Please help me help 10 yo DD become more stylish....

(64 Posts)
HelloItsMeAgain Tue 19-Jan-16 14:46:07

My beautiful 10yo DD & I had a heart to heart last night when she told me some of her friends are teasing her a bit about her lack of interest in style/fashion. (They are at a school with no uniform - Yr5)

We are quite out-doorsy kind of people - climbing, kayaking, walking, camping - so clothes for all of us tend to be about practicality - warm, waterproofing, layers etc. Her clothes for school mirror this a bit but are not just the practical stuff - more a mix of Next, Landsend, Hi-gear/Outdoor wear stuff and supermarket stuff.

My DD is beautiful (clearly grin) and she has been, up until now, quite happy with jeans, t-shirt, fleece and boots/trainers. As she said last night "Surely being able to put together a t-shirt and jeans that go is enough." She is not particularly interested in fashion and does not want to grow up and change (according to her).

I am not going to force her to get more "fashionable". I love the fact she thinks the other girls who are getting into it are just trying to grow up too quickly. But I do want to help her make clothes choices that she is comfortable with. Yes when climbing and kayaking you wear the right kit. But that if she wants she can wear stylish stuff too. But oh wise MNetters - I do not have a clue.

Not a scooby.

I am not fashion-savvy. I wear jeans, vests, v-necks with converse/Vans/Birkenstocks. Fairly classic in wardrobe- though I may have a bit of a teeny tiny quirk - like bright pink birkies or leopard print Vans to liven up the grey v-neck/black jeans. My nod to growing older is to not give two hoots about what people think about my wardrobe and to relish being able to afford cashmere jumpers now So my knowledge/interest in fashion is pretty low. non-existent Not sure if I have a single designer item in my wardrobe. Took me 3 years to bother to buy skinny-jeans.

So - help. Please? How can I guide her? Are there appropriate magazines we could look at? What (preferable on-line/mail-order) clothes ranges should we browse next time she needs some clothes (some stuff is getting a tad small so possible due some updating). Is Next OK? Or should I take her to John Lewis? Somewhere else?

Thank you in advance. My mum never helped me with this stuff just carried on giving me hand-me-downs and frumpy homemade dresses so I want to help her develop her own style and self-confidence.

ThenLaterWhenItGotDark Tue 19-Jan-16 15:06:59

Dd who is now 12 likes H and M more than anywhere else. She wouldn't be seen dead in a skirt or dress and so goes for leggings, boots, longish tops and fancy jumpers. (actually, go and have a rummage in Matalan, I got dd about 9 really nice jumpers all for about £8 each over Christmas)

If you sign up to H and M website you can get a catalogue and discount codes etc. Next mail out a wee catalogue as well.

John Lewis is fab quality of course, but it's still a bit classical and dressy IMO for a pre-teen who is starting to feel a bit self conscious.

Next might be somewhere else to try, and Debenhams Blue Zoo or whatever it's called.

SkodaLabia Tue 19-Jan-16 15:10:44

Ah, it's a dark art, being 'stylish'. My mum could never see that shoe A was frumpy and shoe B, whilst being very similar, was gorgeous. grin

Start with shoes, does she want to wear trainers? You could get something conversey, rather than Hi-Tec, for example. What about ankle boots with skinny jeans?

An extremely cool 10 year old neighbour of mine does a nice line in Cyndi Lauper-esque skirts over leggings.

H & M is good, but not likely to be the hardwearing outdoorsy quality you may be used to.

abbieanders Tue 19-Jan-16 15:15:11

I think it's important to bear in mind that she is only ten so you probably won't want her dressing like a 16 year old. Can I recommend somewhere like Boden? They do very sweet clothes in good material for that age group without horrible, aggressive slogans and cut out pieces which may be too grown up. A nice pair of leggings, some ballet slippers and a nice top could be just the type of outfit she needs - comfortable, age appropriate and current enough.

This only strikes me today because I happened to be browsing through the young girl clothes thinking that they're exactly what I'd like my girl to wear at that age. You also have the advantage that it's online so you can see complete outfits and talk about what she likes or doesn't like. She may then begin to get her own look together.

