I got my kids Superman pajamas at Target a couple years ago; they still fit. We call them Supergirl PJs (though I guess they should be referred to as Superwomen– is there a Superboy?) The PJs have the Superman crest on the front, which lights up, and mesh red capes which attach with velcro. The girls transform when they put these PJs on; they start leaping and high kicking. Last night, three year Alice said to her dad, “Now I will defeat you and then you will work for me!” Then she leaped off the couch onto his back and said, “See, I can fly when I have the cape!”
Watching how my kids act wearing these outfits reminds me again how important it is to get girls out of their “pretty” dresses. Alice is a great hiker, but when she wears her flowing princess stuff to the park, she can’t climb or run, she trips and falls, losing her confidence, then whining. Wardrobe choices are subtle– and not so subtle– early training for what kinds of actions the kids get comfortable with, and if they mainly experience their bodies as something pretty to look or something that can do cool stuff. That’s why all the toys where girls get trained to dress dolls– paper dolls, plastic dolls, sticker dolls, magnetic dolls– drive me crazy.
Beacuse these are PJs, only worn around the family at night, the girls wear them happily without their usual self-consiousness about other kids possibly seeing them and making fun of them for being in “boy stuff.”