Single Mom Who Only Makes $120 A Week & Lives Off Instant Noodles Explains Why She Dresses Her Baby In Designer Clothes

She considers designer baby clothes her duty as a mom — she doesn't care what anyone thinks about them.

Clips of mom and baby from "Blinging Up Baby" YouTube via Canva Pro

Most parents want to give their kids the best, but is there a point where "the best" goes way, way too far? For example, a mom who's on public assistance and spends most of her money buying designer baby clothes? 

That's the debate that one UK mom has sparked after she appeared on a British television program to explain her baby's extravagant lifestyle — and her own impoverished one.

She's a single mom on welfare and spends most of her money buying her infant daughter designer baby clothes.

20-year-old Carissa hails from Dorset, United Kingdom, and as she revealed on the UK reality TV show "Blinging Up Baby," she and her seven-month-old baby Lavinia live a lifestyle most of us can only dream of.


Well — Lavinia does anyway. Carissa? Not so much.

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The single mom eats soup and instant noodles so she can spend most of her $120 per week income on designer baby clothes.


Carissa, who is also going to school to be a hairdresser, receives around £100 per week in cash —  about $120 — as part of her government benefits packages, and nearly every cent, or pence, in her case, is spoken for. Not by diapers and formula and all the other myriad needs for a baby, but on floofy, sparkly dresses and name-brand attire for tiny Lavinia — what she calls her "obsession" with "bling" for her baby. 

"I always make sure Lavinia’s got the things she needs first," she told the "Blinging Up Baby" crew. "She’s got everything — it’s me that goes without things. I’ve been living off like tin soup, maybe Cup-a-Soups, and packet noodles," she went on to say.

Of course, Carissa's idea of what constitutes Lavinia's "needs" is very different from most parents — as the cameras pan around Carissa's home, she shows off all her daughter's high-end clothing, including myriad dresses dripping with sequins and crystals, tiny hot-pink baby Ugg boots, and clothing sets from expensive brands like Lacoste. 

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The mom spends all her money on designer baby clothes so that her baby will know she's appreciated later in life.

Carissa says her baby-fashionista efforts are all to ensure Lavinia feels special once she's older. "I’m hoping that when I look back at photos with her," she said, "she can see how much effort went in, and she can see how loved she was."

And, like most parents, Carissa's ultimate motivation is trying to have a better parent-child relationship with her baby than she and her own mother had.

"I never was close with my mum," Carissa said. "When I put the things I buy on her, I sort of get emotional over how nice it is. I like to feel that way. For me, it makes everything worth it."

Carissa was raised by her grandparents, who still help her to this day, including with raising Lavinia. "I think if we didn’t help her out, she wouldn’t be able to have any food," Carissa's grandmother told the reality show crew. But she considers it part of her grandmotherly—and now great-grandmotherly—duty to do so. "That’s what you do for your family, you help them out," she said.


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Carissa has based her baby's glamorous look on legendary British reality star Katie Price—and not everybody likes it.

"Katie Price is my biggest influence," she told the documentary crew. Price, a former nude model who became a UK household name after appearing on "I'm A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here!," is a legendary UK media personality and business mogul known for her Barbie-like sense of style, numerous plastic surgeries, and heavily enhanced physique.

Think Kim Kardashian meets Paris Hilton meets Pamela Anderson, but with a British accent.



Price has also proudly embraced the stereotypical moniker of "chav" — derogatory British slang for a type of supposedly low-class person with a bad attitude and a love of high-end brands — think somewhere between "white trash" and "Jersey Shore" here in the States.


As you might imagine, Carissa's Price-based inspiration for baby Lavinia's looks has drawn plenty of ire too. "Not everyone shares my vision," she said in her TV appearance. And, like with Price, "many people call my daughter 'chavvy' and 'tacky,'" she says.

But Carissa says she refuses to let it get her down. "I don’t really care about them — it’s the look I like," she said. And she's not choosing a new role model for herself or her daughter anytime soon either. "Everything about her she does different," Carissa went on to say of Price, "and that's what I like about her."

If doing everything differently with baby Lavinia was Carissa's goal, there's no denying she's knocking it out of the park — or the baby section of the Louis Vuitton store, as it were.


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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.