Bikinis, crop-tops, padded bras and high heels: these are some examples of clothing items that are no longer limited to the women’s section of department stores. They’re finding their way into the kid’s section and in some stores are available to kids as young as two.
Yesterday a mother took to social media to express her concern and general upset over the range of kids clothing that Woolworths have in store at the moment. In her post she mentions that crop-tops, short shorts and wedged heels are inappropriate and unnecessary for her two-year-old and that Woollies should be doing a better job at supplying a more practical and age-appropriate range of clothing for young kids.
Below is the Facebook message that was posted on Woolworths’ page yesterday.
Woolworths responded to her post and ensured her that her concern would be forwarded to the Woolworths clothing team, while thanking her for her feedback.
There are many aspects of society that influence our children; music, celebrities, friends, advertisements. Fashion (or rather, clothing) is just one form or choice of expression. What role should a department store like Woolworths play in the development and growth of kid’s fashion today? Should kids as young as two be following fashion at all, since most two-year-olds probably wouldn’t know any better (or care), whereas the parents are responsible for selecting and purchasing their child’s wardrobe items?
Who’s listening to the customers?
These are some of the many questions worth asking, when leading department stores like Woolworths are selecting and specifying the ranges and types of clothing they make available to what should largely be a consumer-driven market.
In the comments-section of the Facebook post, most parents seemed to agree that Woolworths needs to actively get involved in age-appropriate awareness and provide a wider range of kids clothing in terms of colour, size and general design. Fewer people felt that the freedom to choose where you shop and what you buy is enough to avoid conforming to something you might feel strongly against.
Personally, I’m pro-kids staying kids for as long as possible, and perhaps Woolworths, as one of the biggest clothing-retail stores in our country, could turn a negative into a positive by making a stand and slowing down the rate at which kids are influenced to become adults. Going against the notion that kids are growing up too fast by influencing what is made available in stores could be a start. Or if that’s too drastic, at least broaden the range of kid’s clothing so that consumers aren’t limited to Disney clothing, specific colours or clothing that is deemed age-inappropriate for children to wear.
Accepting that times are changing and moving faster than when we were kids is one thing, but surely if more and more ordinary people/parents stood up and made more noise about things, with the help of big companies like Woolworths backing us, this could impact and slow down the speed at which the rest of society has on our kids? Maybe it could slow things down enough to enable children to actually embrace their youth without having to dress, or speak, or behave or ‘live’ the way they think the rest of society expects them to live.