Kids develop a sense of style pretty early in adolescence. They develop an affinity for fashion and have clear personal preferences for color palettes and how they want to style their hair and wear their clothes. You can help your child build their personal style with reassurance by giving them the room to engage their stylistic gifts.
Here are some tips on helping your child embrace and build on their personal style profile.
Master the Basics
Getting dressed is a skill in itself that helps your child build strong motor skills. Help them master the basics of buttoning up a shirt, zipping up their pants and tying shoelaces. Practice makes perfect so encourage your child to play dress up with costumes and switch the costumes often to get the hang of wardrobe changes.
Teach about the Artistic side of Fashion
Before your children sashay across the room with model-like confidence, teach them about the art of fashion so they can foster an appreciation of it which will help them build-up their personal style. Top a symmetry lesson off with teaching about styles of skirts (A-Line, Straight Skirts, Pencil Skirts, Tube Skirts, Pleated Skirts) and teach about balance and proportion. Your son will appreciate a lesson on how colors and fabrics play off each other. Visit a fabric store and have your kids pick and feel varying degrees of fabrics and imagine what a certain fabric would look like as an outfit. This lesson will take your kids’ style profile to a whole new level!
As your kids start to create their own sense of style, be sure to establish boundaries. Girls need to know early on that a tight bulging outfit doesn’t mean it’s better. And boys need to clearly know that their pants shouldn’t sag on the ground with their underwear protruding out for the entire world to see. Yes some of their outfits might make you cringe, but they should never be offensive enough to cause a Miley-Cyrus-type ruckus from onlookers. Have your kids pick out their own outfits and have them show you what they intend to wear. Act more like a “style consultant” than a disapproving parent. This will help them build up their confidence and self-esteem to choose the ideal outfit on their own!
Face it; you’re probably not going to be your child’s biggest style inspiration. But there are plenty of books and magazines to fill that void. Let your child seek inspiration from a variety of sources like style magazines or even watch runway fashion shows on TV, which are all the rage these days. You might find that your child has a penchant for edgy styles like Rihanna or prefers classic prints and florals like the First Lady.
Whatever the style preference, these tips will help your children build their personal style profile up to be a cut above the rest of the kids in their class.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kia Morgan Smith is a busy mother of five, wife and blogger at CincoMom.com where she tackles the whimsical journey of parenting. She’s a busy mom managing many things like hectic after school schedules, dinner and world domination.