Though the natural parenting spectrum ranges from slightly crispy (hooray for eco-conscious disposable diapers) to über crunchy (elimination communication all the way), you don’t have to fall anywhere on that spectrum to appreciate local businesses and non-toxic baby products. Before you click on that free two-day shipping option, check out our top picks for “green” baby shopping throughout San Diego county.
Photo: Ariel Dolfo Photography
This cozy little shop tucked under the Normal Heights sign is owned by Brianna Fanelli, who not only advocates safe babywearing but gives back to the community through outreach programs that help families get their hands on a baby carrier. At Buddha Baby you will find an impressive selection of ring slings, wraps, and buckle carriers, plus you can walk away from your baby carrier purchase armed with confidence and knowledge since all of the employees here are certified babywearing educators.
You’ll also find an array of cloth diapering supplies, locally made goods (like kid’s sunglasses, wooden toys, soft-soled moccasins, teething necklaces, baby clothes and more) as well as natural and anti-plastic products (like teething remedies, rubber pacis, glass baby bottles, silicone toothbrushes, and stainless steel children’s dishware). If natural parenting topics like baby-led weaning, cloth diapering, and babywearing have your head spinning, fear not! Brianna offers several free and reasonably priced parent and caregiver educational classes that are held on site. Click here for a calendar of events.
Favorite Brands: Sloomb, Luludew, Ro.Sham.Bo Baby, Hape, Natursutten, Tula, Sakura Bloom
Insider’s Tip: Don’t miss their free Mother’s Tea every Friday at 11 a.m. Also, it’s street parking only, so plan accordingly.
3342 Adams Ave
San Diego, Ca
Babies in Bloom
Disappointed with the lack of natural birth options for North County parents, owner Rochelle McLean opened a stand alone birth center after spending several years running her successful baby boutique. Located in the same building as the birth center, the boutique offers products for new moms in addition to eco-friendly goodies for babies. Stop in now for a great selection of breastfeeding gear, nursing bras, tanks and natural body products. For babies, you’ll find popular brand cloth diapering systems, amber teething necklaces, wooden toys, organic cotton layette clothing, and more.
Babies in Bloom also happens to be the only Clek retailer in the county. (The shop does carry some of the seats in stock, but the staff can also place an order for you if what you want isn’t in store.) Rochelle herself is a certified lactation consultant, childbirth educator, and doula. On staff, she has a certified car seat installation technician as well as certified babywearing educators. As for classes, sign up or stop in for everything from Cloth Diapering 101 to Baby Storytime to Mommy and Me yoga. Click here for a schedule of events.
Favorite Brands: Green Tones, Honest, Grovia, BumGenius, Milkbarn, Cake Lingerie, Solly Baby
Insider’s Tip: The boutique and birth center are located in an area with many other medical offices, so don’t be alarmed if you think you’ve made a wrong turn. There’s plenty of parking in the lot.
1948 Via Centre
At this shop, owner Meri Brice seeks to create a shopping experience based on building community with other families. Stop in to find a treat for your little one or to attend one of their special events held throughout the year. Dads can look forward to a Father’s Day event coming up in June, and anyone in the family can join the before-hours wellness event series held right in the middle of the store. While our first two picks focus on gear for babies and toddlers, this coastal boutique has a lot to offer older children as well. Check out their wide selection of fresh and modern clothing, shoes, and accessories.
Babies get special pampering with their beautiful collection of organic cotton layette clothing and blankets. You’ll love the endless options for organic cotton teethers, rattles, dolls, and animals — toys you can feel safe about your baby chewing on for hours! If you’re shopping for a gift, Magical Child offers a variety of unique American- and European-made toys, many of them crafted from sustainable materials. Don’t miss their large selection of puppets, dress-up clothes, and other items for imaginative play.
Favorite Brands: Uncle Goose, Tea Collection, Haba, Under the Nile, Baby Bum, Hazel Village
Insider’s Tip: You’ll find plenty of parking at The Lumberyard. You can’t see the shop from the street, so park in either lot, and head toward the two-story building. The shop is on the bottom level.
Honorable Mention: Global Enfant
Although this shop no longer has a brick and mortar location, still based in San Diego, they are through and through a local online business specializing in green and organic products for mothers, babies, and children. Visit Global Enfant online to purchase popular baby carriers, cloth diapers, organic bedding, and more.
Favorite Brands: Ergo, Beco, Boba, Imse Vimse, Wean Green, EcoLunchBox, Klean Kanteen
Insider’s Tip: Red Tricycle readers can take 6% off their order of $25 or more through the end of June. Just use code SOCAL 2016, and get free shipping on all U.S. orders!
Are you a free two-day shipping kind of shopper or do you prefer a more personal shopping experience at local boutiques?
— Amanda Freerksen