As someone who rarely thinks about what she's wearing on a day to day basis ("Oh, this'll do, It's clean"), I lam definitely on the "clothes don't matter" end of the spectrum, especially where children are concerned. Like many schools in the USA, there is no school uniform. Now I know that you parents-of-uniformed-children think this is probably hell-on-earth, but to be honest, we've never had a problem. I like to think it's because of my
As an aside - a few reasons we never had battles in the morning were because a) I made sure the clothes were agreed on and laid out the night before, b) I often gave them a choice between two or three things, c) the boys simply put back what they didn't want to wear and came downstairs decked out in something completely different. No tantrums or anything, just a flagrant disregard for the previous night's events, which also meant that d) I never bought clothes that were "inappropriate for school".
But back to the topic in hand; I am a big fan of our school's annual jumble/garage sale and my older two now also delight in $5 jeans and $10 jackets. Why pay retail eh? The Little Guy gets a new winter coat every year which is almost brand new and costs about a tenth of the original price. He's grown out of it before the year is done and we have no one to pass things on to, so back into the sale it goes and another one is purchased. Not all of my kids' clothes are second hand and none of them look old and tattered, but as I said, they're not "brands" or "labels" and I don't run out and buy the latest thing when they have drawers full of the same stuff.
However - here's where I think kids' clothes matter. When your ever-growing child walks off to school in trousers that fit last week and are now half way up his ankles. It's not like they've never been washed before. Surely he can't have grown half an inch in a week? (Yes, they can.)
"Let's get you another pair of trousers" I say.
"Mom, they're fine", is the response, and off he goes to school.
And I just know he's going to be the dorky looking one with the half mast trousers. I often wondered what possessed parents to dress their kids in clothes that are clearly too small, and now I know.
The kids don't give a hoot!