Fashion / Shopping

Dallas’ Own Tot Playhouse Makes Quiet Waves on Lovers Lane

Savvy Entrepreneur Knows What Celebrity Moms (and Fashion Lovers alike) Love

BY // 06.20.17
photography Hannah Hairston

In a quaint bungalow on Lovers Lane, champagne glasses clinked, and chocolate cupcakes circulated at The Tot Playhouse when the newly opened children’s boutique hosted two trunk shows for a day.

It’s the second retail concept from Dallas-based fashion and social-media entrepreneur Nasiba Adilova, who opened her first store, The Tot, as a smaller gift shop in Highland Park Village last year.

Both brick-and-mortar spaces arose from thetot.com, a wildly popular e-commerce site launched by Adilova and business partner Miroslava Duma in early 2016 to offer expert advice from celeb mothers like Gwyneth Paltrow, Rebecca Minkoff, and Elizabeth Chambers, plus an edited selection of parenting products.

The Tot Playhouse stocks eco-friendly essentials for mothers and little ones (apparel, toys, furniture, et al.) from Bugaboo, Dockatot, Cybex, and Hatch, all of which are guaranteed to be free of toxic chemicals, dyes, pesticides, and other harmful ingredients.

In one room, ready-to-wear for new mamas from New York designer Morgan Hutchinson’s label Buru draped the racks. In another, Babies4Babies founder and new Dallasite Kate Sigfusson — statuesque in a sleeveless white jumpsuit with her young daughter on her hip — showed her brand’s organic baby blankets in playful prints of palm trees, sailboats, lips, and stars.

Cute baby bathrobes and chic diaper bags aside, the best part about The Tot Playhouse is its interactivity. Safe, sustainably made toys (puzzles, wood and felt food sets, a mini piano) fill one area; another serves as a kitchen where mothers can test high chairs and bottles. On the patio, luxe strollers are lined up to try before purchase.

Holiday Gifting

  • Cotton Club
  • Museum of Fine Arts Houston
  • Oscar De La Renta - Earrings
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Loeffler Randall - Clutch
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Loeffler Randall - Shoes
  • Wayne Smith
  • Oscar De La Renta - Clutch
  • Asher Gallery
  • Cotton Club
  • Cle Du Peau - Nail Polish
  • Cle Du Peau - Lip Gloss
  • Bond No 9 - Candle
  • Bond No 9 - Perfume
  • Elaine Turner - Felicia Stole in Magenta
  • Wayne Smith
  • Elaine Turner - GiGi Flats

“We want people to be able to touch, test, and feel each item in a real home setting,” Adilova says.

One room is designated for The Tot concierge specialists to meet with expectant mamas about their baby registries, or for gift-buying consultations. A nursery room stocks swaddles, bedding, and furniture.

“This room has pieces by some of my favorite companies like Nursery Works and Jenny Walker,” Adilova says. “I have both in my home and love them.”

A mother of two tots — her youngest son was born in April — Adilova continues to stun with her fearless sartorial choices (“I’m loving my denim Balenciaga jacket with exaggerated shoulders and Gabriela Hearst bags”), while translating that forward sense of style to maternity wear, children’s apparel, and accessories.

As much as it’s sought by mothers shopping for a bassinet or bouncer, the playhouse is a haven for babies in tow. “My son loves our playroom,” she says. “It’s where every kid that comes in the store runs to first.”

The Tot Playhouse, 4607 W. Lovers Lane, 469.917.8715.

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