LONDON: EAT SEE PLAY SHOP SLEEP TIPS OUT OF TOWN

CENTRAL LONDON

The London High Street

popFollowing on from Emilie’s recent post about places in Paris to find chic clothes at less-than-chic prices I thought I’d let you know about some of my favourite spots on a typical London High Street. Now most Mums in London will know of these national treasures but if you are visiting London they are worth checking out.

I’m a huge fan of Swedish kids clothes shop P.OP (Polarn O Pyret) which sells playful and colourful kids clothes and a small selection of maternity wear. Think lots of stripes and lots of colour. They have 4 shops in and around London (Brent Cross, Westfield, House of Fraser (Oxford Street) and Kingston) but a further 10 or so stores around the rest of the UK.

Next up: Zara Home (no, not Zara Kids): A very small selection but I love their quilts and blankets for kids and they always have a tiny rail with really sweet sleep-wear/snuggly-wear. I have had some great finds there.

london in a bagI find so many good kids birthday presents from Paperchase particularly these children’s writing sets, which are so sweetly designed. They often do melamine plates and trays and sets of fun snackpots, which are perfect for kids’ dinner time and eating on the go.

Long before having children I had a bit of a Muji-addiction. I always find something there — it certainly indulges my stationery habit. It is also a great place to head for souvenirs as they do these sweet little bags of miniature wooden cities and London transport (black cabs, red buses) in a bag (but I’ve only seen these in-store not on-line). What some may not know about Muji though is that they are great for (what I like to call) ‘fat-tops’ — cleverly designed tops that fall over your bump during pregnancy or, as in my case, my post-baby chocolate-bump. Note there is usually more of a selection in store then online.

On this subject I do love Comptoir des Cotonniers — very flattering clothes! Quite a bit pricier then Gap but really very lovely (also have a tiny ‘girls’ collection from age 6 — I’m seriously wishing the years away so my daughter is old enough for it, cute! cute!) Feel a bit of a cheat with this one though as it’s originally a Parisian brand.

Habitat TitoA great stop for well-designed toys and kid’s furnishings is Habitat. Their wooden London Bus is a long-running classic but I also love some of their newer toys like the Tito (pictured here). They also do fab bits and pieces for a kids room — we recently got a bright red wagon for storing toys in, which we love.

Last but not least, if you happen to be passing The White Company (or The Little White Company) then it’s always worth popping in. I particularly like their pyjamas but they also do cashmere baby cardies and classic toys and nursery decoration.

All that shopping might make you hungry and on a London High Street you are never far away from a Carluccio’s (Italian), Wagamama’s (Japanese) or Giraffe (International) — which are all well set-up for kids. If sushi is your thing, then I adore Itsu, but it’s not so buggy /high-chair friendly. For a sandwich-on-the-go … you can’t beat Pret-a-Manger (who now do cute kids bags).


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