Ok. I’m going to take a really deep breath, and then spout a ton of my favorite things at you: mobiles, modern shapes, non-sickening characters/colors/patterns, no annoying music boxes, gentle motion, handmade goodness, and artistic license all rolled into one great category: mobiles. I’ve been gathering mobile picks for Birdie’s room since before she was born – so that’s over 18 months now – and I still can’t pick just one. Currently we’re using a very old, well-loved mobile I inherited from my old design job. which is a little beat up. While I dither (maybe I’ll choose one by the time she’s 18 years old?) I can share with you some of the top contenders. Before we dive in, let me remind you of three very important rules when it comes to mobiles for kids (particularly babies and toddlers):
- The generic musical mobile that clips to your crib from Babies R Us is only good until your babe is 5 months old (when they begin to pull up and reach out for things). I say it’s a waste of money and (usually) bad design.
- The best mobiles for babies have graphics or flat shapes that face your child – they’ll be lying underneath it, contemplating the universe. So all the cute mobiles that hang horizontally are better suited for older kids room decor. And, as I mentioned in this post on black and white graphics for babies, black and white baby mobiles are NOT for the crib, because they stimulate babies. Use B & W mobiles like this Wimmer-Ferguson Infant-Stim Mobile over your changing table.
- Remember, of course, that most mobiles will have to hang very close to the ceiling to keep curious toddler hands from reaching them.
- (And the best all-around mobiles for all ages goes to the classic: Flensted Mobiles – see the bunnies and the rainbow mobile in the images here!)
The first five picks – shown up above from left to right, top to bottom:
- Marine Mobile series from Puka Puka: These handmade beauties ship from Australia and feature the most amazing color combinations and gentle translucency. Also, check out her new felt ball series!
- Frazier & Wing Mobiles: When I first saw these, I was a little awestruck – such a simple concept but completed with such perfect results. Plus, so many great combinations of shapes and colors are available.
- Birds of a Feather Mobile: Love the combination of wood and diecut shapes. This is the option that fits both my love of modern design and flora and fauna.
- Salty and Sweet Oh Deer Mobile: You’ll laugh out loud at some of the choices from Salty and Sweet, not all of them are, er, child appropriate. But it’s that range that lets you know that even the ones that are kid-friendly are uber-hip, and gorgeous to boot.
- Flensted Mobiles Circular Bunnies: Though every Flensted is a classic, I’m partial to the bunnies because of two things – translucency and the amazing shapes repetition. Those bunnies tumbling through the air are just too damn cute.
The last five picks, shown above from left to right, top to bottom:
- Butterfly Mobile: The most traditional of my picks, I first fell in love with this mobile while lying on the table of my Cranial Sachral Therapist. These little butterflies catch the slightest breeze and are very very mesmerizing. Plus, Birdie loves them too.
- Djeco Envolee Coloree Mobile: I love almost everything Djeco makes – their illustrations and colors are spot-on. The added complexity of all the mobile’s extra pieces add to the joy. I also wrote about their traffic edition.
- The Bette Mobile – I love the shapes of this one. Though the colors pictured are a little expected, you can customize the prints and patterns completely, and all those shapes spinning around above a crib would be beautiful.
- Flensted Spectrum Mobile - Yep, Flensted Mobiles are so good they’re listed twice. But this mobile is such an iconic shape – taking after the great Alexander Calder – that I had to include it. Especially after CB2 apparently discontinued the other affordable Calder Mobile knock off. Sigh.
- Tissue Poms - Not technically a mobile, I still say buy a set of 5 tissue poms in your own custom color choices, hang from the ceiling, and my work here is done.
- And as a little bonus, if you need some make-your-own inspiration, take a peek at this minimalist (and easy) idea from an earlier post.
What’s your favorite mobile for your kid’s room? Add to the list in the comments below!