A Little Vintage Inspiration

At The Fableists, we design our clothes for kids. They are meant to take a beating; to play hard, to be washed again and again and to be passed on to another child when yours is done with them. All this plus they had to have that classic, lasting style.

We built our clothes to be ‘future vintage’ and as such, it made sense to look for a little vintage inspiration when we were coming up with the designs. We love vintage work wear because it is well made, durable, and classic – perfect for The Fableists kids!

Don’t just take it from us. Check out this tweet from Daisy Bridgewater, who writes the Children’s Notebook in the Telegraph Magazine:


We love looking online and in books for vintage style that we think will be perfect for kids. We could easily come up with hundreds of designs based on these hard-wearing threads.

Shouldn’t all kids be dressed ready for action? In our clothes, your kids will be ready for anything. And there is history in our clothes. Just look where they’ve been before.

Follow us on Pinterest to check out some of the things that inspire us.

Hand Me Downs are Totally Awesome!

Seriously? These outfits were never bought new. They were just passed on and on and on...

Seriously? These outfits were never bought new. They were just passed on and on and on… They may even be antiques. After all, they look like they date from 18th century Bavaria and American Pioneer times. But, man – I loved that dress!

A quick search for ‘hand me down’ turns up all sorts of negative connotations: ‘cheap’, ‘shabby’, ‘used’, ‘no good’.


Do you remember when all kids’ clothes were passed around? Raise your hand if you wore the same outfits as your brothers, sisters, cousins, neighbours…? Second hand clothes were not something to be sneered at – you eagerly awaited your turn! As a child, my favourite clothes were the ones that had belonged to my older (and therefore terrifically cool) cousins. I loved getting their clothes and I wore them with pride and when I was done, they went to my brother and my younger cousins. We didn’t call them ‘vintage’ and yet no one turned down their noses at them. It was just what you did and it was the way it had worked since human beings had first covered themselves. We didn’t waste things. Everyone did it – regardless of their background or bank account.

Exactly how, when and why this changed is the topic of endless research and essays. Suffice it to say that somewhere along the way, we started spending our money less wisely, on lesser quality goods. Suddenly everything we bought was made on distant shores so that it could be produced on the cheap (a topic for another day) and we were clamouring for more and more. Our wardrobes and drawers started to overflow and most of the stuff didn’t even get worn. Our consuming is now out of control and most of us have the debt load to prove it. We’re teaching our kids to be bad consumers. And they are missing out on an essential childhood experience. Hand me downs are part of being a kid.

One of the most important things to us at The Fableists, is to make clothes that can be passed on from one child to another. To that end, we’ve designed the majority of our clothes to be worn by both girls and boys. They are made of 100% organic cotton using natural dyes that aren’t polluting the planet (and no chemicals will seep in through your child’s skin, either). They are made of thick materials so that they’ll last. If you wash them in cold water and hang them up, they’ll last longer (and you won’t have to iron them – result!). We want you to buy less of our clothes and wear them more and wear them longer.

So think of buying from The Fableists as an investment in ‘future vintage’. Think of how excited future kids will be when our clothes are handed down to them!

The Fableists: Big and Little

Big and Little

Big and Little

I Love this picture for three reasons.

One, because it is a gorgeous snap of my lovely daughter Amelie (with her not so beautiful father!).

Two, because this was a monumental day, one in which the amazing Sam Robinson shot our first ever collection in east London over 3 locations. We can’t wait to see the results.

And three, because it happened that our stylist and designer decided to put Amelie in our French Chore Coat, Breton Shirt and Dark Denim Jeans for her first look and it mirrored what I was wearing (and kind of always do). I think it proves beautifully how these classic clothes can look so much better on kids than their parents and also how the clothes look equally as good on a girl as they do a boy. Most of our first collection is gender neutral; ideal for passing the clothes on. Now that can save you some cash!

I love the snap. The outfit I am wearing is what inspired the style of The Fableists and it was a complete coincidence that we had the same stuff on.

It will all be ready for sale shortly and seeing the kids in the clothes was just so exciting for us yesterday. The kids worked the clothes pretty hard!

Beautifully designed clothes, made well in a totally sustainable way.

Matt Cooper, Founder

eBay? Yeah, we love it too

How many of you spend hours trolling eBay with no specific purpose? We’re guilty of the eBay browse and we totally encourage this behaviour. Regular viewing can turn up some terrific bargains on, well, pretty much anything.

eBay can be a fun, cheap way to buy clothes. It satisfies the urge to shop while also giving a second chance to used items. It can also get pretty competitive. Personally, I prefer the tortuous approach to bidding where you forego the maximum bid option and instead sit watching the time tick down, hoping that no one will sail in and make a last ditch attempt to foil your buying. Matt tells me this is very amateur eBaying but I think it adds to the thrill.

Do not be afraid to buy clothes on eBay. If there are no stains or rips then, once washed they can be like new – and all yours. Most of the time, you won’t know where their brand new clothes have been either! There is LOADS of tat on eBay but if you narrow your search to brands you know you love, or to hard wearing fabrics, like denim, then you’re bound to come up with a winner (or six!). Ask questions about sizing because some brands come up small or big and you can’t usually return items bought on eBay. Also, take in to account that a worn item has probably shrunk and you might have to size up.

Soon you’ll be browsing eBay for The Fableists’ clothing. In the meantime, admire some of my latest eBay purchases – some great items!

Denim Skirt Bought on eBay

Denim Skirt Bought on eBay

Petit Bateau Dress Bought on eBay

Dress Bought on eBay

Petit Bateau Denim Dress Bought on eBay

Denim Dress Bought on eBay

Petit Bateau Chambray Play Suit Bought on eBay

Chambray Play Suit Bought on eBay

Petit Bateau Denim Skirt Bought on eBay

Denim Skirt Bought on eBay

Smock Top and Smock Dress ~ First Look

Smock Dress by Th FableistsSmock Top by The Fableists

Here are a couple of our first items of clothes. They are made in 100% organic cotton chambray. The Smock Dress is based on a vintage Parisian dress and the unisex Smock Top is based on vintage work wear. The Smock Top looks just as good on boys, we just didn’t have any on hand!

Both will be available soon through our web site in sizes 4-10.