April 30, 2010

From Pickles to Plato's Closet - Cleaver Women (Young and Old) Go Shopping!

First, I feel I must set the record straight. I HATE TO SHOP FOR CLOTHES. There, I said it. Now I simply wait for the Fashion Police to come and take away my girl card.

I know it's unfeminine not to enjoy browsing through racks and trying on clothes. The only browsing I enjoy is at the book store. There, you can find me leisurely stroking the spines of books, and peeking inside to get a look at all those words. Ahh, a l'il slice o' heaven.

Anyway, back to the task at hand. Granddaughter Desiree turned the big 13 almost a week ago. Here she is, sporting a jaunty pickle mustache on a recent visit:

Desiree, like most girls her age, wants to dress in all the hip, trendy clothing available in stores. She loves herself some brand name duds. Unfortunately for her, we are in the middle of a recession here at the Cleaver Compound (oh, you mean it isn't just US?)...so I wasn't able to buy her all the cute (and by cute, I mean expensive) stuff at the mall.

When my daughters were her age, and I was a single parent, we were not averse to shopping at consignment shops and/or thrift stores to pick up bargains.

Desiree was a bit leery when I suggested the idea, until I mentioned Plato's Closet - now, that was a store some of her friends shopped at - and if it was good enough for her friends, it was good enough for her.

Desiree tried her best tricks on Wednesday afternoon to get an IMMEDIATE trip scheduled for an hour later, but it was not to be. She was even convinced that the employees at Plato's Closet would be thrilled to keep the store open just for us, instead of losing our business. Her argument, persuasive, yet flawed, failed to get the desired result.

In true adolescent drama queen fashion, she was sure that she'd NEVER be able to find the time to go if Wednesday didn't work.

Until Thursday morning, when she posted on FB that Granny (come on, Granny? I ain't no Beverly Hillbilly!), Aunt Tammy and Seth were taking her shopping (not thinking to first confirm with us)!

Now about the challenges that awaited our trip:

Desiree's style of dress is usually not much to my liking. She likes clothes that are tight, and shorts that are SHORT. "Less is better" seems to apply more often than not. 

Think of seven pounds of sugar in a five pound bag - you're gonna have spillage, people!

Exhibit One: Des (holding Seth) on Easter. She wore THIS, her BEST outfit, to CHURCH:

Desiree's heard my little mini-rants about her clothes before, and she hasn't disowned me yet. But I knew my credibility was flawed - I'm her Grandma, after all, and I'm OLD.

Here's where the gorgeous Tammy comes in (she insists that I call her that). In Desiree's book, Tammy is the epitome of cool. I knew that Des would listen to Tammy's assessment of any clothes she tried on. See how cool, yet contemplative Tammy is?

And thus, a plan was hatched. Thursday, we made our excursion to Plato's Closet. Tammy was still en route, so I watched as Des started picking out shorts that Daisy Duke herself would say were skimpy. I told her she could try them on, and that we'd add them to the pile of possible purchases (I crossed my fingers on that part).

Lucky for me, she couldn't get the microscopic shorts up over her thighs - score one for Grandma! She took some other possibilities (also too small) into the dressing room, and I asked the youngish storeclerks for help. 

I explained Des' current style, and asked them (in hushed tones) if they could recommend any clothing that may fit a bit better, but still let Des look stylish and age-appropriate. They did not let me down! Within minutes, they had a stack of about 30 pairs of shorts for her to try on. 

Soon, Tammy and Seth arrived, and my job was done, for the most part. My only task involved re-hanging discarded apparel, and giving my opinion about the fit and style of Des' selections. I also confused Seth when he came in - he didn't recognize me in my new hairstyle. It took him a minute or two to decide that I WAS Grandma!

And ya know what? Des actually listened to our critiques of the clothing she tried on.

I did let her get one pair of rather short shorts (still longer than the ones she normally wears) - I'm no dummy, I know that after the war is won, it is good to make concessions to the opponents.

Can I ask you all a question? Does the average 13-year old girl know what "camel toe" is? Does that tell you how tight some of her clothing is? 

Thanks to the mad fashion skills of the gals at Plato's Closet, and Aunt Tammy, Des' nether regions will not suffer from a lack of blood flow anymore!


  1. I really like Plato's closet. Discounted clothing but yet still very much in style and hardly used (because teens never wear their clothing out). Love it!

