Hello Happy + Bright!

Hello June. Hello sunshine. And, hello HAPPY + BRIGHT! It’s an oh so big day in our shop Mej Mej and Cathy Heck Studio … because we are super excited to introduce you to our newest collaboration with the wonderful creative team at Primitives by Kathy. HAPPY + BRIGHT is arriving in shops throughout the summer!! We have been working on this exciting collection for months, and lots of thoughtful consideration has gone into every single product. The goal for all of us was to create a big baby and child collection with different mini-collections that could all be displayed together. We began with the much loved themes of Galaxy, Under the Sea and Woodland Wonder.

Each theme is handled with a different art style. This has been a true mother-daughter project. Sometimes Julianna (artist daughter) would draw the character and Cathy (artist mom) would stitch the character. Sometimes, Cathy would draw the character, and Julianna would build the repeat pattern. And often, Cathy and Julianna would Skype to brainstorm new ideas. Here we are (below) sketching and skyping. 1) Jules trying a neutral coat of gouache on the Woodland bear. 2) Cathy experimenting with pen-and-ink linework for the Galaxy bear  3) Cathy and Julianna matching colors from Texas to Virginia, before they are off to the artisans in India and then back to the team in Pennsylvania! It’s so interesting to think that one little product is touched by so many creative hands.

We started with a sophisticated neutral color palette that could be used with a different emphasis for each theme. The aesthetic of the entire collection is modern and fresh, with a dash of Scandinavian design. Even though we are originally from Texas, Julianna’s husband is Danish, and we have loved the inspiration that Jules shares every time she goes to visit family in Copenhagen.

Although the Happy + Bright collection includes gift choices from blankets to bibs and toys to totes, our first introduction is all about PILLOWS. Contoured pillows, embroidered pillows and milestone pillows are beginning to arrive in shops across the US, and as you know, pillows are THE EASIEST way to add a pop of color or an accent of fun to any space. Plus, they are easily changed if you want a new look, or the sippy cup spilled one time too many. Here are some peeks of a few from each group. First up: the Galaxy gang, with the sun and the moon and a very dependable astronaut bear.

And below is one of our favorite embroidered pillows. It’s the solar system (in order)! It’s stylish and educational all at once, and it easily moves from nursery to toddler room … and we even love it thrown amongst our living room pillows. We don’t even have to ask Ms. Google, “Which planet is closest to the sun?” because the answer is right there on the sofa.

The next mini-collection takes us Under The Sea, a go-to theme for families, whether they live near the sea, or in the mountains, or on 57th and 3rd! We created all the pieces for this group with transparent luminous watercolor. This style is a favorite because the hand of the artist is evident, and it’s a perfect medium for illustrating water, waves and sea creatures, especially merry mermaids.

The third themed group is based on one of our best-selling collections for Mej Mej, Woodland. For this magical forest, the characters are modern, but not hard-edged. Julianna created the originals with hand-painted gouache for a friendlier feel. For this collection, we included embroidered designs on a natural linen-cotton blend, as well as soft elegant cotton velvet. This group works well with popular gray and white children’s spaces. And it’s so versatile … it can go boy or girl, modern or classic, botanical or boho!

And all 3 collections include milestone pillows that are must-haves for Instagramming mamas. #adorable #theygrowtoofast  Each pillow comes with a set of changeable banners which tuck handily in a zippered pouch on the back of the pillow, and then easily tie to the front for the next big moment to share with all of your baby’s fans. Tip: you might send this link to the new grandmas, because they will do anything for more pictures of their newest little grand baby! (I know this because I am one!)

So that’s a little peek at the pillows … we hope you see some perfect unique gifts for your next baby shower or gift-to-self. And if you can’t find them in your favorite local gift or baby shop, we have a limited number that you can order from our own online shop Mej Mej. We can’t wait to see which are your favorites. We hope you’ll share your pictures by tagging #shopmejmej … whether your little one is feeling happy and bright and ready for a pillow fight … or thoughtful and dreamy and ready for a little nap.

And keep an eye out in a few weeks for our next Happy + Bright First Friday: THE ORGANIZED BABY.. with lots of functional and adorable gifts for babies and all those who love them.

In the meantime, have a very happy (and bright!) month of June from Cathy and Jules and the Mej Mej family


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