With England facing the biggest baby boom in 40 years (eek!), there are more and more of us mamas around and thankfully retailers are starting to take note by creating not just new products but services to make our lives easier. Hooray!
What more could we ask for to get us ready for impending mama-hood than a Yummy Mummy prep service? That’s right, a one-stop shop with one-on-one care to get us set with everything we need for baby and mum during pregnancy and beyond. This service has been launched by John Lewis Oxford Street and Peter Jones (Sloane Square) to cater for this year’s ensuing mummy rush and I tried it out at Peter Jones.
The full Yummy Mummy prep service is available at these two London stores only (including Clarins or Elemis pregnancy spa treats for an additional price) until the end of June but I experienced the nursery advice session and time with a Fashion adviser which are completely free of charge and available at all John Lewis stores.
Of course I thought I knew everything now that my first child (Coco Lily) is 2 and perhaps a prep service wasn’t really necessary second time around. But it turns out that although I have a good idea of what you really need for you and your baby things change in the few years since I was last pregnant. As I walked around with my personal advisers I realised how many questions I have about things I’ve forgotten (breast pads!) or need to consider second time around (double buggy!).
From buggies to breast pumps and muslin squares to Moses baskets, the list of newborn needs seems endless and can be quite intimidating with your first child and frustrating with your second when you think of the things you didn’t bother to keep from last time!
My adviser, Jenny took a few details and registered me with a nursery list then we headed onto the shop floor to work our way around the department. We talked about what I already had, what I thought I might need and what Jenny suggested and her knowledge on every item was impressive. With each item I thought we may need Jenny scanned it into a handheld device as if creating a wedding list to log my choices.
After talking me through every baby-related thing you can imagine we headed back to the comfy armchairs while my list was saved. I was given a folder with details to log in to our nursery list online and edit, pass on the details to friends and family and purchase from as well as the latest nursery brochure and a copy of baby & me magazine. Not forgetting a voucher for free tea and cake for two upstairs in the restaurant while I waited for my next appointment with the fashion adviser. And as I was on my own of course I had the two portions of cake to myself. The staff insisted!
Just a few of the items on my list…
All items, John Lewis. Children not included.
Maternity style advice
Despite having worked as a stylist it’s still a challenge to dress myself some days – and not just because there’s a toddler hanging off me! – to think of new ways to wear your wardrobe and get out of your comfort zone to try something new. So it’s always interesting to get another view on what might work for you.
My style adviser, Judith picked out a great selection for me to try and was great with the sizing and colours. I did think I could squeeze into the smaller size on occasion but of course, she was right! We walked through the Seraphine maternity wear section but also picked up some ‘normal’ womenswear pieces that would work both now and after birth for breastfeeding or skimming that post-birth tummy.
Once we had a good selection I was taken to the fashion advisory changing rooms. Comfortable, spacious, everything you want when you’re pregnant and trying clothes on; two mirrors for different angles without making you jump at a 360 degree view of your growing body and a comfy arm chair to rest on after pulling on and off skinny jeans!
Here’s a selection of what we picked out in store…
If money were no object I think I would have bought all but one of the items I tried on, they worked really well and were a great fit. And the one item I didn’t love? A fab dress but a bit revealing for my self-conscious liking!
Whether you’re a first time mum or expecting your second (or more!), these free services are a great way to take a few hours out for yourself and take the hard work out of planning for your new arrival. You don’t feel pressured to spend a penny and you can just have the nursery or style advise on it’s own if you don’t fancy both. I left feeling informed and relaxed (and full of cake!) after a stress-free shopping experience.