1. Caramel ‘Nikau’ Baby Romper, £72.00
2. Les Tricots De Margot Cashmere Bonnet, £34.00
3. John Lewis Pack of 2 Tights, £6.00
4. Gap Velvet Mary Janes, £8.95
Caramel is probably one of my favourite children’s labels – the colours, the shapes, the knits, the beautiful sprig prints… You could literally shop on their website blindfolded and still come away with the most stylish outfit ever. My bank balance however… not so keen. You can do some serious damage in less than a minute without even trying. So for me Caramel is a one-off; a treat; something for a (very) special occasion; or somewhere I might shop during sale time. A bit like Bonpoint I suppose. Which doesn’t mean I love it any less. In fact, it probably just makes me want and love it even more… But a couple of weeks ago I had an interesting conversation with someone who had a slightly different slant to shopping at Caramel. Her and her friends (all with little ones) buy a few pieces from Caramel each season (for newborns and up), then pass them all on to each other. But not just as casual hand-me-downs in a Waitrose carrier bag; as actual gifts for newborns and birthdays – washed, ironed and beautifully wrapped in tissue and ribbon. As good as new. So their little ones wear them, their mamas love them in them, they are carefully cared for (well you would when a romper sets you back £72.00 wouldn’t you??), then passed on, then the whole process is repeated. Everyone is happy. And it works because the quality is great, so the pieces really last and last. I suppose it’s simply the polar opposite of today’s ‘throw away fashion’ (a concept that I personally loathe). The chicest form of recycling. I just love this idea. And who wouldn’t want a gorgeous Caramel cardigan/romper/pair of bloomers for their little one, even second-hand?
1. Monsoon Baby Star Dress, £20.00 (reduced from £30.00)
2. Zara Cardigan With Pocket, £15.99
3. Martin Pederson Baby Tights, £16.00
4. Zara Leather Boots, £17.99
We are loving this pretty baby girls party dress. The metallic gold polka dots, layers of tulle, handkerchief hem, butterfly sleeves… Dreamy.
1. Miller Xono Beanie (from Elias & Grace), £40.00
2. Bonton Escale Dress (from Elias & Grace), £67.00
3. Martin Pederson Gemini Tights (from Elias & Grace), £16.00
4. Mango Wooden Leather Sandals, £34.99
Who says socks and sandals are a nerdy no-go? Not us. Nothing cuter!
ps: I have been scouring the shops, searching for the (Barbie sized) Elsa doll for Tabitha for Christmas (from Santa), but no luck. I was certainly not expecting to find one on the Selfridges website. But I did, and now Elsa is winging her way to Richmond… Phew!
1. Zara Mini Printed Dress, £19.99
2. Marks & Spencer Pure Cashmere Cardigan, £35.00
3. Zara Mini Metallic Leather Mary Janes, £17.99
4. Martin Pederson Gemini Tights, £16.00
Vintage style foral prints, pure cashmere, knitted tights and sheepskin lined Mary Janes = the sweetest, chicest baby girl look.
1. Zara Home Kids Cashmere Pom Pom Hat (one size), £19.99
2. M&S Cotton Gingham Checked Dress & Tights Outfit (0-24 months), £16.00
3. Bonton Peho Toy Rattle, £10.00
4. Gap Navy Bow Ballet Flats (0-24 months), £7.95
What is it about gingham dresses on little girls? And are these the cutest ballet pumps you’ve ever seen??
ps: loving these silver high tops…
1. Mini Boden Cosy Cable Throw-On, £31.00-£36.00 (was £35.00-£40.00, SHOP NOW
2. M&S Cotton Embroidered Skater Skirt, £16.00-£20.00, SHOP NOW
3. Zara Ribbed Tights, £5.99, SHOP NOW
4. Start-Rite Gold Leather Mary Janes, £48.00 (were £60.00), SHOP NOW
We love this chunky cable knit sweater (it has the cutest pom pom on the hood, which you can’t see in this pic). And I bought this gorgeous skater skirt for Tabitha back in the Summer. Perfect with or without tights. It really reminds me of the Miller ones that I bought her last year in that amazing Elias & Grace sale.
