A short time ago, I posted an excerpt on my Instagram account from “The Conscious Parent” by psychologist, Shefali Tsabary, Ph.D. So much of the information in this book resonated with me and transformed some views I had on parenting, even in what seems to be mundane experiences. For example, I let my 10 year old dress herself and I encourage her to feel free to express herself through fashion, as in other areas. Providing this liberty doesn’t mean that I don’t shop for her clothes when she is not with me and there are still rules to dressing (e.g. age appropriateness and cleanliness). It means releasing my desire to be so controlling over her “image” and also understanding that excepting her way of self expression through fashion is part of excepting who she is and encouraging her to express herself freely.
This story is just one example of how parenting ideologies translate to decision-making. Like other values we hold, parenting consciously or mindfully relates to other aspects of our lives, like the types products we purchase for our children, including the clothing we buy. Here are a few children’s clothing brands to add to your list for conscious consumerism.
With sizes like 12-18 months, 18-24 months, and so on, parents are constantly purchasing clothes to keep up with the rapidly growing bodies of younger children. BeyaMade, designed by a former fashion fashion designer, came up with a solution to reduce textile waste and also save parents money by designing clothes that expand as children grow over time. It is a pretty genius idea. You simply order the clothes in the size your child is currently wearing and the clothing can be expanded as your child grows, through the design which incorporates functional drawstrings and hems. The pinstripe jumpsuit below, for example, can be expanded for up to six seasons.
As stated on their website, Indi was started “as a way to offer beautiful clothes for our little ones that represent the values we stand for—and the world we want them to grow up in.” The garments are made using natural indigo dyeing techniques, so it is definitely a brand to explore when you are looking for blue hues and also for your bohemian child fashion looks. The company also invests 20% of the product costs into their artisan communities.
Imps & Elfs
Imps & Elfs is a baby, toddler, and children’s clothing brand that was among the first brands to join Made By. The products are produced by workers who are paid a fair wage and work in safe environmental conditions. Also of note, the products by Imps & Elfs are free from harmful chemicals, including pesticides and hormone disruptors like flame retardants and phthalates. Their complete “Restricted Substance List” document is available on their website. I love the intentionality they describe in creating a brand of clothing for children, with children-appropriate silhouettes, chic designs, and accents to showcase their personality. There is also a unisex collection.
All of the brands in this post feature clothing created with care for the earth and/or care for the children that are wearing them, while maintaining stylish and trendy fashion. One of my goals in parenting is to create a safe and healthy environment in which my daughter can grow and thrive, including the products she’s exposed to in our home environment. Have you ever considered how chemicals in clothing or other products can affect children’s health? Children’s Environmental Health Day is this week. You can learn more about how every day toxicant, or chemical, exposure relates to health and simple tips for reducing exposure through this project.