You could say that Edwina Elek's got you covered if you're pregnant in London. Literally. As co-founder of Clary & Peg, she's outfitted the cutest bellies around town. And this year, she outfitted her own as well -- her third baby is due this month, so she's getting plenty of use out of Clary & Peg's vintage-inspired, maternity-friendly collection, including that adorable signature jumpsuit you've probably been lusting over, pregnant or not. (Lucky for you, they offer international shipping!)
Because we know she's so well-versed in where to eat, shop and get pampered during pregnancy, we asked this soon-to-be mom of 3 (her other kiddos include Dashiell, 5, and Cosmo, 3) to give us her hometown pregnancy tour. Here are 11 spots to hit when you're pregnant in London.
1. Pampering: Shine
I don't often have a chance to pamper myself, but I love having massages. When I'm pregnant, I find it really helps me to relax and aid aching limbs, so I indulge more than I otherwise would. There is a great place called Shine on Church Street in Stoke Newington which has great pre-natal treatments.
2. People-Watching: Church Street
Church Street is full of cafes and small independent boutiques, so it's a great place to while away an afternoon or sit and work in a cafe and watch the world go by. I also do pregnancy yoga ,which I love; a calm hour where I just get to think about me and the baby, and I inevitably fall asleep during the relaxation at the end!
3. Street Fest: Dalston Yard Street Feast
An outdoor warehouse space filled with all the different foods you can possibly imagine. It opens at 5pm, and we often go with friends on a Friday to hang out and avoid cooking! The children love tearing around the place, although they're not so adventurous on the food front -- it's all about the pizza!
4. Coffee Shop: The Dusty Knuckle Bakery
It's near our office, and they have a lovely garden and make delicious pastries and coffee. On sunny mornings we meet there, sit outside and chat through our do list and what we need to achieve that day. It's a great business to support, as they are a social enterprise working with young people facing barriers to financial independence: youth offenders, early school leavers and the long term unemployed.
5. Italian Food Cravings: Trullo
Italian deliciousness, and amazing ragu.
6. Swedish Food Cravings: Cooper & Wolf
Swedish cafe at the bottom of my road that does amazing meatballs and cinnamon rolls.
7. Dim Sum Cravings: The Dumplings
Delicious local dim sum restaurant. Their chocolate dumpling pudding with ice cream and salted caramel sauce is the most incredible thing I have ever tasted... probably heightened by my pregnant taste buds. I have been there 4 times in the last two weeks alone!
8. Accessories Shopping: Mimi Berry
I have only been wearing Clary & Peg and vintage this pregnancy, so I have had to satisfy my shopping desires through accessory purchases. I have recently bought a mimi berry bag -- conveniently she has opened a shop round the corner from my house. They are simple and chic bags that go with everything. Ideally, I would like one in every colour!
9. Shoe Shopping: Office
I've had a few weddings to go to this summer, and because I had the dresses sorted I was worried about finding comfortable shoes. I found these in Office and even on first wearing, I was on my feet and blister free for 10 hours straight. Wedges are the way forward and suitably vintage!
10. Nursery Shopping: Dragons of Walton Street
I'm putting all 3 children in the same room since it means I can keep my office and au pair! And more importantly, I do love the idea of them all sharing together. The older two are now in bunk beds, and it has been a real bonding experience for them. The room is full of vintage toys (my old dolls house and childhood desk), and the walls are decorated with mine and my siblings childhood outfits. Because it's Baby #3, we have everything we need so I haven't had to buy anything for the nursery. And for the first few months, it will sleep in the room with us in a crib that was slept in by my husband and his father -- it has a beautiful old liberty print lining. But, if I was going to nursery shop, it would be at Dragons of Walton Street, which is filled with beautiful old-fashioned painted furniture like rocking horse and dolls houses. It makes me nostalgic for my childhood.
11. Babymooning: 40 Winks
We haven't gone on a babymoon this time, since we realised that we'd never been away just as a family of 4. So we are going to Greece for a week and staying at the Ekies All Sense Resort in Halkidiki, a very child friendly boutique hotel on a beach. For a local babymoon option though, 40 Winks is a Georgian house in East London. There are only 2 rooms, but they are beautifully done and a bit different -- it's top of my list. I also love the Rooksnest suite at The Rookery in Clerkenwell. Old English charm with an amazing bath, which is very important when you're pregnant!
Bonus Pick! For visiting with kids in tow: Columbia Road Flower Market.
The flower market takes place on a Sunday morning and starts early, always a bonus with small children. There's always live music playing, lots of delicious food on offer and beautiful flowers as a backdrop -- on summer mornings it has almost a carnival-like atmosphere.
Photos courtesy of @claryandpeg