Calling all last minute Christmas shoppers!

21 December 2015

Screen Shot 2015-12-20 at 21.31.52

We know you’re all super-organised and have had your gifts bought, wrapped and tastefully arranged under your tree for weeks now… But, just in case you suddenly realise that you’ve forgotten something, or even someone (God forbid!), here are some options for last minute (and VERY last minute) deliveries: John Lewis (order by 8pm on 22nd for their click & collect service), Next (order up to midnight on 22nd for collection in store on 23rd), M&S (order by 5pm on Tuesday 22nd for store collection), Selfridges (order by 4pm on 23rd for click & collect service on Christmas Eve), ASOS, Yoox (order by 11am on 23rd for delivery on Christmas Eve), and good old Amazon (order as late as 12 noon on Christmas Eve for same day delivery on selected items!!). Happy (last minute) shopping!

Nicky & Sarah xx

ps: if none of the above applies to you, you have our full blessing to feel suitably smug, and celebrate with a guilt-free half hour of anything that takes your fancy (our top choice would be getting a jump on that online sales prep, closely followed by a lie-down in a darkened, child-free room).

Mama Spree: Christmas pleats

18 December 2015

606022_in_pp
Madewell Sweatshirt, £75.00

Gold Skirt

1. Madewell Sweatshirt, £75.00
2. Topshop Ostrich Feather Bag, £45.00
3. J.Crew Pleated Midi Skirt, £128.00
4. Jigsaw Glitter Sole Shoes, £169.00

You already know we love a cool sweatshirt. Well this is our current favourite. But we’re loving  it with this more dressed-up skirt (some cheaper options here, here and here. And heels. And for good measure, let’s chuck in a feathery bag. And somehow it just works. Come 31st December, you’ll probably find one of us (or maybe even both of us?) in a variation of this outfit. But equally, any of these looks (Rock Chic, It’s All In The Mix, Cool Yule or Christmas Style) will work for any festive occasion – they are pretty interchangeable. It’s just a matter of which one to choose? Decisions, decisions…

Sarah & Nicky xx

Christmas Books for Kids

17 December 2015

Christmas Books

1. Seasons, £12.08
2. The Fox and the Star, £14.99
3. The Polar Express, £5.59
4. Little Grey Rabbit’s Christmas, £5.99


A Few of my Favourite Christmas Books for Kids
by Tom Lloyd (Educational Psychologist and Daddy to Tabitha & Marlow)

‘Seasons’
…greetings to all of you out there in Instagram land. This is a wonderful conversation-starter of a book for nursery-aged children and the wintry bits are particularly well illustrated.

‘The Fox and the Star’
Following yonder star…

‘The Polar Express’
My personal favourite Santa story

‘Little Grey Rabbit’s Christmas’
Richly nostalgic for both Sarah and me and no doubt for people even older than me! The sort of book Jimmy Stewart might have read to his kids in the closing scenes of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life‘.

‘The Snowman’ DVD
It won’t have escaped your attention that this is not a book. It’s screen-based entertainment: hisssss. But the book doesn’t feature David Bowie’s fashion crime of the century. That jumper. Sack the stylist, as Sarah would say.
The Snowman/Father Christmas DVD, £6.95

Merry Christmas to one and all,
Tom

Mama Spree: Pyjama Party

16 December 2015

708p01

We’re having a bit of a ‘pyjama moment’ at Little Spree HQ right now. For us this time. Not to be confused with loungewear/sloungwear (more of which soon), we’re veering towards the classic, cosy, and stylish enough (well if you buy the right ones anyway) to slip into as soon as you get home, which we are guilty of doing on occassion. Hell, we’ve even been know to answer the door to the DHL man wearing our pjs! These are the pairs we want to get cosy in right now: sateen stripedchambray; silk pipedclassic white; silk; melange; stretch jersey; and this striped nightshirt and matching pyjama bottoms. This pair comes in lots of different prints (we like the animal print) and they also come in regular, petite and tall). Non ‘pyjama pyjama’ options include this, which we love!
Another rather unexpected source of decent, classic pyjamas is good old T.K.Maxx. Who knew? I happened to be in there (the one in Kew for anyone who’s interested?) a couple of weeks ago, and had a quick snoop at the nightwear section, not really expecting to find anything I would actually want to buy. I ended up leaving with not one, but two pairs of pyjamas and change from £50.00! One pair was plain navy silk from Calvin Klein (sadly not available online, but so lovely, so definitely worth looking for if you happen to be in one of the stores), and the other was this pair). This pair and this pair are also great, and both under £30.00! And for all the Christmas optimists out there, it’s got to be these

