Do you think it’s worth it to buy designer clothes for your children? Or do you choose to spend that money elsewhere?  Naomi, mother to 18- month-old son Caiden says, “Babies and toddlers grow so quickly that most of them don’t even get the opportunity to wear their clothes out before they get donated or passed along. As far as being aware of fashion, I don’t believe that comes into play until they are in grade school. For mothers on a budget or parents that just generally don’t want waste to waste money, children’s fashion is definitely at the bottom of the priority list. Happy healthy babies are at the top!’’

Serena (Pictured below) on the other hand, is a 19-year-old fashion enthusiast who is not a mother, and has another opinion: 

‘’I want my future child to be fashionable and wear what they want themselves to wear. I want to give them the liberty to find their unique style and use fashion as a tool for self-confidence, but while doing that, I hope to teach them to make good spending choices. I don’t want them to grow up thinking that expensive means fashionable. I want them to learn to use money and spend on clothing in a smart way. Buy good quality if you are wearing it a lot, but sometimes a cheaper option is just as good as the expensive option. How a parent spends on clothing for her child can be a lesson for the little one because the little one is learning from the parent all the time, even if the parent might not always think they are.’’

Some argue that most people can’t tell the difference between a $20 or $200 sweater, and that children are going to grow out of the clothes so fast anyway that they don’t actually need something of designer quality.

I know for myself, I love a good designer item, but as a mother to a 15-month-old son who’s very active it’s understandable that everything he wear ends up in the laundry very quickly. However, my opinion on whether a child should wear designer clothing depends on two main things: practicality and price.

The Kiddie Business:

The kiddie clothing business is booming; the fashion industry has discovered that some parents will pay a lot for kids clothes, so now, Versace, Dolce and Gabbana, Burberry, and other high-end designers are funding fashion shows with 5- year-olds gliding down runways in mini skirts and knee-high fur boots. They’re hoping that children’s clothing stores will carry their high-end fashion for kids.


Photo Taken by Krystal Hawksworth)

I asked Stone Bell, mother of Shydell (pictured above) who is 15-months-old, if she liked designer wear clothes for her daughter and if she dressed her in it. She replied ‘’I like them and do dress Shydell in them, however, liking and affording are two different things. So, it depends on the price; I would not spend $150.00 to $200.00 dollars on a kid’s garment.’’

So who’s putting their children in these expensive clothes?

Five-year–old  Alonso Mateo is, and he has become an Instagram style icon:

Style icon Alonso Mateo is captured on Instagram, wearing different fashionable pieces: tailored-made jackets with a Tom Ford pocket square, Dior shirts, Diesel jeans, Gucci belts, All Saints leather jackets, and Gucci shades. Right now, he’s only five. That makes him one of the youngest in an internet lineage of child style icons, from Matthew Weiner’s son, Arlo, to Alexander Wang’s toddler niece, Aila, who is often spotted at his fashion shows. Add to that Hudson Kroening, the son of model Brad Kroening,  who became Karl Lagerfeld’s muse when he was only three, and Thylane Lena –Rose , who was shot for French vogue when she was 10. Then there is Suri Cruise, or Maddox Jolie-Pitt, both of whom wear Lilliputian luxury and get shot by the paparazzi. But here’s the twist: this little boy Alonso Mateo comes from parents who are not famous. Instead, he’s a social media phenomenon.

I asked Nevaeh (pictured above), age five, to look at Alonso Mateo on Instagram, and asked her what she thought of his style, what she thought fashion meant to her, and if she knew what designer meant:

‘’I like his style– it’s for boys. I want Gabriel (her one-year-old brother) to dress like that. I think it’s high fashion because he has a fashionable jacket and nice glasses.’’ Nevaeh believed that Alonso’s style could be defined as: “When you dress up really nice– when you look cool.”

While she wasn’t too sure what designer meant, the little girl knows style when she sees it. “I like to wear fashion stuff,” she says, and we can tell! 

