• Fri, Feb 25 2011

Why Designers Children’s Clothing Lines Are Ridiculous

Stella McCartney is getting praised for it.  JLo’s spawn are schilling it.  But if I had my way, designer children’s clothes would end up on ridiculous branded products lists

First, McCartney’s kids clothes are cute.  The children modeling them are adorable.  Really, it all makes for achingly sweet advertising and plenty of uterus-swooning.  I won’t deny any of that. 

Children, at least for the first 5 minutes after you’ve dressed them, tend to look cute.  They can manage to do this (for a short period of time) whether they are wearing a $133 hoodie or not. 

Look, I don’t have a problem spending money on my daughter.  I probably enjoy it a little too much.  Also, I want my daughter to look nice.  Honestly, it’s more fun to dress her in a perfect outfit than to try to find one for myself.  My problem here isn’t with cute kids clothes.  I like them.  I buy them.  My problem is with spending a large amount of money on children’s “fashion”. 

Think about this; why do adults spend more money for designer clothes?  Because even if you don’t buy a Burberry trench, you might look for a coat at Macy’s instead of Wal-Mart.  Therefore, you spend more money than necessary on some clothes.  This side note is for people in the Midwest who actually know someone who has bought clothing from a Wal-Mart.

  • The perceived quality is better.  Normally, more expensive clothes are made better.  They use more quality material and tend to have a more flattering fit.  Most importantly for me is that quality stitching makes clothes last longer, so I get more use out of them as well.
  • It’s an investment piece, or something that you’ll wear for a long time.  Burberry trench coats, black Louboutins.  We know that we’ll keep these things around for years to come.  Personal story, when I was in college and had my first big night waitressing, I used my tips to buy Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses.  This was when I still had disposable income.  I still have those sunglasses seven years later.  And I still adore them.  For me, they were a great purchase.
  • Paying for original design.  There are some fashion designers out there who are just amazing.  They come up with clothes I could never dream of.  And they make people look good in them.  Sometimes, we all have to admit that designers are artists and they deserve to be paid more for creating something truly unique and amazing. 
  • That label makes you feel good.  I’m sure Karl would agree, there’s just something about the name Chanel.  Growing up, it represented all the things I wanted to be when I got older.  It was sophisticated and classy and so adult.  I’ve always loved it.  So, someday, I would like to buy one amazing Chanel dress.  I want to put it on and feel confident and classy and all those things I envied when I was little.  As long as I don’t overindulge this fantasy, I thinks it’s ok.

Now let’s look as these reason as they apply to children. 

  • The perceived quality is better.  Normally, more expensive clothes are made better.  They use more quality material and tend to have a more flattering fit.  Most importantly for me is that quality stitching makes clothes last longer, so I get more use out of them as well.
  • It’s an investment piece, or something that you’ll wear for a long time.  Burberry trench coats, black Louboutins.  We know that we’ll keep these things around for years to come.  Personal story, when I was in college and had my first big night waitressing, I used my tips to buy Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses.  This was when I still had disposable income.  I still have those sunglasses seven years later.  And I still adore them.  For me, they were a great purchase.
  • Paying for original design.  There are some fashion designers out there who are just amazing.  They come up with clothes I could never dream of.  And they make people look good in them.  Sometimes, we all have to admit that designers are artists and they deserve to be paid more for creating something truly unique and amazing. 
  • That label makes you feel good.  I’m sure Karl would agree, there’s just something about the name Chanel.  Growing up, it represented all the things I wanted to be when I got older.  It was sophisticated and classy and so adult.  I’ve always loved it.  So, someday, I would like to buy one amazing Chanel dress.  I want to put it on and feel confident and classy and all those things I envied when I was little.  As long as I don’t overindulge this fantasy, I thinks it’s ok.

Maybe when my daughter is old enough to know who the hell Gucci is, I’ll start considering designer clothes differently.  I’m not saying that I’ll buy them for her, I would hate to take away that proud moment when she makes her first big paycheck and buys her first designer shoe.  Shoes happen to be her favorite thing.  But maybe then, I won’t consider kids fashion to be as ridiculous as I find it now.  Currently, I think it’s just another silly thing to attach a well-known name to.

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  • Eileen

    Slight blip in the middle; your explanations for yourself are repeated. Other than that, umm…totally agree. If you have a lot of money and really WANT your kid to wear some adorable designer outfit, hey, it’s a free market. But why anyone would care about designer clothes for children (especially when Wal-Mart has some adorable kids’ clothes, and this is coming from a staunch East Coaster here), I just don’t understand.

  • Ken Gold

    I agree on all counts, Lindsay, and I’d like to add another reason why designer kids clothes are ridiculous… because they’re designed for the parents rather than the kids. Most kids could care less about wearing designer kids clothes and while some of them are cute, many of them make kids look like “mini-me’s” of their “designer parents”. Kids clothes should be casual, fun and something that kids want to wear. You know, something that they pull out of the drawer because they like it… not because their parents like it. And that’s the driving design philosophy behind the clothing line that my wife, Lisa and I create at http://www.likewear.com. It’s all about wearing what you like ;-)