A Day At The V&A by Ipswich Mummy

After our thoroughly enjoyable trip to London at the beginning of April our eldest two children had been asking almost every day when we would next be heading to London so we were delighted to be asked by AlexandAlexa.com if we would like to spend a family day in London at the V & A Museum of Childhood.

Kitted out in some cute clothing from their website we headed off to London, parking in Redbridge and taking the tube a short journey to Bethnal Green Station. The Museum of Childhood was less than 5 minutes away from the tube station and easy to find.

As it was St George’s Day there were lots of extra activities on and we were greeted by a Punch & Judy booth outside the door and there were Morris dancers wandering around and craft tables on the lawn.

Our children had their first experience of Punch & Judy last Christmas and loved it so they were over the moon to see the booth. It was another half an hour until the show would begin so we went inside the museum to have a quick look around.

We were amazed at how big the museum was and could see that we would be there for a considerable time!

The first thing we did was to book ourselves on the 1.30pm session of egg decorating activity, which was being held throughout the day. For £5 each we were given a short tutorial on egg decorating and a thick chocolate egg slab to decorate with a large choice of sprinkles and decorations and take home. It was hosted by a lovely lady from The Chocolate Source. Numbers were limited so that there was plenty of space on the tables and no jostling for the decorations. Molly was called up for a demonstration and was very impressed with the white chocolate bunny whiskers that were piped onto her face.

While we were waiting for the Punch & Judy show to start we wandered around the museum. Myself and my husband could be heard regularly squealing ‘I had one of those’ with great excitement!

The children love museums with hands on displays so they had great fun trying on dressing up clothes and playing in the sensory pod, riding a rocking horse, playing with a giant robot and more.

I’m always a little dubious of our children’s views on Punch & Judy seeing as it’s hardly the most politically correct puppet show but the puppeteer came out of the booth and got the children involved with a short talk about what’s right and what’s wrong, particularly where violence is concerned. He was brilliant at gaining the children’s enthusiasm. After watching Punch & Judy in the baking sun we had lunch at the Benugo café within the museum. It was a little expensive but the food was delicious and if you’re on a budget you’re welcome to take your own food and eat it in the picnic room.

After lunch the children decorated an easter basket and if we’d had more time they could have made an easter bonnet. The craft activities were all free and outside we could have made fans or flags. There was also a bunting workshop and St George and the Dragon Storytelling. We then went up to the first floor and the children loved looking at the old style cots, prams and highchairs in the baby section and they wondered why their baby brother’s stuff looked so different.

They then discovered the Good Times section with a sandpit and 2 Punch & Judy booths with puppets. We were all treated to a very funny puppet show by Charlie!

The temporary exhibition space was housing Food Glorious Food until 25th April and as the children adore Mr Bloom’s Nursery on Cbeebies they were in their element ‘gardening’ in the shed and dressing up as various fruits & vegetables.

There was also a kitchen larder full of nostalgic packets and tins of food that my husband and I remembered from our parents’ cupboards when we were children.

It was approaching 3pm and although we would have happily have spent another few hours at the museum the children were hot and tired so we went outside and watched the Belles of London City Morris dancers for a while.

We would love to go back. It’s a fantastic place to go with lots for the family to see and do. With free entry to the museum it can be an inexpensive day out. They have a great list of family events coming up over the next few months, most of which are free!

Impswich Mummy’s children were wearing a Petit Bateau Submarine Print T-Shirt, a Munster Kids Mikey Mathews Graphic T-shirt and a Ralph Lauren Pink & Blue striped dress from our spring summer collections on www.AlexandAlexa.com

- Words and Images By Heidi from http://himmethree.blogspot.com -


Posted on : May 11th, 2011 Comments : 0
Category : Outings & Events |

Our Interview With Miss Hope of Hope & Greenwood

One always hears about the fabled old fashioned sweet shops, but it was not until we headed to South London vintage confectioner, Hope & Greenwood, for our Candy Shop Photoshoot, that we really understood what all the fuss is about.

Upon entry, all three senses were immediately stimulated. A vintage entry bell tinkled as we swung open the door and the sweet aroma of chocolate and boiled sugar engulfed us as our eyes feasted on shelves stacked with glass jars brimming with brightly-coloured boiled sweets and the counters bursting with handmade chocolates, truffles and fudges displayed in 1950s press glassed cake stands.

It took everything we had, as adults, not to scream with delight and run around the shop filling our bags with candy. We were there to work and once we calmed ourselves down, work we did, even if it was done with 50% focus on the task at hand and 50% focus on the splendid anachronistic post war decor and the abundance of goodies that lined the shelves around us.

