mama spree: knits & birks

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Birkenstock

1. Boden Cashmere Crew Neck Jumper, £69.90 (was £99.00)
2. Lulu Frost Art Deco Earrings, £148.00
3. Iro Distressed Jeans, £82.00 (were £114.00
4. Birkenstock Suede Arizona Sandals, £69.99

As some of you will know, during a recent holiday my normally calm, kind husband turned into a crazy competitive lunatic during a game of beach football (after I scored a goal!). The result being one broken toe and a six week restriction on footwear to Birkenstocks. In the past six weeks they (I have the ‘stone‘ and black ones) have been worn with army pants, long dresses, biker trousers, skirts and various jean options (Sarah has them too and she wears hers with these Boden striped jeans). To prove it I’ve posted a little montage of some of my outfits on our Instagram (@littlespree).  The funny thing is, now that I’m able to expand my shoe repertoire to other flats (heels are still a way off) I’m kind of addicted to my Birkies. In fact I’m wearing this exact outfit as I type this post!

Nicky x

ps: If the sun is shining when you read this post, swap the cashmere jumper for a simple t-shirt like this one from J Crew, or this cashmere blend one from Topshop (you might want to keep that jumper close by though!).

mini bags

Girls Bag

1. Jigsaw Alice Mini Crossbody Bag, £15.00
2. Jigsaw Alice Mini Crossbody Bag, £15.00
3. Jigsaw Alice Mini Crossbody Bag, £15.00

Normally anything so (very) pink and so (very) shiny would be an automatic Little Spree ‘no-no’ but not this time. These sweet little bags are not only cute and reasonably priced, they provide one of those rare opportunities where you can genuinely be happy when your little ones choses the pink version!

Nicky & Sarah x

mama spree: the best black swimsuits around…

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Black Swimsuit

1. Anthropologie Audrey Frill Swimsuit, £88.00
2. Boden Sorrento Swimsuit, £59.00
3. Orlebar Brown Bandeau Swimsuit, £185.00
4. Hush Halter Swimsuit, £70.00
5. Tomas Maier Strapless Swimsuit, £260.00
6. Next Premium Cut-Out Swimsuit, £70.00

We all need at least one great black swimsuit that fits well and that we feel great in (well as great all we will ever hope to feel virtually naked on a public beach anyway…). But not just any old black swimsuit. One that fits well, stays put, flatters and enables you to swim with/run after little ones without feeling self-consious. Save the pretty, frilly, patterned, whimsical ones for the poolside (preferably sans kids). This swimsuit needs to work hard. Here is a round-up of our favourites. And for any curvy mamas out there, we like this one from ASOS Curve, this one from Seafolly, and this one from Panache (sold in bra sizes) for bigger boobs. For ‘boyish’ mamas (lucky you!) we like this one from Topshop.

Sarah & Nicky xx

baby harem

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Kin By John Lewis Baby Harem Pants, £9.60

Boys harem pant

1. Gold Baby T-shirt, £32.00
2. Kin By John Lewis Harem Pants (0-18 months), £9.60
3. Mango Suede Moccasins, £22.99

Another day, another harem baby (told you were were obsessed!), and another way to wear them (for babies this time). We love this emerald green worn with grey. And who could resist these baby moccasins to complete the look? And if you’re in the mood for a harem, these Mango ones are really sweet too.

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: the lovely girls at Wear & Where asked us for our tips on travelling with little ones (that don’t involve Valium…). Read our answers here.

mama spree: get it before it’s gone (again) !!

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Mango Fringed Clutch, £29.99

Ever found something you really like, only to find that it’s sold out by the time you decide to buy it? Then you spend weeks searching for your dream item (because of course by now you really, really want it) and cannot understand why you didn’t buy it when you had the chance? Please say it’s not just me? Well, that’s the very experience I had with this lovely clutch. To make matters worse, various smart shoppers we know did buy the bag so I kept seeing my missed opportunity everywhere. On this occasion however, the story has a happy ending as more stock has just arrived! So, if you like this bag as much as we do (I’ve got mine – Sarah’s is on its way), get it before it goes (again!).

