The Cost of High Fashion for the Youngest Consumer

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Today's New York Times "Thursday Styles" section features the article, "That Dress Is SO Preschool," covering high fashion (in every sense) on models who look to be about five years old. We're talking a "Lanvin tulle dress, $1,200, and taffeta coat, $1,570, both at Barneys." Didn't you just know Barney's would be in on this? The clothes? Completely adorable. The price tags? Utterly ridiculous. But can we all take a breath here?

lanvin girls ruffle dress

Look--there has ALWAYS been super high-priced clothes available for the children of the rich, but now virtually every well-known designer, including the above-mentioned Lanvin, Gucci, Stella McCartney, Fendi, Phillip Lim, and Marc Jacobs have introduced children's lines. This is a game changer. 

It seems like these extremely expensive clothes find a way, if not to become the new baseline, to shift the goal posts for all kids, especially little girls. As the mother of a little girl going on four, I hate to think the state of little girls' fashion in five years when she's going on nine. I hate to think she (or any little girl) will be the object of ridicule if she's not wearing high fashion; if she's not hip in a way that should not yet concern kids of this age. 


Source: neimanmarcus.com via love Maegan on Pinterest

Being a young woman is tough enough, what with the constant judgment on appearance to which young women are subjected. Why push this back to the preschool or pre-tween years? Why capitulate to the idea that looks are everything, even to preschoolers, because that's at least part of the statement that high fashion seeks to make. 

According to The Times, these designers "use tiny garments to strengthen their brand." Sheesh. I wish they'd expand their brands in some other direction and leave the pre-schoolers out of it. 

lanvin kids dress

* Lanvin Tiered Ruffle Dressseen above via Barney's NY - $1263

* Lanvin Sleeveless Dress seen above via Barney's NY - $1145


[Both dresses shown above look to be in the bridal category, as if they were to be purchased for flower girls, knowing that brides will spend a fortune on their weddings. However, much of the designer kid's items are in the $70-$300 range, which is still quite steep especially considering you can find an adorable little dress at Target for $6. - Maegan Tintari, Style Editor]



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