To say that motherhood has taught me things I didn't previously know before having kids would be an obvious, massive understatement. But one of the things I've learned that I totally wouldn't have expected, is that most of the cleverest innovations in clothing design have been happening in children’s clothing lines. Every time I dress my son and discover a genius little feature, like built-in mittens or buttons and tabs that let you shrink and expand a pair of pants, I'm flooded with questions for clothing companies, including, "Why are adult clothes so far behind?"
For example, onesies usually have an envelope-style neck opening so you can undress a baby after an exploding diaper or puke situation without dragging the mess over their heads. I kinda feel like bachelor and bachelorette party shirts should maybe come with that feature, you know? And why am I, a grown woman, walking around stubbing my fingers every time I try to put so much as a hair tie in the pockets on my jeans, when every baby boy I know has functional cargo pockets and nothing to carry around?
To be sure, though, children's clothing has it's issues, too. I groan every time I go looking for rain boots for my son, and can only find options plastered in cartoon dogs or that are made to look like they might belong to fire fighters or police officers. Like, why can't a little boy just get a normal pair of galoshes in a nice, single color? Who decided that my 2 year old needs to look like he has a job already, and that those are his only choices?
I'm not sure, but I do know that I have a lot of questions for the people who make our clothes, like:
What Is Up With Sizing?!
How is it 2017 already and we still haven't all agreed on standard sizing across brands? Is it really that hard for companies to all agree on what inches should mean or something? And how is it possible that this problem is already this bad for babies, long before "vanity" sizing can possibly be a contributing factor?
Why Even Make Socks That Don’t Have Those Anti-Skid Thingies?
We know the technology exists. We also know that gravity exists, and that it hurts like all hell to slip and fall when wearing socks on a smooth floor. Why is it not just standard to put those little dots and shapes on all socks, for people of all ages, so we can all enjoy the freedom that comes from being able to keep your feet warm, walk on hardwood floors, and not fall down and bust your entire self, all at the same time?
Why Is It Basically Impossible To Find Girls’ Tights With Those Anti-Skid Thingies?
Little girls run around and are subject to the law of gravity, too. Yet every time I've looked for tights that my son to wear when it's cold, I end up leaving empty-handed because it would be too much of a hassle to have to undress and re-dress him every time he stepped in from the cold onto our hardwoods. What gives here?
Why Are Tights Considered A "Girl Item," Anyway?
Why do we have to cross the store and navigate a whole new set of weird sizing standards just to layer up comfortably? I'm not even gonna debate boys in skirts here, 'cause regardless of how a person feels about that it's indisputable that little boys get cold, too, and could use a nice, close-fitting layer underneath their clothes that doesn't involve negotiating gaps between pant bottoms and sock tops.
Why Don’t All Coats Come With Mittens At The End Of The Sleeves?
As in, all coats for all people, not just babies and toddlers. Sure, some of us may be grown-ups, but we, too, have hands that get cold. We, too, lose our gloves all the time. What about us?
Why Don’t Adult Clothes Celebrate Our Family Members?
When was the last time you saw a grown man wearing a shirt that says “My Mom Rocks!” Never, right? But does she no longer rock now that he’s no longer a toddler? I highly doubt it. If she rocked then, she probably rocks even harder now. Same for grandmas, grandpas, dads, sisters, brothers, aunts, and uncles. Get with the program, grown-up clothes makers.
Why Do Baby Clothes Have More Functional Pockets Than Grown Women’s Clothing?
I assure you, my 9-month-old son had no pressing items to carry with him in his little shorts (not that I would even have allowed him to hold anything that could fit in those little pockets, because they’d be a choking hazard). Nearly all of my son’s pants have had functional pockets, even when he had nothing to carry (or now, when all of those things are gross, like leftover banana).
Meanwhile, I can barely fit my fingertips in my pant pockets, and remain surprised every time I find a dress that actually even has pockets. I am a grown-ass woman who actually has items to carry around and be responsible for. What’s up with that? Is this part of a grand conspiracy to force us to buy more purses?
Can I Get An Extend-y Tab On My Pants, Too?
Kids aren’t the only ones whose sizes change. Sometimes, I brunch a little harder than other times in my life. It would be nice to be able to cinch and un-cinch my jeans as needed, instead of having to keep a closet full of all different sizes of the same stuff.
Why Do Footie Pajamas Look So Cute On Babies, But So Creepy On Adults?
This isn't really a question for clothing manufacturers so much as a general thing I wonder about. Whenever I see a baby or toddler in footie pajamas, I'm thoroughly charmed. Whenever I see a grown person in footie pajamas, I'm thoroughly convinced I'm going to see them on the late-night news someday.
Why Isn’t There A Much Bigger Cost Differential Between Baby Clothes And Grown-Up Clothes?
Honestly, there may be some sort of halfway decent technical answer to this question, but I’m not genuinely interested in that answer so much as I’m interested in remaining righteously angry that I am expected to pay basically the same amount for a baby sweater that’s a fraction the size of my own sweaters. Fraction of the size should equal fraction of the price, should it not?
Does The Person Who Designs Adorable Little Animal Graphics For Baby Clothes Just Die Of Cuteness Every Day?
Is it a really high-turnover job? I just feel like if I drew things like the teeny little puppy firefighters on one of my son’s newborn onesies, I would squeal and melt into a puddle of uselessness and not be able to do anything else for the rest of the day. I ask because when I first bought that onesie, I squealed and melted into a puddle of uselessness, and was unable to do anything else for the rest of the day.
Who Decided To Start Putting Animal Ears On Baby Hats?
And where can I thank them for one of the all-time greatest innovations in cuteness? Animal ears on baby hats are among my very favorite things, and I don't think this hero is getting their just due.