Solana swaddle wraps

Solana swaddle wrapsIt’s hot here in England, and I could not be any happier! After the past couple summers of cloud and rain, we are finally, finally getting a summer!  In fact, the Met office just issued a heat warning for the UK as temperatures are predicted to rise above 30° here in London.  While I love the heat (the stickier the better!), this is not good news for the elderly or for babies who are at the most risk of suffering from the high temperatures.

My baby has been spending a lot of time in just a nappy these days — forget blankets and bundling! But I do think she sleeps better at night if she’s a bit swaddled, which is when a Solana swaddle wrap comes in handy. These blankets are 100% organic sheer cotton; they’re so light they’re nearly translucent! Which means your baby can be swaddled without overheating, keeping your baby safe from really high temps.  They’re perfect for weather like this!

-Courtney

Aden + Anais sweet swaddling blankets & sleeping bags

I am such a big fan of the sweet muslin swaddling blankets from Aden + Anais. Even I, the worst baby swaddler ever, can swaddle my baby with these blankets! We have a stack of them sitting on my dresser in my bedroom and it’s the first thing I grab when it’s time to put Marlow down to sleep.

I was so thrilled to discover they also make sleeping bags in that same cosy, soft muslin material. Marlow has graduated from the swaddle to the sleeping bags (see photo!) and it has made for a smooth transition. I also like how light-weight the sleeping bags are – perfect for the warmer months ahead.

x Courtney

La Langerie, a delicate collection for newborns


The lovely ladies at La Langerie sent one of their gorgeous swaddle blankets for baby Marlow and it’s become one of our favourite blankets. I love the soft, gauze-like material, and the fact that it’s so generously sized — perfect for swaddling and breast feeding and snuggling and all sorts of other things (I read on their website that it can also be used as a towel, and I believe it because it’s such a nice thick material!). La Langerie also sells pacifier clips, bibs and lovely fragrances. So gorgeous and so French!

x Courtney

PS – See below, a photo of Marlow wrapped up in her ‘La Lange’ swaddle blanket. (She’s clearly very content in it!) xx

Weekend Getaway: Ibiza


Ibiza is a place I visited a long time ago in a different life. It is so easy to get to from mainland Europe and so full of life and excitement. I absolutely loved it, but it never occurred to me that it might also be a great place to visits with kids. Anne-Laure, a fellow Frenchy, has recently moved to Ibiza and kindly shares her favourite places to visit with kids. Turns out there are a ton of things to do for the whole family! Here’s her guide:

Have you ever thought of Ibiza as an Island Break for family? Well Ibiza is the perfect spot because this tiny little island has it all! Wonderful weather from Easter to mid-November, good flight connections with most European cities, small villages, beautiful beaches, incredible food and lots of fun for kids and adults.

I moved here last February and even though I already loved the island before moving, I can assure you that the more I know it the more I fall in love with Ibiza. The positive energy which captivates all its visitors will also charm you.

I am a French native, a natural cosmetic blogger and mother of 2 incredible sons, Gabriel (20 months) and Paul (4 months)… :) I can see you raising your eyebrows! Yes, it is a hell of a lot of work and organisation to be able to keep up with all the things you used to do before having children, like going out for lunch with friends, shopping, partying, etc… But with all the tips I have listed down here you will be able to do it in Ibiza. Here’s my list with all my favourite places to go around the island to enjoy the Ibiza Lifestyle with your children: (more…)

Séraphine multi-functional nursing shawl


I love the versatility of this nursing shawl from Séraphine! What a perfect piece — lovely to wear as a throw or a scarf when you’re pregnant (it’s super comfy to wear and looks very stylish), great to use as a nursing cover when it’s a bit chilly or you feel very exposed, and handy to have around as a blanket or swaddle for the baby. Best of all — this piece won’t lose it’s attractiveness after pregnancy and nursing — I’m sure it will stay a staple in my wardrobe! Available at Séraphine (online or at one of the shops).

xxx Esther

Playtime Paris

Last week I had the pleasure of spending the weekend in Paris — such fun to hang out with Emilie, go for a bit of shopping and of course visit one of the best children’s fairs around: Playtime!! Here’s a short recap of some of the wonderful things, brands and people we saw — not all of course, that would be virtually impossible — there was such an overload of gorgeous discoveries to be made and interesting people to meet!

  • We were excited to discover Garbo & Friends, a new Swedish brand with the cutest illustrations and wonderful bedding products (and more). Their first collection will be launched in December, so stay tuned!
  • Always fun to see Dana from Tannhäuser, and her new collection is so fresh and original — excited to see it in the stores next summer.
  • Loved the new bright coloured swaddles from aden + anais (those swaddles are so versatile, you can even wear them as a cool scarf)!
  • Anette from Apünktchen told us her she launched her online boutique — at last! We love those cool hats!
  • Sweet, the dolls Jess Brown designed for Atsuyo et Akiko!
  • It was fun to see Yanina from Aravore, and what a gorgeous collection she had to show us!

