With the current celebrity baby boom in full swing, there is a huge interest in their choice of baby names, the buggies they’re pushing and what hot new products they’re treating their A-list babies to.
When (untrue) rumours that pregnant Victoria Beckham was planning to give her unborn baby daughter a £2 million nursery circulated, we asked ourselves “What on earth could you spend that on?!”
To get the lowdown on what the rich and famous are investing in when it comes to their baby’s nursery and children’s bedrooms, we spoke to the MD of family run nursery boutique, Dragons of Walton Street, in London. This high-end nursery store boasts an impressive celebrity clientele…
“We’ve had a host of exciting customers from all over the world. From Arab and European royalty to famous international aristocrats,” explains Lucinda. “We had model Jerry Hall visit the other day – I remember when her children were young and we did her children’s room. We’ve had a few footballers come and visit too, which was exciting.
“When the Prime Minister’s wife, Samantha Cameron gave birth to her daughter Florence, I had a hand painted chair sent to her, both to London and in Cornwall. It had a sign post on the back of the chair with No.10 Downing Street with a little white rabbit knocking on the famous Downing Street door with her name on it,” says Lucinda.
So how exactly does a nursery boutique get such a fabulous reputation with the rich and famous? Lucinda explains, “Dragons was started over 30 years ago by my mother when she couldn’t find any nursery furniture for my brother and I. She originally had an antiques shop in Sussex but begged my dad to open a shop in London in Walton Street. The interest in hand painted nursery furniture started after a chair was on display in the window that my mother had painted.”
“My mother had a studio on the back of the store where artists would paint the furniture. Then one day, out of the blue, Princess Diana came in and purchased furniture for Prince William and Harry (when they were babies). My mum didn’t tell anyone she came in. Then one day, a tabloid newspaper called her and said they’d heard she decorated the Prince’s nursery! This moment definitely put Dragons firmly on the map.” Yes, royalty can do that! Now onto those other Royals…
“I would love to kit out Prince William and Kate’s baby-to-be’s nursery. This is because that would be the second generation of decorating a Royal baby’s nursery, as my mother worked with his mum, and I would love to work with Prince William,” explains Lucinda.
“That would be lovely because our brand is quintessentially British and everything is lovingly hand painted and we’ve been going for over 30 years. It would be terribly exciting to decorate another member of the Royal family’s nursery.”
So, do celebrity parents tend to stick to traditional options or do they go all out, like you’d expect them to? Well, Lucinda says it’s a mixture. “There’s a real combination – some want lavish, over the top objects, like Cinderella Moses baskets made of silk or a crystalised cot. We recently sold a silk Moses basket for £7,300! I’ve noticed they also love hand-painted furniture as they are unique, which I guess is the key for the celebs, as they want to have things others don’t,” she says.
“Others want minimalist, contemporary and modern looking furniture and accessories, which is great because Dragons can do both. It’s definitely interesting seeing different people’s taste.”
If only to be a fly on the wall…