Children’s Party Suppliers (Decor and Food)

This is not a sponsored post*
This is an updated post, originally posted in October 2015

Questions on party supplies, especially helium balloons, frequently surfaced between parents in Lausanne. So I listed here what I know or had heard of, and included my own experience and favorite suppliers. This post was written with kids’ parties in mind, so no wine suppliers, sorry. Hope you’ll find this post useful nonetheless! 😉

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Balloons

Few balloons

For only a few balloons, you can go to Franz Carl Weber in Lausanne. From the info I heard, you can either bring your own balloons or buy from them. I heard that Manor in Lausanne center also had a tank but I haven’t tried it myself.

Up to 30 balloons

The helium tank from Coop Brico+Loisirs (photo below) has been my personal choice. It’s more economical as it’s smaller (2.2 liters for approx 20-30 balloons) and thus cost less (around chf40). The tank is “disposable” and according to the label the gas can be used up to 5 years from the filling date. I actually bought one on sale earlier this year (then it cost around chf27).

heliumtank-brico

I have used half a tank for my daughter’s birthday party this month and could keep the rest for later. Once emptied, the tank can be disposed safely on metal recycling bin at your local déchetterie. Finally, as there are many Coop Brico+Loisirs shops, it’s easy to grab a tank. It’s not big nor heavy, I put it in the basket under our Mclaren stroller for easy transport.

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Petit Toi – Decoration and Furniture Boutique for Kids

Disclaimer: Petit Toi is one of current advertisers on Lausanne Mom. However photos in this post are taken by myself (with permission) and all opinions are my own.


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If you have been following this blog long enough, you may know that I’m an interior design enthusiast. Last year I even showed you my son’s bedroom* when I finished decorating it. My Pinterest boards are full of house photos (including spaces for little people) and I get super excited whenever my favorite decor magazines 20 Private Wohnträume and Milk Decoration arrive in the post.

Naturally when Alejandra, the owner of Petit Toi, contacted me a few months ago about her upcoming store, I couldn’t wait to get there. Petit Toi finally opened its doors in late February. However due to illnesses in the house, I only managed to swing by on Friday.

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How glad I was to finally step inside – This store is a gem! So many lovely items, from custom made furniture to wall decal, desk lighting to pom-poms, from many many different brands. You can see that the selection was made very carefully.

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I have seen the paper origami lamp shades (pic above, left) before and thought it would look perfect on my daughter’s bedroom once she gets her own room. Glad to know where to find it in Lausanne!

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And this crib and dresser combination? With a Miffy lamp on top? Love!

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Not the color you have in mind? No worries, most (if not all) furniture in Petit Toi can be customized. As you can see in the photo above, there are many available colors so that you can order your own combination.

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The bunk bed in the photo above is fully custom made by a Spanish brand Asoral. To be honest, I’m not the type who like to order all furniture from the same company. But I agree that it would work perfectly for many, especially those with small or shared rooms. Alejandra offers free consulting for this brand and she showed me the options. I’m especially impressed by the many different sizes that would fit any size of room, either with high or low ceilings. And the huge hidden storage options are awesome!

Still in the photo above, on the right, you can see the “writing and activity books” from Minus. It was the first time I saw them, and I’m smitten! They are made to be filled by parents and/or grandparents with the children and come in different themes. I love this kind of activity books as they mediate communication between generations. On their website I saw that they now also have a few in English, so perhaps Alejandra can help you to get these ones.

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I really didn’t know whether I should be glad or sad that I didn’t need any kid furniture anymore. I think I would spend serious Swiss Francs in this store if I was creating a nursery or bedroom for the first time. And yep, no doubt I didn’t come home empty handed. See the poster in the photo above (on the right)? I had been looking for a French alphabet poster for a while now, so yeah, that one is now “home” 😉

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Then there were many many other adorable items, like these knitted dolls above…

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to wallpapers and posters (there were some that glow in the dark – how awesome)…

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to drink bottles, honeycomb balls, garlands, and clothes from the Swiss brand l’asticot.

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Alejandra (photo above) is originally from Colombia. She is married to a Swiss and they have a beautiful little daughter. We spent almost two hours chatting, about many things – being mommies, our children, how being away from family feels, and of course about the store concept. Alejandra is trained as designer, so that after many years working in watch and electronic industries, she finally came back to what she loves most: design. In this case design for little people. And how I’m glad! It is a breath of fresh air to see what she offers in the store. In Lausanne!