Having only heard about the shops owners, Miss Hope and Mr. Greenwood, our curiosity of this shop, in which everyone’s childhood fantasy is basically re lived, left us with numerous questions for its owners and candy shop creators.

We caught up with Miss Hope to find out a bit more about Hope & Greenwood:

Did you enjoy sweets as children?

Pink Panther bars after mass for me. Pineapple cubes for Mr G.

What was your childhood like?

Daubed with tubes of watercolour, Fuzzy Felts, Gloy Glue, Flip flops, Super Mousse (frozen) and nylon pyjamas with a badly positioned ring pull.

Any funny childhood memories or stories?

None  whatsoever.  I spent most of childhood hiding in a wardrobe eating Wagon Wheels and twiddling the wheels on my roller skate (singular).

What are your favourite sweets?

Miss Hope’s Magnificent Jellies in particular Cherry Hearts.

What are your favourite chocolates?

Rose and Violet Creams.

The chocolates in store are produced exclusively by yourselves; can you tell me about what makes them different from other chocolates?

They are British, made with fresh cream, butter and proper vanilla. They are enrobed twice like wearing two cashmere scarves at once.

How many different flavours of sweets do you have?


How many different flavours of chocolates do you have?

About 40

What are the best sellers?

Champagne truffles, followed by champagne truffles, though our Oozy Caramel is truly splendid.

The most unusual sweet you sell?

Fizz! Bang Wallops! Sweets with va-va -voom.

Owning and working with sweets do you still actually enjoy them?

Unfortunately yes.

You have a very vintage aesthetic to the store, can you tell me about that?

Rose tinted glasses of a gentler time when we played knock-down -ginger, ate Vesta curry and my granny lived next door. The brand rule is ‘if my granny had it in her pantry – then we stock it.’

Do you have any children?

Jake (20) Rich (35) Vicky (32) and 4 grandchildren, we are their favourite grandparents.

If so what are their favourite sweets?

Magic Millions and all the other free sweets.

What do you enjoy most about owning a sweetshop?

Making people smile, it’s a happy place.

Easter is almost here, what sweet treat would you recommend for the occasion?

You absolutely MUST try our Strawberry truffle eggs as recommended in Delicious Magazine.

In addition to the store we held our shoot at in Dulwich and their second location in Covent Garden, you can also buy H&G confectionery in Selfridges, John Lewis Foodhalls, Fortnum and Mason, Harrods, Liberty, House of Fraser, Fenwick and Conran. You can also buy online on their site.

- Shop Online on the Hope & Greenwood -

-See the AlexandAlexa.com Magazine-

Posted on : March 10th, 2011 Comments : 0
Category : A&A Behind The Scenes, Outings & Events |

Sparkles, Skulls, Mermaids and Pirates with Damien Hirst

Normally, we wouldn’t recommend you take your child to view a skull of any kind, but after visiting Florence for Pitti Bimbo and stumbling across Damien Hirst’s exhibition For the Love of God, we have decided it just might be an exhibition for all ages.

For the Love of God has only been shown twice before Florence, once at White Cube in London (2007) and then the Rijks museum in Amsterdam (2008).

It is not every day you (or your children) get to view a skull encrusted with 8,601 diamonds, totalling 1,106.18 carats, valued at over S80,000,000 – it is quite breathtaking and beautiful – and with the imagination of a child, the who, where, what, when and why(s) of the art piece result in creative interpretation as they use their imagination to make sense of this luxury halloween-esque creation.

When we entered the small velvet room ourselves, a girl of about 5 was in the midst of asking her mum a string of questions about the jewelled skull – when she stopped for a breath, her mother asked her what she thought the answers to her questions were. After a brief pause and some intense concentration, the 5-year-old began answering her own questions, launching into a story of her own of how this piece of art came to be, her rendition involved a mermaid named Abriella, a whale named Nonos and a pirate named Jimmy (essentially, Jimmy stole the diamond skull from Abriella and Nonos saved it and brought it here to Italy to be kept safe in Palazzo Vecchio/”this place”).

Our run in with the 5-year-old story teller proved that even ‘adult’ art, if made interesting to a child, can proving that art of this nature can provide children with inspiration for their creativity and imagination.

For The Love Of God will be at Florence’s Palazzo Vecchio until 1 May, 2011.

two alexandalexa.com team members at the exhibition entrance in Florence!

Posted on : February 2nd, 2011 Comments : 0
Category : Entertainment, Outings & Events |

My Day With Dior’s Rene Gruau

When we first heard about Somerset Houses Dior Illustrated Exhibition and the workshop to go along with it, we knew we  had to go. Unfortunately, to get into the workshop, we needed a child between the ages of 6 and 12, so, we put a call out on our Twitter for mums with children interested in art and fashion and quickly got a response from Hareena and her daughter Muskeen.

