Gratuitous Kid Bragging Thread

She offered to let me blog these photos so long as I covered up her face. Below is what Sprog the Younger designed and wore to party with her classmates (not a school formal, the school only organises those for Year 12, so Year 10 organised one for themselves).

a triptych showing different angles of a girl wearing an outfit with lacy sleeves and gauntlets trimmed with trailing ribbons, a striped shirt, a layered skirt in tiers of lace and satin, with striped socks and Doc Marten boots

It was already pretty anime/manga before the dressmaker got super-creative with those ribbons – they really made it. You can see how he extended the brief below when it came to those ribbons.

design drawings for a party outfit

The best part is that it’s based on simple separates that can be worn again in many different ways, and having the special touches put together by a young couturier thrilled to see something different for a school event, and living just around the corner, was a fraction of the price some of her peers spent at boutiques for something they’ll never wear again.

Another of her friends was going to wear something punky-femme with Docs, but ended up going with the conventional frills and heels after all, so StY was pretty much on her iconoclastic own, although at least she was with other girls who had eschewed the peer pressure to bring along a boy (any boy) just for the sake of having a dancing partner. She said that cameras went off all around the room as she walked in, and that she and the baby-dyke couple wearing Cons were the only girls who ended up without blisters.

I am so proud of her for walking her own path here. What wonderful things have kids who you love been up to lately?



Categories: Life, parenting

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19 replies

  1. -Eldest child just coming up to the end of first year uni, getting assessment tasks with H1s and working and making friends and generally appearing to be on top of everything. No one event stands out but I’m very proud of her. Yes, still at home but I’ll miss her when she goes.
    -Son took up guitar a couple of months ago and has become very competent in a very short time. He plays quite adult contemporary stuff IMO for a 13 year old (Newton Faulker Dream Catch me, Pete Murray Opportunity) and he’s not afraid of any chord – looks them up on the web and just learns them.
    If only he would apply the same time and enthusiasm to his school work :-/

  2. That’s brilliant. 😀

  3. She said she felt like she was cosplaying, just cosplaying some character nobody knew 🙂

  4. Not a kid anymore but a young woman that I love just graduated high school with guaranteed entry to study law at uni, something that I watched her work incredibly hard for, for years. I’m so immensely proud of and happy for her that I could burst! She’s also moved out of her dad’s place (my sometimes partner) and in with her mum – who she absolutely idolizes – and whilst the change to our little family is slightly heartbreaking (for me) I’m bloody stoked for her!
    The outfit above is awesome! I love the stripey socks and shirt and the little white lacey, frilly underbit thing of the skirt – too cool (and yay for the unblistered feet).
    Going out now to do a celebratory breakfast thing with the high school grad now.

  5. Daughter (16) who has a fine ear for racist, homophobic ‘jokes’ and opinions stopping conversations mid banter, amongst friends, at school, facebook etc by stating: ‘Oh, that’s really awkward: my mum, stepdad, grandmother, brother, cousin etc(pick one) is…..’ She takes the concept of the family of humankind seriously and she finds it quite satisfying to see how it stops the flow of conversation immediately. And declaring when somebody tries to claim it wasn’t racist or homophobic or meant that way that that is exactly what it sounded like and felt like to her. She is known to have a HUGE family. Last year she suddenly decided she wasn’t going to not say something ever again when offensive comments are made.
    Sexism she relates directly to herself of course. My little feminist. Though lately she has become more and more aware of the limitations that society imposes on boys and men. She has 2 brothers.
    I’m very proud of her. She is much braver to stand up for her convictions than I was at her age.

  6. Now that is a rocking design! I’ve got a pretty similar style, so it raises the temperature of my cockles to see the younger kids getting in on the fun. And I know exactly what she means by cosplay – most days I feel I’m cosplaying as myself.
    I don’t know any kids, but I’m sure they’re all very nice.

