We are thrilled to introduce Melissa Chapman as our tween fashion expert. Melissa is a Staten Island based writer and blogger. As the mom of two tweens, she knows the ins and outs of parenting this unique age – and loves to share her point of view. You can read more of Melissa’s work at The Staten Island Family.
Face it, gone are the days when your child would look at you with tears welling up in her eyes and plead for you to come along on her playdate, and you’d stay, even though you had hoped to spend those two precious hours getting a much-needed mani-pedi. And your suggestion that the two of you spend a few hours painting together would be a met by nothing less than a resounding yes!
Yet now that she’s a tween, her desire to spend time with you has pretty much dried up. In fact, you’re lucky if your questions about how her day at school went illicit more than a two-word reply. Unfortunately, spending quality time with her parents is not high on her list of priorities.
Your little sweet pea, who once clamored for your constant hovering presence, is clearly asserting her independence. Although you want to encourage her to be her own person, you long for the good old days — when it was just you and her clasping hands and chatting away in your fragile cocoon of togetherness… (sigh!)
But what if you could continue your Mommy/child playdates with your older kids and foster a new found sense of camaraderie participating in activities that will satisfy your child’s more mature sensibilities and help you retain that close-knit bond you once shared. I know it might sound impossible — but I’m here to let you in on the secret to achieving it.
With my 11 year old girl we’ve found a common denominator- it’s called fashion, and girlfriend LOVES to shop– not only with the goal of purchasing things but even just to window shop. My 11 year old is super visual, she loves seeing the new colors and textures of the summer fashions for her age group and I am more than willing to partake in this activity with her if it provides a way for us to bond.
And being that my daughter just began day camp this month we did out annual summer shop. Normally we would have hit up Justice, but my girl said she wanted to check out JC Penney , which could not have made me smile more broadly from ear to ear.
Their new line of clothing TOTAL GIRL is fun, not flirty and has an edge to it! She got some really fabulous pairs of jeans shorts, with these cute sashes and embellishments – hippie style skirts and the swimsuits were plentiful and VERY age appropriate too.
Then it was on to the Children’s Place because my girl loves to wear solid colored t-shirts( although I’d prefer vintage ones– she reminds me- these clothes are for her and not for me- and so we nabbed several at just $6 a piece.
Bottom line is this: When it comes to fashions for your tween girls- keep it cute and classic. NO short shorts, no revealing low cut shirts and well- keep them as little girls for as long as you possibly can. (When they’re 16 you’ll have far less control over those itty-bitty teeny weeny yellow polka dot bikinis!)