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: don’t miss tomorrow’s ‘bookworm’ post. Daddy Spree’s Tom is sharing his favourite Christmas kids’ books.

Stylish Christmas Stocking Fillers

15 December 2015

Stocking Fillers boys

1. Studio Skinky Playon Pencils, £9.72
2. M&S Paper Aeroplane, £2.00
3. Maileg Little Brother Christmas Mouse, £17.00
4. Oliver Bonas Harmonica, £6.00
5. J-Me Toothbrush Holder, £8.00
6. OMY Giant Colouring-In Poster, £8.10

Untitled

1. Nanoblock Flamingo, £8.00
2. Djeco Kirigami Multicoloyred Paper Balls, £5.67
3. Maileg Little Sister Christmas Mouse, £18.50
4. Meri Meri 7 Days Hairclips, £7.00
5. Pop Cutie Doughnut Necklace, £10.00
6. H&M Ballet Pumps, £7.99

This year we set ourselves the goal of finding stocking fillers that were not only thoughtful (and pass the Little Spree style threshold) but also cost £10.00 or less. We’ve been pleasantly surprised to discover that many of our favourite brands (and a few new ones) can easily be bought within this price range. So here’s our final selection, and if your children are anything like ours, don’t be surprised when the paper aeroplanes or Maileg mice turn out to be the highlight of their day.

Nicky & Sarah xx

ps: don’t forget Twig’s stylish tips for speedy wrapping for all those little stocking fillers – candy striped paper bags and alphabet stickers

Christmas Pyjamas

14 December 2015

8028589_3
Jigsaw Star Pyjama Set, £25.00-£29.00

Screen Shot 2015-12-13 at 19.32.44
M&S  Pure Cotton Checked Pyjamas, £9.80-£13.30

If you need an excuse to treat your little ones to lovely new pyjamas, surely there’s no better time than Christmas? There is nothing nicer than a brand new pair of pyjamas on Christmas Eve – and let’s face it, these pyjamas are going to be well documented for years to come in the obligatory Christmas morning ‘present opening’ photos. We love the classic style of these two pairs (above). But also on our ‘wish/shopping/maybe list’ are:

For the boys: organic candy stripedChristmas Edition ‘slim jyms’Christmas two packNight Sky onesie (already owned by Bailey, and bought and stashed for Christmas Eve for Marlow); grey marl bear print; classic checkedglow in the dark star print; moose Henley stylestar print; and this three pack.
For the girls: floral printditsy print two packNordic printsparkle starglow in the dark star print; and this two pack bunny sleep suits (ok so not technically pyjamas, but cute nevertheless – I’m quite tempted for Tabs).

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: a few people asked me on Instagram recently, where I buy Tabitha and Marlow’s onesies. Mostly Gap. They both have this one, which they are both fast asleep in now as I’m typing this).

Mama Spree: Christmas Style

11 December 2015

Screen Shot 2015-12-09 at 23.48.42
Mango Striped Metallic Shirt, £34.99

Dungarees II

1. Madewell Cropped Voile Dungarees, £125.00
2. Mango Striped Metallic Shirt, £34.99
3. Susan Caplan for John Lewis T-Bar Necklace, £20.00
4. Isabel Marant Suede Sandals, £380.00

Dungarees, yes, but not just your average, common or garden denim dungarees – these are ‘dressy dungarees’. Not denim, but voile, and not turned up, but cleverly cropped. Perfect for wearing with heels or a pointed flat. We love this relaxed shirt under them (but still with a little Christmas sparkle in the form of a gold lurex stripe).  Cool, effortless, style for Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, or any of those random pre-Christmas parties that we all seem to get invited to. Oh, and this blouse is also worth a look.

