Last week saw my first ever journey into the beautiful Burford just over the Oxfordshire border. Growing up, Burford always meant one thing to me and that was Cotswold Wildlife Park but having now been into the actual town centre, I can safely say I will be returning soon!
The reason for my visit was also a first for me as I attended my first Kids Arcade popup. Rachel, creator of Kids Arcade, explained to me just what she has set out to do with her stylish pop-up concept. “Kids Arcade serves up a cool edit of kids’ fashion & lifestyle product for the modern parent. Navigating the digital world of independent brands for you, it brings a dynamic and bespoke shopping experience to life in stylish venues around the Cotswolds and beyond.” Rachel is absolutely on the money with this, and she didn’t fail to deliver one bit.
This particular popup took place in the beautiful Warwick Hall of Burford and the venue alone was enough to hint at the standard I could expect once I walked inside. There were so many amazing brands on show, some of which I only got a sneak peek at as I had dropped the girls at childcare – next time they will have to come with me as there would have been plenty of things to keep them busy whilst I shopped! I could spend ten blogs telling you about the brands I will now be keeping an eye on but instead, I have picked three of my favourites.
- The Girl Element
Even in the few days since Kids Arcade, I have been regularly checking for updates on this super exciting new brand. Most of you will know by now that I have two young daughters – two girls who already know their own minds, and hopefully that they can go on to achieve anything no matter what their gender. Some days my eldest wants to be a princess, some days she wants to be a pirate, most days at the moment she wants to be Mary Poppins. Regardless of what she wants to be when she’s older, I don’t want to feel that her clothing is pigeonholing her into being “unicorns and sparkles” and that’s it. A lot has been said about girls’ clothing available on the high street and the reinforcement of gender stereotypes but thankfully, Kate Haddon, founder of The Girl Element is here to help. The gorgeous nightwear range (aimed at girls aged 2-11) which will be launching soon is based around three key STEM designs: think, create and invent. And quite frankly, aren’t they wonderful ideas to put on clothing no matter what gender our children are? They look beautiful, feel amazing and I am eagerly awaiting the email to say when they have been launched for sure! Make sure you sign up here too as the initial batch of pyjamas will be limited.
2. Alice à Paris
Having lived in France for my degree, I always used to look at French women looking effortlessly cool with such great envy. Its something I still haven’t mastered, and perhaps (most likely) I never will but thankfully for my children, Alice à Paris are making it far easier for them to do so! I bought my eldest a beautiful cotton dress and for my youngest, a top/bloomers combo that will match her older sister. Soft, light material, both outfits will be perfect for our summer trip to Portugal and they have gone down very well with the girls! Hopefully this brand will become a staple in our household and most importantly, the girls will be comfortable!
3. Sisi & Seb
A curator of cool kids’ clothing and accessories, the main premise behind Sisi & Seb is ‘buy less, buy better’. This is something we’ve really been trying to do with the girls, especially as they are now getting older and the ‘price per wear’ is actually really good! Stockists of beautiful clothes, they also sell things for dinner time, bath time and even treats for Mummas! I picked up some fun Liewood bibs for my youngest as she loves to decorate herself when eating but it is definitely a brand I will be returning to, especially around Christmas/birthdays.
The thing that impressed me most about all of the brands that I encountered, and indeed, Kids Arcade itself, was the aspirational nature of it all. These are women (primarily) seeking to raise our children in a better, more sustainable world and they are doing something about it by setting up these incredible businesses. One brand, LoLA, is actively seeking to encourage the inner artist in all children whilst another, We Are Pop, is promoting cool brands and items such as the much longer-after Mutha.hood Strong Girls’ Club t-shirts! Ethically minded companies, such as Lovesay & Mo, seem to be on the up too, and surely that can only mean good things are happening?
Rachel will next be at a popup in Charlbury with a curated edit of stock later this week.
Ad – this is labelled an Ad as I was given discounted products in return for social media coverage and a review. However all opinions are my own – it really was great!