Tag Archive - Shopping

25.09.14 Shop: Bicester for Kids

Most of you in the UK have heard of Bicester Shopping Village   which as they describe it, is ‘a chic shopping outlet’.  It’s a designer haven of delightful shops all at discount prices near Oxford.  During the Summer I went to check out what they had on offer specifically for the kids.

i i love gorgeous pop up shop

My favourite store was their centrally placed pop up shop area which is changed seasonally. Over the Summer it was home to the beautiful and eclectic ‘I love gorgeous‘  which made it their own with a huge selection of pieces from ditsy prints to sequin party dresses, all colour organised in rails. A true visual treat and even included their own small garden for children and events at the back.

i love gorgeous pop up shop

i love gorgeous pop up shop

i love gorgeous pop up shop

I love gorgeous, started in 2006 by two mums and has gone from strength to strength ever since. The concept of the store at Bicester was a perfect environment to provide inspiration to other mothers looking to dress their girls in whimsical partywear and everyday funky yet feminine pieces at a reduced price to that in the stores and online. The pop up shop therefore giving people the chance to try the brand before making additional purchases when they are hooked!

The Bonpoint store was another favourite space crammed full of heart achingly divine French fashion for the little ones. From embroidered cherry logo pins to linen and cotton mix blouses perfectly chic, displayed on your very own Delphine or Pierre.

Bonpoint store at Bicester

Stella McCartney‘s main store offered a beautifully curated collection of on trend designs for the smaller clientèle, including the popular cowboy boot and tiger print knitted rompers.

Stella McCartney Bicester

Stella McCartney Bicester

The village offers a wide selection of brands including Dior, Dolce and Gabbana and Gucci as well as more high street names you may be more familiar with, such as Clarks and Cath Kidston, where you can pick up the latest nappy bag or lunch box in that perfect retro print.

Cath Kidston Bicester

Hackett and Ralph Lauren also offering smaller sized pieces of their classic mens key looks. The Ralph Lauren kids shop being one of the largest and busiest stores I viewed, but with a lot of choice and a wide range of price points.

Bicester

It is never as fun to shop with the kids as it is without but there are facilities in place for the children, with good toilets and various eating spots including plenty of high chairs and playgrounds for when they really have had enough!

Bicester

Bicester playground

To get the most out of a trip here, I would definitely recommend the ‘Hands Free Shopping’ service which for a small fee, lets you make the most of browsing and purchasing without the need to carry everything you purchase around with you. This is especially helpful if you do have children with you as you can keep your hands free for making sure they don’t make a quick escape!

The village overall is perfectly laid out and just the right size to fully appreciate it in a whole day of shopping. Once parked, (valet parking is optional) everything is within a 5-10 minute stroll through the part cobbled and decorated centre. It is clean, well staffed and really quite pretty. I adored the very British red telephone boxes scattered about and feel they make a special effort to keep the grounds of the village attractive with flowers and being partly covered, it is still a great place to be hopping between the shops when the weather is not so great.

For a full list of stores available here go on to the Bicester Village website to view the map and brands available.

 

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24.09.14 Shopping someone else’s Wardrobe

jimmy choo carrera glasses

Do you do second hand, vintage or passed down? Or are you a strictly ‘brand spanking new’ only person?

I have to admit there is something about new and shiny things all wrapped up in beautiful packaging and then again, I also love something almost new, but at a fraction of the original cost.

Recently I purchased these uber cool Jimmy Choo ‘Carrera’ black and gold wayfarer style sunglasses on line from Charlotte’s wardrobe over at The Fashion Guitar. I know how much she loves her clothes and can assume therefore that she looks after them pretty well too. They arrived all the way from NYC in their case, nicely packaged and ready to wear. If I didn’t know better, I would have said they were brand new.

The popularity of the second hand designer shop is definitely on the rise where I live and really it makes sense. I buy great clothes for me and my kids, look after them and when I fall out of love, need a clothing  purge or the zip gets too tight, I take them in to one of the stores near me and someone else resells them. None of the time, effort or drama. Just a cheque at the end. It’s a great way to buy too and if you are local enough to visit these in person, you can try everything on before you buy. My most epic second hand purchase was a fitted black Givenchy jacket I paid £80 for.  It still is epic.