All items were carefully selected, are beautiful and made by local manufacturers from Switzerland and neighboring countries (France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Scotland among others). So that anyone who buys these items can be sure that the furniture and toys met the strict European safety standard and Fairtrade certification. They are also eco-friendly and ethical.

All these of course come with a price tag, especially the furniture. But considering all the quality stated above, the beautiful design and the fact that they use solid wood, I found the price to be fair. After all we know we’re not buying IKEA or Conforama here. The smaller items (decorations and toys) are very affordable. For example, the poster I brought home was priced at CHF19. So yup, this store is also a go-to for gifts.

And finally, Alejandra also offers decoration service and advise, birth registry, and in the near future will also do events for children as well as creating an online shop. Yay! So many awesomeness!

 

Petit Toi
info@petit-toi.ch
+41 (0) 76 407 04 79
Rue Mathurin Cordier 12
1005 Lausanne
https://www.facebook.com/petittoi

Monday: By appointment only
Tuesday to Friday: 10h to 18h
Saturday: 10h to 17h

End of 2013 Holiday Giveaways: Voucher from Paper & Party Love

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I think you’re going to really love me, as I managed to get awesome offers for Lausanne Mom’s end-of-the-year giveaways 😉 There will be at least one giveaway per week and here’s the first one to win!

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paperpartylove

If you have been following this blog for a while, you should know how I loooooove to decorate my kids’ birthday parties, and thus adore beautiful party items.

See the black & white polka dots paper cup below?

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I seriously NEED to throw a black and white polka dot party!

Ok, ok, enough about me and my parties. Let’s talk about YOUR party. Do you want to throw a beautiful party? With the help of Paper & Party Love, it’s gonna be easy. Take a look at the online store, and go awwww like me.

holidaycollection

I personally think that The Holiday Collection is not to be missed – Gold Confetti Napkins? Silver Glitter Polka Dot Wine Bag? And those Holiday Pinwheels? After the holidays are over, they would make fab decorations for a teenager’s party!

I’m a huge fan of printable party packs and had used many for our family’s parties. It’s so exciting to see the party printables in Paper & Party Love shop. The collections start from simple printable invitations that you can customize with your little one’s name and age, dinner party printables, up to the full pack of party printables in different themes (which include many items such as invitation, welcome sign, favor tags, cupcake wrappers, etc).

The owner of Paper & Party Love, Carla, also blogs. Check her blog for tips on decorating parties. There is also a facebook page that you can “like” and get notified when new products or special offers come to the shop.

And for the best part, there is a Paper & Party Love gift voucher worth CHF100 that one of you can win. To enter the giveaway contest, leave a comment on this post, with an answer to this question: “What is the most stressful part of organizing a party?”*

Comments are accepted until Sunday, 24 November 2013 at 11:59pm. One winner will be randomly picked by random.org and announced on this blog post.

Good luck!

 

*If someone asked me that question 3 years ago, I would say “choosing a venue”, as we used to live in a teeny tiny apartment – there was no way we could invite many people. Now that our house is more spacious, it’s not a problem anymore. But as my daughter is getting older, I always need to come up with “fun theme” and then “programs of the party”. That could be stressful, although in a fun way 🙂

 

**Images courtesy of Paper & Party Love


Winner announcement on 25 Nov 2013:

And the winner is:

winnerPaperPartyLove

comment #2 by Dina! Congratulations!

I thank all of you who participated and Paper & Party Love for the possibility to host this giveaway. It was a lot of fun! xx

Where I Shop: (for) My Son’s Toddler Bedroom

Update on April 28, 2013: The final bedroom is revealed! See photos below the original post!


A couple of weeks ago, I asked a question to Lausanne Mom facebook followers. I posted the mood board I made for my son’s bedroom and I asked if they would like to see a post with the list of sources for the furniture and decorations I used. I had 35 thumbs-up, so here’s the post.

Disclosure: A few of the suppliers here (marked with*) are affiliated with LausanneMom.com, in a way that when you click on the link provided and buy something from the store, a percentage of your purchase will go to support this blog. I hope you believe me that the products were chosen because I genuinely like and buy them myself!