  2. Although I have no daughters, I can totally relate to all this, because I feel the same way when I see young girls in public, dressed so...uh...badly. I laughed out loud at your camel toes comment! :D
    Very intertaining post, as always Ms. Cleaver!!

  3. Stopping by from Trendy Treehouse's Follow Me Friday. I am your newest follower.

  4. I'm now following from Follow Me Friday! I'd be honored if you choose to do the same! until later...

  5. What is it with kids. I could never wear anything like that when I was a teen. I mean physically I could have but I couldn't do it mentally. I have a niece the same way. Love the camel toe comment. You would think they would figure that one out lol.

  6. Hi there.
    Stopping by from Friday Follow to say hello.
    My daughter has been to Plato's.

    Have a great Friday!

  7. It is so nice to have you for Family Fridays.. I really loved this post. I use to love shopping at the thrift stores when I was a teen. I loved the jeans.. I was out the other day with my Mom and was in shock at what the teens wear today. I mean they barely have any clothes to cover them up.. crazy times.. Thanks again for linking up and joining in.. Have a great weekend.

  8. At my son's school a few years ago, several of the boys (including my son) went thru a "skinny jeans" period. I spent the entire 6 months saying "Pull your shirt down, I can see your underwear". Luckily, he is very slender so he actually looked OK. One of his friends.... hmmm. to say politely not.a.good.look. Kids and clothes and adults. not.a.good.match. Great post.

  9. I don't know why I couldn't find your blog before when I clicked on your profile. I'm a computer dunce.

    All I can say is - at least she has a super cool grandma. That sets her up way better than the rest!

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  11. warm and loving family story!

  12. I haven't Friday followed in a while so thought I would join in today! Can't wait to get to know you.

  13. WOW it is hard. I think my style as a teenager was weird but spileage was not there. I am not there, my daughter is 10 this week....Hm....HAAA ia m scared.
    I am following you now and would love if you come follow me back and say hi!
    Gros bisous

  14. Oh, I'm so glad I only had boys. Even the only grandbaby is all boy. I did have to contend with sagging. I often pulled my pants down to expose my 'drawers' - no I don't wear panties - to rolled eyes & sheer horror. Why would I want to see your butt if you don't want to see mine. They never did get it.

    From one grandma to another - Happy Friday Follow. And yes, I hate being called Granny. Only Hubs does that to which my 2-1/2 yr old corrects him and says "It's GrandMa!"

    Glad I found you. I love blogs that make me laugh, June FC!

  15. happy follow friday. Have a great weekend. Loved the title of your blog and had to pop in. we are your newest follower.


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  17. hilarious, im glad you finally got her to dress appropriate. Im your new follower from FF. http://jessicawarrick.blogspot.com

  18. I love Plato's Closet. My 11 year old has now discovered that she can fit into XS and wants to go there a lot! They have super cute stuff! And I had to LOL at the camel toe part of that! Do they even know what it means?????? I know my 11 year old doesn't!

  19. Love this selection! Camel toe made me laugh out loud!!!

    My rules for my 13 year old are: No bare tummy when arms are raised and shorts must not be shorter than her fingertips when standing.

  20. I have two daughters with such different taste in everything...LOL
    but we still love them!

  21. Waaay to many girls that age are walking around looking like a yeast infection waiting to happen. I don't know how they stand it!

  22. I detest clothes shopping. Books stories are my only shopping pleasure as well. So we can both give up our girl cards together.

    And I suspect (sadly) that 13-year-old girls (and boys) do know about cameltoe (whereas I came to learn about it only a few years ago because of that song ... and I had to ask to have the term explained to me.)

  23. I love platos closet. Im twenty and really don't have a problem with resale or thrift stores. my sister on the other hand hated the ideal of a thrift or a resale shop until she actually shopped at platos closet. I can remember the first time we went, she begged can we go to the mall first and then go there as a last resort. so when we finaly made it I found so much cute stuff that my sister actually started looking through the racks (I think it was making her jealous to see me with good name brands for cheap). she found a few out fits and was sold, she now shops there and visits me when I'm at work (I now work at a platos closet...coincidence)....got to love the store..
    check my plats story
    platos blog

  24. Came across your blog via the comment section of How to Eat a Cupcake. LOVE the name - chuckled the minute I saw it and knew you had to have a great sense of humor. Well, you do, and your write ups are fantastic! :)


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