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What party outfits are there for little girls if you don't like dresses?

(49 Posts)
Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 12:46:22

First world problem of the day grin

I have a nearly 3yo DD, and a lovely posh Christmas party to go to in a few weeks time. There's even a professional photographer there, so it would be nice to try and make her look less like she's been dragged through a hedge backwards than usual (she just has that sort of hair!)

Anyway, our personal taste isn't for dresses on a day to day basis. In fact, considering she's 3 and permanently mucky her clothes are all just leggings/jumpers/boots sort of thing. So I thought, maybe I'll buy her a really nice dress for the party. But then I remember that we don't have tights, any kind of appropriate cardigan (or any cardigan bar hoodies...) or particularly any shoes other than wellies, stompy dark boots or sporty trainers.

At which point my natural tightness has cut in and while I know I can get loads of nice things from eBay and supermarkets and charity shops, I'm quite loathe to buy a new dress, tights, shoes and cardigan that she's unlikely to wear again for one afternoon party.

Yes, yes, completely ridiculous problem I know - but has anyone seen anything nice out there? Can I still make her look "party", as I know she's starting to enjoy dressing up, without buying loads of things she'll never wear again?

mumnosbest Mon 24-Nov-14 12:49:46

Leggings and a dress or floaty top.

carrie74 Mon 24-Nov-14 12:51:45

I saw a lovely outfit in the M&S window at the weekend: gold sequin shorts with a cream jumper that said let it snow. Still not terribly practical...

When they were doing the 40% deal, my dress denying daughter agreed to a cute (practical) green Jersey dress with stars on it (she needed it for her school camp disco, but we'll use it over the Xmas season too). H&M always good for cheap sparkly party shoes.

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 12:55:47

Now I'm trying to remember if any of her leggings are decent enough to be worn to a party blush

Shorts could work, that would be cute. Or could we just rock the pouffy party dress and big boots look? I could pretend I'm trying to be 'cool' or 'ironic' grin

WreckTheHalls Mon 24-Nov-14 12:58:03

A nice tunic and leggings or slim fit trousers?

I saw a little girl in gorgeous velvet dungarees the other day. Looked a bit Monsoon-ish, possibly?

EvansOvalPiesYumYum Mon 24-Nov-14 13:01:54

My DD never liked sparkles or frilly dresses.

She used to just wear leggings (or tights) with DMs and a pretty-ish top or unfrilly dress. Definitely no spangles, she was always happy and didn't look out of place at all.

Dress and boots - definitely cool!

RollaCola Mon 24-Nov-14 13:05:49

If she has any lace up shoes or boots you could "party" them up by replacing the laces with some sparkly ribbon.

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 13:06:30

OK, if a dress and boots can be cool then that's better! I can reconcile myself to £10 on a party dress that she won't wear again. Though I do like the sound of velvet dungarees...

I was about to make some comment about how irritating it is that all the shops operate around girls + parties = dresses, and then pictured what women wear to parties...!

FelixTitling Mon 24-Nov-14 13:07:13

H&M is your friend.

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 13:08:25

Rolla, sadly there lies the problem - we have wellies, big brown leather boots, brown basketball boots, or Moshi Monsters trainers grin I like a practical, hard-wearing and non-mud staining shoe, me.

(Yes, I am resigning myself to the fact that very soon she's going to start having her own say on her clothes and may very well be dresses and angora cardigans the whole way!)

MonstrousRatbag Mon 24-Nov-14 13:09:02

What about a T-shirt, little shorts and tights?
I like this top, and you could pair it with these shorts and tights.

Boots is good for this kind of thing. I put DD (her hair is less 'through a hedge backwards' and more 'Wild Women of Wongo') in this kind of thing a lot, thanks to Advantage Points. She gets to look sweet and still be super-active.

CaulkheadUpNorth Mon 24-Nov-14 13:09:26

Friends dd does tights and shorts a lot as she isn't keen on dressss.

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 13:11:49

I hadn't thought of Boots, thanks for the reminder!

MollyBdenum Mon 24-Nov-14 13:22:53

Leggings plus pretty tunic or top are fairly standard. H&M tend to do really nice tunics/dresses.

Most of the childrens parties DD went to at age weren't party dress parties anyway - they were often held at soft play.

Leggings, tunic, cardigan and sparkly or brightly coured baseball boots with maybe a slightly more fancy than usual hairclip were far more standard partywear than frilly dresses.

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 13:26:48

The reason this suddenly struck me was that this is the work Christmas party, so not soft play or anything. And most of the other people who work here get paid - well, let's just say I see a sea of expensive party dresses before us grin

QueenL Mon 24-Nov-14 14:16:13

Our personal taste isn't for dresses on a day to day basis.

grin I see

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 14:20:37

Heh - I meant me and DP but see how that actually reads grin grin

She has wonderful personal taste, dahlink....

squoosh Mon 24-Nov-14 14:33:34

I know a three year old girl who refuses to wear dresses so for some family weddings they bought her a tux. She did look adorable.

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 14:45:12

A tux! I would love to do that!

RainbowBlue Mon 24-Nov-14 15:18:23

Try Sainsburys...they have a lovely pair of burgundy cord shorts with matching tights for abt £8...but they look a lot pricierwink. Would go great with those brown boots ... We do the same with DD as you, my DH is allergic to fancy dresses, anyone would think he had to wear them grin

SpockSmashesScissors Mon 24-Nov-14 15:48:16

What about something like this red dress H&M

SpockSmashesScissors Mon 24-Nov-14 15:53:26

Or this one black dress H&M

Some other options H&M

Thurlow Mon 24-Nov-14 15:57:08

Ooh I like that red dress Spock, not too frilly and girly.

AmeliaPeabody Mon 24-Nov-14 16:13:47

Take a look at the unisex shops and particularly Scandinavian brand. Dresses, and alternative, casual enough to wear for everyday (so you get the use out of them) but nice enough for a party, too.
E.g. Molo, Danefae,, Smafolk, Ej Sikke Lej

If you wanted something less casual. Poppy Children is my favourite place for lovely prints, classic style, and no (well few) frills.

Or nice leggings (Boden - some nice velvet type leggings, for example) and smart t shirt or tunic top.

bouncinbean Mon 24-Nov-14 16:14:15

That red dress is fab Spock - I wasn't planning on getting my DD a dress - just idly reading the thread but am very tempted with that!

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