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On Parenting
Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 08/09/2011

The new ‘let them eat cake’ crib

“Let them eat cake,” nursery version: the Vetro crib.

Arriving just now in high-end children’s stores in a country that is riddled with fear over the economy is a $3,500 crib.

This crib is apparently worth its price because it is undeniably beautiful (though probably not as beautiful as what goes in it), made entirely of acrylic (Vetro means “glass” in Italian) and recyclable.
(Courtesy of Nurseryworks)

“Each piece is like a work of art,” said Traci Fleming, president of Nurseryworks, which makes the crib. Each will be numbered, and Fleming expects that the company will make hundreds of them because of the strong response the Vetro has received.

Although the Vetro’s price is shocking, especially now, especially this month, it seems to be part of a mini-trend in mini-goods.

Right now, we can watch tennis player Daniel Nestor showing off his Gucci diaper bag on the Tennis Channel (thanks to Daddy Types for the link). The Wall Street Journal recently chronicled the profusion of high-end fashion designers who have started children’s lines.

This ostentatious showering of wealth on babies and young children is, of course, not a widespread trend (though a recent New York Times story suggested that luxury good are flying off the shelves). In these rough financial times, coupon clippers, such as the one featured in The Washington Post this week, are more the norm.

Still, companies are not creating such, frankly, ridiculously priced merchandise in a vacuum. Fleming said she has witnessed a surge in sales of the company’s high-end nursery furniture, as well as for what she called the mid-luxury $600 to $700 price point.

Could it be that some affluent families that can’t afford adult-size luxuries are turning to pint-size ones? That would be the same reason why high-end lipstick sells so well in recessions (except that lipsticks have a longer life span than most baby goods).

Or could it be that our wealth distribution is so out of whack?

Either way, the see-through Vetro gives us plenty to gawk at.

By  |  07:00 AM ET, 08/09/2011

 
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