Mothercare Teddy T-Shirt (18 months-8 years)
I think this has to win, hands down as the best bargain ever to be posted on Little Spree. £2.50 for a super-cute long sleeved t-shirt made of 100% cotton! Can it really be true? Yes it can! Thank you Mothercare. See, cheap can be chic!
Du Pareil Au Meme Hansel Blouse (1-23 months)
Another day, another charming little smocky blouse. Loving the black and white gingham check. Autumn is when these blouses really come into their own – you never really know what the weather is doing from one minute to the next. Just throw a chunky cardigan over the top (I’ve just taken delivery of the most gorgeous dusky pink one from Mini Boden – more of that later) and add skinny cords/jeans and you’re good to go. Then ditch the cardigan if (like today) it turns out to be beautiful (as I sweated it out in my new tweedy Topshop jumper…). It’s all about the layering.
ps: various London-based Fashion Editors I know will be hitting the DMAM store on Boulevard Saint Germain looking for bargains in between shows during Paris Fashion Week (on at the moment). Bonpoint it ‘aint, but if you don’t mind a rummage you can find some fab things at amazing prices. I was first dragged into this particular store by my old boss and Glamour Editor-in-Chief, Jo Elvin (we always managed to squeeze in a quick ‘trolley dash’, even in the tightest of show schedules), and I’ve been back every time I’ve been in Paris since. So thank you Jo!
Tootsa MacGinty Fox Jacquard Knit Jumper (3 months-5 years)
Love this because it’s simple, but quirky at the same time (even I get sick of plain grey sweatshirts sometimes…).
ps: just tried to order the Hello Kitty Vans for Tabitha. Sold out! Note to self: order before sharing.
Boden Printed Jersey Dress (0-4 years)
This is not an intentional ‘nursery related post’, but as of this morning I realised it sort of is by default. I ordered both of these dresses for Tabitha simply because I thought they were cute (as you do!), but I now realise that not only are they very cute, they are super-practical too! They are a really simple design, made of jersey (so don’t need ironing), really easy to get on quickly (popper fastenings), and are helpfully printed all over, so don’t really show up the odd mark from paint/pen/food. I couldn’t decide which print I preferred, and seeing as they are such a great price, I simply ordered both (as you do!). They look adorable on (and I probably don’t need to even mention the Peter Pan collar do I?) and I can literally get Tabs dressed for nursery in seconds (just add navy knitted tights). She wore the floral print today, and will be busting out the ducks tomorrow. Just one last thing, they are quite generously sized (I think). I originally ordered age 2-3 years for Tabs, but they swamped her, so I returned them and ordered 18-24 months instead (even though she will be three in January) and they are perfect (Tabs is quite small though…). I love them!
£13.60-£18.00 (was £16.00-£18.00) boden.co.uk
Zara Double Breasted Coat (6-36 months)
This is for everyone (I know there were a few of you out there…) who balked at the price of the Lily Rose coat from Trotters that I posted on 17th September (although I still stand by that post – a good coat is a great investment). In fact I had already seen this Zara one before I fell in love with the Lily Rose one, and absolutely loved it. I love the classic camel colour, the shape is super-chic, and the little collar is just too cute for words. All in all, a great (inexpensive) antidote to the everyday waterproof (boring) ‘nursery/school’ coat. And an alternative for anyone who feels slightly sick at the the thought of coughing up 80 big ones for a coat for such a little person. The problem is, now I want this one for Tabs too (it would look so cool with her skinny jeans and sequinned hi-tops)…
Les Tricots De Margot Cashmere V-neck Cardigan (0-18 months)
Looking for a lovely christening/baptism/naming ceremony present? Look no further. This amazing French cashmere company is my latest obsession (well at least it’s not nursery-related for a change…) and I have now bought this exact cardigan for two babies for two christenings in as many months (I know – not very original of me, but I just love it). Both times I bought the largest size (12-18 months), so that the baby in question could keep it to grow into. So why the obsession? Well, the quality is fantastic (100% 2 x ply cashmere), I love the classic design – the v-neck and the little pocket, the colour (it does also come in other colours, but this is definitely my favourite), and last but not least, the fantastic price (I’m not saying that £48.00 is particularly cheap for a baby cardigan, but it certainly is for a gorgeous cashmere one). It’s also equally perfect for a baby boy or girl. If you had the time or the resources, it would also be a nice touch to have the baby’s initials embroidered on it (know anyone handy with a needle and thread?). It also come beautifully wrapped in tissue in a pretty box (I just wrote on the box and added a ribbon, and I was done). Anyway, both cardigans were very happily received (I would have been more than happy to unwrap one of these myself!).
