Thursday, July 29, 2010

Fashion Conscious?

Once upon a time, not so long ago I was a control freak. Don't get me wrong, I still have my issues with control, but this morning as I surveyed the ragamuffin children climbing into my car I audibly laughed at how far I have come.

This time last year I started allowing K, P & R to select their own non-matching clothing--every day but Sunday. Although it makes me laugh now, it was a big step. I had thoroughly enjoyed dressing them in coordinating clothes for the first 5 years of their lives.

My trio attended a Montessori school that really encouraged individual expression, so they were by no means the only interestingly-dressed children. Because letting go of the reigns is frequently a process moreso than a one-time decision--I still exercised the right to 'help' with outfit selection. For the most part, there was not much to comment on about their new found fashion freedom. They did a good job and didn't deviate much from the types of clothing I had previously chosen for them.

This Summer, however, my children have really begun to embrace 'expression' in their clothing choices. My sons are into wearing dozens of silly bandz and oversized hats (sometimes backwards.) K doesn't seem to care much about the fads, but suddenly has very strong opinions about how she would like me to style her hair (braided pigtails are the favorite.)

Dressing up as various characters and putting on shows is still an enjoyable pastime in our home. Sometimes the lines between dress up closet and accessorizing become quite murky. Like last night when everyone insisted they needed something on their head for church. K chose a tiara, R a football helmet and P an alligator mask.
I snapped these as R & K were skipping down the sidewalk downtown holding hands. (Isn't 6 awesome???)

This was an outfit for running errands earlier this week. Bonnie & Clyde? Not sure how the safety goggles fit in for R. He has started wearing those more since his brother got glasses.

Speaking of his brother, P has a style ALL HIS OWN. The dress up closet would be far too easy and common for P. He likes to create his own accessories. Below, a belt made from paper towels. (There actually were two, you can only see one in this picture.) He was wearing this when I picked him up from basketball last week.

And today, he fashioned this headband out of and old cord he found. He tried it as a bracelet and a belt before settling on this choice.

Self expression is a beautiful thing...and yet, there is still enough control freak in me to be THRILLED about putting on uniforms for school in a couple of weeks. ;-)


Bailey's Leaf said...

When in school, Saturday is K-'s "Day to Choose." Now, often the outfits match. There are somedays though. It's all good. But yes, I do love the uniform. I love being able to line them up after being freshly laundered and pressed, know what she is wearing for the week and simply reaching in to grab one.

To uniforms-- HOORAY!

Kate said...

How fun! My 6 year old has VERY strong opinions about what shirts and what type of shorts he wants to wear. We usually let him choose, though he chooses from a couple of options when the occasion is a little nicer.

I love your kids' creativity!

Nikki said...

We have the opposite mentality in my house. Our 8 yo daughter doesn't care a lick about clothes and would wear shorts and a tank top all day-every day. I'm thankful for the dress code at school because it requires her to put some thought into her outfits. I know I should be glad she's not a clothes-horse yet, but I sure wish she were more fun to shop with!

Paula said...

Your children are adorable. I let go of the controlling clothes about a year ago. Merely because I was too tired to argue about it and figured other things were more important. As a result we have rain boots we wear CONSTANTLY and long sleeves in the middle of this insane heat!! Shew....I don't know...but oh are fun!!!

Claire said...

I love kids fashion choices! When the boys I teach wear their own clothes (rather than uniform) I am always entertained!


Love Being a Nonny said...

I love seeing what they choose to wear. I wasn't very good about letting them make their own choices in clothes. I knew I HAD to let them choose, so I cheated and put out three things they could choose from....I guess I took the fun out of it! I love that you let them be creative. When I see a little two year old in the grocery store with a tutu over her pajamas, I smile. I can only imagine what her morning must have been like!

By the way, in that last picture of P with K....she looks so much like you it is scary!! Good grief, a mini JennMom!

Kelly @ Love Well said...

Oh, I love seeing these pictures! They are so cute, but seeing their personalities shine through their clothing choices made me smile a mile wide.

My six-year-old boy does the SAME THING -- costumes, clothing changes, pajamas all day. He would so enjoy your three.