  7. Eldest daughter has finished Year 12 with 3 first-in-subject awards, plus an external award for commitment to study and another for outstanding Visual Arts body of work. Her HSC rankings are equally impressive, so she’s reasonably confident of getting into USyd for a BTeach (Primary). If not there, it’ll be Macquarie. For her formal outfit she opted for a knee length Audrey Hepburn style of dress that was inexpensive (as those things go) and is something she’ll wear again and again. Her partner for the evening was a boy she’s known all her life (tigtog, do you remember Fatima and her lad, Joseph, from playgroup?). Rather nice, I think, for them to have spent their first and last days at school together.
    Youngest daughter has just finished her end of year exams. She sound a bit like Helen’s boy, squeezing her study into little pockets of time between GarageBand sessions, recording covers of her favourite songs. Indie-folk, mostly, like this. She has her own playlist on my iPod! Last week she performed “Naked as we came” (by Iron and Wine) at the high school’s annual showcase of tutored music students. It was very special that her uncle was able to be there, as the guitar she plays used to belong to him and he’s building her a new one at Gilet. Her tutor (who has apparently played guitar and golf with David Gilmour of Pink Floyd) says very nice things about her playing and singing.
    And amongst the young folk I love, but who don’t share a house with me, one has scored a place in ArtExpress for her amazing drawings, one has been accepted into AIM on the strength of her outstanding bass playing, and another (who is 8 years old and has Downs Syndrome) is starting to read to me (rather than the other way around).
    Proud of them all 🙂

  8. Your girl rocks, tiggers.
    I think my not-yet-three-year-old made his first pun today.
    Mostly I’m impressed by how stoic he is, and how he defaults to happy. He got his first bee sting last week, and we wondered if he would be nervous about going back out to the garden, but instead the next day he was acting out being the bee and pretending to sting my foot. Unexpected bonus I’ve discovered of being the feminist mother of a boy toddler: when he wants me to make his towel into a skirt so he can be a ballerina for the dancing bit of In the Night Garden. If he was a girl, sure I’d still do it, but a bit of me would be wincing and thinking “why don’t I just dress her in a onesie that says ‘I support the status quo’?” As it is, I get to fully enjoy the adorable toddlerness, and feel a bit subversive at the same time.

  9. We drove to Sydney from Melbourne last Sat and sun, spent a day there and drove home on the tues. the two girls, the Hbomb, 4 and Sherbet, 20 months, were fantastic. there were a few tears and the odd frustrating set of circular demands and denials, but overall it was a great trip. once in Syd, they made a beeline for their elder cousin and a sister outlaw leaving Dr H and i to enjoy a party.
    the Hbomb is so looking forward to proper kinder next year, we are planning her lunches and little lunches, next week we have to plant extra carrots so that she can take them.
    there isn’t much i can say about Sherbet that doesn’t make me sound like one of ‘those dads’ who think their children are so special and advanced, so i’ll just say that she wants to do a somersault and she is trying and trying and trying. and i love the trying and i love the quizzical look on her face after she has fallen sideways and picked herself up and gets ready to try again.

  10. I loved this post, tigtog.
    My 5 yr old daughter is very much walking her own path too and it is reassuring to see someone’s older daughter who has managed to stick with her own path all the way through. Well done to your girl, tigtog.

  11. Love the girl who cleverly stops homophobic, racist and sexist remarks. My family is multicultural and multi-racial. One of my daughter’s friends was apt to make racist remarks at times but was stopped – at least in our hearing – when she asked one day ‘What are those people called?’ as part of a racist comment and my daughter said,’ I just call them aunty and uncle.’ Neat, effective and I was so proud of her.

  12. My niece (reported on her mum’s facebook page):
    Miss six on the upcoming school production. “Mum why do the girls have to be quiet snowflakes and the boys get to be the noisy thunderstorm? It’s not fair.”
    #breedingthemyoung
    Great thread, tigtog. I love your daughter’s outfit, and I so admire her independence in designing and wearing it. I hope my own three girls grow up just like that.

  13. OK now we are all so pwned.
    Random woman at the pedestrian stop lights (I assume the “grading” was in a martial art, unless there’s some other thing which uses the word.) “And he said to me, mum, since I’ve passed my grading, as a special treat could I cook dinner on Friday?”
    I’m afraid this BEATS.US.ALL. 😀
    (Off for a drink now with some Melbourne bloggers – wish Sydney & other points hoydens could come.)