HelloItsMeAgain Tue 19-Jan-16 15:24:09

My mum never saw the horror of shoe A either. In fact I had 2 unpleasant bouts of being bullied at school largely started by comments about 1) Shoe A and 2) An outfit I wore to the school disco. So is all rather sensitive to me mostly over it, honest

DH & I have discussed and agreed we have no problem with her having 2 wardrobes iyswim - the outdoorsy stuff and stuff to wear that is more stylish. Especially as the more stylish stuff is partly for school anyway. We can afford a few extra bits as no uniform costs to worry about atm

DD does have some opinions on what she is happy to wear - for example she felt her down coat was great for outdoors stuff but she hates it at school as it is too "puffy". We have agreed that she is happy to wear at the weekend, and if it snows at school - but I will not force her to wear it daily - she has a less puffy alternative and she has agreed to keep a fleece with her to layer up.

Shoes-wise she has some very, very cool brown suede ankle boots - Goretex lined - so when not in trainers she is very happy in those.

H&M is a great idea. I generally hate shopping - but there is an out-of-town one nearby that is relatively easy to pop into. Am not going to do anything immediately as I don't want her thinking I agree with her friends (I don't). Just want to start getting prepared for the next time we do pick up a few bits. I think it is time to start helping her shape her style a bit beyond the practical.

Any other suggestions or magazine tips from those with "stylish" DDs?

ShutUpLegs Tue 19-Jan-16 15:25:29

DD1 is also about that age and is struggling a bit. SHe's happiest dressing for comfort not style and would happily knock about in joggers and a Tshirt all day.

Observe her friends to get a sense of benchmark - round our way most Boden would mark you out for ridicule. SHe wants to fit in by flying under the radar but has no interest in dressing inappropriately.

Next and H&M work best for us.

She likes denim shorts over tights as an alternative to the joggers. Teamed with a Tshirt and a sloppy fine-knit jumper from H&M, its her go to outfit for parties now that none of them wear frocks any more.
We buy plain T's or we look for ones with a stripe or logo on the front that we can both live with.

Agree that leggings, a decent T and ballet pumps also works well.

They seem to be transitioning away from brights & patterns to more neutral clothes - greys, blacks, navys for the bottom half and a more sophisticated top half rather than a T with an applique on it. Dolman sleeve fine-knit jumpers seem acceptable.

Don't forget hair - sparkly hair bits are not acceptable anymore. Wide, jersey bands or loose now if its long.

HelloItsMeAgain Tue 19-Jan-16 15:28:25

Oh and YY abbie am totally not doing the slogan thing. And DD is of the same opinion. She is quite into dance/ballet so I may have to grin and bear "Pineapple Studios" blazoned across her though grin

She is not totally without a sense of style and what she wants to wear - but I think (especially with my past) I want to try and help her be aware of what looks are current/on trend and not stand out like a sore thumb too much. I know, I know - a bit sheep like. Will be happy if she decides not to be sheep like - but my mum never allowed me to even look at the sheep - and certainly not look like them. And I got bulled for it. For something to fundamental to your self-esteem I want to try and avoid that for DD - without forcing her.

Fuck me this parenting lark is difficult.

ErgonomicallyUnsound Tue 19-Jan-16 15:35:43

DD and I like Zara a lot. They have stylish dresses, we have bought many over the years, people always ask where they are from. They also have really good basics eg cardis, tees - crucially they are plain and fuss free, which we think is stylish.

They suggest outfits online and have a lot more stock than instore.

abbieanders Tue 19-Jan-16 15:35:58

round our way most Boden would mark you out for ridicule.

It can be very distinctive. However, they do have some quieter pieces in that age group. Maybe I'm showing that I'm an older mammy to an infant girl, but to me, ten really is such a child still!

Candycoco Tue 19-Jan-16 15:38:51

My dd is 11 and she loves new looks 9-15 range. They do really nice jeans, tops etc that are definitely fashionable as are based on the adult range. But obviously you have to be careful that they aren't too adult.

ErgonomicallyUnsound Tue 19-Jan-16 15:44:18

Zara also do editorials like this which give ideas

WhoKn0wsWhereTheMistletoes Tue 19-Jan-16 15:48:22

My just turned 10 DD mainly wears H&M and Gap at the moment, a lot of grey, navy, cream, purple a few brights and she likes pictures of animals (realistic not cutie types) still. Pink is all but gone from her wardrobe now. Thankfully she hasn't asked for ballet pumps yet, holding off on those for as long as possible, she still mainly wears trainers outside school.