Sarah & Nicky xx

Baby’s First (Stylish) Christmas

10 December 2015

Baby First Christmas

1. Huttelihut Baby Hat, £38.00
2. M&S Cotton Sleepsuits (sold as part of a set of three), £15.00-£16.00)
3. Clara & Macy Personalised First Christmas Star Decoration, £14.75
4. The Two Wagtails Personalised Baby’s First Christmas Card, £4.25
5. Trousselier Angel Bunny Rattle, £10.53
6. Next Knitted Booties, £6.00

Is it possible that Next have employed a group of lovely, kind-hearted grannies to make some of their baby knitwear this Christmas? It’s the only explanation for these handmade looking  pom-pom booties (above) and this adorable cardigan (take a look at the back view, it’s so sweet). If like us, you’d rather avoid the reindeer and Christmas pudding outfits, they’re a simple way of adding some festive fashion (just the right amount in our opinion) to your baby’s first Christmas wardrobe.

Nicky & Sarah xx

ps: we just found this super-soft ‘Huge Howard Bear‘ (which has the year embroidered on his paw) from The White Company and think it would make the loveliest gift for a baby’s first Christmas. And it’s currently 50% off!

pps: and one last things to add: these bunny booties

Mama Spree: what is it about cashmere?

9 December 2015

tumblr_mw9ib8hFqF1rsuch2o1_400

When I first started working at Marie Claire as a Fashion Assistant in my early twenties, I always remember a rather fabulous, rather grand and much loved Fashion Editor saying (very dramatically) “darling, once you wear cashmere you can NEVER go back…”. I didn’t get it then (I wasn’t even close to owing anything cashmere at the time – this pre-dated all the fabulous High Street cashmere that we’re all too familiar with now), but I certainly get it now. Of course, I still wear wool, but I must confess, I’m always just feel a little bit uncomfortable and fidgety in it. Put it simply, I would rather own one gorgeous cashmere sweater than five wool ones. We wear our cashmere year-round, but of course, the depths of Winter (even a mild one) is when we really start yearning for all things cosy and comforting – something about just slipping a cashmere crewneck over your head and onto your skin just feels so good… (I don’t do layering). We are certainly spoilt for choice about who to throw our cashmere cash at, but here are our favourite sweaters, starting with Gap (I have the crew-neck (it’s just been reduced!) and the roll-neck (only available in store now) and I love them both – thick, but not too think – you don’t want to be perspiring in your cashmere. I’ve also got my eye on the cardigan (more for Summer to be honest). Feels a bit indulgent splurging on cashmere for yourself? So pop some on your Christmas list instead! Boden always does great cashmere – and with them we generally like to size up, but this season they have done their new ‘relaxed, boyfriend fit’ in a crew neck (check out the new ‘Jade’ colour – it’s really lovely in real life and makes a nice change from neutrals) and a v-neck which we love; then these from Hush; Raey; Vince; Iris & Ink, and Jigsaw are all great contenders. And of course, not forgetting our trusty go-to mens’ cashmere from M&S and Uniqlo; and also John Lewis for both crew and v-necks. We’ve also added hoodies to our cashmere remit (think chic rather than lounge-y – layered under a crombie coat and with a ‘Granny shoe‘), and are currently coveting these from M&S; Boden; and this J.Crew boys one if you can squeeze into the older sizes (definitely worth a try!).

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: fancy a cashmere hit, but with a smaller dent to your Christmas bank balance? How about these, this, this; or these (I wear my grey ones at home with my Birks – far too  gorgeous to save for bed).

Little Boys in Bow Ties

8 December 2015

Boy Party Outfit

1. Next Shirt And Bow Tie, £11.00-£12.00
2. Monsoon Velvet Jacket, £45.00
3. Mango Jeans, £14.99
4. Converse Black Rubber Boots, £35.00

There are two groups of people who seem to carry off a bow tie easily: the very young and the very old (oh, and anyone wearing a tux).We love this soft gingham version for a boys party outfit as it takes a classic look and makes it fun (and therefore more likely that your little man will want to wear it!). Not necessarily how we would expect the more mature man to wear his bow tie perhaps (although we’re not against it), we’d style it with jeans, a velvet jacket and these cool hi-tops.

