This may seem like a ridiculous question, but why do we call kids’ clothes, well, kids’ clothes? Take a moment and picture a little kid.
What is being worn, from head to foot? Does she have sneakers and a pony tail or a messy bun and a statement necklace? Is he wearing aviators and skinny jeans or sweatpants and a tee shirt? Does it matter?
Does a kid’s clothing item just mean it is sized for a two or five year old, or is the style of clothing distinctively different? Kids should be kids, right?
That doesn't mean they will always be dressed in “play clothes,” but does it mean they should be coiffed and stylized? Should kids be wearing carefully designed outfits, often complete with accessories and hairstyles? Is the term kids’ clothes an archaic one or does it have to mean saccharine colors and juvenile cartoon characters?
Of course, this subject isn't so black and white. But, you've probably noticed that there is a growing trend of dressing kids (from infants on up) in “adult” styles. Again, what does it mean? What makes it so that we know at a glance whether a kid is dressed as a kid or as a mini-adult?
There seems to be an important distinction between a kid wearing the same kind of thing an adult would wear, such as a button down shirt or ballet flats, and being stylized like a mini-adult. While the line might not be completely clear cut and not all time is play time, do the clothes remind you that the child is a child?
We also see this debate played out in the retail space. More and more companies are changing their tactics when it comes to kids’ clothes. The products themselves are different, but so is the styling. Little boys with hipster glasses and half-tucked Oxfords; girls with oversized scarves and mixed prints seem to be the new norm. Have you noticed how advertisements have changed?
How do you define kids’ clothes?
All images are on my Pinterest Board "Stylish Kids"