My daughter, Neo, has always disliked shopping in the junior section. Skimpy spaghetti straps, plunging necklines, skinny low-rise jeans, and lots of gathering and ruching in odd places.
We gave up a few years ago and struck out for the Misses section. Her wardrobe now is mostly straight leg jeans (almost boot cut) or Dockers twill pants, solid color T-shirts with maybe a satin ribbon around the neckline, and the occasional striped or ribbed sweater. She has wonderfully thick wavy dark brown hair. Lots of it, and she usually coils it up into a loose bun with a plastic clip or scrunchy. When it's down it's cut in layers and falls to her shoulders.
Friday she came home and asked if she could go to one particular store in the mall to buy black fingerless gloves. Mind you, this is a kid who Never asks to go shopping for Anything. We don't do trips to the mall unless it's 100 degrees and we're trying to beat the heat.
"Sure. I'll buy you gloves. Fingerless? Do they have lace?"
"No. Not lace. But they're stretchy and there's a pattern and I want them in solid black."
"OK. How do you know this store has them?"
"Asked a friend."
I did point out to her that fingerless gloves weren't really going to go with the Lands' End look she's sporting now. "Yeah, I know. I kinda want to go Goth."
Well, it's hardly a surprise -- she's been into a wide range of music for a while now, along with Japanese techno. So I said, "Emo? Or Goth."
"Not Emo! Those guys are weird. Goth."
"Wait. To me Goth is long black dresses, torn lace, black lipstick, black eyeliner, boots, trenchcoats, and a thing about vampires. But the vampire thing is kinda over the top. Is that Goth?"
"NO! Goth is torn T-shirts, black leggings, short plaid skirt, vest or droopy hoodie, black boots, fingerless gloves, black leather jewelry, and colored hair. No spikes in the hair, but Chelsea has spikes on her boots."
"OK. That's not Goth to me. That sounds Emo to me, or maybe just rocker."
So we decided that we're calling it rocker, although it's still Goth in school. (Emos are the ones at school who wear their hair in spikes, pin their clothes together with saftey pins, wear lots of chains on their pants, and cut themselves. That sounds "punk" to me, but I'm elderly.) My only concern is that she wants to pull off this change this weekend. She has two outfits from Hot Topic -- I predict a lot of laundry in my future as she cycles through those two and only those two for the next week or so.
And just so I'm clear. I couldn't be happier. I love that she's trying to find her people and her thang. She asked what she was allowed to do. (Watch me fall off my chair.) So I told her no nose piercing and no white eyeliner. I hate white eyeliner. Hate. It. She sorta shyly asked about hair color and then she fell off her chair when I said that hair color doesn't bother me at all. I'll even help her streak a color into it if she wants. I used to streak dark pink into mine (without bleaching, so it looked more like a weird highlight more than anything else). We did agree that dying all your hair black does do odd things to your face, and she's said that she wouldn't ever die all of her hair, because she likes it too much the way it is.
I am a *little* concerned about what the reaction of her comrades is going to be as she studs, dyes, and tears herself a new identity, but we'll weather that storm too.
So to recap. She's going from this:
Hee. Very excited for her.