ps: while we’re on the subject of christenings, I would love to know where I can buy a decent, tasteful christening card? I have literally scoured dozens of shops (some well-known and some small, independent ones), searching and searching. Of the few that I did find, they were either too religious (sequinned crucifix? Not today thank you) or just plain naff. So I simply didn’t give one for the last two christenings. So any leads, gratefully received. One idea I did have though (after the event – really helpful!) for the next one is a card with a single initial on (Liberty stock them). Thought that could be a cute option? Any thoughts?
River Island Grey Star Print Dress (3-12 years)
Yes, more stars! I just never seem to tire of them (hope you feel the same??). How cute is this dress? I love that it’s grey (obviously) and the lace trim. I could really see my ten year old niece, Holly wearing this. And the great thing about it is that it can be worn in very different ways – cute and girly, or a bit more tomboy-cool with tights and ankle boots (this is how I think Holly might wear it). Love.
John Lewis Quilted Jacket (3 months-3 years)
Autumn is most definitely here. I might be the only one, but I really love the Autumn (I don’t even mind that it’s getting darker early…). I think it’s safe to say we can pack the shorts, Summer dresses and sandals away now. So time to turn our attention to jackets, jumpers and coats. This is also another ‘nursery related obsession’ – a practical and waterproof coat to be worn outside at nursey. I panicked (to put it mildly) when I saw this on the list of things Tabarlow would need for their first day! Did they actually mean ‘an anorak’?? Oh my God. But I needn’t have worried – there are stylish, waterproof jackets out there if you look hard enough. I actually ended up finding (and buying) Marlow a really great navy quilted jacket from Autograph at M&S for £22.00 (amazing price – it looks really expensive), which I love, but I also saw this one in John Lewis which was definitely a contender. I like the quilted ‘husky’ vibe, and it’s really cosy and warm. And will look good with everything (unlike Tabitha’s Liberty-esque printed jacket that I bought her for nursery, also from M&S – it’s really cute, but only looks cute with plain things, not other prints…). Anyway, I love this one and would definitely recommend it if you do happen to be looking for an ‘anorak’…
Bobo Choses Cat Bag
Now that Tabarlow are at nursery five mornings a week, my latest obsessions are all nursery-related (I will graudually work my way through the list over the next few weeks…). My current one is bags. Tabs and Marlow already have the Oliver Bonas grey initial bags (I posted one back in June), which I love because they are so easy to spot and I immediately know whose is whose. And now I’ve found this adorable duffle bag (men, buses… and now bags!). I mean seriously, could this bag be any cuter??
Babatude Cashmere Star Jumper (12-24 months)
I am always strangely drawn to stars. They just always look so sweet on kids’ things somehow. This is such a beautiful jumper, and 100% pure cashmere, so lovely and soft. I love the combination of the camel with the fuchsia pink – the perfect mix of classic and cool. Know anyone who’s just had a baby girl? This would make the loveliest present to keep for when she’s a little older. What are you waiting for? It’s in the sale!
£39.00 (was £65.00) babatude.com
ps: if you do order one for a present, it will come beautifully gift wrapped (one less thing to worry about, which is always a good thing in my book). Nice.
