New to Gilt: Maison Jean Bourget for Kids (+ French Style Wisdom Straight from the Source)

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Around here, we admire — i.e., are borderline obsessed with — French style. That certain “je ne sais quoi” has a classic, never-trying-too-hard appeal, and the fashion-centric have long flocked to France for rich inspiration.

Enter Maison Jean Bourget, who have translated the timeless Gallic look into kid-friendly form for more than 50 years. We’re celebrating the storied family brand’s debut on Gilt with a little history lesson from company rep Pascale Adelson — along with the scoop on color trends, design inspiration, and some tips on how to dress your little Francophile.

How did the brand get its start?

In 1918, Jean Bourget’s grandfather, Emile Bourget, created a little atelier composed of three people at La Chaussaire, in the region of Maine et Loire, mainly focused on suits. Later, his son Emile gave the small company a boost and focused on military uniforms made with quality fabrics, bringing them a step ahead of the clothing industry in their time. With their expertise in strong, comfortable clothes, Bourget began specializing in children’s clothing in the early ‘50s.

Jean, the eldest of Emile’s 10 children, created the Le Bourget brand in 1959, and with growing demand, launched a children’s collection for winter sports and opened subsidiaries in Milan, New York, and Barcelona. The company was later renamed Jean Bourget, and run by Jean’s sister, Elisabeth, who launched newborn and layette with a group of freelance designers. Namesake boutiques and nearly 1,000 shops later, the extraordinary adventure of Jean Bourget continues with the same passion: innovative children’s clothing with a focus on constant quality.

What makes the designs distinctly French?

The motto is: We have to see children as children — not mini-adults. The brand has a comfortable, contemporary style with casual-chic designs that are easy to wear and laid-back, but not without elegance. Our fabrics are selected precisely to be strong and durable, and creative details like fun prints and colors and modern shapes give the line a sense of uniqueness.

How would you describe the way French children dress?

French children dress chic and casual for their everyday life. Sportswear is usually worn for sport days at school, but it could also be paired with something fun and comfy such as a vest or shirt. You wouldn’t wear sweatpants at work every day, so why should your child? They might play rough and get dirty at school, but why not put them in comfortable pants and shirts with fun character and a great fit?

What are the main components of that “French look”?

A marinière sweater, a raincoat, rubber boots, and soft pants.

What are some trends you’re seeing for next season?

The sun on the “roof gardens” of Brooklyn inspires us — a hipster-inspired range of contrasting off-white, ink, camel, and yellow curry. Also cotton satin polka dots in fuchsia and blue ink. A “smart-rebel” look.

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Meet Six-Year-Old Style Icon Alonso Mateo (& His Chic Stylist Mom)

f-GilteGroupeSix-year-old style icon Alonso Mateo has a few secret weapons up his impeccably-rolled sleeve, namely, his celebrity stylist mom, Luisa Fernanda Espinosa. She takes inspiration from street style and the runway to create a series of looks that their 400,000-plus Instagram followers fawn over, and we’re officially smitten, too. We enlisted the hyper-stylish duo to create covetable outfits using some of Gilt’s favorite pieces—shop the sale now, then read on to find out more about their style secrets, preferred shopping spots, and more.

StyleFile: How did you start documenting Alonso Mateo’s outfits on Instagram?
Luisa Fernanda Espinosa: Two years ago, I discovered Instagram and started posting pictures of special moments of our life here in California, Mexico and on our travels.

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Molly Sims on Motherhood and Strolling In Style With Orbit

Okay, so saying we identify with all-around-bombshell Molly Sims may seem like wishful thinking, but the reality is, she’s a remarkably down-to-earth mother to almost-two-year-old Brooks—with a few tricks up her stylish sleeve. She knows the power of a good parenting book, a well-packed travel bag, and a smart stroller (namely, the new Orbit G3, launching on Gilt tomorrow at noon ET!). To celebrate the big roll-out, we caught up with Molly to chat about all things motherhood.

