Clothes make the girl
Bright pink socks with little yellow flowers. That was the first thing that caught my eye as my daughter came downstairs the other morning, all dressed and ready to walk to school with me. She was wearning turquoise capri leggings that ended about 6 inches above her ankle, leaving her calf-length socks visible in all their fuschia glory. I ventured tentatively, "You know, I don't think you're supposed to wear capri leggings with long socks". Her response: "Of course you are! How else am I going to show off my socks?"
My daughter has always had a style all her own. From the time she could talk, she would insist on different-colored socks ("Yellow! Pink!"). I know most toddlers go through this stage, but at the ripe old age of eight, she still likes to combine her colors and styles in ways that remind me of Cyndi Lauper. She thinks her hair looks better when it's uncombed ("tousled", she calls it). And she can be extremely stubborn about wearing her favorite shirts, even when they no longer cover her belly button (giving her that high-waisted Steve Urkel look). On the days she goes out looking like Dobby the Elf, I wonder if anyone is wondering, Who dressed that child?
I've been slow and reluctant to hand over the reins to this little clothes horse, but it's an inevitable part of growing up and letting go. Yes, I still pre-coordinate her options by buying mix-and-match separates, and steer her away from anything with overly commercialized or anything that requires ironing. And I exercise my veto power when she chooses outfits that I deem age-inappropriate, weather-inappropriate, or stained/torn beyond repair (she, in turn can reject anything I buy for her that she doesn't like). But other than that, she's her own stylist.Continued on the next page