Emma Levine Peace Love Calm Boys Top (2-9 years)
Emma Levine is my latest discovery, and one that I am rather excited about. I first found out about her and her gorgeous baby and kids’ collection from my lovely friend, Sugar (yes that is her real name!). The collection is made up of beautiful, individual pieces that all have a bit of a vintage, whimsical feel to them (which, of course, I love!). There are great prints, lovely luxury fabrics and intricate detailing, but not the hefty price tag that you would probably expect to find. So perfect for Little Spree! There are lots of fab things that I’ve got my eye on, but I have already bought this cute grandad-style top for Marlow (and he was wearing it on Sunday), so thought I would share. It might not be that clear from the picture, but it’s charcoal grey and covered in tiny crosses and the words ‘peace, love, calm’. It’s just so cool, but still cute at the same time. It’s advertised as a boys’ top, but I would definitely dress a girl in it too (so Marlow will have to share it with Tabs). This may be my first Emma Levine post, but it definitely won’t be my last. Thank you Sugar!
F&F Baby Cord Trousers (0-18 months)
Love the colour (a cross between nude and the palest of pinks) of these sweet baby cords. So stylish, who would ever guess they came from a supermarket? Tabitha actually had a very similar pair to this from Bonpoint (a gift) when she was a baby. I’ve actually found a few gems for Tabarlow and my nephew, ‘Baby James’ in Tesco recently (and the prices are hard to beat). These would look adorable with a grey/navy/beige jumper or cardigan. Who says cheap can’t be chic?
Lily Rose Double-Breasted Coat (2-11 years)
Before you shoot me down in flames for the price tag, hear me out. I know it’s quite expensive for a little girl’s coat, but it was love at first sight (in Trotters in Turnham Green to be precise), and I just couldn’t ignore those feelings. It is so gorgeous! Now as you know, I’m all about the high street and the bargains where kids’ clothes are concerned, but I would be lying if I said there weren’t exceptions to this general rule (I am a Fashion Editor by day after all!). And much like my approach to my own wardrobe, coats and shoes (and bags!) are worth spending the money on if you can afford to. I know that Tabs will wear this coat day in, day out for the whole of Winter (and let’s face it, Winter in this country is never-ending!). So cost per wear, the numbers do work in your favour, but granted, it is a lot to stump up in one go for such a small person. But then it is a beautiful coat (so chic and stylish), and lovely and warm too (it’s 100% wool tweed with a cosy, quilted lining), so it’s still practical. I have also bought her a really cute (even more pratical) waterproof coat from Limited at M&S for £20.00 (I will tweet a pic later), so between the two, she is covered for any eventuality. And she’s got the whole ‘high-low’ fashion thing nailed already! What can I say? I fell in love…
H&M Boys Brogues (sizes 7s-1)
I was tipped off about these from my lovely friend, Joe who is Brand Director at Grenson Shoes (so he definitely knows a good brogue when he sees one). He bought these for his four year old son, Otto (one very cool little boy indeed) when he was in Germany recently. He texted me a picture of him (Otto, not Joe) wearing his with a pair of skinny turned up jeans and he looked so cute (this is the way to go with a ‘statement shoe’ like this – dress them down so they don’t look like your little one has dived head-first into the dressing-up box…) Now, they are not leather (I never thought I’d post something that is described as ‘imitation leather’, but there you go), but that’s not really a surprise when they are £12.99 is it? All I can say is if you’re looking for a super-stylish, cool pair of shoes for a little boy, these are the ones to buy. Loving the monochrome (very Bugsy Malone). I just wish they came in Marlow’s size, but sadly his feet aren’t quite big enough yet. Buy now, keep for later?