Gilt: You juggle it all—acting, modeling, and being a mom—what’s your secret? Any tricks to keeping it all together?
Molly
: When I’m working out of the home, I find myself always wondering what Brooks is doing and what he is up to…I miss him like crazy! Just last week I was working on a sitcom and I swear to you, at every break I would call just to check up on him. But, the thing is, when I work at home, I feel guilty because he is close by and I want to give him all my attention! But, I’ve really learned that I have to have an equal work/life balance.  I make time in my day to focus on work and other times where I don’t touch my laptop or phone and I just focus on my Brooksie. I also have an app on my phone where I can see him in his crib when he is sleeping! It’s great for me when I am out and want to check up on him.

Gilt: What’s the coolest part about being a mom? The most challenging?
Molly
: The coolest thing about being a mom is how much I love having my little partner in crime with me! I love our date nights! We go out at 5pm. Any later than that, Brooks falls asleep at the table. And there is nothing better than hearing him say, “mama”.  It melts my heart. 

The most challenging aspect would have to be, finding that balance to do my job well while still being a good mom to Brooks.

Gilt: Any great parenting advice you’ve picked up from your A-list friends? Any that you always share with other new moms?
Molly
: I am always reading books on parenting and I love having a village of mothers to go to and ask questions. I take a great class with other mothers from Jill Spivack – she has an amazing book, “Sleepy Planet”. I recommend it to everyone!

Gilt: What are your favorite things to do with Brooks?
Molly
: One of my favorite things to do with him is take him to the park so he can run around with all the other kids.  He loves to play on the swing set and jungle gym. I also love taking him to music class.  We have dance parties to his favorite songs!   

Gilt: What’s your approach to kids’ clothes? Brooks always looks baby-chic! Is there anything in particular you love to dress him in, or that we’ll never, ever see him in?
Molly
: Shopping for Brooks is so much fun!  I love him in Gap Kids, Eggy, and I love shopping for him on Gilt.  Brooks never met a stretch pant he didn’t like!  He also got his first suit for his very first graduation from a baby class!

Gilt: Speaking of chic, let’s talk strollers—they’ve kind of become the new status symbols for moms. What made you choose Orbit?
Molly
: I love the whole system! My hubby and I have two bases in each car, so we can easily transfer the car seat from one to the other.  It’s basically an all-in-one system. We can lift him out, lift him in, and never have to take him out of the baby seat. Orbit is a no-hassle stroller!

Gilt: Talk to us about your customized version of the G3—why did you choose that combination?
Molly
: I love black and grey because it’s neutral.  I can mix it up with different color blankets, and the neutral palette goes with everything. I love the baby carrier because we travel so much and I got the sidekick for Brooks so he can ride along with a little sister or brother one day!

Gilt: Any tips for traveling with kids? How can you minimize the stress?
Molly
: I always make sure I have things packed for Brooks to play with, like Hot Wheels, a DVD player, and kid-friendly headphones.  I also wrap his Hot Wheels individually (like little presents), and he gets to unwrap one every hour we are on the plane. I really try to change up his activities every 20 minutes or so. Okay, with him it’s more like every 5 minutes…

Gilt: Your good friend Rachel Zoe just had her 2nd baby—do you think there’s another one in your future, too?
Molly
: I am so happy for Rachel and her family! And yes, we are trying to have another bun in the oven!

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Elisabeth Röhm: Her Top 5 Picks for Back-to-School

Elisabeth Röhm, best known for her roles as Serena on Law & Order and Kate on Angel, has been blogging for PEOPLE.com for over a year now. The actress, 39, currently stars as Taylor on The Client List, while her film Transit is out now, with Officer Down following later this year.

This school year is a momentous one for me, as Easton — my four-year-old daughter — will start her “big girl” school on September 11. With each step she takes toward her first day, I recall my own memories — I hope her transitions are smoother than mine were. She’s certainly more confidant! Easton and I took a look at the Gilt Baby & Kids back-to-school sale and selected a few must-haves for the fall. Can’t wait to get that first yearbook.

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