I’m a little bit in love with this dress. It’s taken a while for the big-name brands to embrace the whole dinosaurs-for-girls thing, but they’ve finally cottoned on (duh) and started introducing more options that were previously only available in the boys’ section.
Top of my wish-list is Boden’s Florasaurus smock dress, above. It’s been out of stock in The Girl’s size for a while, which is probably a good thing as my debit card wouldn’t thank me this month. But there are plenty more dinosaur-themed clothes to pick from, including a little navy blue smock dress I’ve got my eye on.
I’m not a fashion-y person, so I have to really love something to buy it brand new rather than from an NCT sale. Sure, there are certain wardrobe favourites that I’ve seen in the shops and been unable to resist. But once you start buying second-hand, high street prices just seem a little bit ridiculous. Plus, The Boy dresses himself most days, so he tends to look like he’s just jumped out of a fancy dress box regardless.
I do actively try to avoid dressing them like trendy grown-ups, though. My thinking is this: if you were three years old, would you choose bright, baggy and boldly-patterned trousers to run, jump and roll around in? Or would you go for a pair of skinny jeans with ‘distressed’ knees (sorry what?) and a cute little pocket detail that sort of looks a bit like an adult pair of D&Gs? Perhaps my son has inherited my lacklustre approach to fashion, but I know which option he’d go for.
And as for girls, they’re even more tricky. You actively have to hunt out things with dinosaurs, trains, or cars on them (and heaven forbid you put them in something blue – this is an actual conversation I had, or wish I’d had, with a mum in the park just this weekend).
Clothes for kids, by kids (sort of)
All this weird grown-up and gender-specific dressing is one of the reasons I love Boden (and yes – I do realise that I said I hated spending loads on clothes earlier in this post, and am now endorsing a very middle-class clothing brand. Two words for you: Boden clearance. All. The. Way).
The fact is, their kids’ clothes look like a child may actually have designed them (though I realise they haven’t). They’re bright, they’re bold, and they have crazy mismatched patterns. Maybe it’s because I dress myself in head-to-toe black most days, but I love that these clothes are as bonkers as my kids are. They’ve got their whole adulthood to wear toned-down, muted colours, so I’m sticking with the grab-the-brightest-thing-in-the-wardrobe-and-run approach for as long as they’re happy to.
Space-themed clothes for girls now, pretty please?
There is one thing that’s definitely still missing from Boden’s collection – and the shops in general – though, and that’s outer-space or astronaut-themed clothes for girls. I can get pretty much anything I like with planets, galaxies, aliens and spacemen on for my son. But spacewomen? Not on your nelly. These PJs are the first thing I’ve found that aren’t Star Wars branded (and – miraculously – they’ve left the sky blue and not turned it pink, what with these being for girls and all). And with stargazing and Tim Peake’s mission both pretty big features on TV lately, I can’t be the only one out there who’s looking.