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Expectant Mom's Resource Center Manufacturers' Websites SHOPPING MALL Product Features

Product Features

CribInfant Furniture

Great! You get the news from your doctor - you're expecting! Many emotions wash over you - joy, relief, excitement, fear. You also begin thinking about all those things you will have to buy to accommodate the little bundle of joy. "What do we really need? Which infant products are the best? Can we afford everything? The six page list of things you will have to invest their money in is overwhelming, but one of the items that rises to the top of the list as extremely necessary is...a crib!

There are several elements that go into making a good crib.

Quality Materials and Construction
Quality materials can make the difference between a crib which you'll want to return within two months (or less) or one that you and your family will use for 15 to 20 years without a single problem or complaint. Construction materials should be stained or painted hardwoods like maple, ash, beech or oak. Some metal cribs are also very sturdy and secure, but can be somewhat limited in styling. All finish materials must be lead free and non-toxic. These types of materials are essential both for overall stability of the product and for visual appeal, now and several years later. The overall stability and safety of a crib can be threatened by the use of inferior woods in the manufacturing process. Some of the problems encountered could be weak or warped slats in both ends and side rails or hardware that is not secure and subject to malfunction. More specifically, the weak or warped slats could break or become loose and the hardware could simply fall out making the crib both unsafe and nonfunctional.

Styling
A good crib is visually appealing, both in style and color. Many parents want a crib that they feel is unique or one that conveys their own personal style and tastes. Depending on the location of the store throughout the U.S., the popular styles could range from Colonial or Early American finished in oak, cherry or other dark wood stains to clean lined, contemporary or ultra-contemporary styles, finished in light maple tones with classic accent colors or hi-gloss white. Color is of key importance in the overall style and appeal of the crib. Most new parents are trying to coordinate the entire room, from furniture and bedding to wall covering and accessories.

Safety
It is no accident that cribs meet or exceed all safety standards. A quality crib manufacturer tests and retests its product constantly to ensure that each and every crib complies with the mandatory industry safety standards as set by The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) and the voluntary standards as set by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Cribs which meet these safety standards are certified by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers' Association (JPMA). "Although aesthetic appeal and price are key issues, as we work through the design process, they clearly take a back seat to product safety. We developed our own performance test procedures in the early 1970's — long before the existence of the ASTM structural integrity testing for cribs was developed and even before the mandatory crib standard was promulgated." says William S. Suvak, Executive Vice President, COO, Child Craft Industries, Inc. and ASTM Crib Committee Chairman. "Today, the first steps in our design process are to assure compliance with 16CFR part 1508 (mandatory crib standard) and ASTM F966 and F1169 (voluntary crib standards). From there, we are always on the lookout for any potential safety issues that may not be addressed by these standards." Cribs which have earned this very important JPMA certification are labeled accordingly and should be prominently displayed. Most educated consumers will buy only those products which are certified to meet all safety standards. Manufacturers who produce only certified products usually provide literature and point of purchase materials which can help educate the consumer and promote crib safety. Product safety is of the highest importance to today's consumers — particularly where their children are involved. Many specialty store customers look to the independent specialty sales associate as infant product "guidance counselors". This helpful guidance can help you now and through the years.


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