Little Bird By Jools Floral Dress (6 months-5 years)
This is the dress I bought for Tabitha, and she loves it (and luckily, so do I). It’s a great, simple smock shape and just so easy to wear (Tabs has been wearing hers with her yellow Boden sandals, which seem to just look great with everything…). And obviously I’m loving the pretty Peter Pan collar. But the other thing I like about it, is that is has long sleeves. Sounds ridiculous I know, but so many cotton dresses for girls have short sleeves, which can be annoying once the weather changes. So this one is the perfect dress to see your little girl through from Summer to Autumn, and then onto Winter. The cotton (100% no less!) is quite thick, so it’s warm enough to wear on chillier days, then as it’s gets colder, just add a little cardigan or sweater (don’t forget to make sure that cute collar is showing!). And it looks as good with tights (preferably navy) as with sandals. So all in all, a dress ‘with legs’, which is alway a big tick in my book. I really does have an old-fashioned charm about it (it reminds me of a doll’s dress). The colours are a little punchier than in the picture, so just bear that in mind. Tabs was wearing hers today, and very cute she looked too.
ps: the M&S red wellies arrived today. Love them! They are a little shorter than your average welly (which makes them even cuter as far as I’m concerned), but sturdy (without being chunky). A really great buy.
M&S Unisex Welly Boots (sizes 5s-13s)
One of my first ever posts, back in February was about a pair (well two pairs) of M&S wellies. Yellow ones. It was one of my most popular posts, and Tabarlow are still wearing said wellies now (in fact they wore them in the garden at their nursery just today). I have just ordered these red ones online for them (I’ve already given them the once-over in the store). Love that they are completely plain (not that easy to find, unless you go down the Hunters route, but even then they still have the little logo…), and really simple. I did love the yellow ones, but I thought red (it only ever makes very fleeting appearances in their wardrobes) would make a nice change. I think you can get away with a red welly somehow…
ps: 20% off all baby and kidswear at M&S until Sunday! Yay!
Cath Kidston Deer Baby Cardigan (0-12 months)
How sweet is this little cardigan? I don’t normally like pictures on clothes, but this is far too cute to ignore. Wear it with everything!
ps: my eagle-eyed sister, Caroline noticed a mistake on yesterday’s post. The John Lewis baby cords are in fact £12.00, not £22.00 as advertised. Sorry about that. I’ve amended it now, so all is right with the world again.
John Lewis Baby Corduroy Trousers (0-18 months)
These may not look particularly exciting in this picture, but I have seen them in store and they are really cute. Just a really simple, stylish trouser for babies, that are easy to get on and off thanks to the elasticated waistband (who needs buttons and zips anyway?). I love the needle ‘baby’ cord, and they are lovely and soft (100% cotton thank you very much). Not too skinny, but not too baggy either. Perfect.
Vans Hello Kitty Classic Slip-Ons (sizes 4s-2l)
These would probably win the prize for the item least likely to appear on Little Spree. So what the hell are they doing here you may well ask? Here goes. Well, I’ve always loved Vans (I blame the surfer/skateboader ex-boyfriends). I live in mine when I am at home with the kids and at the weekends – they are just so cool, comfy and easy to chuck on. I only like the plain slip-on ones though, and they always look great with a skinny jean and a cashmere jumper (my ‘mum uniform’). Anyway, enough about me. Hello Kitty has gradually started becoming part of my life now that Tabitha has appointed her as her guru. She literally worships her. So far she has a couple of cuddly toy versions, a hair slide (eek…) and a hairbrush. But this is as far as it goes. I have drawn the line at anything wearable (ok, the slide yes, but that doesn’t really count does it?). As far as I’m concerned, ‘Hello’ (as Tabs casually calls her) crosses the line between cute and naff when she starts appearing on leggings, t-shirts and swimsuits etc (it’s the thin end of the wedge). But I am obsessed with these Vans! I just think the combination of Vans and ‘Hello’ is too cute! My boyfriend will probably die of shock (and it takes a lot to shock him believe me!) when these turn up in the post, but yes, I am going to order a pair for Tabs. I cannot wait to see her face. Obviously, she will only wear them with a really simple, low-key outfit (party dresses need not apply), such as her pale grey skinny jeans and a Breton t-shirt/jumper/little blouse. Oh gosh, have I lost the plot? Should I make this my last post? No, sorry, I love them!
