The cooler months are here, which means we are all transitioning to our autumn and winter wardrobes and that includes our little ones. With my one year old, Ava, I have found that it is easier to get her wardrobe ready if I follow a couple of simple steps.
A good start is investing in key pieces, then layering with natural fibres underneath in breathable cotton, wool and cashmere. I also find it works well if I colour coordinate to ensure maximum interchangability by sticking to similar colour tones and have footwear ready for any occasion. And lastly I’ve also included a few notes on how to wash and store your pieces for longevity.
I’ll discuss my 5 keys steps below with examples from Ava’s autumn/winter wardrobe…
1. Invest in Quality Key Pieces
Key pieces include a lightweight rainproof jacket, wool winter coat and pram suit. These key pieces will see a lot of wear, which means it is important to look for quality pieces which you can rely on and won’t fall apart after the first wash.
My recommendation for a rainproof lighter jacket in wet weather is the Burberry Lightweight Quilted Jacket which Ava has seen a lot of wear out of. Bear in mind, I always buy her coats and jackets one size up. This way I can roll up the sleeves when they are slightly larger and with the Burberry jacket the check pattern underneath looks great and that way you can get more wear out of them for a longer period then just one season. We have the mink colour however they do come in three colours. Burberry also have the option of the Burberry Diamond Quilted Hood Jacket which I am also a fan of as the hood provides that extra coverage. These lighter jackets are also great for autumn.
A wool coat for those dry yet cooler days is also ideal. I really like the quality and design of Rachel Riley, who has a wide selection of winter coats for both boys and girls. The coats are all lined and button fastening. They are thick, and quite heavy which is great for keeping in the warmth and feel soft to touch. Ava has the Rachel Riley Boys Blue Wool Blend Coat (I dress her in blue as well). The inside is this beautiful bronze gold and the coat is so well crafted, and very warm. Chloé also have a lovely faux fur wool and cashmere blend coat out this season which is a great lighter alternative for girls or Bonpoint’s Minois Coat Ecru.
A pram suit like this cosy faux fur hooded button up knit from Mebi is great for everyday walks in the pram and for toddlers to run around in outdoors. They can easily be removed for meal times and provide that extra all over warmth toddlers need when exploring in winter.
Mama’s and Papa’s have a classic white padded rainproof pram suit they re-launch every season and is insulated enough for urban snow in London and Ava wore last season. It also comes with little gloves which are detachable. Once they are walking and spend less time in the pram, a waterproof fleeced lined all-in-one is ideal for wet weather.
2. Layer with Natural Fibres underneath in breathable Cotton, Wool and Cashmere
Knitted cardigans and bonnets not only have a timeless and classic look they also provide that extra warmth needed for layering over outfits and under coats.
For a timeless and classic cardigans and bonnet knits our favourite would have to be Tierno,which have the most exquisite knitted cardigans, and they also do a set with the matching knitted bonnet which Ava wears in elegant grey pictured above. As each piece is hand made to order, Tierno pieces are heirloom items which you can easily treasure for a lifetime and keep for the next generation. They are also lovely and thick, so very warm.
I love the personal touch, as Tierno’s knitted pieces can also be personalised with your baby’s initials. All these knitted sets are made up from organic materials and are a staple for any children’s autumn/winter wardrobe.
Zara Kids and H&M Kids also have a large selection of knitted everyday outfits, and also 100% cashmere and wool pieces. But do get in early as they sell out. This Zara Kids Cashmere set of a jumper and ribbed leggings (comes in 3 colors) and this H&M set are great everyday pieces to starting layering with, for example this all in one wool body suit and also like these wool tights. They also wash really well and the fabrics maintain their shape.
Pepa & Co also have a lovey range and most of their outfits come as complete looks. Their knitted sets are great for European winter and come in the most gorgeous colours. Ava loves her knitted cardigan and knitted pants in beige.
Cashmere from Oscar et Valentine is fantastic for the cooler months, and they have a very large selection of 100% cashmere rompers, leggings, hats, scarfs and mittens. When Ava was born the first thing we ordered for winter was the Bonnie cashmere hat, scarf and mittens. We when discovered their gorgeous cashmere rompers like the Charlie cashmere coverall Ava loves to wear below. We also like their Marcel leggings but do get a size up as they run small. Bear in mind these rompers are all button up and it does take a little while to do them all up and the material needs to be washed carefully which I’ll discuss in my last point.
Long sleeve cotton body suits are recommended for extra warmth under layers as I find when I put Ava in blouses they un-tuck as soon as she starts to move and play. For occasion wear we love Bonpoint’s delicate collar embroidered bodysuits and Dior’s embellished collar body suits, which are just perfect for the festive season as well. For everyday we love Pepa & Co’s white cotton bodysuits also with liberty print frill collars. And as a last layer, a vest under garment like these cotton vests and thick cotton tights or extra thick long socks are perfect.
3. Colour Co-ordinate to Ensure Maximum Interchangeability in similar tones
The last thing you need is to worry about which outfits match and what goes with what or is that certain piece you need at the present moment in the wash.
Therefore sticking to a couple of similar colour palettes and then interchanging gives you maximum flexibility and saves time when it comes to outfit choices.
This is not a hard and fast rule and of course you can include colour, in winter and autumn rich red, burgundy and navy tones work well with neutral colour palettes.
4. Winter Shoes with Style
A mixture of pre-walkers and walkers are great. I like how soft the pre-walkers are for indoors and the foot isn’t as restricted. Once outside though, toddlers need extra support so a harder rubber sole is recommended.
We currently love our lace up Jane Rose leather boots from Age of Innocence, good for any type of weather rain or shine and the darker winter themed Toddler GG Supreme ballet flat by Gucci for outdoors. They also have the unisex Toddler GG Supreme Sneaker too. Indoors, Ava usually wears her Adidas Gazelle Sneakers, ideal for soft play and classes and for casual wear she loves her Early Days off white t-bars and these gold ballerinas with socks and tights. If you are outdoors in the country, little printed wellies from Joules are really practical.
5. Buy a Non-Bio Delicate Wool Wash & Hand Wash your Pieces to Ensure Longevity
Hand washing, air drying and at times dry-cleaning is so important to keep these delicate pieces lasting for a quite while. I usually use Bondi Wash Cypress and Petitgrain laundry wash delicate for cashmere and wools and Bondi Wash Pepper and Lavender for organic cottons. Laundress also have a specialised wool and cashmere care set complete with wooden jumper comb. For cotton bodysuits which are not as delicate, I find Fairy Non-Bio Liquid wash performs well.
If the clothes are stained I usually spot treat the stain first and then wash by hand and then gently stretch back to shape and air day. If all else fails there are specialised dry cleaners that can clean these pieces for you. However source eco-dry cleaners that use non-toxic, biodegradable plant based detergents that will be gentle on your child’s clothing and most importantly their skin when they wear them next.
Cashmere and wool will pill over time, the good news is that you can buy an inexpensive special comb to go over the fabric once in a while, and the piece will look new again. After the season is over, if you are storing your winter pieces, you can purchase acid free paper and fold away in a box. Always store the boxes somewhere well ventilated.
I hope you find some of these tips useful and if you have any questions or suggestions do feel free to pop them below.
Kerstin // Lux Mumma