1. Zara Loose Fit Jumpsuit (3-14 years), £22.95
2. Mango Star Hair Clips (set of two), £3.99
3. John Lewis Cotton Tights Pack Of Two (2-15 years), £6.00-£7.75
4. Boden Short Leather Boots (sizes 22-39), £40.00-£55.00
If you little girl is bit of a tomboy, or you just want to get her out of princess dresses for a day…
La Redoute Sleeveless Polka Dot Print Romper (1 month-2 years)
£13.00 SHOP NOW
This super-cute romper may look a little Summery, but with a little bit of layering it could be totally adorable right now (and frankly, why wait?). Just add a cosy cashmere cardigan, some soft knitted tights, a gorgeous bow (you’ve got to have a bow right?), and you have yourself one very stylish baby. Then come Summer (if it still fits, which it should if you size up enough now), you can show off the pretty crochet detail on the sleeves (which I love). I squeezed Tabs into rompers like this for as long as I possibly could, I just loved her in them so much. Sadly no more. But how cute is this Bambo frilled bodysuit? And totally practical too – no extra fabric to ride up when your little one is on the move…
ps: just had a bit of a ‘mini spree’ in Zara this morning. I bought these boots, and this blouse for Tabs (plus one in age 13-14 for me – yep, another white blouse, but it is so pretty…); and this sweatshirt and these sandals for Marlow. Love them all.
Mini Boden 2 Pack Ribbed Tights (0-3 years)
£9.60-£11.20 (were £10.20-£11.90) SHOP NOW
I’m very fussy about Tabitha’s tights. Not only do they have to look right, they have to feel right too (she complained last Christmas about a particular (quite pricey) pair that were ‘itchy’, so they had to go…). So nothing too ‘nylon-y’ thank you. I love these Boden ones with the contrasting toe/heel detail, and I love the colour combinations, particularly for babies. And I definitely have my favourites for everyday – John Lewis’ pack of two pairs of cotton knitted tights (I always buy the grey and the navy, unsurprisingly). They never let me down (or go baggy in the crotch – never a good look, at any age). I also like these Uniqlo spotted ones; these charcoal M&S ones that also keep your legs cosy; these Little White Company ones for a bit of added sparkle; these cashmere ones from Mango; and lastly, these colour blocked ones from Cos.
Marks & Spencer Corduroy Spotted Dress & Tights Outfit (3-24 months)
If someone had shown me this dress and asked me to guess where it was from, I’m not sure even my trained eye would have guessed M&S. Totally adorable. And normally pre-styled outfits/looks make me really tense (I usually only like one piece, but hate the rest, which then puts me off buying it completely. Plus obviously being a Fashion Editor makes me a total control freak when it comes to styling outfits), but these tights are equally adorable. Would make a great present. And an amazing price! Amen to that.
£18.00 BUY NOW
The Little White Company Sparkle Tights (2 Pair Pack)
Even I get sick of plain grey or navy knitted tights sometimes. These are a great way of adding a bit of festivity to your little girl’s outfit without compromising on style. All the key elements are here (all my favourites) – navy, grey, spots, stripes, but also a sprinkle of silver glitter (on the striped pair) for good measure. This is probably about as festive as Tabitha’s legs will get this Christmas, but that’s fine by me. Love them. And great news – they have just been reduced!
£8.40 (were £12.00) thewhitecompany.com
John Lewis Pack of Two Cotton Tights (2-15 years)
I get so many emails (yes even in August!) from mums asking my advice on where to buy good girls’ tights, I felt they were deserving of their own post. I am (surprise, surprise!) very particular about tights (both for me and for Tabs, although I will stick to Tabs for the sake of this post). Firstly they have to be cotton. For Tabitha they must only ever be the cotton, knitted variety (I have an irrational phobia of little girls, particularly babies, in regular opaque tights – the white ones literally bring me out in hives, even at christenings…). I am very picky on colour and design too. I have dabbled with the occasional pair of striped tights, but always end up hating them once they are on (too gimmicky for me, although I am not entirely against them). So this narrows is down to a rather modest selection of navy, grey and charcoal. Sorry! But before you get too depressed by this limited colour palette, allow me to lift your spirits by adding that all those colours go with pretty much any other colour, so you don’t have to faff about so much in the morning getting (your little ones) dressed. I always buy these John Lewis ones (but they only start from age two, so no good for babies I’m afraid), which also come in, yep, you’ve guessed it – navy and charcoal. I also buy the Mothercare ones, which also come in a pack of two. Zara always do great ones too, particularly if I’m feeling really crazy – they do lovely cable and ribbed ones (Tabarlow wore charcoal ribbed ones under their christening gowns). I do also like brown and beige too actually now I come to think of it. So there you have it. If anyone else has any other leads, I would love to hear from you (unless it’s about white, opaque ones – you can keep those).