H&M Cotton Sweatshirt (4 months-2 years)
I always love a simple, grey sweatshirt (for me and for my kids) – they are always so useful in your wardrobe – I’ve yet to find something they don’t look look good with. And as far as I’m concerned you can never have too many (although, I always end up wearing my favourite Zara one, despite the fact that it’s so ancient, it has holes in it…). This is such a great one from H&M, and for £3.99 I will probably have to buy two (crazy not to!). This is not my first grey sweatshirt post, and I very much doubt it will be my last…
Zara Home Knitted Booties (one size)
Ok, so this lovely weather is set to change (what a surprise!), so we’d better start getting prepared, and focusing on all things Autumn-y. I thought I would start small (literally) with these adorable chocolate brown knitted booties from Zara Home. So cute! And they look like they might actually stand a chance of staying on! I love that they look like your granny might have knitted them, but that they are in lovely chocolate-brown, as opposed to lemon or pale blue. Super-cosy.
Collectables Girls Beige Frill Dress (6 months-6 years)
In this lovely ‘Indian Summer’ that we’re currently experiencing, Tabitha just lives in dresses. Easy-breezy, comfy, cool… Just add a pair of cute sandals and she’s ready to go (although we’re now starting to have mini battles about which sandals…). I just can’t quite believe that this gorgeous little number is from Boots?? It looks so stylish and expensive. I haven’t seen it in the stores, but I am definitely going to be looking for it now. I love that it is beige (I know that probably sounds like a weird thing to love about something, but when it comes to little girls’ dresses, it really does apply). It’s just simple enough – the ruffle neckline and broderie anglaise hem are the perfect combination with the understated colour. Wear now while it’s hot, hot, hot, then just layer a Breton long-sleeved t when things start to cool down again. Now I come to think of it, I have a very similar dress (from Paul & Joe) in my own wardrobe…
£8.00 (was £24.00) boots.com
ps: we went to a christening today (and baby Evie even borrowed one of Tabarlow’s christening gowns – and rather gorgeous she looked in it too), and Tabs wore her Zara cream crocheted dress that I posted back in April. I think out of everything she owns, this dress has had more compliments than anything (and probably more outings too). And no one can believe it’s from Zara. Proof (if you needed any) that you do not need to spend a lot of money to dress your kids well (and get lots of lovely compliments along the way). Now I just need to stop buying as many things!
Cyrillus Swimming Shorts (4-16 years)
I’m possibly a little late in the year with this post, but I don’t know about you, but I was experiencing a balmy Summer’s day today in London (I am still wearing my white vintage sundress and flip-flops to prove it…). So I think there is definitely still a ‘swimwear window’. How great are these ‘swimshorts’? Super-stylish, but still fun. And chic enough to be worn as regular shorts pre/post swimming.
M&S Boys’ ‘Walkmates’ Leather Velcro Shoes (sizes 4s-9s)
Yep, another shoe post! And no, I very much doubt Elvis ever wore shoes with any kind of velcro straps. But I definitely think these are a great, inexpensive toddler shoe, and worth sharing with you all. I first saw them almost two years ago in the Marble Arch store, and bought them for Marlow (at the same time as the now famous suede desert boots that I bought for them both). I would like them even more if they didn’t have the red tag on, but you can’t have everything right? And these are proper toddler walking shoes – designed to give little feet the right amount of room to develop properly. So I can live with the red tag (God, I need to get over myself sometimes!).
ps: apologies to anyone trying to buy the Joules hobby horse in yesterday’s post. Sadly it has now sold out. It was definitely available when I published my post at around 5pm yesterday, I promise. That was clearly one popular horse!
