Sunday, October 23, 2011

How We Dress Our Big Dude

I wanted to follow up with my How I Dress My Little Dude post with a How We dress Our Big Dude post. C, my 9 year old stepson, has always been a bit opinionated about what he wears. This is something we greatly encourage. So mostly we just guide him in his clothing decisions. Here are a few points for dressing older children.

C in Surface To Air and H&M pants

LET THEM EXPRESS THEMSELVES I think this is so important. C pretty much picks out all his own stuff. We do sometimes grab him things when he is not with us but 99.9% of the time he is with us when buy clothing for him. It's fun watching him come up with ways to show off his personality on the outside. One of my favorite stories is when he was about 6 we took him school shopping and he refused to buy anything that wasn't the color black because he was "rock n rolling". So black it was. Everything was black other than one brightly colored monster tee. This phase didn't last that long but most of them don't. Children need to learn how to make their way in this world while holding onto their individuality and experimenting with who they want to be. Clothing is an easy way to give them some freedom and control over their daily life.

SET BOUNDARIES The above suggestion can only work if there are some boundaries. We have a couple small rules when it comes to C dressing himself. 1.It has to be weather appropriate. 2.It has to fit properly. and 3.It has to be event appropriate. For example, no PJ'S to school or play clothing to a formal event. With these rules in place it's pretty easy for C to go into his room and decide for himself what he wants to wear for the day.

At the anime festival last year.

HAVE FUN Children's clothing can be really exciting. I like to look for pieces that get C to take pride in what he is wearing. He has a glow in the dark shirt, one that changes color in the sun, and loads of star wars tee shirts. A huge chunk of what he wears are silly tee shirts and crazy colored sweatshirts.

STOP DRESSING BOYS LIKE CRAP There I said it. I am so sick of seeing people with daughters dressed in adorable little outfits and then their boys are in old, stained, and ill fitting tee shirts and basketball shirts. Why is it parents just throw in the towel with their boys? Teach your young man to take some pride in what he is wearing. I'm not saying he needs to wear a three piece suit to school but there is a time and place for basketball shirts and those are on gym days and at summer camp. I can assure you that a pair of cotton or twill shorts are just as cozy gym clothing.

 Imps & Elves hoodie, H&M jeans, thrifted boots, American Apparel socks, and his Mario hat.

BUY GREAT BASICS Invest in comfy undies, socks, and basic tees. I buy all our basics from either American Apparel or Nico Nico at Monkey & The Bug. C has recently discovered ESP no. 1 while he was modeling for Monkey & The Bug (check out his pics HERE) and he has requested I get him a few pieces from their line as well. All three are high quality and will last, which is always important when it comes to basics. They get worn a lot so you don't want them falling apart.

LOOK TO THE WEB I really love going online and looking for great novelty shops. I love for star wars, Nintendo, and video game themed tees for C. They are quick to delver, have some really unique stuff, and the quality is fantastic.

Obsessed with his blue button up from American Apparel. The last pic is at a rehearsal dinner for his Aunt and Uncles wedding. The bow tie is from Me and Matilda.

LET THEM HAVE THEIR OBSESSIONS Sometimes C falls in love with a particular item and wants to wear it constantly. As long as it is clean (and goes with our three rules) then we let him go to town.

ACCESSORIZES C likes playing with accessories. Sometimes they are bit wacky but it is a great way to express his individuality so we let him. This goes for shoes as well. He has some basic Chuck Taylors, crocs, and black boots but otherwise his sneaker selection is pretty wacky. We don't push him to "match" he can come up with any combos he wants.

DRESS THEM UP Enjoy the times you get to actually dress them up. We had a lot of fun with my brother (and now sister) in laws wedding. The boys wore the cutest bow tie and suspender combo from Divine Domestication. I highly recommend  them for custom wedding stuff. Fabulous company! This goes for holidays as well. We always try to be a bit festive during the more special days of the year.

SAVE IT  I save all of C's awesome stuff for when H gets older. (only the particularly cute items that are still in good condition) Actually, I did this before I even knew H would ever exist. The result is a good chunk of beautiful clothing for Hendrix someday. 

Monkey & The Bug
American Apparel
77 Kids by American Eagle 
H&M Kids
Imps & Elves
Nico Nico
ESP no. 1
Surface To Air
Shaun White for Target


  1. I LOVE H&M for kids! And Gap {although they are pretty pricey}. Old Navy is cool too! I can sometimes find cute finds at Walmart and Zellers, but I can't wait for Target to open up. I also check out thrift stores, sometimes you can find really awesome brand name clothes for cheap.

    Nolan does have some "stained" clothes, but I keep them around for days when I know we're going to be doing crafts and getting messy. We don't go out of the house with stained clothes {although sometimes, we come back lol}.

    I hate that people dress their boys so bad too.

    I am definitely gonna be ordering something from Divine Domestication for my sister's wedding in March, just picturing the boys rocking adorable bow ties and suspenders is killing me haha!!!

  2. oh my GOSH...that picture of him with your little guy in their suspenders is sooo cute!! They look great together-what a gorg pair of brothers!

  3. Fantastic post and pointers! What a stylin' pair of little dudes you have on your hands.

  4. I always enjoy buying shirts and jerseys for my boys. It is becoming my favorite past time shopping basketball and football jerseys and shorts for them. I almost forget to buy something for me.

  5. Adriana, they are both absolutely precious!