Thursday, June 18, 2015

Shopping for Grace



If you have girls, I'd like to talk for a moment about clothes.  In the past, as I've written about, Grace has always preferred simpler, more "adventurer" styles of clothes.  She's never been one to want dressy and frilly, never went through a princess stage or begged for scarves to wear around her neck (did anyone else have that trend flare up in their child's school?).  Once I let go of trying to push my ideas of style on Grace, we've had a nice run of fuss free dressing.

But now that she is a teenager, things are changing!  I'm so happy that she is willing to experiment and try new things so I celebrate that, but man it's a scary world out there.  I'm struggling to find a place to shop for her.  She's in that in between stage of being tall enough for adult clothes while not being filled out enough (um, she has a 23 inch waist) to wear them, but the brands we've worn for the past several years don't go up to her size.  Also, and here is where I sound like a prude, everything seems to be so revealing!  Shorts are scraps of fabric, tops show bra straps (on purpose?) and skirts are so short you certainly can't play, or even bend down.  It's important to me that Grace learn the value of modesty even while pushing the envelope as teenagers have probably done since the beginning of history!

And we are dealing with new territory in that, for the first time ever, she wants a bikini.   I've always maintained a "no bikini" party line, however, I realize it's a tough spot to be in since the vast majority of her friends wear bikinis.  She went to a pool party a few weeks ago and she was the only one in a one piece and that can be hard for a 13 year old; even one that's pretty comfortable in her own skin.  So I'm trying to come up with a compromise with more of a tankini style (she doesn't want that) or more of a sporty type of bikini.  But where do I find such a thing??  Or do I just let go and embrace the bikini stage?

A few days ago, Grace and I spent a few hours shopping at the mall and at the end of the day Grace had picked out some really lovely, and appropriate, clothes.  In the end, I smiled because even though she is stretching her boundaries, everything she picked out was still "Grace" but with a bit more style!

So I'm really curious how you deal with this?  Or is it not an issue for you?  Perhaps I'm being entirely too old fashioned?  Or maybe I"m just not shopping in the right places?  If you have good sources to purchase clothes, stores or online, please share!  Surely there is somewhere besides Forever 21 and Aeropostle, though, frankly, that seems to be where the kids want to shop!

P.S.  The above photo is of one of Grace's favorite finds from our shopping day.  A whole store (Forever 21) full of lacy and on trend items and picks out a Cherry Coke sweatshirt!





12 comments:

  1. I know it's on the pricey side, but I love the clothes from Boden. Their clothing seems to me to be a perfect mix of sport and sweetness.

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    1. Yes! We do like them and we do shop with them online. They have a line for teenagers too, but it can be sort of a thin selection but definitely worth visiting again! Thank you!

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  2. Try athleta or dolfin for a sporty bikini

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    1. Thank you for the suggestions, I've never heard of Dolfin but will most certainly check it out and we do have Athleta nearby so we could try on some suits. Thank you again!

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  3. Hi Anna! I have been wondering what's out there for the next size/phase. My daughter is reaching the end of girls clothes and this question keeps popping up in my mind...I am in complete denial! One of my current go to stores for her is crewcuts, the jcrew kids line. Maybe the JCrew women's line will have some fun options?! They still tend to carry classic lines and their kids stuff wears very well. My son can wear some of their Tshirts for 2 years! (they don't shrink!). I am lucky enough to live near an outlet and get great sale prices. I never pay full price..it's too much. Maybe the women's small & xsmall will have some good choices (the kids clothes run small!)? I think they carry bathsuits too. Maybe swim shorts and a bikini top would be a good compromise? I also worry about how "sexy" girls clothes are these days. Why do boys have super long shorts and girls have super short? It's just wrong. Good Luck! I'll be curious to see how it goes!

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    1. Hello Kristin! We have loved Crewcuts; the sale prices are great and the quality is really good. She's really outgrown their line though and the 14 are getting too small (because as you say, they run small!). I hadn't thought of going to the JCrew adult line but that might be a great option, especially as they have good sales. I'm jealous you have an outlet!

      I've never thought about the boy shorts being so long while the girls are so short! So funny and true! What is going on?!

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  4. Anna, I went and peeked after I commented..some cute stuff but pricey indeed! It looks like your best bet is Tshirts and very casual..which works for a teenager. It probably won't be a big shopping spot, but I spied a cute elephant T shirt! Good Luck! I am off to check out the Dolfin line..my daughter is 10.5, she'll be 11 in the fall. She is NOT comfortable with the little changes starting in her body so she wants everything baggy and sporty. Bathing suits will be a challenge this summer. And she hates the short shorts..thinks they are obescene! I am on the hunt for anything on the long side (but I still want cute, it's hard to let go of the little girl outfits!). Good luck to all mothers in these transitions! (this is why I love your posts so much! they are spot on!)

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    1. Grace got a longish pair of denim shorts that she loves (and fit the bill for the fingertip rule at school) from Aeropostle. This is such a hard time for them to tow the line of being comfortable in their own (changing) skin and wanting to be dressed like everyone else!

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  5. I've never commented on your blog but I have enjoyed reading it for months! My 9 1/2 year old daughter is a younger version of your daughter. She is an adventurer and an artist. She is very strong and independent. She likes her clothes to reflect her personality and to be comfortable. We buy 80% of her clothes at http://peekkids.com They have free standing stores and are available at Nordstrom. They go to size 14 but run large. They have modest clothes with bright colors and patterns. My daughter loves their graphic tees:)

    Meg

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    1. Thank you so much, I've never heard of Peekkids but will most certainly check it out. Grace also loves graphic tees so that might be a good match! Thank you for your comment and here's to celebrating strong and independent girls!

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  6. Clothing is a big issue for us as well, especially the shorts! I refuse to buy anything shorter than a 5" inseam. I'm not sure if Grace would fit into this size yet, but Old Navy's womens section has some longer options that Claire likes (jean shorts and cute patterns). When you shop online, they have more sizing options (0's and XS, sometimes even XXS) than in the store. I figured this out the hard way when Will hit his teens. NO ONE carries jeans for super tall and skinny guys in the stores, but there are more options online. Good luck!!

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  7. Oh the joys of having a girl! I bet it is a love/hate situation with clothing. I wonder if you would have any luck with brands like Athleta or Title Nine, which are more sporty style clothing. They sell workout clothes but also everyday styles and I noticed when I was in Athleta this weekend they do carry XXS and 00 sizing. They had some really really cute sporty type bikini/tankini styles! Since she tends to have a little bit of a rugged wild child in her some of those "Colorado/California" type styles might really jive with her and the fact that they are more sporty/outdoorsy kind of keeps them from being too sexy looking. Good Luck!!!

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