before I learned about Jennifer More. Based out of San Mateo, CA Jennifer is a registered Yoga Alliance Vinyasa and Prenatal Yoga instructor, a certified doula, childbirth educator and a mother. Her passion for the benefits of prenatal yoga extends beyond the United States.
She has trained yoga instructors in Prenatal Vinyasa Yoga techniques in Peru, China, South America and numerous US locations. Her techniques have given yoga instructors the tools to modify poses as needed to incorporate pregnant women into their existing classes in a safe and effective manner.
She is the creator of several bestselling prenatal yoga DVDS which have received noteworthy mentions in The New York Times, Fit Pregnancy, Pregnancy Magazine and received the "Top Gear of the Year" award in 2007 from ShapeYou.com.
A perfect companion to our Maternity Yoga Pants, Belevation has decided to offer Jennifer More's Prenatal Vinyasa Yoga 2 DVD set on our online store. We love it because it provides the most flexibility for your yoga practice and can work around your busiest schedules and varied energy levels. One lucky Belevation Facebook fan will receive a complimentary copy during our November give-away. But don't wait till then to begin doing Prenatal Yoga. Enjoy!
A couple of years ago, Cheers actor John Ratzenberger, came through our southern county on a national bus tour for his television show, Made in America, which ran on the Travel Channel from 2004 through 2008.
The following short film was shown to the audience, in the old court house in Rock Hill, South Carolina. With textile machines of our own that no longer hum with the sweet sound of productivity, the issue hit close to home.
All of Belevation's production, assembly and components are made entirely here in North and South Carolina. In today's globalized marketplace, that makes us rather unique. Life as a dinosaur, is not easy though. Mom and Pops have been driven out of our quaint downtown's.
Big box stores have conquered the turf in the hardware, drug and office supply markets (to name just a few) all across America. And when you pick up most of the products in those cavernous buildings, you will be hard-pressed to find much still made in the USA.
As we watch our national trade-deficit continue to balloon, there are those across American trying to reclaim our manufacturing and retail past, like John Ratzenberger and folks in Oregon, at this cool Portland based buy local group.
In the past month, Belevation's US made production has been featured by several of these organizations. On the terrific Still Made in USA website, Belevation Maternity can be found under both the active wear and lingerie categories.
Stephanie, the sites webmaster notes that "The loss of American manufacturing jobs has meant hardship for families and entire communities. Many (domestic companies )are barely hanging on, and unless consumers make an effort to support them, the choice to buy American-made will be gone."
Consider what opportunities you have in your daily life to support local businesses and buy American products. By doing so, you are making a huge, positive impact in your community for our collective future.
Welcome to our Belevation Blog page. For a multi-tasking mom like me (and probably you), taking the time-out to write this Belevation Blog provides a perfect opportunity for reflection. Belevation products were not around during my pregnancy, nor was the Internet for that matter.
Remembering back to my special nine months (more than 20 years ago), I was definitely a seeker of information, as I still am today. So, I will joyfully do the research to make this Belevation Blog a useful parenting resource in this fast past world of products and information. Most special of all, is that my web designer, blog partner, tech source is the very same character who made me so violently ill for those first four months, and then got so comfy he didn't appear to have any plans of coming out at all. So treasure every