I’m just back from a whirlwind trip to New York. As big, bold and beautiful as ever New York was positively steaming in the heat and buzzing with summer city life. I was staying over the river in the achingly cool suburb Williamsburg, Brooklyn, known for its vibrant art and edgy music scene but also a family friendly area to live. So tucked side-by-side with galleries, coffee shops, restaurants and bars were two great baby and kids shops.
Maybe it’s the spacious lay-out of the ultra-modern store Mini Jake or the super-friendly staff, but even the baby and kids stuff in New York seems shinier, cooler and more exciting than in London. Mini Jake is packed with everything you could possibly need for your baby’s first year and beyond. It stocks all the great eco-fashionable brands such as Oeuf, Stokke, Bloom, Stokke, Bugaboo plus toys by Plan, Bobles and Playmobil along with a book corner, clothes and gifts.
New York is famous for skyscrapers and yellow cabs, but the city’s women are renowned for their big bags. So it was no surprise that the choice of diaper bags was overwhelming fabulous. Skip Hop is popular out there and I spotted the stunning – Studio Diaper Hop which works as a baby change bag and stylish mum’s bag and all very well priced at under $100. You’d be hard pushed to find a fashionable change bag at that price here in the UK. We really need to up our game!
I heaped my basket with fun and educational re-usable sticker books for the boys by Mudpuppy design and stocked up with the snack bowls and eating & drinking products by Boon – a funky range of BpA-free ergonomic designs. Even the sippy cups are more exciting in New York. Also in the bag was a Squirt baby dispensing spoon – a hilarious looking squeezy spoon gadget perfect for weaning on the go.
Mini Jake also runs morning music and movement classes so you can combine shopping with action for the kids.
Mini Jake, 178 North. 9th Street, Williamsburg.
Just around the corner was the stunning boutique children’s clothes shop Sweet William stocking an eclectic and hand-picked selection of high quality independent designers. I picked up a baby bean vintage play suit for my neice. ($54). Sweet William, 112 North 6th Street, Williamsburg.
For yourself don’t miss Beacon’s Closet (88 North 11th Street, Williamsburg) – retro buy and sell emporium. My fashion-obsessed friend hailed it the best place to buy vintage wear in the city. After all the spending, recharge your batteries with a coffee at Verb Coffee Shop, Bedford Ave. Great for hanging out and people watching.