Style Clashes Between Parents and Kids

The day I first walked into Bonpoint, a posh children’s boutique on Madison Avenue in New York City, I decided that I would shop there almost exclusively for my future children.  When I mentioned that to my fiancé one time as we walked past the store, he flatly asked how much that would cost.  Then he went inside, picked up a seersucker blazer that could fit a 2 week-old baby, and which cost as much as a flight to Los Angeles, and dragged me out.  Neither of us considered that perhaps a boy would want to wear Ninja Turtle t-shirts instead of cashmere cardigans.  Or that a girl might want to wear shorts and tank tops instead of Lily Pulitzer dresses.  Like so many people who are not yet parents we thought we knew a lot about kids.  And we were certain that we would be in control.

Well, as soon as our son was born, in California in the Spring, he started receiving surf-inspired outfits as gifts.  He looked so cute in those easy outfits, that soon enough I started shopping at Patagonia.  It did’t help that the former climbing outfitters, is one of my husband’s favorite places to shop.  By the time my son was two, he was choosing his own outfits, mostly Thomas the Tank Engine shirts and “comfy” pants.  At 5 years-old he started wearing black clothes almost exclusively.  Now I have two girls.  Irish twins, someone told me the other day.  So, I inevitably buy the same clothes for both of them.

And since I love dresses, I buy a lot of dresses.  But then, all of a sudden, my 3 year-old announces that she doesn’t wear dresses anymore.  Only shorts and shirts.  It was not easy to convince her to wear this tie-dye dress to a friend’s party.  I was happy to have been able to capture this image – she is also over having her picture taken – showing us in our matching outfits.  As soon as we returned home she ran to her room to change.  And of course, the 19 month-old copies everything her big sister does. Now she protests overtime I try to put a dress on her.


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