Handmade, personalised, monochrome or traditional… however you like your stocking, we’ve got the perfect one for you this ChristmasRead More
FAMILY LIFESTYLE BLOG
Ethical, British Fashion news, interviews, family travel and our place to shout about independent brands we love!
2018 has felt like the year that ‘ditching the plastic’ has gone mainstream. There have been HUGE strides forward in how consumers, and big retailers, are thinking about their plastic usage, but the children’s toy industry is still rife with plastic, throw-away toys. This Christmas we wanted to champion the toys and brands that offer something different - innovative use of materials, classic heirloom toys that won’t end up in landfill when the batteries wear out and genuinely brilliant design that don’t just look good, but children will love:
Mini Filli offer a beautiful edit of contemporary toys for babies and children, from Scandi and European brands - we love the Wobbel, it can be used as a fun balance board to build their gross-motor skills and burn off energy, or as a mini rocking chair for TV watching or reading when they need some downtime. (Wobbel board, £96)
Rather than a traditional Christmas Eve box, we’ve put together a ‘Sleepover’ bundle for Christmas - one of our organic cotton drawstring bags with ‘Silent Night’ (maybe wishful thinking where sleepovers are concerned!) perfect to stash their teddy, toothbrush and pyjamas… on which note, we’ve included a pair of our award-winning ‘Design Your Own’ pyjamas, a great Christmas Eve activity to keep them busy whilst you peel the sprouts! Finally, we’ve included a bedtime story from the ‘Little People, Big Dreams’ collection of inspiring women to complete the bundle. (Sleepover bundle, £59)
History Heroes are the perfect stocking filler for fact fans - think Top Trumps crossed with brilliant inspiring true history icons - choose from historic women, inventors, scientists, children and more. (History Heroes cards, £9.99)
A great ‘after lunch’ game for all the family - Junior Draw It is a tube of dipsticks, simply choose a stick and draw it, whilst your team members try and guess what you are doodling. (Junior Draw It, £7)
Ottie & the Bea is a modern children’s toy shop, stocking one of our favourite imaginative play brands, Maileg. There is a whole world of characters, accessories and worlds for little minds to create (think soft, beautifully made fabric Sylvanian Families). This ‘Book House’ opens up to reveal a 5 room house with kitchen and furniture (Maileg Book House, £62).
From mini microscopes to crystal growing activity sets and Dinosaur egg excavation kits - the National History Museum has a brilliant online shop for fun, practical, activity-based gifts. We love this card star projection lamp. (Night Sky Projection kit, £15)
Invest in a beautiful children’s advent calendar that you can use year after year and fill it with notes, treats or small gifts - building their anticipation for the big day…Read More
A round up of the best kids Christmas pyjamas. Festive Pjs for boys and girls to snuggle up in this Christmas.Read More
To launch our ‘Heads Up’ Campaign, we thought we’d do a round up of other small brands who are giving back to charity this Christmas - offering beautiful gifts with true meaning and that will benefit others, too:
This autumn we have launched a very special collaboration - for every 4 of our Italian merino wool kids bobble hats we sell, we will be donating one to the Oak Centre at the Royal Marsden Hospital, where children with cancer are treated. They are a really practical gift for any child undergoing cancer treatment as they are super soft for sensitive skin and merino wool is naturally efficient at helping the body regulate its temperature. Head’s Up campaign merino wool kids hats, £29, Lala & Bea - read more about the Head’s Up Campaign here.
£5 from every sale of a special edition lilac ‘Strong Girls Club’ tee from Muthahood (£24) goes to baby loss charity, Tommy’s and the work and research they do into reducing premature death.
From Babies with love give every penny of profit from their ethically sourced designs to orphaned and abandoned children around the world - we love their wooden toys and super soft muslin box sets.
We know all about The Big Issue publications - but did you know they have a store? The street art section represents ‘artists that have been marginalised’ and at least half the profits go directly to the artist, with the rest supporting The Big Issue’s charity work. There are loads of other sections - from kidswear to food & drink, books and gifts. Worth having a browse when doing your Christmas shopping.
Since launching Lala & Bea, we have been involved in so many great pop-ups, fairs and big retail events that we felt it was about time we curated our own! We are passionate about championing other independent brands and supporting women in motherhood, so decided to bring it all together under one roof…
We will be launching the first ever Brixton Bazaar, 5-7 October, in The Department Store on Ferndale Road (free entry Saturday and Sunday - evening events and workshops are ticketed). We are taking over the downstairs space for the 3-day event - full of independent brands to shop, kids workshops, panel chats and wellbeing treats - here’s a breakdown of what’s in store!
Friday night kicks off with a refreshing take on working motherhood - we are so often told we ‘can’t do it all’ and those feelings of overwhelm and the ‘juggle struggle’ are all too common for us working mums… but our ‘Positive Working Motherhood’ panel chat is about stopping and appreciating the best bits. Bringing together 3 successful, thriving business women (Yvonne from Kemi Telford, Gemma from Muthahood and Hayley from Southwood Stores), we will talk about how motherhood has changed their approach to their careers, inspired them to start their own brands and they will give their tips and advice on how to juggle work and a busy family without burning out. It will supportive, uplifting and empowering - we can’t wait!
Working motherhood: the postive impact tickets are available here. From 7pm, 5 October. Including free drink, bar and food available all evening.
Saturday is our ‘family day’ - we wanted to create something that you didn’t have to ‘drag’ the kids along to - it’s just as much for them! There’s going to be a slime workshop, a ‘design your own t-shirt’ crafting area with our best-selling kids tees, hand-blocking printing workshop with ethical lifestyle brand Dilli Grey, a book reading corner with Doodle & Scribbles Books, facepainting.. the works! The idea is that your little ones will be happily occupied so you will have plenty of time to browse the incredible edit of 14 brands in our marketplace - from womenswear to childrenswear, homewares, jewellery and accessories - we’ve brought together some really exciting brands (stay tuned on our Insta feed for sneak peek of the brands involved!). Perfect for getting organised early for Christmas gifting!
Following their sell-out UK tour, the hilarious and searingly honest Ellie and Helen, aka the Scummy Mummies, are going to hold a brand new comedy night on Saturday - with all new content, songs, sketches…and catsuits! We love their frank take on the realities of motherhood - saying all the things we are all thinking but too scared to say! We guarantee it will leave you feeling uplifted and reassured that it’s not just you! The perfect girl’s night out giggle.
Scummy Mummies pop-up comedy night, tickets are available here. From 7pm, 6 October. Including free drink, admission to the pop up (with exclusive deals on the night) and entry to an amazing raffle!
Sunday is all about you - with our ‘motherhood wellbeing’ day. The space will take on a calmer, nurturing vibe - designed to let you spend a few precious hours focussing on what you need - from a styling session for busy mums to a hypnotherapy workshop to massages… or just mooch in our marketplace amongst our gorgeous independent brands or grab a coffee in the cafe. Kids are more than welcome on Sunday too, we’ll have a kids’ author doing a reading and lots of yummy food so feel free to make it a family day.
Of course we will be there with all our gorgeous autumn stock - including our Italian Merino bobble hats, snuggly blankets and super soft cotton sweats. See you there!