Nicky & Sarah xx

ps remember this super cute Little Marc Jacobs shirt and bow tie that we posted on Instagram after the Alex & Alexa press day? Now in stock.

Christmas Day and beyond

7 December 2015

Girl Party Outfit

1. Louis Louise Frill Dress, £60.07
2. Next Jazz shoes, £14.00-£17.00

After much searching and deliberation (and literally dozens of discarded dresses and tutus…), we settled on this as our favourite girls Christmas Day/party outfit. Festive (well our kind of festive anyway), fun, stylish and cute. And the perfect hi-lo outfit (you can blow the budget on a gorgeous dress if your High Street shoes look as cute as these.

Sarah & Nicky xx

All Wrapped Up

6 December 2015

MooXmas1
Photo: Emma Lee

We are really excited to have a super-talented guest editor for today’s post, Twig Hutchinson. Twig is one of the top interiors/props stylists and Art Directors in her field, working for clients such as Fired Earth, Homes & Gardens, Marie Claire and The White Company (we first met on a shoot about five years ago – SC), and just has the most beautiful taste. The adorable image above is her Christmas card that she’s about to send out (that she styled and art directed). We asked her to come up with some beautiful ideas for Christmas wrapping, but taking into account how time-poor most of us mamas are, and the stresses that the festive period brings with it (Twig is herself a mama to three gorgeous little ones, so she gets it…). We absolutely loved her ideas (all styled and photographed by her own fair hand), and we hope you will too. For more interiors inspiration (and not to mention her lust-worthy house and beautifully dressed brood), follow Twig on Instagram @twighutchinson.

Sarah & Nicky xx

 

My top tips for wrapping the perfect Christmas Present by Twig Hutchinson

DO: Go for clashing colours and don’t be afraid to use ‘non Christmas papers’
DO: Keep going with neon. It’s still a big trend, but use it sparingly and try paring it with colour and pattern as opposed to brown paper.
DO: Invest in a really fabulous pair of sharp scissors. They make the business of wrapping so much easier. I recently invested in a pair of these bad boys from Shepherds and they are AMAZING. These are also brilliant and make a fab gift.
DON’T: Go for foliage as a present topper. Looks divine in photos and by all means go for it on your napkin, but personally when I’m unwrapping my presents on Christmas morning I don’t want to be surrounded by a pile of dried up, manky looking branches.

These are all also worth a look:
M&S Contemporary 2-in-1 Wrapping Bundle; Oliver Bonas Candy Print Wrapping Paper; Cox & Cox star wrapping paper; and this affordable paper from M&S is pretty close to neon!

Having said all that, I’m a firm believer in Christmas being a time when all taste can legitimately fly out of the window. As my uber-chic friend, Caroline recently said when I asked her about wrapping her kids’ presents: “oh, they get the super-naff thin tatt with Father Christmas on… There’s nothing stylish about Christmas at my house!”

Twig x

CoolKids

Cool Kids

Frankly I’m hoping all my presents come wrapped like this. I may not want dried olive branches everywhere, but glitter, sequins and pompoms is a different matter entirely. Wrap your presents as normal in brown paper, then wrap a layer of cellophane over the top of it. Before you tape up the final end, pour in glitter stars, sequins, or whatever razzle dazzle you can get your hands on. Seal up the end and add an alphabet key ring in place of a gift tag. I have bought these for all my Godchidlren from Accessorize (available in store only).

The Little Crafty Bugs Compay Star Foil Confetti, £1.85
The Little Crafty Bugs Company Neon Pom Poms, £2.02
John Lewis Glitter Washi Tape, £2.00
Docrafts Neon Ribbon, £5.00
Meri Meri Wooden Foiled Tree Decoration, £3.75
The Makery Neon Ribbon On Wooden Spool, £4.95

Manic Mums

Manic Mums

If like me, you are hosting Christmas this year and have a to-do list the length of Great Britain, here’s a little idea that may help on the stocking front. Chuck it in a bag and whack a sticker on it. Job done.