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My son “B” is currently 21 month-old. We co-slept until he was 19 month-old, and now he shares a bedroom with his big sis. He has his own part of the room, and I’m trying to decorate it with his current interest — i.e. things that move (cars, trucks, trains, planes, etc). I also picked items that are not too child-ish, hoping that they will last many many years. Photos of the real room will be posted later as I am still working on it!

Here are the things that I selected for B’s toddler room:

  1. Bedding. I sew his pillow cases myself, using fabric bundles “Peak Hour” (designed by Kellie Wulfsohn for Riley Blake). Price around: $9/yard. Bought from this Etsy seller. B currently uses sleep sacks, so that pillow cases were the only ones I made until now. Later, I’ll do the duvet cover as well. For finished products, I found many cute bedding on vertbaudet.ch* (for car theme, search using key terms circulagogo or auto-city).
  2. Star pillow case. I’m in love with star shapes at the moment and I made B’s pillow myself. But these 2 pictured on the mood board are available from LaRedoute.ch* (star: cat# 8463140, road: cat# 8463182, CHF19.90/each)
  3. Desk light (used as reading/bedside light). From Conforama.ch* (cat# 9614, CHF19.95)
  4. Sock monkey. I made it myself for B’s 1st birthday present. Impressionen.ch sells cute white ones for CHF39.95 (it’s a Fair-trade, hand-made in Kenya with the name of the maker on it)
  5. Prints. I bough the left one from this Etsy seller. The right one taken from Wikimedia Commons and self-printed. Frames are from IKEA.
  6. Rug. I’m very much into black & white lately, and was very happy to get this wool rug from LaRedoute.ch* (60x110cm, cat# 6762905, CHF64.90). This is one of the non-baby items that I hope to last even to adulthood.
  7. Bunting. I sewed one myself. It’s also easy to make one from paper. For a store version, try Confettibox.ch or Cyrillus.ch. Just remember to hang it out of your kid’s reach, as it can suffocate if one gets tangled.
  8. Decorative plane. B’s was a kind gift from dilookids.ch for his 1st birthday. CHF35 (Note that this plane is not a toy and should be used as decoration only).
  9. Bedside table. I specifically looked for this one (Componibili by Anna Castelli Ferrieri for Kartell) as I love the look and I think the sliding doors work well for little hands. It’s from plastic but stylish enough even for adults, so that I hope this one will last very long. B’s was a second-hand scored on ricardo.ch, but Pfister.ch sells new ones (CHF98).
  10. Deer wall hooks. I bought B’s on mondo.ch when it was closing and thus on sale. Available on connox, EUR25.
  11. Crib-turned-toddler bed. From IKEA (similar to Hensvik, CHF89.95), with Vikare guard rail (CHF14.95).
  12. Vintage letter B. Bought from this Etsy seller. It shouldn’t be difficult to find any letter on Etsy.

So there they are. I hope it will show you that there are many places (on and offline) where you can shop for furniture and deco items beside IKEA 🙂 For bargains and second-hand, check anibis.ch and ricardo.ch, and you can also get coupon codes for many shops at i-reductions.ch. For more inspirations, follow my board on Pinterest.

Please let me know if you enjoy this post! Feedback is always welcome!

Update: I was asked about the sock monkey. Here’s the link to the tutorial I used.


Update on 28 April 2013:

I finally finished the room a few weeks ago, but didn’t have the time to take photos until recently. I have listed most of the items I used above (on and after the mood board), and below you’ll find more links for items that I didn’t put on my mood board.

How my son’s toddler bedroom looks like now:

broom1

I changed a couple of things from the original plan posted on my mood board above. I decided to use a yellow rug that we already have (from IKEA) instead of the black and white wool rug (that is now used in another room in our house). The reasons: I think it looks more colorful, and it’s cheaper and easier to clean in case my son makes mess on it.

I also changed the poster I intended to use with a blown-out poster of a copyright free photo file of a digger (unfortunately I lost the original link to the file. Once I find it again, I’ll link it here). The poster was printed via fnac (50x75cm, CHF15).

broom-side

I really love the side lamp (from Conforama, link above). It looks so cool and it’s fully metal so it doesn’t look cheap although it is! I didn’t realize that it is a touch lamp, which makes it very easy for my toddler to turn on and off. On the other hand, sometimes he plays with it by touching it non-stop and drives me crazy.

