Written by Jacy Meyer
Kids these days. Always growing out of everything. Where does the smart Prague parent go to outfit their cool kids? Depends on your budget and the occasion, but no worries, you´ll be spoilt for choice in all corners of the city.
One street will just about do ya; however there´s not a lot that´s unique, glamorous or even fun about it. Václavské nám. is the best bet in terms of both selection and prices. Depending on the parent, either C&A (Václavské nám. 33, www.c-a-a.cz) or H&M (Václavské nám. 19, www.hm.com) will properly outfit your tykes, no matter their age, without breaking the bank. (An informal poll had more parents choosing H&M over C&A.) If you have school-aged kids, Marks & Spencer (Václavské nám. 36, www.marksandspencer.com) is a good choice; their selection for younger kids isn´t as extensive as C&A or H&M. Moving up the cost scale, head to Myslbek (Na Příkopě 21, www.myslbek.com) where both Next and Mothercare can be found. Side note – any of the shopping centers; Nový Smíchov (Plzeňská 8, www.novysmichov.eu,) Palac Flora (Vinohradská 151, www.palacflora.cz,) Palladium (nám. Republiky 1, www.palladiumpraha.cz,) etc. will have stores either specializing in kids wear or stores that offer it along with other baby items or general clothing shops. Of special interest in Nový Smíchov are a Zara Kids (www.zara.com) shop, always a good choice for dress-up outfits, as well as a Kenvelo Kids (www.kenvelo.cz.) There´s also a Chicco (www.chiccocz.cz) here for baby-related items. And of course, who can forget Tesco? (Národní 26, among others including Nový Smíchov, www.tesco-shop.cz) Good prices, good selection – from clothes to furnishings to formula to diapers – one-stop baby shop.
If you are looking for a special occasion outfit, English department store Debenhams (Václavské nám. 21, www.debenhams.cz) is a good first stop. On the stratosphere end of the pricing scale is Au pays des mimis (at Centrum Chodov, Roztylská 2321/19, www.centrumchodov.cz, but also Nový Smíchov, www.mimis.cz.) They import such brands as IKKS, Lili Gaufrette, Petit Bateau, among others. Last check they were running a sale on their Autumn/Winter collection, so now´s your chance to pick a hot bargain. If there are any to be found here.
What about secondhand? Kids grow so fast, especially the younger set, it seems they wear an outfit once, and next time it´s too small. And when you have the wee ones, not a lot of damage is done, leaving the garment in pretty good condition. Smart moms know to hit the secondhand stores. A couple of tips to keep in mind: the selection is almost always better for the younger ones – lots of stuff for those under 6 months, but a little older and up through the toddler range can be tougher to find. Also, don´t plan on picking up any seasonal items – look for winter coats in the spring and shorts and tees now. And never buy shoes secondhand – always purchase new, and look for the certified giraffe tag on the shoe. Shoe quality can differ dramatically here and it´s important to buy shoes marked with this symbol to ensure the best design, comfort and fit for children´s growing feet. A good shop selling certified shoes is Dětská obuv (Francouzská 30) in Prague 2. They have a great boot selection right now, and some cool wooden toys in the window. Since you are in the neighborhood walk around the corner to Vinohradský obchůdek u klídku (Jana Masaryka 50, look for the Levná móda sign.) Their selection changes fairly regularly, and as a bonus, there´s women´s clothes here too so pick something up for yourself. They have a basket with items for 20CZK and a rack (mostly women´s stuff) for 30CZK. Brands names can be spotted here; there were cute little girl´s overalls from Next and some snugglies too. A lot of the kids stuff looks barely worn.
A productive afternoon can be spent in Holešovice. A good number of shops are within walking distance; all offering great bargains. Those looking for labels will do well to stop in at Děstké prádlo a oblečení Domenica (Dukelskvch Hrdinů 23.) Mothercare, Early Days, Ladybird, George and Next are all regularly in stock. The store is a bit bigger than most and items are neatly arranged. Over on Veverkova 8 is Dětský Bazárek. Tiny store with a small selection of everything. Merchandise is hung by sizes, and on the last visit they had a rack of toddler winter jackets. Bé-Be Dětský Svět (Milady Horákové 26) has a lot of new stuff, especially for newborns. They also have bottles and toy sets, so a nice shop if you are looking for a gift. Biggest in the neighborhood is Špuntík dětský obchod (Kamenická 26.) The clothing selection is small, however they´ve got everything else from tubs to toilets, strollers to car seats. Right now there´s a decent selection of winter snugglies and onesies. The whole front room is basically given over to toys; including Lamaze and The First Years brands. Proof this is a child-friendly place? The stairs up into the store are equipped with a stroller ramp. Best bargains though have got to be found at Dětská Burza “U Krtka” (Šternberkova 17.) An example: one smart mom bought her one-year-old daughter´s Next winter jacket there. Looks barely worn, no stains, rips etc. and it only set her back 220CZK. This year´s new winter jackets in the Next store? A little bit pricier 1500CZK. The selection here changes often, and there´s always a lot of stuff to choose from.
If you know your kids sizes, do your shopping online. It´s only in Czech, but www.brumla.cz is a secondhand online shop. It´s easy to navigate, you can search by category, brand or size. E-Bay fans will appreciate www.mimibazar.cz. This is also only in Czech and offers items for sale by individuals. You don´t bid for your bits and pieces, but email the seller directly with your choices.