Joules Jnr Dobbin Girls Hobby Horse
It’s been a while since I’ve seen one of these! I used to have one when I was little. This one is so sweet. I love that it has a bit of a vintage feel to it, (it sort of looks like it could have belonged to me!) and the paisley print fabric is so pretty. Oh and if you press his ear he neighs! Mine definitely didn’t do that. Would make a lovely gift for a little girl. And it’s half price in the sale!
£15.00 (was £30.00) joules.com
ps: Tabitha’s Sun-San ‘surfer’ sandals finally arrived today. They are so cute. I forgot that I’d ordered the pale pink ones (most unlike me), but they are fab. And Tabs fitted the size 6, so they are quite true to regular kids’ shoe sizes (I wasn’t sure because they are American, which is why I held off on ordering Marlow a pair). Love.
Mini Boden Checked Simple Trousers (0-4 years)
As you already know I am all over the Mini Boden Autumn/Winter collection, and in fact, placed a big order for Tabarlow just yesterday. These trousers were on my (rather large) list. I am so fussy about prints for boys, Marlow is rarely seen in anything other than a stripe, or possibly a check when it comes to trousers. These are quite colourful for me, but I just love them. I can really see them with a navy or grey cashmere jumper this Winter (they definitely need to be worn with something plain and neutral). I also ordered the ticking stripe version, which are great too. One of the things I love about Mini Boden is the little practical details – the smaller/baby sizes of these are cut a little looser to accomadate a nappy, and then the bigger sizes are a slimmer cut and are lined. I also like that they just have a no-fuss elasticated waistband (particularly useful for babies and potty training toddlers). Can’t wait for them to arrive now…
Cos Chambray Tunic Dress (1-8 years)
I would say ‘dress’. I have seen this in the Regent Street store and it definitely looked like a dress to me (and a very cool one too!). I just love Cos kids’ clothes (but you probably already know this). They rarely put a foot wrong, and I love that they just do a small collection of great pieces each season, so you don’t have that ‘panic to buy it as soon as you see it for fear of never seeing it again’ feeling that you get in most high street shops when you find something fab. But then I guess Cos isn’t most stores, and that’s why I love it. Anyway. This is one cool dress (loving the side pockets, the colour-blocking effect two-tone denim and the longer hem at the back). And it will be coming Tabitha’s way very soon. She can wear it with sandals (hurry up navy Sun-San ‘Surfer’ sandals – where are you?) for now, then with boots when it starts getting colder (again).
Bobo Choses Eyes T-Shirt (2-9 years)
Although I’m not a fan of gimmicky things, occassionally I come across something that manages to strike the right balance between fun and cute. This is one of them. I just love this t-shirt! It does have a slight whiff of Stella McCartney Kids about it (minus the Stella price tag of course), which is probably one of the reasons why I like it. Another is that it’s just a little bit different, but is still quite plain and simple (if it was red it would be a very different story). I am definitely buying one for Marlow, although it would be just as cute on Tabitha. Just add jeans and hi-tops and you have yourself one cool little outfit. Would make a fab present too.
Château de Sable Chunky Knit Baby Cardigan (18 months)
I just love a classic knitted cardigan, and this one is spot-on. Château de Sable (sandcastle to you and me) do some lovely, timeless (and super-chic) pieces for babies and toddlers. I love the handmade feel and the cute pockets. Such a lovely design. It’s made from a cotton, angora and cashmere mix, so feels lovely and looks lovely. Unfortunately this particular one is now only available is age 18 months because it is in the sale (for a bargain £17.99!), but I really love it, so still wanted to share it with you. It would make a beautiful present for a new baby to keep for later (I always like to buy things in larger sizes for presents otherwise new mums get swamped with newborn sized things that often don’t get worn).
£17.99 (was £28.99) chateaudesable.co.uk