Day 6: Kentucky Derby Hat – How to guide her inner fashionista

Ruthie The Kentucky Derby Hat 8 Comments

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untitled (169)Termed the “most exciting 2 minutes in sports”, the Kentucky Derby has been held every year since its inception in 1875.  Women dressed to the nines in their large hats and finery sip on mint juleps and watch the “run for the roses”.

A two-minute race?  A new outfit and hat?  Now that’s a sport I could get into.

We women love our pretty things.  And we want our daughters to learn the fine art of looking classy on special occasions.

It all starts when they’re young…



Enter the dress-up clothes

I loved to play-dress up.  My mom, an accomplished seamstress, fashioned a blue satin gown for my very first wedding as a flower girl at the ripe old age of four.

I thought I was the star of the show.  (Bride?  What bride?)

When I turned 7, I talked my mom into a pair of black (gasp) one inch high heels.

Oh, the bliss!  I felt gorgeous in those 1 inch heels!  And on top of that, she sewed a long, purple velour dress for me too (We called them “maxi’s” back then)!

The cute boy in Sunday School noticed.

From that day forward, it was all about fashion.


Who knew that in 30 years my 3 daughters would inherit that blue satin dress for play.

Every day, my girls got out of bed, put on their plastic shoes and feather boas, and came down to breakfast.

My husband (who was raised in a house full of boys) was at a loss.


Along with the play clothes comes a strong sense of preference about every-day clothes.

Some girls are very particular about their clothing.

You know what I’m talking about.

The heels.  The clothes.  The makeup.  The jewelry.

The fights.

You feel like you are in a race yourself - the race to see who will win the clothing wars before giving out. Click To Tweet

Better make sure it’s you.



What’s a dress code?

This doesn’t always begin in the teen or tween years – I happened to have a 3-year-old who thought she was her own wardrobe stylist.

Every day we went round and round over that kid’s outfit.  She simply MUST wear flared jeans of her life.


I finally came up with a method and, implementing the referee rule called, “maintain consistency”, I stuck to my guns.


When your little girl is a diva

untitled (171)1) Pick out two outfits

Those are her choices and nothing else.  It’s either that or go naked.  Stand your ground.


2) Teach her a thankful spirit

If she only likes one set of clothing and hates everything else she owns, find creative ways to get her to notice something positive about her clothes (sparkles, flowers, colors, etc.).

Also, make sure she’s not feeding off of something she’s picking up from you.

If you’re not thankful for your clothes, she won’t be thankful for hers either.

If she has 5 outfits and doesn’t like the rest, have her pack them up and give them to another little girl who needs them.

Involve her in the process.  It may make a big difference.


3) Get a set of stickers she loves and put it on her outfit

Maybe she’s still not sold on her attire for the day.

I know this is a bribing technique but it’s an inexpensive one, and it never hurts to encourage your child in little ways (especially those strong-willers or “swillers” as I like to call mine).


4) Don’t play into the drama

IMG_1650-731733Lay out the clothes, let her pick, and get out.  Ignore the attitude (unless she’s screaming – then no).

If she sees that you’re not going to be coerced, she will eventually be distracted with something else.


When your teen wants to dress like the crowd

1)Maintain modesty

Only you can determine what this looks like for your household.

But bear in mind the thoughts of the young men that will be keeping company with your daughter.

Here are some good ideas of clothing to avoid:

-low cut shirts

-mini skirts

-booty shorts

-super tight jeans

-belly shirts (do people still wear those?)

-jeans with giant rips or holes

-any clothing with holes or large gaps


2)Determine your motives

If it’s just a preference that you don’t like her wearing that slouchy t-shirt instead of the cute sweater you bought her, drop it.

That is not a battle worth fighting.

Life isn’t all about looks, it’s about what’s on the inside.

Don't make a big deal over clothesthat could possibly drive a wedge between you and your daughter. Click To Tweet

You may be a fashionista, but that doesn’t mean she has to be one.


-Teach her the right clothing for her shape

untitled (170)

And yes – that is the very faded, blue satin flower girl dress I wore when I was 4. Models shown are my two youngest daughters. 😉

I see a prevalent need for this.

Perhaps your daughter is a little on the chunky side – don’t let her wear tight-fitting clothing that emphasizes.

Also, some larger clothing just aren’t flattering.

Go with her when she shops for clothes (to me this is a no-brainer) and have her try them on!

Your pocketbook is funding this venture – you have every right to say no if you don’t approve. Or if it doesn’t look good, find a constructive way to steer her towards something else.

Dressing up can be so much fun!



Be sure to enjoy this very large part of your daughter’s life.  Provide fun dress-up clothes when she’s small.  Give her a choice between two outfits for the day, and when she’s older, stick to a modest, but reasonable dress code.  Go shopping with her, and enjoy all things feminine.

It’s not the Kentucky Derby, but after she’s grown and gone, you’ll feel like it only lasted two minutes.  Make it “the most exciting two minutes” you can!


Click here for Day 7: The Fireman’s Helmet!

{If you are just now joining me for my “31 Hats MOM Wears”, take a peek at how it all started by clicking here!  And if you’d like to follow along each day, but get distracted (because of battles with your daughter over what she’s wearing), you can follow along via email!  Just fill out your email address at right hand top of the page, just underneath my picture!  And enjoy wearing your different hats today!}

Comments 8

  1. Great post, Ruthie! I enjoyed visiting with you today and picked up some great tips as well. I’ll be back for the rest of this series. Thanks for sharing! Peace and many blessings to you, Love! 🙂

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      1. And also just the post in general I found interesting and helpful. I loved that you mentioned teaching them to dress in ways that are appropriate for their shape. I think often that’s not even something parents think about.

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          My daughter and I were just discussing this very subject the other day. So many times girls wear things that are unflattering for their shape and it is important for them to know how to remedy that!

  2. You are most welcome, Love! … I emailed your post to my sister because she has a teen daughter and she and I were just discussing this very topic the other day. So, when I read #2 under “When your teen wants to dress like the crowd.”, I thought to myself that was a practical but very helpful tip.

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      Thank you so much for your words. It helps to know how people are being helped practically. I”M so thankful you felt it helpful to send on to your sister, I hope it can help her as well.

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