With the gorgeous Duchess of Cambridge having her little Prince George this week, babies have been non stop in the news this week. She’s due to get gifts from around the world – including a lavish present from Sudocrem who got jewellery designer Theo Fennell to create a bespoke jewel-encrusted, 18-carat white gold charm bracelet that doubles as a Sudocrem holder! Erm, handy… I really do love to give presents when people have babies though – to me it’s as much fun as seeing the actual baby! Buying baby and children’s gifts is so much fun and choosing vintage items just makes the gift that much more special and unique – just like the recipient. So with that thought in mind, this week I’ve picked my favourite vintage inspired gifts for a new bundle of joy available online now…
1. The blankets you wrap your baby have to be one of the most treasured (and useful) items you get given. You can find lovely crocheted and vintage blankets on eBay and Etsy but I personally like re-worked blankets using vintage fabrics with new fleece linings. The range at My Retro baby is one of the best I’ve seen and deliver to the UK. The patchwork ones are really cute but I love the unisex animal retro version.
2. A lovely card is a necessity to wish new parents all the best. I love the look of vintage cards but the ones you find are often used or marked with brown spots – Zazzle.co.uk do a great range from Vintage_Obsession which takes vintage designs and makes them into new versions – absolutely adorable!
3. I love this vintage silver spoon set from Daisy Park – it reminds me of the fairy tale Goldilocks and the 3 bears! They also do teaspoons with baby boy/girl hand pressed into them and My Christening. A lovely unique keepsake.
4. A vintage Teddy bear is a great present. Although you can go high end and seek out a Steiff or another rare German example, I like the retro British plush toys from the 60’s. Merrythought are still making bears today but this vintage soldier teddy on eBay is just fabulous.
5. A truly traditional gift is a piece of Royal Doulton Peter Rabbit china – this plate is cute and useful. It can be used as it was design to, as part of a children’s dining set or on a shelf in a nursery as a decorative item.
6. Money boxes are a vintage gifting must have. There are great examples in silver-plate, china or glass (for example the Holmegaard versions which you had to smash to get the money out – children’s safety was pretty relaxed back then!!!). My favourites are by Carlton ware who produced great retro design versions in the 1960’s – they did practically everything – Noah’s arks, owls, cats, horses, pirates, soldiers, pigs, trains…
I covert the set of 4 figures – Queens guard, Beefeater, Policeman and Scots guard as seen here on eBay. A perfect gift.
8. Probably one of the most iconic gift you can give baby is a rattle. There are some beautiful antique versions around and a gift like this will become a family heirloom. I love this silver rattle from 1926 and a gift like this is one of a kind.
9. For a funky gift a vintage fabric bib using retro print fabrics is just the ticket.
10. A Rocking horse can be an extravagant gift, but my its a fabulous one! Little Bird Told Me have a gorgeous vintage inspired range made from retro print fabric – and they are so lovely! I love this pink and white paisley version…it has a real 1970’s vibe and would great in any playroom or nursery.
Anyone that has children will most likely have a little box or suitcase somewhere holding memorable items from their babies arrival plus some of their favourite gifts from that time. I certainly do, and every so often have a look through it and the memories it revives are lovely – I look forward to giving it to my son when he is an adult or has a baby of his own. By buying a unique vintage gift you can make sure your gift is in that box!
Sarah Gorlov is the owner of creative consultancy Blue Sky VM and is a stylist, blogger, vintage lover and charity shop addict.
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