  • Carla from Bobo Choses was as busy as ever in her stand, and rightly so — her new collection is as fresh as always — and we love the perfumes!
  • We loved to see the direction the girls from Elfie are taking, and we were again SO impressed by their homemade cookies!
  • Lovely to see Dan and Zoe from Hucklebones in Paris, with another gorgeous collection!
  • Excited to meet Wendy Mullin from Built by Wendy. We really, really liked her first children’s wear collection.
  • Ketiketa must be one of our favourite French brands — such beautiful bedding (and Emilie and I had fun making patters on fabric with the Ketiketa stamps later that night)!
  • Finally we saw the Coral & Tusk collection ‘live’ — it’s even more beautiful than on the screen. Such lovely details!
  • Loved chatting with Merel from cool Dutch brand Kidscase — and I was so tempted by their baby collection…
  • Fun to see Nickey from Elias and Grace, and she got it right again with her new collection for Miller!

xxx Esther

Bubble London Recap

Wow! Two trade shows in one weekend! We have seen so many great children’s brands, our heads are spinning! Here are some highlights from yesterday at Bubble London:

  • The new designs at Poppy feature a little girl riding around on a giraffe through a beautifully illustrated London town, and we can’t get enough. Absolutely fabulous designs and colours in the A/W collection. Much to look forward to!
  • Olive Loves Alfie is launching a new range of interiors paint and their display was awesome! So many great colours.
  • We were ultra impressed with the fantastic, happy collection at Tootsa Macginty. And apparently we weren’t the only ones — her stand was buzzing the entire day long! (And we loved the new haircut of Kate!)
  • As always, the Hucklebones collection was stunning. And the creators, Dan and Zoe, couldn’t be more lovely.
  • Seeing the hand-crafted pillows from Lettie Belle in person made us love them even more!
  • Really like the sweet prints and fresh colours in the Old Rectory collection. And excited about their new baby pyjamas.
  • The ilovegorgeous stand rocked our world. Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!
  • Loved meeting Joanna from Babatude and seeing her luxuriously soft cashmere creations.
  • The Spotty Otter outerwear collection is both functional and fun, and we think this is a brand on the rise (it’s already hugely popular at our kids’ schools!).
  • With beautiful textiles from India, the entire Bouton collection really, really impressed us.
  • It was really great to meet Helen from Helen Gordon and to see all her pieces in one place. We are big fans of her scrumptiously soft pyjamas and love her new circus print!
  • The Aden & Anais collection is, as always, super impressive. So cool to see all their swaddle blankets hanging in one big row!

  • Just listening to Yanina from Aravore discuss each piece in her collection makes you appreciate just how much thought and love went into each piece. Such a gem of a brand (and a lady!).
  • The bright colours and happy messages in the Boys & Girls collection put a smile on our faces! That’s what childhood is all about!
  • The NYC-based brand, Ode, which we first discovered at Playtime NYC last summer, featured a stunning collection and a new knitwear line. Such pretty textiles and loads of details!
  • So nice to see the Dutch brand Kidscase both at Bubble and at Playtime. As always, it’s a can’t-go-wrong collection!
  • We discovered the new label Beau Loves, and with their Zorro mask prints and playful designs, we think this is going to become a new favourite brand.
  • We also discovered the new UK brand, Marmalade & Mash which made their debut at Bubble. This is a brand to watch for sure!
  • We met the lovely Amynta from Tulip and Nettle who wowed us with her luxurious collection and beautiful photography.
  • And finally, the Spanish brand Nadadelazos is super fun and funky, and we were already fans… but even more so now!

xx Courtney and Esther

Moochic Baby


I have a nice discovery to share! Moochic Baby is a darling little boutique, started by two mum friends Yuva and Aneesa, which offers the coziest quilts, the sweetest swaddle blankets and on top of that, perfect pyjamas too! All the lovely items are made out of 100% pure, super soft cotton, handcrafted in India using traditional block printing techniques (so all slightly different and unique). The prints they are using have been in Yuva’s family for generations! I’m really loving the quality of the pieces — the big swaddle blankets are made of three thin layers of fabric which makes them super soft and airy. The quilts are royally sized too (works perfect to keep adults legs warm on the couch!) and are extra natural and snuggly with a 100% cotton filling. Best of all? Everything in store is very affordable. Run, don’t walk!

xxx Esther

Cute Receiving Blankets by Jill mcDonald


You can never have enough blankets when you have a baby in the house, and especially not these thin Jill McDonald cotton flannel swaddle blankets that are easy to wash, perfect to swaddle, thin enough to carry with you at all times, and have adorable colours and prints. I still use them for Ava all the time — they’re just the perfect summer blanket, and I love that stash of sweet colours on her dressing table. Be it as a carseat cover or little play mat — these blankets are used over and over again…
Available through Amazon.com (flowers or dinos ).

xxx Esther

Baby’s home… what now?