Nicky x

we’re loving a harem pant right now…

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CharlieAndGus Harem Pants, £16.75

Grey Harem Pant

1. Mango Mao Collar Shirt (3-14 years), £14.99
2. Mango Cardigan (3-14 years), £14.99
3. CharlieAndGus Harem Pants (0-4 years), £16.75
4. Sun San ‘Surfer’ Sandals (sizes 22-36), £38.00

Question: what’s warmer than denim cut-offs, but cooler than jeans?
Answer: a harem pant!

These grey ones are very similar to a pair I bought Bailey last year. I love the fact that they can be worn all year round (in Winter Bailey wore his with hi-tops, a sweatshirt and beanie hat, and this is how he’s wearing them now). Not only that but they are soft and comfortable (so no complaining) and they have survived tree climbing, football, long haul flights, camping, and all the ‘playing’ that’s been thrown at them. I think I’ve just talked myself into buying another pair…

Nicky x

mama spree: is it a dress or is it a nightie?

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Lace Nightdress

1. Topshop Embroidered Nightdress, £32.00
2. Topshop Embroidered Nightdress, £32.00

The line between a pretty Summer dress and a nightie has definitely blurred this Spring/Summer. We spotted this super-cute (officially a ‘nightdress’) dress in the nightwear section of Topshop, but decided it was far too pretty (and cool) to save for bedtime. It would make the perfect holiday dress (we are already imagining it with a flat tan sandal, but it would also make a great beach cover-up if you’re worried about the length – at 5’5″ and 5’3″ respectively, we aren’t!). And who doesn’t like a new purchase that multi-tasks? We couldn’t decide between the white or the black, but at £32.00, maybe we don’t have to…

Sarah & Nicky xx

the chicest of teepees

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Numero 74 Cotton Teepee, £120.69

We love a teepee and we love this particular shade of mustard yellow. And we pretty much love anything from Numero 74. So this was always going to be a sure-thing wasn’t it? And if mustard isn’t your thing, it also comes in all these gorgeous colours too…

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: we are still loving our twigwams from last year. And they have both survived the Winter outside. They aren’t cheap, but for a permanent fixture in your garden/on your terrace they are well worth it. They are constantly being either played in or admired or both!

little spree meets smallish

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Next Chambray Sundress, £10.00-£18.00

Girl Sandals

1. Louis Loiuse Bow Brooch, £9.00
2. Petit Bateau Plain Cardigan (3-12 years), £36.00
3. Next Chambray Sundress (3-16 years), £10.00-£18.00
4. Maa Helena Sandals (sizes 24-37), £75.00

Another day, another Next purchase for Tabitha. This dress has been waiting in the wings for quite a few weeks now – we’ve just been waiting for the right moment to share it. We love the combination of simplicity and prettiness. The simplicity means it’s easy to style up, and the prettiness means you don’t have to. Anyway, as well as featuring it in today’s post, we have also included it in our very first feature for the fabulous Smallish magazine. Yep, that’s right, we’re branching out as ‘Contributing Editors’ – Little Spree meets Smallish. If you love Little Spree, specifically Mama Spree, you are going to love this! Every month we will be sharing our favourite finds (think hi-low and anything in between…). This month we kick off with ‘Summer Denim’, and as well as what we’re coveting for us, we’ve also included a few ‘mini me’ denim pieces. Including this very dress. We are really excited, so please take a look and let us know what you think. We’d love to hear your thoughts. And if you haven’t looked at Smallish before, you really should – it’s a great read! Happy (bank holiday) Monday!