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The “zoo keeper” shirt is a vintage find on Etsy. The yellow cotton blanket was bought on clearance in Globus (CHF40). The dresser is from IKEA.

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The Dr. Seuss wall clock was bought from Amazon.com during our US trip last year.

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The wooden star was a Christmas ornament, bought from Zalando.ch on clearance, and I painted it black. The plane is from dilookids.ch.

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In case you notice, what I called my son’s bedroom is actually half a room, as he shared a bedroom with his big sister. My daughter has the left side of the room and my son the right side, that’s why you only see one wall side on the photos above.

Finally I would really like to hear from you. Could you please let me know if you’d like more post like this? I always make mood boards for every room in my house so it would not be difficult for me to do another “Where I Shop” post for other rooms in the house. Perhaps my daughter’s side of this bedroom? Let me know!

My Daughter’s 4th Birthday Party (A Gratitute Post to Our Sponsors)

This post is kindly sponsored by Confettibox.ch, Cake & Bake, and Hopscotch.ch.


My daughter turned 4 last Saturday and we threw a cookie-baking party for her and a few of her/our friends. We used printable L’il Baker party kit for the invitation, sandwich topper, and decoration. But I didn’t want the party to be too pink so that I inserted some greens here and there.

We were lucky to have sponsors for some very important party items. Estelle of Confettibox.ch was again very generous and sent me bunting, balloons, bags for goodies, candles and straws. I always love her stuffs as many of them are basic but so lovely. Some can definitely be re-used for next parties (one of the reasons I avoided ones with licensed characters). The bunting could later also be hung in my daughter’s bedroom. And the pink mylar number-4 balloons was perfect as a centerpiece!

The party started at 3pm in the afternoon so that we could keep the menu simple and most importantly, kid and parent-friendly. We had club sandwich, tomato-mozarella on sticks, Babybel cheese, mini cheese sticks, pistachio and some apples. For drinks there were peach ice tea and pink lemonade.

And of course we had a birthday cake.

I give you a closer look…

Isn’t it amazing? We luuuurved the birthday cake. It was baked by Melissa of Cake & Bake. I wanted a simple, elegant, cake, that fits a 4th birthday. I asked Melissa for a pink confetti cake, and boy how good it felt to get exactly what I wanted. The best part was that it tasted as good as it looks. Yumm!

As for the party itself, I told you we did a cookie-baking party. Here are some shots from the table where we gathered, rolled the dough, cut, baked, and finally ate the cookies. Fun fun fun!

At the end of the party, as expected, we got busy with birthday presents. My daughter loved her presents, but when I asked her the day after which thing of the party she loved the most, she picked her party dress! I couldn’t agree more. It was lovely and she received many compliments. The dress was a kind present from Victoria of Hopscotch.ch (and fyi, it’s currently on sale).

Finally, the goodie bags were given to the little guests. Inside were child-size baking tools (that I scored when Mondo.ch was closing, for only CHF2/set!) and a bar of (pink) Cailler chocolate. The pink and green bags came from Confettibox.ch.

I think everyone had fun at the party, especially the most important one: the birthday girl. I heartily thank all the sponsors for helping me create another memorable birthday party for my little ones. Thank you, thank you, thank you, lovely ladies! xx

This & That May-June 2012 – Week #22

Sorry for this late post. We had friends visiting from the Netherlands over the long weekend. I got very busy cleaning the house before, and having too much fun after, I needed 2 full days to recover 🙂 I hope you had a great, super sunny, long weekend, too!

Happy summer!

This & That May 2012 – Week #21

My Son’s 1st Birthday Party (A Gratitute Post to The Sponsors)

This is a sponsored post


My son turned 1 year-old on Sunday! Which coincided with Mother’s Day! Time to party, don’t you think? But as I have been job-less since last November and have been spending a good chunk of hubby’s salary to do our garden, I decided to look for party sponsors. Thank goodness that being a blogger, I’m surrounded by an excellent network of party suppliers, and all of them are mommies themselves 🙂

For the theme of the party, I chose “Sock Monkey”, as I hand-made a sock monkey as a present for my son. The first thing I did was to look for custom invites and party kit, which I finally purchased from Designing for Peanuts (the Etsy shop).

