collections of the myriad online companies and individual labels that have emerged over the last
couple of years. Surfing the websites, flicking through the brochures and visiting children’s boutiques in
fashionable haunts, what you see is a plethora exquisitely charming prints, hand-knits, crocheted
blankets, embroidery, appliquéé, rick rack braid and clothes that intentionally look skillfully home made.
This may seem like a return to the stuff of traditional British children’s clothes from the era when
children were seen and not heard and clothes were probably rather scratchy but although these clothes
reference picture books, fairy tales and the 1940s, they have a more casual, thrown together look – rather
than the stiff formality that ‘Nanny’ would have chosen.
Ex St Martin’s student Amynta Warde-Adam of Tulip and Nettle, started making children’s
clothes because her son “didn’t want to wear a football strip and through a fascination with
soliders’ uniforms decided he wanted to wear moleskin”. Her collection includes ‘hero’ breech
es, ‘yum yum’ dresses, which are tied with Petersham ribbon, floral smocks, and gingham
bloomers often with generous trimmings of original vintage ribbons called ‘anorak braid’ and
‘daisy trim’ that Warde-Adam picked up from a very old fashioned local supplier when it shut
down. The collection is a real trip down memory lane to the days when nursery school was still
all about nature tables and finger painting.
A more recently established company is Wintersweet, set up by textile designer Rebecca
Loxley who motivated by her “concern for the loss of traditional textiles used in everyday life in
the UK” created a collection of matinéée jackets, booties and fine cobweb shawls that is hand knitted
in South America. This emphasis on traditional textiles is also an enduring theme for Eva Karayiannis,
who established Caramel Baby and Child nine years ago. Karayiannis came from Greece to this