Forget what you were taught: blue is definitely not just for boys
It's not always easy to find kids' clothes that tick all the boxes. They need to fit now, and ideally for at least another six months. They need to appeal to the child, because who wants a battle about getting dressed every day? They need to be practical, wearable, wonderful and, in this 'woke' era, made by a brand with sustainable credentials, or one that's heading in that direction. Here's our pick of the best for S/S19 – choose wisely and you'll not only have a very happy child but you'll also be able to kit out younger siblings in the same ensembles years down the line.
Alex & Alexa
They say: 'the world's best kids' brands at the click of a button.' We say: the perfect one-stop shop for everything from party dresses to plimsolls to PJs, in sizes from newborn baby to that tricky just-teenage age. The S/S19 campaign neatly reflects how old-fashioned the 'blue is for boys' sentiment has become, kitting out girls in gorgeous pale blue outfits.
We particularly love Alex & Alexa for introducing us to international brands, such as Barcelona-based Bobo Choses (below); each collection is based on a story and its characters immortalised through the brand’s distinctive hand-illustrated prints.
Another European favourite, this time from Holland, is Sproet and Sprout, known for experimental motifs and fun prints, as seen on these beautiful pyjamas. This is one for you if you veer towards fuss-free shapes and neutral shades, plus the brand's eco-conscious philosophy means good, lasting quality.
Perfectly pretty AND oh-so practical? What more could you want? Marie-Chantal has been around for nearly two decades and its founder, married to the Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece, has undoutbedly road-tested her designs on her own five children. The S/S19 collection, available from mid-February, is filled with the stuff of summer dreams - floral prints, pale pastels and an exquisite attention to detail in the form of ruffles, ribbons, scalloped edges and layering.
You can explain to your kids that their Mini Rodini outfit is not only super cool but also that it was made without having a nasty impact on the people who made it, and the places it was made. Mini Rodini collections are not for the wallflowers - they're bold, loud and proud. S/S19 is dubbed Tropical Island, packed with wacky banana, panther, crocodile and monkey prints.
Can Queen Stella do no wrong? She's blazing the eco-trail, and has been since well before it was cool to be green, and her kidswear is as covetable as the adult ranges are. We love the bright colours, kooky prints and child-friendly fabrics. Full marks.
Guilt-free kids' clothes that actually do tick all the boxes. Frugi only uses organic cotton and their outerwear (which we have personally tested) is made from recycled plastic bottles, plus it gives 1% of profits to charity. Its clothes come in bright, vibrant colours, featuring playful characters and clever details such as reversible designs, adjustable waistbands and interactive appliques. Its spring collection: the Summer of Scillyness. To the beach!