Area Stores Have Chic Boutiques for Trendy Tots

SUMMER WEAR: Super Model Addison Gray in Corky & Co. bathing suit ($49).

“Fashion is all about happiness. It’s fun.” – Donatella Versace
Italian fashion designer

Oh sure, it appears to be a charmed life; but let’s take a look into the real life of a supermodel and learn the truth. First of all you have to get a good night’s sleep; and if it is a late shoot you might need a little nap to keep away the grouchies. Our model was Ms. Addison Gray, daughter of Dacia and Brian Gray of Tulsa.

We met up with Addison and her “agent” (i.e., biggest fan) Grandma Vicki Tapp at the very chic boutique, the Lolly Garden, in Utica Square, which features everything from fun wear to formal wear for boys and girls. It’s on the east side next to the Polo Grill (742-6300). Manager/buyer Amanda Graddy served as stylist/consultant to Ms. Addie, who is a perfect size 4. The Lolly Garden celebrated its first birthday in May; Addison celebrated her third one on March 30.

Addison was doing a little shopping herself when I walked through the stroller-friendly automatic door of the store. She was pushing a pint-sized shopping cart that was filled to the brim with plushy stuffed animals. She was already dressed for the photo shoot in a splashy lime-green tankini with a flaming pink flamingo on top, trimmed in a ribbon of hot pink pom poms (Corky & Co. $49.)

Adorning her cascading brunette locks was, according to Discovery Girl magazine, the summer’s “must-have” accessory: a large, brightly colored flower. (Check out Stirling Flowers and one-of-a-kind hair accessories for girls in the Gaga-a-Gogo boutique at the Cherry Street location across the street from Panera Bread.)

Like a pro, our girl Addison dropped everything to “strike a pose” on the giant Lolly Garden logo in the center of the store. She stood on her tippy toes, sat on the floor, stretched like a gazelle (or a mini Gisele), and followed every instruction until we had several contact-sheets of photos. She made it clear when the shoot was over, reaching for her grandma’s arms, and fell asleep in her car seat on the way home – wearing the bathing suit she had modeled. You see, like any savvy supermodel, she had it in her contract that she got to keep whatever she wore.

Meanwhile, back in the Lolly Garden, Ms. Graddy gave me a tour down the stroller-friendly aisles from which she selected Addie’s outfits. One-of-a-kind sock-monkey t-shirts are almost impossible to keep on the shelves. The Coco Bon Bon cupcake outfit is sure to be a little miss favorite. The appliqua on the tank top ($33) is so appealing one would find it tempting to pluck the crocheted cherry on top. A mid-calf skirt ($35) completes the outfit in cupcake print, lined with toile and a ruffle. As comedian Gilda Radner once said, “I base my fashion taste on what doesn’t itch.” She would be pleased. This is children’s couture that is affordable and comfy.

The piece de resistance for all seasons and especially this summer has morphed from the ballerina’s tutu into the “pettiskirt.” Amanda held up a soft-pink one in infant size 0 – 3 months (Belle Ame, $45) that looked like cotton candy and with a baby in it would melt your heart. “Tweeners” kitsch it up with leggings and a jean jacket, tank or tee. The pettiskirt comes in all sizes and lengths from tutu to ankle-length.

Happy feet this summer will be wearing ballet flats, slides, and flip flops. Baby Couture magazine highlights Birki Kids water sandals made in Germany ( If you want to help our economy locally, drop by the largest children’s boutique in the area, Kathleen’s Kids at 81st and Harvard or online at Ask Nancy, Debbie, or owner Kathy Marshall for a peek at their Bear Feet nubuck Mary Jane sandals ($74) with dimensional flowers on the toes and non-slip crepe soles. They are shaped like your little ones’ bare feet; and they are made in America.

As organized mommies know, you must remove something from your closet for each new item you bring to it. Why not donate those items to the Laura Dester Shelter for abused and neglected children? These kids have been taken from their homes in emergency situations with only the clothes on their backs. Call Ashley Peth at (918) 560-4803 to learn more. The concept of “paying it forward” is a wonderful thing for children and their parents.

Ciao for now!

P. S. Thank you Addison. You were truly a super model.

Updated 05-18-2009

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