Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Shop 'til your hand is ready to drop

This wonderful fall-ish weather we've been having all week has me looking forward to Real Fall when we can wear sweaters and not die of heat stroke.

The girls are excited too and are pouring their enthusiasm into catalog shopping -- a tradition here in Jenworld. Each summer, as the fall catalogs pour in, I put them in a stack. Then, at some point, when I need some sort of entertainment for the girls, I hand the pile of catalogs to Elegant, along with a pen. I don't even need to say anything, because she knows her mission and she definitely chooses to accept it.

Elegant goes through each catalog page by page. Any time something catches her eye, she marks it with an E. There are a lot of E's. When she's done, she hands the catalogs to Graceful, who then goes through them, scattering a few G's here and there. In this manner, I find out what the girls like and it helps me figure out what to order.

Why does Elegant always go first? We used to be fair and have the girls take turns, but then we discovered that Elegant was simply marking whatever Graceful marked, thereby rendering her choices null and void because she was copying her sister.

The girls have been doing their fantasy shopping this week, so I'm getting a sense of what their respective "looks" will be this fall.

Graceful is sticking with comfort over flash. Pants and shirts over dresses or skirts. Cotton and fleece over wool or tulle. She gets cold easily, so by October, she'll be pulling out sweaters and fleeces. By Thanksgiving, she'll be starting each day off in many layers: sweater, turtleneck, thick pants, and warm socks. She's also much pickier than her sister, who is an indiscriminate sartorialist, so Graceful examines everything carefully to make sure it's not too "baby-ish" or might have something itchy or scratchy on it. She prefers pants with elastic waists and pockets are always helpful for serendipitous discoveries.

Elegant on the other hand, will wear just about anything fashionable and doesn't worry as much about comfort. She seems to be embracing the "flouncy skirts with boots" look this year -- too bad her choices are outrageously overpriced -- but she's also interested in pants for the first time in, well, ever. And she's continuing with her signature look: bright knit dresses with thick colorful tights or leggings underneath.

(In Jenworld, Elegant is required to always have some sort of leggings, shorts, capris, or tights under her dresses and skirts, as she has a tendency to flash her business regularly -- both accidentally and intentionally. This is the same child who started a mooning riot in preschool when she showed off her pretty big girl panties to her class -- mostly boys -- and they responded by showing off their Spiderman, Batman, and other fabu briefs and boxers. It took the teacher several minutes to restore order and then I had to face the music when I came to pick up Elegant.)

Both girls are suckers for shirts with great pictures. Neither girl liked this, which disappoints me, as I was hoping to get it for one or both of them.

Luckily, both girls understand that they can't have everything they mark. I'll make sure they have all the basics and I'll even throw in a few splurges, but they won't be getting $100 or even $50 shoes, nor will I buy $60 wool sweaters. I do tend to buy name brands, such as Mini Boden, Hanna Andersson, and Lands End, but I'll supplement with some stuff from Target, as well as goodies I find on eBay.

So I'm definitely getting excited about fall, which is my favorite of the four seasons. We have four weeks until school starts, which is hard to believe, as this summer is just flying by.

Time to hit the catalogs for myself.

1 comment:

Josie said...

FALL!!! I still haven't bought enough of the summer stuff on sale. And its 100F here sweaters are out.
Love that elegant likes to show her undies. My little sis was like that - dropped her pants whenever it struck her fancy.