Party Pieces Pink Striped Candy Shop Party Bags (pack of 10), 49p
Paperchase Neon Pink Zig Zag Washi Tape, £3.00

PoshPressies

Pricey Pressies

Expensive presents require the poshest of papers. Shepherds Fine Papers and Bookbinding is the go-to place for this, and a closely guarded secret of mine, until now… For the perfect finishing touch add a beautiful ribbon from V.V Rouleaux or John Lewis.

Clockwise:
Shepherds Chiyogami 860 Paper, £6.90
Shepherds Neon Edged Ribbon, £1.00 (per metre)
Shepherds Italian 229 Paper, £3.00
Shepherds Little Dot Paper, £4.95
Shepherds Italian 181 Paper, £3.00
Shepherds Geo Paper, only available in store

WildatHeart

Wild at Heart

Perfect for boys and dads alike are these fabulous wildlife and woodland themed papers. Continuing the alphabet theme, these fabulous gift tags are available from M&S in pewter, gold and red. Sadly, only the red is available online.

Clockwise:
Paperchase Kraft Reindeer Paper, £3.50
M&S Glitter Alphabet Letter Gift Tags, £1.00
Hannah Werning Kingdom Springs Wrap, £1.50
Paperchase Antler Woodland Paper, £3.50
Emily Burningham Caribou Paper, £1.65

Mama Spree: The Gift Guide (AKA: our wish lists)

4 December 2015

wishlist N

1. Oxfam Safe Water For 10 People, £10.00
2. Joseph Wool Dress, £265.00
3. Lulu Frost Lock Earrings, £115.00
4. The Case Factory iPhone Case, £85.00
5. And The Mountains Echoed, From £3.66
6. Yves Saint Laurent All-In-One BB Créme Skintone Perfector, £33.58

I had filed the Joseph ‘Elie” dress in my ‘one-that-got-away’ fashion folder. The sleeveless version of this dress came into store during the Summer, however by October, when I tried to buy it, it was sold out everywhere. It was with a small ‘whoop’ that I recently discovered that ‘Elie’ was back, and better than ever as now it has cosy sleeves. In the event that she sells out again before my letter reaches Lapland, I have been coveting the Lulu Frost earrings every since we featured them in the Mama Shop, and how cool is this phone cover (I borrowed it from Sarah’s wish list). For anyone who has read ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’ by Khaled Hosseini you will know why I’d love to spend a few hours over Christmas reading ‘And The Mountain Echoed’. As for the ‘YSL Top Secret BB Cream’ – this is more of a ‘must’ than a wish – I’ve actually received complements on my skin having applied it to a very scary ‘before’ appearance!
I have included Oxfam in my edit, as for me, Christmas is first and foremost about giving to others. There are so many worthy charities that it seems hard to know where to begin. I include this one as Russell bought me ‘Oxfam Unwrapped’ vouchers for my birthday; when you think that £7 can help feed a family, £10 can provide 10 people with safe water, it’s cause to pause for thought, then action, in any way that you can.

Nicky x

Wishlist S

1. Susan Caplan For John Lewis Necklace, £20.00
2. Bonpoint Eau De Toilette, £50.00
3. J.Crew Pyjamas, £95.00
4. Always Pack A Party Dress, £16.59
5. Crosley Keepsake Record Player, £160.00
6. M&S Candle, £6.00
7. Stella McCartney Knickers, £25.00