To buy from Charlotte’s wardrobe yourself check out her shop here. Or for inspiration, go on over and check out her style at The Fashion Guitar.

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02.09.14 Abercrombie Kids launches in the UK

So they took their time but finally the giant of teen Cool, (you know the store that is so dark it feels like a swanky bar and has staff that are basically models) and somewhat controversial, Abercrombie & Fitch, has launched their first UK Flagship store in Saville Row, London.

With a range of trend driven looks from ‘boho pretty’ to ‘girly grunge’ and classic Abercrombie & fitch  styles for boys in smaller sizes they are sure to attract some new smaller customers.

Situated in the beautiful historic No.3 Saville Row, across the street from the Abercrombie & Fitch flagship store, it showcases three levels of clothing and accessories for boys and girls, in addition to iconic memorabilia that pays homage to Apple Records and The Beatles after the Beatles performed their last concert there in 1969.

Abercrombie Kids

For pictures and updates follow @abercrombiekids on Twitter, and Instagram.

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17.04.14 Mini Rodini Children’s bedding range

mini rodini home

mini rodini home

Thankfully we can trust Mini Rodini to bring us a new bedding range to offer us stylish parents a little more choice when it comes to picking anything more than plain white for the kids.
These organic and eco-friendly beddings and blankets will colour your home with a good conscience. I love the patchwork bunny/ski/bird prints. So adorable for a cool but eclectic interior for anyone wanting something that is as good for the environment and our children, as it is for their design kudos.

The collection is now available in Mini Rodini’s stores and on www.minirodini.com. Prices from €55.

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08.04.14 Molly Meg Pop Up Store

Molly Meg pop up store

Have you managed to visit the Molly Meg pop up shop in Anthropolgie yet?

One of my favourite online stores has opened a pop up shop at Anthropologie on Kings Road until 27th April 2014. Filled with their modern and vintage home decoration, furniture, toys, gifts and party supplies selected from designers from around the world. For more of a detailed peek check out a post from their launch party I missed on Little Big Bell.

There will be Make-and-Do Workshops throughout the month. Each class costs £5 and all proceeds go to charity and kids need to be accompanied by an adult. I would love to make the animal brooches with Emma Cocker Saturday, 26th April. A chance to make your own Mr. Fox! (8 years +)

For more information or to book a workshop visit Molly Meg online or pop along to the shop at : The Gallery | 131-141 King’s Road | London, SW3 4PW

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22.12.13 Seriously Last minute Christmas Gifts: Our guide!

So for all you last minute shoppers sometimes the last minute scramble is not quite so fun. If you are looking for a few extra gifts you haven’t quite found, or looking to do your whole entire shop in one go, check these ideas out.

last minute gifts

Time poor/ Cash Rich

If you don’t actually want to go out shopping or don’t have the time, for this you have a few options. Think vouchers or last minute delivery shops.

Vouchers. These are often downloadable and with a printer you can print out your voucher and put it in an envelope to hand deliver literally seconds before meeting your giftee!

Mr and Mrs Smith offer a ‘Get a Room e voucher for selected amounts and can be used on booking their luxury hotels, many of which are fabulous for children. Babington House anyone?

For the kids, there is an array of cool and kitch downloadable games and ideas to entertain them such as these paper dolls. Just print at home to keep them amused over Christmas. (The Paper Dolls above can be downloaded from Etsy at the Black Apple) or these printable paper fox dolls with outfits from The Marimakes are just gorgeous too.  At Etsy,  you can find lots of ideas for downloadable handmade gifts such as the dog silhouette print by Linen Workshop you can frame, to designs to print out and make yourself at home. (See below – make it!)

Charity Vouchers giving everything from chickens, mosquito nets or providing water for a whole community can be bought on behalf of someone you love from a selection of organisations such as Oxfam and Actionaid. You can also donate online on behalf of someone else, directly to charities such as a personal favourite of mine, The Small Things Orphanage in Tanzania. Your money here can sponsor a child to go to school for a specific amount, but they are always grateful for any amount. You receive a personal response and can view images and videos of the children through their site. (One year I sent actual gifts and saw pictures of the children with the gifts I had sent. It was wonderful, especially for the kids to see what we had sent being played with.)

