The other day I was shopping with both of my kids at the Gap. This is not something I do often. Well, shopping is not something I do often. And shopping with both of them at the same time is something I do even less often. Ever since I ventured to Lord & Taylor when they were both toddlers and ran from rack to rack until they decided to camp out, disappearing behind the clothes. That kind of squelched my desire to shop with them at the same time.
Fortunately, my daughter is very easy to shop for and I can easily pop into any shop that caters to tween girls, fill a bag with clothes and 9 out of 10 times, she’ll like them. However, my son is getting more and more difficult and at age 8 has his own definitive taste. He has certain rules. Everything has to be blue. He now likes collars so all shirts have to have a collar. And he only wears pants with an elastic waist. Actually, my daughter reinforces that rule, too. He’s also into quite eccentric patterns that I typically wouldn’t pick up for him. But now I can tell that if I go with my desires, the clothes I buy that don’t have his approval won’t get worn. And I’m not into wasting money.
It’s all much more complicated than it needs to be.
When they were younger, as in five minutes ago, they wore everything they were presented with. I took great pride in how I dressed them. I bought her funky tights. I bought them both the sweetest clothes in London on our annual trips. He wore shirts with the Union Jack. She wore an English rain coat covered with daisies. They could wear anything and there were no complaints. I could order anything I needed online and not even have to worry about venturing into the shops.
So, we’re standing in the dressing room the other day, and they both bring in their own clothes they had hand picked. Upon first sight of the bright orange dress she was holding and the too small pairs of pants he was holding, I expressed negativity. To which they both replied almost chanting: MOM, YOU HAVE NO STYLE. WE HAVE OUR OWN MINDS AND WANT TO DRESS THE WAY WE WANT TO. WE DON’T WANT TO DRESS LIKE YOU.
Well, maybe it was not quite that harsh but it’s almost truly verbatim.
How did it feel? To be honest, when I read that Stacy London’s What Not to Wear is going off the air, the first thing that came to my mind is how I had ten years to get on the show and never did. I will never be one to say that I have fashion sense. That would be a lie. But how can my taste in fashion be so different from that of my children and how much control do I have over on the way they dress?
On this particular day, I was able to only purchase the items I agree looked good on both of them and that will continue to be my policy until I’m over-ruled.
After all, I’m the mom and it’s a title I take very seriously.
Now let’s not get into the fact that I wear too much black and I’m sure that’s a trait my kids don’t want to inherit.
I’ll go back to shopping online, particularly for my kids. For now.
And write to to Stacy London that I’m available for a fashion make-over if she’s still casting. If she’ll have me.