I first found this dreamy pale pink record player when I was prepping a pink (clothes, not record players) story for Stella magazine back in September. I have been thinking about it ever since. Our house is already bursting at the seams with thousands of records (and not to mention, two turn tables), as we share the house with a full-on ‘Muso’ and vinyl obsessive (Taylor Swift is not an option in our house). So I will be spoilt for choice for things to play on my own little ‘girly suitcase of a record player’ (annoyingly the pink one seems to be currently out of stock, but I also love the white one, otherwise this version is still cute, and also much cheaper), but I would still love this to be the first record I play on it (and Tom, amazingly, doesn’t own it). We took the kids to see Patti in the Summer when we were in Italy. Definitely a holiday highlight (let’s gloss over the abundance of “motherf***ers” that came out of her mouth between songs…). My other latest obsession is a more general one – pyjamas. But not just any old pyjamas – traditional, classic mens style pyjamas. I will get the top monogrammed if I get around to it (I won’t). The necklace (this is a great version of a vintage-style one I have been coveting for years), the candle (show me a mama who doesn’t love a monogrammed scented candle??), and the knickers speak for themselves (well, I have to do something to readdress the balance in my lingerie drawer…). This book is a great read if you want a real insight into the fashion industry (with a dose of unexpected humility thrown in) from one of my favourite people to follow on Instagram, the previously New York based Amanda Brooks (@amandabrooks). I literally read it in a day – the perfect Christmas page-turner. Oh and this Bonpoint perfume smells heavenly. I like very few perfumes, but I love ones that smell ‘clean’ and powdery, which this one does. Here’s hoping….

Sarah xx

Daddy Spree: The Gift Guide

3 December 2015

Daddy Spree R

1. Oliver Spencer Lux Wool Scarf, £70.00
2. Burton Custom Flying V Snowboard, £386.61-£450.00
3. Mio Alpha 2 Heart Rate Monitor, £107.45
4. Thinking Fast And Slow, £4.63
5. Adidas Stan Smith Trainers, From £51.38
6. Nuxe Men After Shave Balm, £18.48
7. Tom Ford Noir Extreme, £58.22

Watching Bailey learn to snowboard is magical. Knowing that he will soon be quicker than me is humbling. Given my snowboard is now 10 years old with bashes, scratches and a the odd chunk missing, I figure I need technology on my side so I’ve been spending some time (a lot) researching how I might maintain some dignity whilst trying to keep up with a five year old. The answer seems to be the new, lighter and quicker Burton Custom Flying V model (a best seller for 20 years, who am I to argue with public opinion?). I know I don’t actually need new binding but they were right there, next to the snowboards (a male version of window shopping?) so if you’re interested, these Burton bindings are a great buy too.
I’m afraid the other items in my wish list aren’t novel, but are either things I already own and love or things I think other Daddys might enjoy –  like these Stan Smiths, I take mini-me moments with Bailey where I can (he has a cute mini version of them). Next up: running (I’ve tried and tested this Mio Alpha 2 running watch) and shaving (this Nuxe post shave balm really works). Nicky  and I both like ‘Tom Ford Noir Extreme’ aftershave (it started off as mine that but I know (and like) that she wears it sometimes). Finally, if you’re looking for a great read ‘Thinking Fast and Slow’ is a fascinating insight into how we think by Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman.

A Merry and mindful Christmas to you all.

Russell

Daddy Spree Gift T

1. Olive Trilby Hat, £20.00
2. M&S Cable Knit Sweater, £39.50
3. A Brief History Of Killing, From £3.79
4. The Road, From £4.68
5. Jigsaw Cotton Shirt, £69.00
6.  Herschel Supply Co. Backpack, £55.00
7. Serpico, From £3.16

1. Hat: éminence grise.
2. Jumper: style over cashmere content.
3.  ‘Seven Killings': OK, so I have actually read 4 and 7. Looking forward to this one though!
4. ‘The Road': Russell recommended this to me. Bleaker than Boxing Day, but lightened-up by the best description of a father-son bond I know of (and an attuned sense of how children speak and think).
5. Shirt: June Carter might have picked this out for Johnny Cash.
6. Backpack: because my stalwart EastPak has seen better days.
7. ‘Serpico': You know what, there probably were scarier times to work in the public sector…

Merry Christmas.

