Most of our friends who are parents, think like us when it comes to toys and gender: Don’t just stick to gender-specific toys, and introduce everything to both boys and girls. And while I know that parents love the idea of their daughter playing with trucks and play tools, I also know that there is a certain amount of hesitation when it comes to introducing their son to fashion toys.
While our Boy has shown an interest in all kinds of toys right from the beginning, he definitely has his preference for vehicles of all sorts, Lego, and yes, guns and swords (introduced to him by a male friend, despite our wishes). We do make readily available all his sister’s toys, but never push him into playing with anything; it’s there if he wants it, and no big deal if he doesn’t. While he does play with dolls, including the popular Groovy Girls (and Boy), he hadn’t really shown an interest in anything else specifically “girly”.
So we were pleased about a year ago when he sat down one day and picked up one of his sister’s Woodkins toys, a type of fashion design/dress-up doll. He obviously had been watching his sister go through the process before, because he knew exactly what to do. Since then, all of his outfits have been absolutely fabulous (but of course, a mother would always say that). When we sit together for a Woodkins session, he sometimes even coaches me: “Mama, I think this hairband would go better with her outfit.” Today, this was his “spring outfit” for Cody:
I love that the Boy isn’t shy about playing with fashion toys, even as he’s becoming aware that “pink is for girls” (as he told me a few weeks ago). I love that he’s done so willingly, without prompting, and will sometimes sit there by himself for a half-hour at a time, putting together the right outfits. Just as importantly, I’m proud that he has such a bold and spot-on fashion sense.