Why We Love Mini Boden
Brilliant looks for prepsters and beach bums alike
Before starting his online and mail-order clothing empire, the Eton- and Oxford-educated Johnnie Boden worked in investment banking in New York. He hated finance but loved his coworkers’ preppy clothes. And so, he went about bringing the great American catalogue to England and back again, peddling looks that are part Hamptons, part Hampshire, and beloved by middle class families not necessarily summering at either. His audience both stateside and abroad lapped it up like a mint julep or Pimm’s Cup, respectively, and it wasn’t long before Boden expanded into childrenswear.
Mini Boden borrows from its parent line, offering clean lines and bright colors. For summer, the girls’ selection includes striped boatneck dresses and playsuits (British for rompers). For the little blokes, there are crew neck jumpers and floral-printed fisherman’s hats. This uncomplicated cheeriness seems wonderfully suited to kids’ natural state of being. Because really, if anyone should be frolicking in “towelling shorts” (shorts that literally towel you off after a romp in the ocean, pool, or sprinkler) with a pear print and matching “fun wellies,” it should be a child.
In another testament to childish spirit, the pieces are comfortable, durable, and, in the case of the Zip-Off Cargos, multi-functional. What’s more, the whole family will enjoy a visit to Mini Boden’s clever website. For the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, it featured a story titled “Adventures of an Incognito Corgi,” in which the “pooches in power” weighed in on life with her majesty and their favorite Mini Boden picks. We had to agree with “Princess Corg’s” choice of a daisy shift. With or without the fashion dogs, though, you can always find a section devoted entirely to party dresses—perfect for all your summer social events, wherever they may be. —Kate Guadagnino