Pantsalive Tue 19-Jan-16 15:56:47

I agree about Zara (but always forget it when shopping for dd). Their stuff can be a bit rock chick, so cool but not over-the-top.
Verbaudet can also be good for non-girlie basics, and there's always a discount code around somewhere.
Otherwise we tend to do H&M and an occasional bit of Primark.

RoganJosh Tue 19-Jan-16 15:59:57

I find it really helpful for me to flick through Next and La Redoute catalogues to fix in my head what look I like. That might help your DD too?

Matildatoldsuchdreadfullies Tue 19-Jan-16 16:01:42

DD2 (she's now in year 7) sounds a little like your dd. We tried to keep 'her' style, whilst allowing her to be stylish, iyswim.

In practice, that means she wears super-stretchy skinny jeans (gap do some nice ones), branded t-shirts (hollister or abercrombie in the sales)- , and oversized, but trendy, hoodies, with converse on her feet.

She feels comfortable, but cool. And she actually looks quite nice.

I'd definitely avoid Boden. It's lovely for smaller children - but by this age it screams 'mum buys my clothes!'

museumum Tue 19-Jan-16 16:08:29

given your normal style i would suggest fatface and gap for clothes but for shoes go to a fashionable shop like schuh or office and get a 'brand'. Same for bags. Shoes and bags and coat can be enough.

CakeThat Tue 19-Jan-16 16:09:05

I was coming on to say the New Look 9-15 range but see that someone's beat me to it! She can still get comfortable clothes from there such as jeans/sweatshirts/leggings /checked shirts but with a cooler style (and not that expensive if you need quite a few bits). My dd got a lovely parka from there which is also quite practical. Also h&m.

Pantsalive Tue 19-Jan-16 16:13:25

If you do Pinterest, it might be worth looking for inspiration on there. You could probably search for tween clothes or something similar.

Rshard Tue 19-Jan-16 16:15:55

My dd is 10 and has developed a bit of a 'lol' over the last couple of years. She's not girly particularly and favours skinny jeans in different colours and sweaters/hoodies/tshirts. She likes ankle boots, converse and trainers. So not too far removed from what your dd wears but a bit less casual? My dd is very sorry so her look fits her personality really well. We shop in next with a few bits from Zara. Her favourite top at the moment is actually from M&S who have a few occasional gems. YY to avoiding Boden at this age, we only buy jeans these days as the fit suits her build.

Maybe give her a budget to get a few bits and have a shopping trip?

Rshard Tue 19-Jan-16 16:16:28

Sporty not sorry!

slug Tue 19-Jan-16 16:16:55

Every year H&M do a version of this jacket I've had women approach me to ask where I bought it and I can see their preteen daughter in the background hovering looking wishful. DD referred to it as her "instant style" jacket.

Add a funky pair of shoes (teal coloured converse or fake Doc Martins) and just about any boring outfit looks stylish

Lovelilies2 Tue 19-Jan-16 16:43:17

My DD is 10 and is still quite happy in leggings (she's 5'1 and skinny) and a tshirt or hoody, and barefoot trainers.
She's quite proud that she doesn't have to 'fit in', we home educate so all her friends are a bit scruffy looking!

She would give me the hmmshockconfused faces if I suggested that biker jacket! She does have one friend who wears 'trendy' clothes, but isn't impressed..
I'm quite thankful that she doesn't want to wear 'fashionable' stuff.. She'd run straight out of a pair of ballet pumps!

Gruach Tue 19-Jan-16 16:54:50

As you've asked about magazines I'd suggest "Miss Vogue". I don't know if it's monthly or if you can buy a subscription (have only seen it once or twice when it comes attached to the grown up Vogue). Seems to include lots of different styles and prices so could provide inspiration for anyone in their teens.

(I speak as someone who started reading grown up Vogue at 14 and has barely missed an issue since.blush )

Gruach Tue 19-Jan-16 16:55:41

Ah, flicking through, there's an app!

Love2dance Tue 19-Jan-16 16:55:48

I have sons but started gifting bits from Forever 21 to my friend's DDs at about that age. It's not high quality but they have some funky T-shirts and jackets in the summer. Another thumbs up for H&M. Actually I like some Boden stuff. I agree it can be twee, but occasionally the Johnny B range (aimed at teens) has some cool sweatshirts.

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