Sarah & Nicky xx

mama spree: new romantic

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White Dress

1. Mango Boho Dress (sizes 6-14), £89.99
2. Chloé Suede Sandals (sizes 34-42), £290.00

If you buy one thing this Summer, make sure it’s a long white (preferably floaty and a bit hippie) dress (and no, you don’t have to be a size 8 and 5’11!). When I first saw this picture of Alexa in this (beyond amazing) Chloe dress at Coachella (after emailing it to Nicky with the title ‘how amazing does she look??’), I immediately promoted ‘long white dress’ to the top of my Summer ‘wish list’. Suddenly it wasn’t about buying one sometime; it became a matter of extreme urgency! How bloody cool does she look?? I love that she went off piste with ‘romantic, pared-down, floaty hippie’ rather than ‘folky, festival hippie’ (the most obvious go-to Coachella look – yawn). This look also reminded me of a recent story that I shot for Red – all white, romantic dresses. In fact, this Mango dress looks VERY similar to a beautiful Saint Laurent one that I shot (and was a little obsessed with). All you need is a pair of simple, chic tan sandals and you’re good to go. Leave the tassels and pompoms at home for this one.

Sarah x

ps: and the winner of the Wrap London trench is… Roma Vaccaro! Congratulations Roma! Please email us with your address and the size you would like, and Wrap will send you your gorgeous trench. Thank you to everyone who entered, and for all your lovely comments about both Little Spree and Mama Spree. It always means so much to get such wonderful feedback. We love that you love Little Spree!

our favourite girl’s romper

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Next Print Romper, £10.00-£11.00

Next Jumpsuit

1. Next Geo Print Romper (3 months-6 years), £10.00-£11.00
2. Bene Bene Waffle Cardigan (3-6 years), £36.00
3. Mango Studded Leather Sandals (sizes 12.5-5), £34.99

I spotted this romper when I was in Next actually buying some other great pieces (some of which we have already posted, some of which we are still to share, but watch this space – we are having a bit of an unexpected crush on the Next kids’ department at the moment…). It’s just spot-on in every way. Plus It’s SO much cuter in real life. It’s got that gorgeous ‘Ali Baba’ shape (cocoon shaped trousers that you rarely see in high street kids’ clothes) and the print is a super-chic mix of a graphic and hippie Ikat-style print. Tabitha loves hers and wants to wear it ALL the time (which is fine by me – good to give that Elsa dress a day off occasionally). My favourite way to style it is with nothing under (weather prevailing) and just simple sandals, but it also looks great with a long sleeved Breton tee layered under. Love!

Sarah x

ps: I have posted a few pics of Tabitha in her romper on Instagram, so take a look…

mama spree: the new statement earrings

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Earrings II

1. Isabel Marant Tassel Drop Earrings, £130.00
2. Mango Pompom Earrings, £6.99
3. J.Crew Tassel Earrings, £68.00
4. Accessorize Tassel Earrings, £14.00
5. Anthropologie Trinket Earrings, £18.95 (were £38.00)
6. Topshop Stone Tassel Earrings, £12.50

We will never fall out of love with our chandelier earrings (a week doesn’t go by when one or both us of isn’t wearing a pair, often at the same time), but we are just having a bit of a fling with all the new tassel and pompom earrings out there… They just feel a bit ‘newer’ somehow, and are perfect for the Summer and the holiday season. Here are some of our favourites (this Anthropologie pair were featured in Red magazine twice recently – once in my ears for my portrait with Tabitha and Marlow, and once in my Jumpsuits fashion story – SC). You already know we can’t resist a pom pom or a tassel so it was really only a matter of time before they graduated from our bags and clothes to our ears!

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: the (Parisian) hairdresser on the shoot I’m on at the moment in Paris wore this Zara navy jumpsuit on set yesterday, and looked super-cool. She wore it loose and slouchy (very Celine-esque) and accessorised only with a well worn pair of Stan Smiths. Just perfect. So off I ran, straight to Zara… SC

key pieces

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Petit Bateau Sailor Jumper, £40.00

Boys Denim Shorts

1. Petit Bateau Sailor Sweater, £40.00
2. Gap Denim Shorts, £8.97 (were £14.95)
3. Bonton Sun Hat, £28.00
4. Pom D’Api Velcro Sandals, £65.00

There are some items in Bailey’s wardrobe that I buy year after year, and in Summer these include denim shorts, a navy jumper and tan sandals. They create a sort of capsule wardrobe as they work with each other and almost everything else. On a hot day swap  the jumper for a t shirt, add a hat and sunglasses (I’ve just bought Bailey these cute round tortoiseshell ones) and on cooler days wear the jumper and sandals with lightweight jeans such as these. Bailey wore both versions in one day last week!