If you want to support your local area, why not organise a voucher from your local hairdressers, spa or favourite restaurant for the adults on your list.  By calling them up, they will often email you a voucher or email you can print out at home. For the kiddies, how about some cinema vouchers or a season ticket to their favourite zoo or farm park? For tweens and teens try a subscription to a cool magazine they would be interested in? Most of these things you should be able to do online and print out the voucher or confirmation.

Physical presents to wrap up…

If you are happy to go out and buy your gifts, but don’t know where to start with all the queues and mayhem,  then head to a bookshop for some really inspirational and crowd pleasing presents for kids and parents alike. Great books don’t need batteries and don’t take up too much space. They are educational and inspiring for imaginative little minds. Some of my favourite for gifts are Maps, Mamoko and Nina’s Book of Little Things.

At Amazon, you have until 9am on 23rd December to choose your gifts you want personally delivered to you for Christmas. John Lewis offers a late ‘click and collect’ service if all you want to do is drive in and collect your items without stepping foot in the chaos of the shops. These are my favourite crowd pleaser’s still available.

Wooden pullalong dog  £16.99,   lego friends set £28.99 and the Bear and Hare back pack  £15.00 all available from John Lewis.

Alex and Alexa is perfect for your designer trendsetter and offer a same day courier service to people living in Greater London. So you lucky Londoners can still bag your favourite girl these Rio Candy Retro Roller Skates in time for an extra fee.

For the skint but creative last minute Larry’s…Make it!!

Adults love brownies. Especially these ones! Erm…and so do the kids!

How about Tibbles the Elephant from Jennifer Carson? Only £2.20 for the pattern.

Or choose to make some animal pom poms for a speedy fun gift for some littlies! The Very clever Mr Printables blog will tell you how for absolutely nada…= free! :0)

Failing that. There’s always cool hard cash. But ALWAYS wrap your envelope in beautiful paper or add a few secret chocs on the front for fun. Everyone wants a beautifully decorated package or one covered in chocolate snowmen. It’s the rules.

Good luck! x

 

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23.10.13 Fashion: Stellaween by Stella McCartney

With Halloween fast approaching and a plethora of costumes at every corner you turn, sometimes you just need something simple. This is Halloween dress up, for those who don’t really want to full out dress up. I like it.

SLP_KIDS_Stellaween_HERO

Stella Mccartney Stellaween

1. Enid shoes £90   2. Petra bat tights £27   3. Arlo T shirt £35 (For each t-shirt sold a donation will be given to Padem a.k.a  Programmes d’Aide et e Development destines aux Enfants du Monde – for the expansion of school and development of economic activities in Kenya.)   4. Max T Shirt £35   5. Boo Umbrella £35   6. Arnie T-shirt £40   7. Misty Dress £85

All items available from Stella McCartney Kids

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25.06.13 Brit Kid Cool: Lola

acdc

This one is about to become a full blown toddler…you know terrible 2? Except I think that starts WAY before 2.  She rocks a good fashion though and she’s easy to dress.

Anyone who happily wears wellies on a hot day, (just because they can put them on themselves), obviously doesn’t care what other people think and I kind of like that.

Wellies: Clarks

Leggings: Next

T-shirt: H&M

 

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05.03.13 T- shirt of the Day

 

goodbye kitty t shirt

Goodbye Kitty T-shirt from Daan & Lotje

I wonder if my Kitty would find this funny? I think Sebby might!

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22.02.13 Bubble London January 2013

billieblush pompoms - chalkboardliving

Bubble London once again took over the Business Design Centre in Islington to show the waiting trade and press its Autumn Winter 2013 collections.  Check out my favourite displays and brands for the coming Autumn Winter season. (Pom pom display at Billie blush which if you like a touch of pink neon in your clothes you’d be happy here!)

Dandy Star Bat sweater

Dandy Star had me at Batman. This fine cute sweater would look great with jeans or equally with a rock chick yellow tutu and seriously I need one of their POP prints in my life too.

beau loves bubble

The wonderful brand Beau loves wowed with their collection inspired by 4 year old Beau himself. He asked for wings for his birthday and bam a collection was made. I’m super excited to see the launch of their bedding range too later this year. First dibs please Beau!…

Tutu Du Monde never fails to inspire and woo me with its ‘meeting Miss Havisham’ esque glitter numbers drenched in romance and beauty. Sigh!

tutu du monde pink playsuit

Tutu du Monde

CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO SEE ALL MY FAVOURITES!

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