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I've just returned from a two-week holiday to find a mountain of post including a mound of new season Autumn/Winter 2001/2 catalogues. On of these being Vertbaudet.
I joined Vertbaudet when I was pregnant with my daughter, who is now 3, so I guess I must have got in at the beginning because the company has only been in the UK for 4 years although it has been established in France for 35 years.
Vertbaudet is a French company offering continental design clothing for mums-to-be and children aged 0-16 years. It has a very extensive range.
The catalogue has 210 pages and is divided into sections:- Childrenswear, Mums-to-be, Babywear, Babycare and Toys.
The CHILDRENSWEAR section carries three separate brands each offering clothing for different occasions. There is: -
1. O'Kids which the catalogue states 'a refreshing collection full of imagination for little rascals' (whatever that means).
2. Today which includes casualwear, jeans, jumpers, joggers etc.
3. Arthur and Felice include outfits for special occasions. These can be a bit pricey but if it's a special occasion, you might think it's worth it.
The MUMS-TO-BE section was a wide range of fashionable, practical and reasonably priced maternitywear. Just right to spruce yourself up when maybe you're not feeling your best.
The BABYWEAR section carries the same collections as the Childrenswear plus Colin-Colline which is a range for new-born babies and sizes start from as small as 45cm. A lot of the babywear are smaller and similar versions to the childrenswear which is good if you like all your children to be colour co-ordinated (been there - done that). You also have the opportunity to buy bootees, tights, socks and hats to match some outfits and this can make a reasonably priced outfit expensive. The accessories can be a bit pricey.
When I bought some summer dresses for my daughter last year, they came with an extra square of material so you could make something, i.e. a small bag or hat, to co-ordinate with the dress. I never did but I thought it was a novel idea.
The BABYCARE section includes pushchairs, baby seats, highchairs, and travelling and safety equipment. It includes famous brands such as Graco and Chicco and appears to be reasonably priced.
The TOYS section is small but provides a few ideas for the 0-1year age group.
In addition to these sections, you can also buy shoes, underwear, nightwear and sportswear. There is a large range of Adidas sportswear for children which I have not seen anywhere else (except maybe La Redoute). You can also buy Nike, Puma, Fila, Quicksilver and Reebok.
All Vertbaudet clothing is tested extensively. They have wash tests, fit tests and wear tests. Certainly, all the clothes I have purchased from Vertbaudet are of a very high quality. They wash every well and some items carry a six-month guarantee, so if they don't live up to your expectations for wash or wear or tear, you can return them for a full refund.
Mother & Baby Magazine have voted Vertbaudet No. 1 for girlswear, boyswear and value for money, which can't be bad.
There is advice in the back of the catalogue on ordering, payment, delivery and advice on washing and size guides.
There are various ways to order: -
By freephone - 0500 33 22 11 between 8am-11pm, 7 days a week.
By fax - You can order by fax but you need an order form for this. Tel. 01274 763838.
By Post - Send the order form to Vertbaudet, PO BOX 125, Bradford BD99 4YG
Internet - Verbaudet have recently opened a website www.vertbaudet.co.uk. You can request catalogue and place orders.
Postage and packing on your order is £2.45. Delivery should be within 5-10 days but I have found in the past that delivery is more like weeks than days, so if you want to order for a special occasion, don't do it at the last minute.
There are the usual methods of payment. Unlike most mail order catalogues, you don't have the opportunity to pay interest free over 20 weeks. You either pay in full when you order or receive your statement or monthly on a Vertbaudet Personal Account with interest added. Extortionate interest is charged at APR 26.8% for balances up to £600 and 19.9% for balances over £600. My advice would be to pay it off in one go when you receive your statement.
Orders are usually delivered by a courier and if you are not entirely satisfied with your order, you may return the items free of charge with the returns label provided.
I have ordered from Vertbaudet many times. A lot of the clothing is unusual and distinctive. Different to anything you can buy in the shops round my way. Some of it is also a bit weird! Vertbaudet seem to offer a lot of free gifts when you order. These are mainly toys. I have received many including puzzles, an organ and a tape recorder. They are not of the highest quality but my kids don't seem to care about that.
There are some items, particularly shoes and boots, which can be expensive but there are people who don't mind paying these prices and you may be one of them. I suppose you are paying for quality.
I always receive my monthly statement on time and I have never had a problem with either orders or returns. The operators are always friendly when you order and best of all you don't even pay for the call.
I would recommend Vertbaudet to anyone with kids, particularly new mums-to-be. It gives you something different to look at and plan for when your baby is born.
Sounds good - although I don't think that appropriate for me quite yet! One point though, with these ridiculous interest rates for staggered payments, it seems it would be easy for new parents to get themselves into serious debt quite easily...
elle3041 28.08.2001 12:48
I think the only thing that lets this company down is the delivery which takes far too long. Great op. Elle.