Tom (Daddy to Tabitha and Marlow)

Mama Spree: Cool Yule

2 December 2015

Green Shirt

1. Next Shirt, £30.00
2. Mango Jacket, £69.99
3. Isabel Marant Étoile Trousers, £155.00
4. Office Sandals, £65.00

When you want to dress up, but not too much… The leather (or indeed, faux) legging have long-since been the go-to mama favourite for the school-run and beyond (I know I’ve lived in mine anyway – SC). But they’ve recently had a bit of a ‘style over’ (don’t panic, no need to ditch your leggings just yet!). Notice that this pair (hello – £155.00 for a pair of Isabel Marant trousers??) is a little slouchier – a bit more of a ‘jogger’ if you will. We just feel that this looser fit seems a bit, well, cooler. And the difference with this style of fauxs is that they look just as good dressed up as they do dressed down. And we love that they are slightly cropped. We’ll be wearing ours something like this.

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: all four of these pieces are what we like to call ‘hard working’. They look great together, but each of them will work with so many different things in your wardrobe. Fear not, we will promise to show you how…

pps: these sandals are SUCH a great looky-likey of the Saint Laurent ‘Jane’ sandals. Nice.

Sacks Of Style

30 November 2015

Screen Shot 2015-11-30 at 11.25.02

Catherine Colebrook Christmas Glitter Sack, £10.00 (was £12.50)

If your kids don’t already have one, they need one!! A gorgeous, stylish stocking or sack (or in Tabarlow’s case, both!). We love anything monogrammed or personalised at Little Spree HQ, particularly at Christmas. Here are our favourites: this polar bear name sack; this personalised sack: this personalised letter sack: this pom pom stocking: this knitted stocking: this monochrome pom pom letter stocking (for any Christmas minimalists out there??); this personalised sack; this simple brown sack; and finally this gorgeous (and rather indulgent) hand knitted present sack.

Sarah & Nicky xx

Come Shopping With Us…

29 November 2015

L Shop

1. M&S Sequinned Dress, £22.40-£25.20
2. Monsoon Tuxedo Set, £70.00

M Shop

1. Mango Flowy Fringed Dress, £39.99
2. Mango Faceted Crystal Earrings, £15.99

At this hectic time of year we know you appreciate all the help and inspiration you can get, so we’ve re-stocked the Little Shop and the Mama Shop with some of our favourite festive things (this is just a taster of our edit for mamas and kids). It was hard to narrow down the pieces to include in the Little Shop, so much so that we just decided to increase the size of the shop (how could we resist the Fisher-Price record player which we both remember from our own childhood). As you know we’re not ones for overdressing, so each party piece in the Mama Shop was carefully selected for adding just the right amount of sparkle (or toning it down). Check back on Friday for our official Christmas wish-lists, but in the meantime there is some serious coveting going on. For me (Nicky) it’s the  Boden boots and Mango dress, whilst Sarah has fallen for the velvet and lace dress and the military style reefer jacket (and has already bought the Topshop jumper), and we’re both obsessed with the cashmere trousers. Santa – if you’re listening, we’ve been very good this year!

Nicky & Sarah xx

ps: apparently it’s Cyber-Monday so many of the items in the shop (and our recent Mama Spree shoe and dress posts) are discounted until the end of the day.

Nativity style

28 November 2015

Screen Shot 2015-11-28 at 20.40.46
Christmas Star Outfit, £6.00 

This post is dedicated to all the ‘slummy mummies’ (myself included) who can’t sew to save their life, and even if they could, just simply do not have the time to rustle up nativity costumes for their kids Christmas nativity play. There are some great, really inexpensive options that are literally just a click away, including Mary (Tabitha wore this very costume for her ‘Mary moment’ last year), Joseph, a shepherd, and who could object to their little one being a lamb when the costume is this sweet?