Yesterday I sat down with a friend who is expecting a baby in June, and we watched the DVD ‘Baby’s Home… What Now?‘ together. Cozy!
When I was pregnant with my first child, I read about 5 different ‘What to expect’ books. Looking back, it’s sort of funny to realise how I was sweating it — the scary unknown made me reach out to all of the written wisdom I could find! I wish this DVD had existed then: yes, you can study how to swaddle a baby from books, but seeing somebody actually do it makes a LOT more sense! Same for breastfeeding, changing a nappy, or filing your baby’s nails! Even for baby number 2 or 3, this DVD is a nice refresher course for how it’s done best. Available online through Amazon.com .

xxx Esther

The Ergococoon

Are you one of those slightly neurotic mothers (I include myself here) who creep out of their beds to double check their partner’s baby-wrapping techniques or sometimes just lay awake in the middle of the night obsessing over whether the baby is properly wrapped — not too tight, not too loose, not too high, not too low? Then this one is especially good for you! As an alternative to the traditional swaddle, this Australian creation by Ergopouch is nothing short of genius. The ErgoCocoon is a simple contraption which certainly would have given me peace of mind in those early baby days.

Made of stretch organic cotton, the Ergococoon gives your baby the security of feeling snug, but without strapping your baby’s arms down the way that a traditional wrap does. So whilst the baby can’t get his/her arms out, they are still able to move their arms around if they wish — but they are still protected from the startle reflex.  At the bottom of the wrap, there is an open end which allows you to transfer your baby into a car or pram and also allows access to the nappy area without having to unwrap your baby. And, with poppers in the arms, the Ergococoon readily converts into a sleeping bag for when the time is right! Practical and simple!

Available world-wide, for stockists please click here.

-Sara

CoutureLab

CoutureLabWhat happens when Carmen Busquets, the creative mind behind Net-a-Porter, foresees a new mood in luxury on-line shopping — one that includes handcrafted products for man, woman, child and home?? An equally chic website called CoutureLab.

CoutureLab sells unique and one-off pieces created by famous designers, including jewelery, accessories for the home, and a range of luxury baby items. Their cashmere baby rompers are classically beautiful, and their baby blankets are so soft – I envy the baby who gets to be swaddled in one!

Following in the successful footsteps of Net-a-Porter, the shipping and delivery from CoutureLab is almost magical. Who can beat same-day delivery straight to your door? Not to mention, the beautiful packaging… The delivery man who dropped off my products last month looked at me like I must be the queen receiving such a beautiful package!

They ship worldwide, already covering more than 34 countries, which means you can send a gift to someone on the other side of the world! Or… treat yourself to some royal treatment!

-Courtney

A summer swaddling blanket

Solana swaddleI’m a big fan of swaddling babies. I know it was considered a bit old-fashioned until a couple of years ago, but nowadays it’s really normal and most of my friends (if not all of them) have swaddled their babies! It’s a logical choice as far as I’m concerned: swaddled babies apparently get twice as much REM sleep and sleep longer than other babies!! Hellooo!

During a hot summer, or in a very hot climate, it can however be a bit tricky to swaddle your baby, as overheating a baby can increase the chance of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). This is why two mums in Arizona (where it gets REALLY hot in summer) started to swaddle their babies in big squares of lightweight cotton. Their lightweight swaddles were a success, and their company, Solana Babywear, a fact! (more…)

Blue Daisy

Last year around this time, my local art store closed. Bummer, I thought. Until I saw what replaced it… Blue Daisy — a great children’s store in Hampstead with everything one could possibly need for newborns up to pre-schoolers.

Blue Daisy

They stock all my favorite and necessary items, like the Beaba Baby Cook and silicone spoons, the Mokopuna merino wool baby clothes, the Swaddle Designs swaddling blankets, Sophie the Giraffe, bottles, bibs, bath toys, buggies, wooden toys, etc. etc. Need a Bumbo or Baby Bjorn baby chair? Or how about the Phil & Teds Me Too chair? They have it at Blue Daisy. Seriously, if you want it, chances are they have it. (more…)

Swaddling

Swaddling was a one of those things I had heard about but somehow thought it had gone out of fashion somewhere around the Middle Ages.

But when our daughter arrived, screaming her head off for what seemed like an eternity, we were willing to try anything to soothe her. A friend of ours gave us the Happiest Baby on the Block DVD by Harvey Karp. (Courtney wrote a review about his follow-up book, the Happiest Toddler on the Block).

The basic idea behind Harvey Karp’s theory is that a newborn is disoriented for the first 12 weeks after she comes out of the womb; he calls this the 4th trimester. What he tries to do is recapture some of the feelings a baby would get inside the womb, i.e. being tightly wrapped in a swaddling blanket, gentle rocking, listening to white noise etc. (more…)