DRESS UP! by Macaroon Original’s Zoe SchaefferDecember 19, 2011
We are excited to have mother of two Zoe Schaeffer from the stylish blog Macaroon Original sharing her thoughts on dress up and imaginative play.
Out of nowhere my older daughter became enamored with the Wovenplay “Indian Princess” tiaras that I bought her (while she was still in the womb, mind you) that have been perched on an I Golfini Della Nonna panda bear’s head for the past few years. I seriously thought the headresses would serve as room décor until she pulled them out to wear while building with magna tiles or dancing to new tunes. Which means…I now have license to really go for it! Already purchased: a one-of-a-kind Birdskull headpiece from Thumbeline and a hand-made headband version from some chick in Germany. The floodgates have officially been opened. On top of these purchases came a “dress up wardrobe.” You know. An open closet meant for over-the-top tutus, Sarah’s Silks Mermaid get-ups, DIY capes, and (obviously,) head gear galore. I see few problems with this new set-up: I’m encouraging imaginative play, organizing the chaos, and satiating an editorial nostalgia, left behind from years having worked as assistants at Conde Nast.
Even at my daughter’s Pre-School, a little bohemian spot in LA where girls can’t wear dresses, skirts, or anything they can’t get down-and-dirty in, has a closet full of princess costumes and fairy dresses alike, because our Director (who has a PhD in Early Childhood Development,) believes in the power of dress up. A flouncy skirt in the sandbox is a no-no but a mermaid on the swing is completely kosher. I like it!
When my brother and I were growing up in a small Manhattan apartment, my ex-hippie parents would fill up trunks with seventies stuff (think squash heels, hand knit hats and patchwork denim,) and that’s how we rolled. Whatever was in the trunk was what went on our bodies (no fairy princess here!) It wasn’t really about what we were trying to become, rather than imagining we could be someone else. And while my friend Joanna claims her daughter is “so done” with this stage at age five, I believe she never switched gears from princesses to ninja geishas (or whatever my friend Jewels claims her seven year old has moved on to.) So yes! The dress up never goes away, it just changes. Meaning, I still live for dressing up, myself. But these days it’s in my Dries and Marni splurges.
Zoe Schaeffer lives in LA with her two daughters, Gemma and Rafi. Be sure to check out her blog, Macaroon Original, for tons of stylish tips and great finds. Images courtesy of Wovenplay and Birdskull – thank you!