Sarah & Nicky xx

Mama Spree: Black Friday black dresses

27 November 2015

Screen Shot 2015-11-28 at 09.32.49
French Connection Tassel Oversized Dress, £85.00

Dresses

1. Aries Cotton-Denim Frayed Dress, £188.00
2. Mango Lace Pleated Dress, £59.99
3. Mango Lace Dress, £79.99
4. Zara Velvet Lace Trip Dress, £49.99
5. Sportmax Code Ruffle Dress, £225.00
6. Isabel Marant Étoile Faux Leather Dress, £175.00
7. Topshop Unique Belted Crepe Mini Dress, £165.00
8. M&S Velvet Lace Dress, £34.65 (£49.50)

We figured the second most important thing to shop for, after shoes, is a dress (or maybe even two?). We love ‘separates’ as much as the next girl, but sometimes a dress is just the way to go. I don’t know about you, but when I go out I literally have half an hour (if I’m lucky!!) to get ready (and that’s including a shower!). I need to act fast, and for me, the fastest route to getting from the bedroom to the taxi is via a great dress. Just chuck it on and go. Literally. So here are our favourites to see you (and us) through the fast-approaching festive season. We have stuck to black (if you’re time-poor, go for black – this is not the time for recreating J.Crew-style colour blocking and print clashing…), but have tried to find a dress for every mama and every mama’s style. Be it short and sexy, long and lacy, pretty, cool, or even gothic-meets-Catherine Deneuve (number 8 – strictly only with flats though). There should be a dress for you.

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: a few of these (numbers 3, 4 and possibly 5) will also double-up as great skirts when you add a jumper into the mix. So you can wear them more casually, and well into 2016…

pps: we probably don’t need to remind you that it’s Black Friday today do we??

Let’s hear it for the boys (gifts)

26 November 2015

boys gifts

1. Globe GLB Skateboard, £35.64-£130.36
2. Tegu Stunt Team Looper Building Set, £20,00
3. Bensimon Bteam Back Pack, £37.42 (was £53.46)
4. Zara Home Globe With Wooden Stand, £39.99
5. Handpicked Wooden Tool Set, £14.90 (was £29.95
6. Le Toy Van Wooden Cash Register, £24.00

This boys gifts edit is a mix of toys currently on our boys’ Christmas wish lists (skateboard x 2, globe and Tegu); tried and tested toys (cash register and this Fujifilm Instax Mini camera (don’t forget the all-important film) which we bought for Bailey last year and is still loved and well used) and things we know our boys will like. We’re just as picky about the toys that our kids have as the clothes they wear and apply the same criteria when we’re considering what to buy: is it value for money, will it be well used and of course does it look good (well, as much as any toys can). Other toys that Santa would be allowed to deliver include this Flatout Frankie cardboard plane (if, like Marlow, you know any little boys who are obsessed with making things from cardboard boxes); this Lexon radio (shower-proof = kid proof); this Corby Tindersticks interactive clock; and, for mini-Hestons, this John Lewis wooden kitchen.

Nicky & Sarah xx

ps: if you’re going down the skateboard route (as Santa is for Bailey and Marlow), you probably want to think about these too…

Mama Spree: party feet first

25 November 2015

Party Heels

1. Isabel Marant Suede Sandals, £380.00
2. Topshop Limited Edition Buckle Shoes, £150.00
3. Topshop  Eyelet Sandals, £65.00
4. River Island Black Leather Tassel Heels, £35.00 (were £65.00)
5. Boden Bow Heels, £97.30 (were (£139.00)
6. Boden Thelma Heels, £83.30 (were £119.00)

Party Flat Shoes

1. Next Strappy Buckle Points, £40.00-£45.00
2. Next Pom Pom Points, £28.00
3. Office Point Bow Pump, £17.00 (were £28.00)
4. Boden Embellished T-Bar Points, £83.30 (were £119.00)
5. Topshop Pom Pom Velvet Tie Flats, £29.00
6. ASOS Studded Ballet Flat, £28.00

As you know, I spent several summer months confined to Birkenstocks (after Russell broke my toe!). During the obligatory eight week healing period (and for months after) my outfits were planned feet up, so I would like to dedicate this post to my toe (third on the right) for inspiring us to plan our Christmas outfits, party feet first. For those who may also have a crazy competitive husband (with whom I will never play beach football again) we’ve also included our favourite party flats.

Nicky & Sarah xx

ps: we’re still loving these Isabel-esque gold bow sandals from Topshop.

pps: Boden is offering 30% off plus free delivery until 31 November with code 7H9S.