For decoration, I used the red and light blue from the welcome sign above. I contacted Estelle from Confetti Box, whom has been one of the most loyal and longest supporters of Lausanne Mom.

Estelle was super generous and sent many adorable deco items — balloons, buntings, paper lanterns, drinking straws, pinata, and goodies that I put inside the pinata. The pinata was awesome as it was possible to break it by beating as well as by pulling the threads under it. But we chose to let the kids beat it and it was a blast!

What is a party without cupcakes? Dina and Yasmin of Poppin’s jumped in. They made 2 different kinds of cupcakes, a custom banana-based (monkey – banana, got it?) with vanilla butter cream and their infamous black velvet. The cakes turned out incredibly lovely. I tortured the kids by displaying the cupcakes since the beginning of the party and not allowing them to eat them before everybody finished lunch and my son blew the candle 🙂

For the goodie bags, I filled each with a pocket-size activity book, an inexpensive bubble, a cookie and a healthy snack. The activity books were bought from amazon.co.uk. The bubbles were bought from Coop (only CHF0.80 each!) and I wrapped them with the bottle wrapper that came with the printable party kit. For the cookies, I already knew whom to turn to. To tell you the truth, I had been looking for an excuse to order cookies from a good friend, Nikki of Toute Sweet. She did not disappoint, of course! She took the sock monkey image from the party kit and baked the most adorable and tasty cookies.  As a bonus point the cookies also made a good conversation topic during the party. 🙂

The choice for a healthy snack was also easy. I am so happy that Katherine of Goodness Gracious agreed to sponsor, as her bio-organic fruit pouches are as healthy as they are tasty. I knew that with these pouches, none of the moms would complain that I gave the kids too much sugar during the party 🙂 FYI, GG pouches can be bought at Manor Food and specialty food stores.

As it was also Mother’s Day, I prepared goodie bags for the moms. Inside there were traditional body scrub and bath salt (that I brought from my recent trip to Indonesia), a cookie also made by Nikki of Toute Sweet, and lovely bookmark and tag sponsored by Liz of Forget-Me-Not. The Happy Mother’s Day tag was printed from this free printable file.

And, one of the birthday presents. I had been eye-ing this red plane (also below) to be used as a decoration in my son’s room. Susanne from dilookids was so kind to grant my wish! I’m so thrilled, and my son seems to like it, too, although he’s not supposed to play with it (yet). If you are looking for the perfect gift, or something special to decorate your children’s room, I can truly recommend the offers on dilookids!

We really had a great time and the boys really enjoyed themselves and keep talking about it! 🙂

Gwen, one of the mom guests –

I heartily thank all the sponsors and vendors for their kind help creating a memorable 1st birthday party for my son. I look forward for more collaborations with all of you mom entrepreneurs! And for the readers, please do check all the links as I’m sure you would like to know them!

XX

HGTV is looking for American homeowners living in Geneva and Vaud!

I am hugely pregnant (36-week!) and will move into a new house in mid July, so that my nesting hormones are on the rage. Every day (and night) I spend hours browsing interior decoration sites and blogs, and hunting vintage furniture. So when late last night an email from HGTV (American Home and Garden Television) popped in the mailbox, I almost thought my baby brain made it up. But no, it was really HGTV that contacted me.

HGTV is launching a new series that will feature stunning homes of American expats living abroad. And they asked me to spread the info to the American homeowners living in Geneva and Vaud.

This is what they wrote on the press release:

We’re currently looking for fun, outgoing, enthusiastic homeowners in Geneva, Switzerland

In each episode, the host will explore four homes looking for great design ideas and highlighting the value-added elements within each space. From interior design to the lifestyle and culture of the area, the homeowners will give viewers a first hand look at what it’s like to live overseas. This will be one of the most artistically shot programs on the network so don’t wait to be a part of this amazing opportunity!

So if you are an American with a beautiful home, you can apply to be featured in this program by sending an email with photos of you and your property to Katie Woolsey at kwoolsey(AT)highnoontv.com

And if you are selected, please let me know! I need some decorating advice for my new house 🙂

Nursery & Children Bedroom Collection from Vertbaudet

I have two posts about Vertbaudet this weekend. The first one is about their new nursery and children bedroom collection. They have really cute stuffs. Check them out — click here!

*Image courtesy of Vertbaudet.ch

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