The new wardrobe
The standards were always going to be pretty high for Delilah's wardrobe; where do the clothes come from? How are they made? Who made them? The responsible questions we hoped would stay at the top of our priority list very quickly became entangled with; how long will they last? Will they fit her feet (she's clearly not inherited either of our vertical challenges)? How will they wash? Shopping with sustainability at the heart of baby clothes is certainly a challenge (not as tricky as sustainably made pregnancy clothes though), but there is clearly a growing supply and demand for this.
The list goes on, but these are the front-runners in her wardrobe for these, for now...
The bare necessities
First thing's first; the basics. Delilah cannot stand having anything over her head, so she has been in kimono wrap-over babygrows and cardigans from day one. We have found H&M Conscious have these in an array of colours using organic cotton the best for staying power and fit (I'm keen to know how these are made though and if they live up to the 'Conscious' name tag, though, but price and fit are the deal-makers for me at the moment). Petit Bateau has the most divine colourways and a lovely high crossover at the neck - great for avoiding a slightly embarrassing plunging neckline. Arket's colours are pretty dreamy and come in Pima cotton - for those unsure what that means, Pima cotton is great for children as it does not contains pesticide residues or synthetic fertilizers, so is ideal for sensitive skins and its fine and long fibre is up to 50% more resistant than most of the standard varieties of cotton, so is great for durability.
Being new to the parenting game, one thing we hadn't thought about is circulation at night - her extremities freeze if left out, so her little hands and feet need to be kept toasty. For sleepsuits, the reliability of John Lewis and M&S are second to none. Her star suit from John Lewis was a favourite, but unfortunately, given the nature of fast fashion repeat buying of styles isn't much of an option.
Then there are the general clothing go-tos, including the previously mentioned saviours. We received a huge amount of goodies for her from Baby Gap - the booties are so, so great (idiot-proof on the sizing, who knew shoe shopping could be so confusing?!) and the hats are brilliant for her slightly-larger-than-average head. My one bugbear? Our nearest store has a terrible format - why you wouldn't make the layout for the baby department pram-friendly is beyond me, so online is definitely the way forward, especially with so many great offers in their emails, if you can handle daily (sometimes bi-daily) reminders.
The pieces she has from Zara Mini are so sweet and lovely quality, I'm finding it a leap up from that often found in the adult clothing. The cardigans, button-up jumpers, booties and dresses are winners for us. If only I could know more about how the clothes are made, though...
I managed to win the most incredible bundle of goodies on Instagram before the little lady arrived, including a stunning cashmere set from British brand Olivier Baby and I have been daydreaming about their things ever since. Their Liberty print swimsuits are at the top of my list for her summer wardrobe. Now, if I could just convince them to make grown-up options too...
The bottom line
How is it that baby socks just never stay on?? Leggings with feet, whoever created them, thank-you.
One brand I am completely in love with for lovely everyday basics is Baby Mori. Set up by two uncles after looking for things for their nieces and nephews, Mori makes gorgeous pieces using both organic bamboo and cotton in amazing colourways. The leggings Delilah has from Mori are so sweet and so incredibly soft, after repeated wears. I can't wait to get her into the sweet little striped summer dresses they make. A firm favourite for us for everything they do.
We discovered some adorable unisex leggings from Nics and Bees when we visited FountLondon in Hackney last week - Handmade using a blend of organic cotton and elastane with the most adorable designs they are great for everyday lounging - For something slightly more show-stopping though, their linen rompers are simply perfection - I'm willing the summer weather to justify getting her at least one...
I have become slightly obsessive about finding bargains for her - especially when it comes to occasional outfits that she will only wear a few times. eBay & Manifesto Kids have been nothing but incredible, the amount of treasures we have found through these has been brilliant for the purse strings - and selling through them has been incredibly handy as well. I have heard wonderful things about Birch & Star in Walthamstow, so look forward to checking that out soon.
Caramel is a brand constantly creating life goal pieces for me and has the most beautiful baby collection. We have found some truly beautiful pieces on Manifesto Kids including a linen top for the warmer months ahead and a beautiful dress that is perfect for a spring wedding we have coming up. Caramel has recently opened a store at Bicester Village, making me excited and terrified in equal measure for our next trip there.
I am a sucker for anything in a Liberty print for her and have found plenty on eBay - if only the weather would warm up a bit for us to get her into it!
Make do and mend
In the first week, the beloved mister had a catastrophe with a stray dark sock that sent everything new and light that depressing grey colour that destroys a wash every now and then. Not wanting her to look like a cloud of sorrow or to throw away pieces that I had spent months looking forward to (not to mention the gifts - awkward), I had a search for dyes that could bring things back to life. Dylon make the most wonderful Sunflower Yellow colour, which was beyond easy to use and looked wonderful on so many of the pieces - not to mention how sweet she looked, completely brightening up a fair few bleak winter mornings.
Wrap it up
Muslins have quickly become an essential part of my outfit now. Obviously there are the plain bundles that are helpful to have around, but the sensory muslin bundle from Etta Loves has brilliant patterns that entrance just about everybody and I hear the patterns are brilliant for baby's development as well - it's also been harder to misplace them, perfect to spot just when you need them!
Another sensory treat and a gift that we have all been mesmerised by is the organic cotton swaddle from Wee Gallery. So handy, it's great for a quick clear up, brilliant for covering a slight bit of modesty whilst feeding and brilliant for entertaining her in the pram or during playtime.
Part of the competition I mentioned earlier was a Marloe London scarf blanket, made from a lovely blend of cotton and bamboo. To say it has been useful would be nothing short of a monumental understatement. I'm planning to treat her to another for her first holiday, I have a feeling we will be lost without them in no time. Not to mention how lovely the team are - it's always so much better to spend your money with lovely people and the Marloe team are just that (Brilliant for a gift too, especially with the monogramming option too).
All in all, this little lady is growing faster than we had ever envisaged. Every day we notice something different, a new bit of magic. Her wardrobe is one of the greatest challenges, we're loving every minute of trying to make it as thoughtful as we can.