Our blog.

We are changing the world. And now we are blogging about it. We hope you enjoy a glimpse of what we do and how hard we work to do it. We are also excited to introduce you to our fabulous retailers and customers.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

"Wear it!" Wednesday

Okay! Back to posting on Wednesdays!

This weeks "Wear it!" Wednesday post features the super-cute Michael! Michael is the son of Jen E. one of the wonderful moms writing for Mommas Review. (See their review of barley & birch here. Yay!)

But I mean, seriously, one look at Michael in that Cactus Tee and you immediately see that he might be one of the funnest kids ever. Am I right?

Michael loves anything that involves running, jumping, and climbing. So it's no wonder that his favorite animal is a monkey!

Thanks to Michael and momma Jen for sharing the pics! (:

Friday, June 19, 2009

An epiphany.

I had a major moment of utter gratitude yesterday. If you're reading this post, this is likely about you.

I never stop working. I work hard for barley & birch, so the line can continue to grow fast and keep changing the world. I work hard as a law student. And I work hard to keep my two lives separate and give both of them 100% of me.

It gets hard, I don't sleep, and I get crabby sometimes.

Yesterday was destined to be a crabby day. I have been averaging 4 hours of sleep a week this week because I am up late working with our new retailers in Japan and wake up early to rub elbows with Senators, cabinet members, and First Ladies.

I woke up yesterday at 5am to bake a pie for a contest at Miriam's Kitchen. I scowled nearly the entire time. I was too tired to shower, so I pinned some braids back and figured I could pass for Boho Chic. (fail.)

I lugged the pie in on a crowded commute and was late to work. Worked frantically all day, taking breaks to deal with barley & birch work. Was crabby about figuring out dress designs, where to get our lookbook printed, and our depleting inventory which we are not going to replace since we are releasing a new collection soon.

Stressed, I sent my soul mate best friend and best employee ever, Alia, a text that said "I need you to come to Bubble NY with me." She of course had already been planning on this and also said "I am lining up things for you while you are there." Crabby, I said, "Plz don't. I won't have time." To which she responded, "Oh, well, I think you have time for the Today Show." So I took a moment, paused, and wondered. I knew she would follow up with more details so I continued working like a maniac.

After work I headed to Miriam's on both phones the whole time-- invoicing on my iPhone while getting lookbook quotes on my personal cell. Hung up both as I walked into Miriam's to submit my pie and take part in the BBQ. People called and texted throughout the BBQ and I would duck away and respond and was grumpy again because I am always responding and always getting back with people and couldn't I even enjoy this vegan bratwurst please?

While there, I spoke with Jenn, Miriam's development and outreach guru. She mentioned that in response to some of my tweets on Twitter and a quick e-mail I had sent to Green America, a business group of which I am a part, they had received boxes of donations. Her appreciation touched me, but my brain was still crabby. Frazzled with all the things I had to do. We spoke about how I respect her nonstop dedication to changing lives and the fact that she fights what looks to be an endless fight. Me? I get to play with kids clothing and donate money and time and sort of feel like I help. But her and the crew and Miriam's-- they are the heroes.

My pie, pictured above, got 2nd place! (It looks a lot more burnt and ratty in the picture, I swear. It was made from scratch. E-mail for recipe.)

Head throbbing, I gathered my empty-but-still-gooey pie dish and left. I remembered that I had planned on speaking with Julie about her crew doing some work for us. Great work, Kyle. She had called and I had not answered. I call her back and we talk as I mosey around a park carrying a dirty pie dish. We talk about ideas for dresses, shorts, fabric, and dyes.

We hang up and I walk down to get on Metro and head home. Its 9pm. I have 18 unread e-mails from the last 40 minutes and I decide, for the first time ever, to not read them while on the way home. Best decision ever.

As I sat on Metro, I was overwhelmed with this sense of pure exhaustion. I was too tired to pull my bag strap up when it fell from my shoulder, I desperately needed a shower, and my hand was covered in pie remnants. Then, my mind went blank. And I almost started to cry. I had had a beautiful day and had been too busy being stressed to even notice it. When did I even become like this?

Yesterday was a great day! I woke up early and baked a pie from scratch (with cherries picked and canned by my family). I was chosen to do an IRL section for Hayden Hartnett and was told I might be on the Today Show in August. I got 2nd place in a pie contest! People I see as heroes told me that they are blown away with all I am doing to help them. And I am now working with an amazing woman who is changing lives and believes in our mission. The texts I received had come from our designer Jodie while she was at the zoo, sending pictures of animals I could tell she wanted to draw. It reminded me what an amazing thing it is that Jodie is one of my closest friends now. I received a call from my BFF from law school, confirming how the love-of-my-life makes his beans for tacos. I love that we are still close enough to call for things like that. I also received calls and texts from the love-of-my-life and family, reminding me I would not even be close to where I am now without each of them.

Some e-mails came from our newest retailer, Sprout San Fransisco, saying "You sent us different quantities than you listed on the packing slip..." (humiliating.) "...but it's okay. Its so much cuter in person! Please update the invoice to reflect the million mistakes you all made but don't worry about correcting the order." Okay maybe not the million mistakes part-- but how cool are they? I read an e-mail from our new photographer who is doing the photoshoot for our new line with not much time to prepare and fell in love with her energy all over again. I read e-mails from our new retailer in Japan, bcbasics, who has already placed a re-order! Wow! How neat!

I read a hilarious e-mail from Summer, owner of fawn&forest. She has one of the coolest stores and still finds the time to say "Great job on having hardly anything in stock! It shows a great response to your line!" as opposed to blocking my e-mails and removing the line from her site for constantly being sold out of more and more styles.

I received an e-mail from Bridget, who owns Wiggle Room, with a picture of her newest baby boy and it reminded me to e-mail her info for the model search we are going to do through her store. Her unending support means more to me than I can express.