Hareena, who will soon be launching her own clothing website www.nottobeworn.com, wrote to us about her daughter Muskeen’s interest in illustration and art and her budding love for fashion, which was exactly what we are looking for.

So, armed with only a camera, a note book, acute artistic skills and of course fantastic fashion sense, we sent 9-year-old Muskeen and her mum to Someset House  to see what all the fuss was about.

My Day At Somerset House

by Muskeen (Age 9) 


 10:06 am: Getting ready to go is easy with my new No Added Sugar dress from AlexandAlexa.com, it is a cold winter morning, but with my tights and my Uggs I am cosy! 


11:05 am: After arriving at Charing Cross Station, we take a nice stroll along the Strand when suddenly we hear a loud rumbling sound – I am very hungry by now! We finally reach the shops and find ourself inside a nice little cafe, we choose a delicious sandwich and some fresh orange juice, yum!


12.15 pm: We arrive at Summerset House.


13.00 pm: We register and receive our tickets! We have time to get a Chocolate Mud Cookie and check out some of the exhibitions that are going on…they are fabulous.


14.00 pm: Clipboards and pencils ready: entering the Dior Illustrated: René Gruau and the Line of Beauty Exhibition and Workshop. The lady who is showing us around is very nice and we see some fantastic work. I am jotting and drawing things down about Rene Gruau’s original illustrations for Christian Dior. I heard one girl say ‘He created some of the most iconic fashion images of the 20th century’, wow!

I find out that Rene Gruau’s art work is very simple and he only used a small palette of colours and really expresses his feelings!


14.34 pm: Now we head of to the workshop, its in a room with a high arch. Now what I did here! All the parents have to dress up (I helped my mum choose!) It is hilarious seeing my mum dressed up like this! We use water colours and felt tips to paint our parents Rene Gruau style. I am very pleased with all my art work!


15.30 pm: At the end we each choose our favourite picture out of the three and hang them up and make a little gallery of our own. Just like Dior!

Posted on : December 7th, 2010 Comments : 0
Category : Outings & Events |

Dior Illustrated

Starting tomorrow, 10 November, 2010, and running until the 9 January, 2011, Somerset House will be showcasing an exciting and child friendly exhibition in celebration of renowned illustrator René Gruau. who created some of the most iconic fashion images of the 20th century.

The exhibition, entitled Dior Illustrated: René Gruau and the Line of Beauty, will showcase Gruau’s original illustrations for Christian Dior including vintage perfume bottles, sketches and magazines, as well as a selection of Dior Haute Couture dresses.

Additionally, on the 20th of November, 2010, Somerset House will be holding a free workshop for fashion savvy kids between the ages of 6 and 12 who have a love for illustration.

The workshop will run from 14:00-15:30 (but be sure to get there by 13:00 to sign up) and will take inspiration from the exhibit by teaching children how to capture their favourite fashion images through illustration as if they were reporting form the catwalk (rumour has it the parents will be the one striking the pose).

We are sending a fashionable mum and daughter to review the workshop and exhibition on our behalf, but if you and your children visit the exhibition before that, be sure to let us know what you think by commenting below.

images provided by Somerset House




Posted on : November 9th, 2010 Comments : 0
Category : Outings & Events |

Save The Date: Fashion Night In with Vogue.com

Get out your diary and save the date, because, for the first time, VOGUE.COM is hosting Fashion’s Night In, an event that will bring together the world’s best online retailers for an evening of at-home shopping perfection, complete with exclusive offers, exciting competitions and fantastic giveaways .

The online shopping extravaganza will be on Monday, November 1 from 6PM to Midnight and 10 per cent of all sales from the night will be donated to Kids Company, so you can do good while you spend!

Alexandalexa.com will of course be taking part, and to make sure all you lovely ladies get spoiled alongside your children, we will be automatically entering everyone who purchases from our site into a prize draw to win your dream designer cocktail dress from Marchesa (worth £1,000)and a £200 Alexandalexa.com voucher for your little ones!

To further celebrate this momentous shopping event, shoppers will enjoy free UK shipping and half price international delivery. We will also be giving away hourly prizes, including a limited edition Yves Saint Laurent colouring book. Make sure you follow our Twitter, @alexandalexa, or our Facebook, www.facebook.com/alexandalexa, to see what’s up for grabs!

Posted on : October 28th, 2010 Comments : 2
Category : Outings & Events |

The Baby Show

The currently 6 month pregnant member of our Alexandalexa.com team and our Press Assistant, Olivia, visited The Baby Show at Earl’s Court this past weekend to enjoy all things related to pregnancy, birth, babies and toddlers.

