There are so many different dress up clothes little girls will love when they first are received. Some costumes, however, get worn over and over again. Day after day they are the first item pulled from the dress up box. They are worn even during non-play times!
What is that magical secret that makes that costume so wonderful? That makes a purchase worth the money?
After all, if your daughter is just going to leave a certain dress at the bottom of the box, or tucked at the back of the wardrobe, then why pay good money for it in the first place? How can you be sure of buying dress up clothes little girls will play with, basically until they grow out of them?
There ARE some ways you can be certain your little girl will love your purchase, that it will be one of her new favorite dress up costumes. Of course, kids are always surprising you, so no promises here, folks! But, that being said, here are a few tips to help you out.
1) Objectively observe your child.
The key word is “objectively” here. What I mean is, if at first thought you don’t think your child is a “girly girl”, and wouldn’t go crazy over a princess gown, ask yourself if you ever given her the opportunity to wear one? To look like a beautiful princess? If she never has tried one on (with you around to observe her), does she love to deck herself out with bead necklaces, try on your pretty clothes or makeup, or drape scarves dramatically around herself? Perhaps she IS a little girl who will seriously love a gorgeous dress up gown.
But then again, if when you observe her objectively, you see that your little girl consistently prefers her lego, stuffed animals, and non-fiction books to any type of dolls or My Little Ponies, she will probably not give an Elsa or Cinderella dress that much repeat attention. You might be better off getting a fantastic Doctor Outfit and Kit, or a fabulous Chef or Cowgirl costume in which she can role-play a different way. (See: “When I Grow Up” Costumes for some ideas.)
2) Go Big or Go Home 😉
If your little girl IS a bit of a girly-girl, as in, loves looking pretty and doing her hair, you can’t go wrong with a fancy, floor-length, beautiful gown. The more glamorous the better. Frills, glitter, crinolins, beautiful soft velvet or satin, etc… she will feel like a Princess. And will be wanting to feel that way a LOT. Remember, it doesn’t have to be a Disney character gown!! In fact, sometimes more creative play can happen if you steer clear of that. (See my page of generic Princess-style gowns for some ideas.)
3) Make sure it’s in GOOD condition!
My daughter has been gifted a few hand-me-down costumes over the years. (I have so appreciated these gifts, as additions can be a bit pricey sometimes.) Anyhow, few of the outfits she has simply adored… and a few were tried on once and then were promptly tossed aside, and I’ve never seen her wear them again.
Why? The loved costumes looked new, clean (well, clean enough for her 😉 ), weren’t ripped, and were, well, in good shape yet. The zippers worked, the hems didn’t sag, etc.
The cast-asides were the opposite. One Tinkerbell costume would have been so great, except the Velcro wings didn’t stick anymore, and the back sagged due to the many times the heavy wings WERE attached. The other cast-asides were stretched out from older girls trying to squeeze into them, or ripped from years of fun.
We appreciated the generosity of our friend very, very much, but those “very-well-used” costumes have definitely seen their end. Don’t go there, my friend, if you’re looking for a new fave. If you want something to be worn with excitement and love, for a long time, make sure you’re giving her something in good shape from the get-go. Doesn’t have to be new, but it should be in good shape.
4) Determine to play along side her at first. And admire her frequently.
If you want to make sure the dress up clothes your purchase for your little girl are HITS, one of the things you can do is to determine that you’ll play alongside her while she figures out her new character (games and activities ideas here). You role-playing with her is definitely one of the keys to having her love an outfit… because with the outfit comes PLAY… and all play to a child is more fun when Mom or Dad or Grandma (or any adult) joins in!
Along the same lines, there is nothing a little girl loves more than praise and compliments from her mother, father, or friends. And if you give her honest and creative positive feedback while she’s wearing the new costume, she’ll shine and repeat the behavior again so you can give her more praise, and more compliments. And soon she’ll have her new favorite – because basically, she feels GREAT in it!
There are so many different costumes out there, and some become favorites faster than others… and some just never reach that status. It’s a good thing to have variety! But it’s also fun to see a child fall in love with an outfit that you just got for them, isn’t it? Hopefully you’ve found these tips helpful! Drop me a note below and let me know what YOUR little girl’s favorite dress up clothes are!
Interested in some more ideas for dress up clothes for little girls? Check out:
- Girls Dress Up Play Clothes – 7 Outfit Ideas Other Than Princess
- Dress Up Wigs for Little Girls
- “When I Grow Up” Costumes for Girls
- Dress Up Clothes For Little Girls – Top Selling Disney Princess Gowns
- Superhero Costumes For Girls