Alonso Mateo first became popular when he appeared on his mother’s newsfeed (@luisafere): Luisa Fernanda Espinosa, a freelance stylist, started posting the pictures last year, and now has more than 127,000 followers. There are now 230,000 photos catalogued of her son on Google images–more than some B-list celebrities. Alonso Mateo comes from a family of money and as a family, they like to shop together. And, like all fashionistas and fashionistos out there, young Alonso follows trends. He’s quoted to say, “I love suits, sneakers, and sunglasses” in a recent phone interview. “I like to dress like my dad because he has cool suits.” His style is curated by his mother, who brings him to Kitson kids, Dior, Gucci, Stella McCartney, Bon Point, Nordstrom, and H&M.  “As long as it has nice quality, I’ll take it”, she says.

Not everyone wants to see a child dressing like this, but many mothers claim if they did have money, they would dress their child like this.

Natasha – Mother of the newborn baby pictured below says:

“Honestly as of now I prefer to spend the money somewhere else! There’s so much to buy in preparation for a newborn (furniture, baby equipment, feeding, stroller etc.). But I think after she has outgrown being newborn and closer to 6 month-year I can see us buying designer clothes.”

Pictured Here Newborn: Kiana sleeps. Her sleepers are from Gymboree.

Childrens Designer Apparel You Can Afford

The Kardashians–Kim, Kourtney, and  Khloe— have a line for  girls up to 24 months, exclusively available at Babies ‘’R’’ Us. The collection features everything from butterfly–print pinafores and matching bloomers to newborn caps and cozy receiving blankets. The collection is affordably priced from $15 to $ 30.

Joe Fresh offers stylish, fresh, and affordable apparel, right at our local Real Canadian Superstore or at the Joe Fresh store located on Granville Street.  Joe fresh is stylish, trendy, and affordable for boys and girls. Prices are as low as $6 and can go up to $30.

Stuart A. Weitzmen is an American, entrepreneur and founder of the eponymous international high-end shoe company. Since 2002, Weitzmen has provided one-of-a kind “million dollar” shoes to Oscar nominees to wear at the Oscars. At his stores though, you can find shoes not only for adults, but for babies, too! Prices start at $42 dollars and up.

Founder of Kreative Creations, Lea Cannonier, is from Bay Town, Texas. She is a mother to Kyla, age nine, and Lauren, age four, and newborn baby Jonee. She is also a creative entrepreneur whose vision is to customize certain color themes for her customers. Check out her creative apparel on Facebook here: www.facebook.com?lovekreativekreations

Pictured Below: Gabriel is wearing children’s place plaid shirt, beige pants from Old Navy and Nike Shoes.

Nevaeh is wearing black sparkle shirt Joe Fresh and Leopard Print leggings H&M.

Black tank top H&M and sparkle skirt target.

Carter’s black cords and YOUNGstreet collared shirt,

Caiden is wearing Joe Fresh shell pants, Adidas Liverpool football jersey,

We can argue as parents, or observers of fashion, whether or not we think our children should wear designer clothing; it may shape their character, there’s no doubt about it! What we do have to remember is those that can afford it work hard also, and choose to spend their money this way and that is okay! Celebrities on the other hand, are given free clothing by designers (hello, marketing!). People come from different backgrounds and experiences. As the parent, what you and your child want to purchase and wear is your call!

Vancouver stores for designer-wear clothing made for kids:

●     Stella McCartney

●     Lanvin

●     Marc Jacobs

●     Jean Paul Gaultier

●     Fendi (designed for 3-month-old to 12-year-olds)

●     Gucci (designed for babies 2-to-8-years of age)

●     Missoni

●     Burberry

●     Young Versace

Where to find these most talked about brands:

Online:

Zulily .com

Department stores:

Nordstrom

Macy’s

Boutiques:

Hip baby

Beansprouts

Peekaboo

Lussobaby

Crocodile Baby