In the other e-mails and tweets, I was reminded that I share beautifully friendly and casual and respectful relationships with hundreds of mom-bloggers (incredible women, I tell you), many retailers (even those that don't carry the line), our marketing company, and every other single person we work with.

I officially have no business relationships-- I have barley & birch-induced friendships. Isn't that amazing? I at one point had to ask a friend if it would be weird to invited them all to my wedding. Answer: yes. But I still might anyway...

So my new friends, thank you all for being so wonderful. You have no idea how much I look forward to speaking, e-mailing, texting, and okay, even tweeting with you every day. I truly adore you.


Thursday, June 18, 2009

"Wear it!" Wednesday

Hm, at our rate maybe we should just start calling this 'Wear it!' Thursday.

But, alas, this weeks 'Wear it!' Wednesday continues our streak of showing off the most beautiful kids in the UK. I mean seriously what is in the water over there?

Please meet Lily (in the Fishies Tee) and Ruby (in the Panda Tee). They are the gorgeous daughters of Abby, who owns the very cool Juicy Tots, an online kids boutique.

Its amazing how different children can transform the look of our clothing. And its also amazing how much we melt whenever we see kids in barley & birch!

Big thanks to Ruby, Lily, & Abby for modeling/snapping some pics for us!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

"Wear it!" Wednesday

This weeks "Wear It!" Wednesday features Jake! Jake is the son of Tze, the fabulous owner of Monsters & Munchkins, which happens to be barley & birch's first and only UK retailer.

Isn't he cute?

What's even cuter is that Jake has a twin sister Maya, who also loves monkeys. Whenever Jake walks by her when he is wearing his Monkeys Tee, Maya makes monkey noises!

That officially melted our hearts and we have been set on recruiting Jake & Maya to be our permanent models ever since. If only their mother didn't have her own incredible clothing line, conveniently named Jakeandmaya....

Monday, June 8, 2009

Have cute kids? Like to win things? Check out this contest!

We love to read cool blogs. We especially love to read blogs that have really cool people behind them.
Inhabitots is both! They have great reviews of great products (ignore that they haven't reviewed barley & birch yet) and have some of the sweetest (as in kind and as in super-cool) writers. Beth S. & Jennifer C. are our favorites.

Anyway, Inhabitots wants to see your eco-cute kids!! And they are offering you $50 and a free Inhabitots shirt just to show off your cute kids. And trust us, we have seen pictures, we know they are cute.

All you have to do is (1) sign up for their newsletter here and (2) leave a comment here that includes a photo of your kid doing any variety of eco-y things! (Hint: If you post pictures of your tots wearing barley & birch-- you are likely to get a little gift from us in the mail!)

So what are you waiting for? Head over to Inhabitots! http://www.inhabitots.com/2009/06/08/eco-cutey-photo-contest/

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

An introduction to the masterminds behind the line.

I'm using the term "masterminds" loosely.

Kyle and I always find it interesting to find out things about the people behind our favorite companies/bands/etc. So we figured it was about time to let our readers know a little about us.

For starters, this is Kyle. Her answers to the questions below will be in purple.
And this is me, Jodie. My answers will be in blue.

What do you want to be when you grow up?
President of the United States of America. No, for real.
When I was a kid I used to want to grow up and be a cartoon. I still kind of do....
If you could go anywhere right now, where would you go?
I'd head to surf at Tournaline in San Diego. The surf, the people, the sun-- you really can't beat it.
Scotland! Anybody live there? Can I crash on your couch!?

Can you make a cake?
Not a chance. From a box maybe? I am, however, very good at asking my friend Brandi to make them, since she can whip up the most delicious tasting cakes from scratch. Does that count?
I love making weird cakes for people, like Hello Kitty, Sushi, and the deathstar.

What was your favorite class in school? (Any grade)
Spanish in high school. My teacher was willd and crazy and came up with fun ways for us to learn. So after having her for 4 years I graduated from high school completely fluent and able to work as a translater.
I'd have to say my Senior design thesis class in college. As much as I thought I hated it at the time because of all the pressure and crazy professors, I really enjoyed making my idea come to life, and working with my models - who were beyond great.

If you could go back in time to meet any two people in history, who would they be?
Cesar and Jesus. I have a lot of questions.
John Lennon and Leonardo DaVinci.... I might have to send some questions with Kyle though...

What is the funniest dream you've ever had?
That I was in a serious, committed, loving relationship with Cesar Millan (Dog Whisperer). And I would go with him to rehabilitate dogs. This is recurring. And we make a great team.
I had this one years ago, but it was that one of my roommates brought a friend of his home that was recently turned into a zombie, and was trying to convince the rest of us that it would be like having a puppy. He was wrong.

So that's us in a nutshell. Feel free to comment/send any other questions you want us to answer!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

"Wear it!" Wednesday

Every Wednesday we are going to post photos of our happy customers sporting some seriously cool barley & birch threads.

This week, meet Sophie, William, & Roni! They were the first kids in the UK to get their hands on barley & birch pieces which makes them... trendsetters! And adorable.

The mother of these three cuties is the incredible Natalie, owner and designer at Sophie4Sophie, which makes a line of adorable dresses that can be worn from 9 months to 3 years!

Do your kids rock barley & birch? Send photos to hey@barleyandbirch.com

Monday, June 1, 2009

We have a blog! (GIVEAWAY!)

We are so excited to start blogging! Stay tuned for information on how to win some barley & birch goodies by supporting our new blog...

GIVEAWAY information:
Leave a comment with your favorite barley & birch piece and why you want it! 3 winners will be chosen at random at 5PM EST! (:

(Adding us as a favorite blog on your blog gives you an extra entry! Mention it in your comment.)