Nicky x

ps: Alex and Alexa asked me all about what it means to be a mother in ‘Motherhood Explained’ for their blog. Read the feature here.

bunny love

Maileg Bunny

1. Maileg Nicky Rabbit, £31.00
2. Maileg Axel Rabbit, £40.00
3. Maileg Helen Bunny, £31.00

As Bailey had shown absolutely no interest in the various bears, elephants and bunnies that he had been bought over the years I decided to give them away. Fast forward six months: “where are my bears and bunnies?”. Eeek!  So it was with a slight sense of guilt that I bought him a Maileg bunny at Easter. In some ways these bunnies (and mice, foxes, cats, deer…) are more like dolls than soft toys as they all have amazing outfits that you can take off and change. I wasn’t sure how Bailey (a boy who likes to  play with toys that fly or can be crashed) would react to such a toy, but ‘Easter’ as his bunny was aptly named is very much loved. The only down side is Easter gets more cuddles than me!

Nicky x

ps: these rabbits and bunnies are included in ‘treat week’ at Elias & Grace, so have 20% off until midnight tonight.

mama spree: the transeasonal trench (and how you can win one!)

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Trench Coat

1. Wood Wood Stripe Dress, £95.00
2. Topshop Sequin Crossbody Bag, £25.00
3. Isabel Marant Étoile Wraparound Leather Sandals, £270.00
4. Wrap London Trenchcoat, £189.00

Too warm for your Winter coat (which to be honest, you’re sick of the sight of anyway), but not quite warm enough to ditch your coat altogether. Bored of your leather biker? ‘Over’ your army jacket? It’s time to embrace the trench! Don’t worry, you’ll fall back in love with your other jackets eventually… It’s just all about the trench right now. And it makes the perfect ‘transeasonal’ (fashion speak for ‘perfect for wearing right now’) coat. We love a trench with pretty much anything (dungarees, flared jeans, little dresses, flats, heels, sandals…), and we’re loving this Wrap London one with a simple Breton t-shirt dress, gladiator sandals (we both have these Issy ones in tan) and this cute sequinned cross-body ‘mini bag’ for some low-key bling. Casual but chic. Fancy winning this very trench? We love it because it’s linen, so lovely and relaxed/slouchy looking. And Wrap London are kindly giving one away to a lucky Little Spree reader! All you need to do to enter is email us with the actual name of this particular trench? A little clue: you might just find the answer somewhere here… We will be announcing the winner on Friday 22nd May. Good luck!

Sarah & Nicky xx

Created in collaboration with Wrap London

stripes & squirrels

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Baby Boy

1. Babe & Tess Fine Stripes Onesie (3-24 months), £40.50
2. Maileg Squirrel, from Elias & Grace, £28.00
3. Louis Louise Baby Slippers, from Elias & Grace (6-12 months), £38.00

It’s hard to believe that Bailey was ever small enough to fit in to an outfit this size, but when he was, this is how I liked to dress him: comfortable, simple, stylish, done (not something I always achieved I might add!). If there’s a cooler baby slipper out there I’ve yet to find it – I adore these Louis Louise ones. In fact Sarah and I are pretty much obsessed with this brand at the moment. For those with the breaking strain of a kit-kat for well priced, cool kids clothes (i.e. us) do not look up this brand!

