21/01/2013 12:36 GMT | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

How Do Celeb Parents Make Their Toddlers Look So Cool? I Can Barely Get My Son Dressed

How do celeb parents make their toddlers look so trendy? I can barely get mine dressed Alamy

As I scroll through the photos on a website one thing strikes me: just how well dressed their kids are.

There is Harper Beckham, daughter of David and Victoria, with her matching sandals and hair bands, swiftly followed by Dannii Minogue's son, Ethan. He looks achingly cool in his white baseball cap, checked shirt, which has been casually turned up at the wrists and trendy shoes.

I think back to an hour earlier when I wrestled my 22-month-old, Sam, into his pushchair wearing a distinctly less than sophisticated outfit comprising his favourite black taxi pyjama top, elastic-waisted jeans for the ease of yanking them over his wriggling frame and big clomping shoes chosen specifically for difficulty of removal – well if you're under two at least!

There is nothing matching or chic about what Sam wears on any given day.

It's not that I don't want my son to look cool – or presentable even – it's just that I simply can't see how it is possible.


His preference for clothes is either nothing or anything with a vehicle on, regardless whether he's just pulled it out of the wash basket.


In theory I could force him into a sweet little shirt and khaki trousers, layered with a denim jacket and a mini pair of Converse trainers to finish the look, but I know what will happen. It will take 10 minutes of shouting, screaming and threats as he thrashes about under my grip.

All this effort will be wasted because the second I set him free he will set about disrobing in half the time it took to dress him, all the while sobbing 'black taxi' and holding the grubby item up to me with an imploring look.

I simply can't understand how Harper or any child will happily sport a fashionable headband or Ethan, that baseball cap, while my son won't even put a coat on. And as for hats – regardless of how hot or cold it is, they won't stay on his head for longer than 10 seconds. Believe me, I've timed it.

A quick chat to some fellow mums confirms that I'm not alone in my struggles.


Alison admits she let her five-year-old son go to church wearing a full Power Rangers outfit, including the mask.


"There was an audible gasp when he walked in, but mainly people found it hysterical to see a Power Ranger in the aisles. I just knew it wasn't worth the battle getting him to change into something else."

Another mum, Wendy, can't wrestle her five-year-old Freddie into any suitable footwear. "He will only wear one pair of sandals because he thinks he's the BFG and these shoes look like the shoes the BFG wears apparently."

Another friend, Jenny, says she'd be grateful if her four-year-old son, Oscar, would wear even a dressing up costume: "The other day I got Oscar ready for school and went to put my daughter in the car. I came back to hurry him along and he was completely naked with not even a sock on. I had to start again all over again and I was not happy."

However, it is not just toddlers who can destroy your sartorial dreams, their dads have a pretty good go too.

Any attempts I make at filling Sam's wardrobe with coordinating outfits are truly ruined by his father, Matt. Whenever he has the task of dressing Sam I can be assured that nothing will match, colours will clash, he'll mix stripes and checks or Sam will end up wearing a pair of second hand tracksuit bottoms and a faded stained t-shirt, despite the fact we're on our way to a smart family party.


While men are capable of dressing themselves, it seems their child's wardrobe is inexplicably more complicated than a Mensa challenge.


"Max is wearing the lovely dungarees outfit you bought him," my friend Jane announced over lunch last weekend. "But it's been put on backwards."

The pointed look at her partner, Stu, lets me know exactly whose fault that is.

I'm glad to see I'm not alone. But each day I see more and more pictures of immaculately turned out children.

I simply can't see where I'm going wrong. How can I ever convince my increasingly opinionated son that what I want him to wear is more suitable than anything he chooses? And if by some miracle I do manage to get him into some matching ensemble, it will be either two inches too short in the leg or swamp him with the sleeves trailing well past his hands.

For now, though, I have given up. I have bowed to his two-year-old preferences and bought a job lot of T-shirts and jumpers emblazoned with cars, trucks and trains. I now have to come to terms with the fact he'll never be ready for the paparazzi or at the cutting edge of fashion, but at least he'll be wearing clothes.

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