While waiting to see the mama and baby fashion shows (for which Alexandalexa.com donated a number of baby designer clothing items), our Alexandalexa.com duo dodged other pregnant women, doting dads, buggies and babies to visit the stands, taste the latest kids snacks, check out the latest kids toys and collect goody bags for our mum to be.

Then came time for the fashion show, where Alexandalexa.com’s Tammy Donohoe, Cacharel, Imps &Elfs, Mayoral and Timberland babywear was modelled by the tiniest of models while TV presenter, model and mum, Myleene Klass, hosted .

Let us know if you went to the show and what you thought of the experience!

Posted on : October 26th, 2010 Comments : 0
Category : Outings & Events |

Fantastic Mr. Fox’s Opera Debut

We found a very Family Friendly idea for a day out in London with the kids this summer break, thanks to Opera Holland Park.

Enjoy a magical day of opera on the Yukka Lawn of Holland Park, a perfect scenic backdrop for s certain fox who is rumored to be ‘fantastic’.

That’s right, in hopes of introducing opera to children; The Opera Holland Park and London Sinfonia have sourced material that your children are bound to know and love, this year’s box office hit, Mr. Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr. Fox

With some fantastic melodies framing the famous story, Kids can watch Mr. Fox sing his way out of trouble in an engaging hour of entertainment for audiences of all ages.


Where: Holland Park, Ilchester Place, London, W8 6LU

Contact: 0845 230 9769 or http://www.rbkc.gov.uk

Dates & Times: Jul 26, 29, 31 AND Aug 3, 5, 7, 10, 12 14 AT 3:00pm

Price: £5, children £2.50

Posted on : July 26th, 2010 Comments : 2
Category : Entertainment, Outings & Events |

Graffiti for Kids

Most parents might frown at the idea of graffiti art and gasp at the suggestion they send their child to learn its techniques….but what if these techniques were taught by a respected London artist who has worked with the likes of Disney, Vogue, Red Bull and ITV?

If you’ve got children aged 10 or older, who are interested in art, there really is no better way to support their creative development than to enrol them in non-traditional art lessons.

The lessons, taught by London based graffiti artist, Andy Seize, provide young artists with a one-hour class on the basics of graffiti: lines, shading, spraying.

Seize founded ‘Graffiti Lessons’ to support and promote the use of graffiti as a positive art from when done in a creative respectful way, offering classes, pre booked events, birthday parties, stags and hen activities to adults and children who want to earn the art and earn it the right way.

The ‘Graffiti Lessons’ team takes photos of each lesson and puts them on the company facebook page for friends and family to view at will. Each child also receives a gift certificate for their next lesson.

Class information for the next ‘Graffiti Lesson’:

When: Saturday, July 17, 2010, 11:00AM

Price: One-hour lesson (£55.00)

Where: Broadway Market, E8 4QB

Bookings: 07967 879421 or  [email protected]

Posted on : July 12th, 2010 Comments : 3
Category : Outings & Events |

July Family Outings & Events



What: Alice Through The Looking Glass

Where: Eltham Palace, off Court Road, SE9 5QE

When: July 8, 2010, 19:15 (Gates open @ 18:30)

Price: £14 for Adults, £10 Children

About: An outdoor staging of Alice Through the Looking Glass, Lewis Carroll’s sequel to the well known family favourite, Alice in Wonderland. Watch Alice on her fantastical adventures through the strange world she enters through the mirror above her drawing room fireplace. The story follows Alice’s travels across a board game where she meets up with some familiar characters like Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum as well as new and exciting characters.  

Bookings: Recommended, call: 0845 450 5157



What: Bastille Day Garden Party

Where: Battersea Park, Albert Gate Entrance, SW11 4NJ

When: Friday, July 11, 10:00-18:00

Price: FREE

About: Celebrate the French national holiday, but in England! Enjoy cabaret performances, a tricolour balloon release, fantastic gourmet market, cooking demonstrations for kids and lots more outdoor fun!



What: Butterfly Explorers at The Natural History Museum

Where: The Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington, SW7 5BD

When: Daily, 10:00-17:50

Price: £6 Adults, £4 Children

About: Learn about butterflies as you and the kids follow the butterfly trail through the butterfly house full of real butterflies, and out into the Natural History Museum’s British garden for more fun!



What: Dressing Up

Where: 5 Nether Street, Tally Ho Corner, North Finchley, London, N12 0GA

When: July 26-30, 10:00-11:30AM

Price: £50 for five sessions

About: Your 4-7 year old fashionista’s or fashionisto’s can work with a costume designer to create fantastical outfits. Kids will learn costume-making techniques and make a fabulous piece of fashion.

Posted on : July 6th, 2010 Comments : 0
Category : Outings & Events |