Nicky x

mama spree: top five mama beauty must-haves

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Today on Mama Spree we are really excited to share our very first guest post. Kim Brown is a super-talented makeup artist (as well as an old friend of mine – we have worked on many amazing shoots together all over the world), as well as a fellow mama (and loyal Little Spree fan – she was one of the first people I shared my idea with while we were on a shoot together many moons ago). She’s also one of the smartest, funniest and kindest people I know (oh, and if you don’t hate her already – one of the coolest). Anyway, Nicky and I thought it was time we started sharing other people’s wisdom and knowledge as well as our own. But not just anyone, only the most experienced, talented people who we really believe will be inspirational to you in some way (because they have already inspired us). We asked Kim for her five all-time favourite go-to products for tired (new and not-so-new) mamas who need a quick, easy beauty ‘fix’ to feel a bit more like our old selves. We may not have the time for the same kind of pre-baby/babies preening and maintenance, but a few minutes (and the right products) can go a long way. And trust me, makeup artists are some of the best people to ask because they work with some of the most beautiful people in the world on a daily basis, who (believe it or not) often have the same hang-ups that we all do. Particularly post-kids. And if models are going to share, they share with the makeup artist. Fact.
With her gift for bringing out the natural beauty in people (I can vouch for this – she has done my makeup many times, and has literally transformed me in minutes!), Kim has collaborated with many acclaimed designers, including Preen and Jonathan Saunders, and made up many A-list celebrities such as Cate Blanchett, Rosamund Pike and Yasmin Le Bon. She has also worked with legendary photographers such as David Bailey, Peter Lindbergh and many more. Kim has worked on shoots for for Marie Claire, Glamour, Harpers Bazaar, ID and Elle; and is currently the Beauty Director of high-end quarterly fashion and style magazine Glass. Kim lives in London with her husband Will and their adorable daughters Marcie (three) and Margot (10 months). So listen up, she knows what she’s talking about!

Sarah xx

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Kim and her eldest daughter, Marcie

This is one product I always have in my kit. It gives the right amount of sheen on the skin without looking too oily. As well as using it on the body you can use it on your hair, and it smells devine, so also doubles up as a perfume. After having a baby your skin can feel a little dry and look a little dull, this is the perfect skin pick-me-up.

This is a Marine Protein Complex from fish and a bit of an industry secret. I lost a lot of hair after both my daughters were born and these vitamins really helped. So many models had recommended it as many of them have weak hair due to all the styling etc on shoots/at shows.

Natura Bisse The Cure Sheet Cream
This is the best BB cream I’ve ever tried. It also has an SPF of 20 and leaves tired skin looking dewy and rested. It also works on many skin tones.

By Terry Baume de Rose
This is my favourite lip balm by far it is also great on the cuticles or any little dry patches. It contains lots of essential oils instead of petroleum, and had a slightly pearlescent Finnish which is really pretty.

Nars The Multiple
This is a creamy stick for eyes, cheeks and lips – perfect for busy mums. It has a sheer finish so is really easy to apply and blend and comes in lots of flattering colours. The most popular is Orgasm, which suits most skin tones. It also adds luminosity to tiered skin.

Kim x

floral prints & floppy brims

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Sun hats

1. Agatha Sun Hat (Rainbow/Phoebe Multi), £24.00
2. Agatha Sun Hat (Ella Multi/Milla Mukti), £24.00
3. Agatha Sun Hat (Trees/Millla Blue), £24.00
4. Agatha Sun Hat (Ella Peach/Milla Peach), £24.00

For some reason I always find it harder to find a good sun hat for Tabitha than for Marlow. I think I’m just a teensy bit fussier when it comes to some girls’ things – pretty but not too girly, not too pink etc etc. These gorgeous ‘Agatha’ sun hats from Little Spree favourite, Olivier Baby are just right. The perfect Liberty print florals; reversible; 100% cotton; big floppy brim; and the all-important ties to keep them in place. I’ve got my eye on the ‘Ella/Milla Peach’ one for Tabs…

Sarah xx

grey tees

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Boys grey t shirt

1. Finger In The Nose Skate T-Shirt from Elias & Grace (2-12 years), £32.00
2. Boden Washed T-Shirt (1-12 years), £8.00-£10.00
3. Bellerose Pocket Mottled T-Shirt (2-16 years), £19.58
4. Bellerose Pocket Mottled T-Shirt (2-16 years), £19.58
5. Emile Et Ida Rain T-Shirt from Elias & Grace (2-8 years), £24.00
6. Gap Crewneck Tee, £3.99 (was £7.95)

Where would we be without a grey tee? Here are some of our favourites, including this Boden one that Marlow and Bailey both already have (and wear all the time)…

Sarah & Nicky xx

ps: don’t forget: the Elias & Grace 20% off ‘Treat Week’ continues until Monday 19th!