  14. My David (13 yrs) has done nothing special, he’s not academic or sporty and getting him to do anything that even hints of being the centre of attention is like getting blood out of a stone. But he still hugs me at every opportunity, even in public, he notices when I’m upset or stressed and makes me cups of tea, he’s honest and reliable and compassionate and I’m enormously proud of him.
    Love the outfit tigtog, especially the blister-free footwear! My daughter will be wearing a very elegant black dress to her end of year 6 dinner, she fully expects to be sneered at by certain peers for her colour choice, they’ve been unpleasant about her preferred mostly black wardrobe a few times now.

    • Thanks for sharing, everyone.
      @Sheryl, I meant to respond on Sunday to say “eek, that’s Joseph? bbbbbut” with all those silly things about height etc – no wonder we sound silly to kids gushing about them growing up so fast. Last time I saw him he was showing me a toy car or something. They both look lovely, and I’m glad that younger daughter is doing the right thing by her uncle’s guitar – memories there too.

  15. Howdy
    I just wanted to say I love this blog, it’s my favorite feminist blog (and I’ve a few). Anyway I’ve finally decided to comment after lurking for a while … I’m blog-shy.
    My little monkey is 2, and yesterday she came home from childcare with two beautiful pictures, one collage, one painting. Tonight she tried to eat the nib end of a texta, and will be going to childcare tomorrow with a purple mouth.
    Love the whole outfit, especially the boots, you must be very proud. I hope my daughter retains her massive streak of individuality through the hell that I vaguely remember was highschool.

    • Welcome to delurkdom, Kirsty!
      This was the first time we’ve seen her in a skirt since about Year 5 – she just decided one day that she didn’t want to wear them anymore (not helped by the boy at her primary school who decided to creep out the girls by sneaking around into positions where he could peek up their tunics and then going nyahnyahnyah – seeing as he was a superjock track/pool star I bet he hasn’t improved one little bit over the years either). Before that, about Years 2-4, there was a time where I despaired of her wanting to wear anything that wasn’t pink and frilly/sparkly, even though as a toddler/pre-schooler I’d kept her everyday clothes practical/varied and kept the frills/sparkles for party clothes (remember, like everybody used to?). I was so glad when she got through that stage – it was just so relentless. I know other kids, especially other girls, who had a relentless sparkly pink frills stage no matter what their parents offered, but who’ve all come through the other side to find their own balance between how fashionable and/or how femme they want to be.
      So I guess what I see is that it’s natural enough for little kids to spend a while conforming to the mass consumerist messages they see around them. If they had a less consumer-conformist infancy/early-childhood, and their parents remain reasonably non-consumer-conformist themselves, the urge to conform just for the sake of conforming should just be a phase.

  16. As a fashion-obsessed accessory freak, I LOVE THAT OUTFIT. Sprog could totally make a career of that. And what I love about the outfit is that it’s something that would suit a lot of different body types. It’s just joyous contrast of patterns and shapes and it totally works!
    I have no littlin’s of my own, but I’m a proud auntie of many. My little Ruby has been learning about Ancient Egypt at school, and I let her borrow some of my Ancient Egyptian stuff for the dress up day. It’s been so great sharing with her what I know about Ancient Egypt (I am so obsessed with it) and seeing her take joy in learning about it. She’s also learning gymnastics, and getting very good at it. I love watching her show her new moves.
    My bigger niece Emmy, who is 15, is going to sing a solo at a school performance thing. I’ve been coaching her in singing techniques. It’s been a lot of fun, and she’s got a lovely caramel-y voice that would lend itself nicely to jazz.

  17. I’m not their mother, but my Girl Guide group are just fabulous (twenty girls, aged 7 to 13), and so I will gratuitously brag about them 🙂 Two of my most dedicated girls just earned the peak award badges for their respective age groups, and I was just so so so thrilled for them – they both looked proud enough to burst last night when they were formally presented with their badges!

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