There is an abundance of cute clothes for girls right now, and I have to really exercise self-control when browsing my favorite boutiques and specialty retailers! I’ve always loved spring and summer fashion the most, and when it comes to dressing my girls that just gets magnified with all of the colorful, printed, frilly, and fun items out there. Since it’s been a long and difficult road to find pre-teen/teen clothes that are preppy, classic, and sizes that extend well into the teens (as most of these style stop at age 8-10), I will provide guidance on dressing pre-teens and teens in a more refined manner that’s becoming of a young lady, void of anything cropped, ripped, and grungy. I’ve tried and tested a number of brands and have finally found a few that have sizing that works, and styles that are great for dressing casual yet respectfully; comfortable yet put-together. I wanted to show you a few of the items I ordered, plus a few that are on my list to order! Have fun browsing these swoon-worthy pieces, and a few basics that I make sure to keep stocked in my girls’ wardrobes.
For Little Girls
For my little one, I am maximizing what little time I have left to dress her up like a doll! I buy fewer, but better quality pieces, like these white leather sandals, which she has worn for two years now, and this chinoiserie dress that she will grow into over the next year or more. Better quality pieces hold up in the wash, don’t snag or tear as easily with play, and can be passed down or sold once they have become outgrown. I’m particularly fond of this dress, and have this one and this one next on my list for her!
If your little girl wears dresses, you’ll need these shorts for underneath, every single time. I get these when they go on sale and always have no less than 3 pairs on hand for each girl; I love the quality of this particular pair. Similarly, I like these in organic cotton for wearing with separates, under sweaters, and will allow them to be worn on their own on days where we are at home and it is blisteringly hot in the middle of summer.
My favorite material for anything, by far, is pima cotton. It looks the best, feels the best, and a true affordable luxury, in my opinion. I buy all of our pajamas in pima cotton because I know my money is well spent and my children will actually wear them (unlike poplin or polyester which tends to feel like sandpaper after a few washes). This adorable floral two-piece set is a ready-made outfit and since it’s a thicker pima, I don’t have to worry about fading or wearing out before it should. This small business makes so many adorable things utilizing pima cotton in the prettiest prints, as well as swimwear in modest cuts.
For Older Girls
Finding age-appropriate, and ladylike clothes for my pre-teen has been a real challenge. Most of the brands recommended to me by others are made for a body-type that’s not hers, are riddled with intentional rips, are cropped, or insert any other inappropriate style that’s on trend today. As tall as me and a string-bean, women’s clothes aren’t an option, but neither are children’s. After much trial-and-error, my go-to brands for her are this one for their dresses that are actually long enough for her tall frame; this brand for their generous sizing in polished casual wear; and this brand for a few fun pieces that can double as play clothes and church clothes. She loves the elevated basics like this cardigan, and these jeans, and I’m sure to buy on sale, or use my military or teacher discount which are honored here, and here!
When I shop for my big girl, I make sure bottoms have an appropriate rise and look for “high rise” in the description of jeans and shorts. I also opt for longer inseams for shorts – “bermuda” length or anything 4″ or longer – and avoid cropped jeans so that as she grows taller she can still wear them. Dresses should be no shorter than knee length, however, sometimes I will allow slightly shorter skirts but only because she wears tights underneath them. Cropped tops are a firm NO and not just because they look ghastly and inappropriate. When it comes to dressing children, I don’t believe they can be too modestly clothed. The more coverage the better in terms of comfort and self-respect– the latter of which is terribly lacking in today’s world.
I always love browsing these websites for the cutest girls clothes, and as you can imagine, have a ball refreshing my girls’ spring and summer wardrobes! I hope this post helps shed some light on how to shop for that tricky pre-teen age range while helping your sweet growing girl learn how to dress in a way that is self-respecting, modest, and polished; as well as where to find the sweetest little girls’ clothes. Until next time!