Attack of the Slogan Tee

I made many affirmations surrounding parenting before having my own children – most of them trivial and somewhat lacking in empathy.  But one that I have struggled to uphold, despite the layers of difficulty that unfold as my offspring get older, is “branding”.

I managed to dodge the assault on one’s eyeballs that is Thomas the Tank Engine.  I even miraculously avoided the pink glitter butterfly bomb that invariably goes off when one produces a daughter.  But the eyes have seen things that cannot be unseen.

Fairy wings and “tit’s man”onesies.  “Diva” t-shirts and itchy looking Snow White dresses – oh the crimes against polyester I have witnessed!  The vomit-inducing partnership of hot pink and purple.  A well-meaning relative who is wondering where that Minnie Mouse ensemble got to.  Fake tuxedo tees and invitations on people’s fridges that speak of Prince and Princess parties.

“A tee.  A tee.  My kingdom for a plain, white tee!”

I’ve learnt to sniff out a $5 dollar cotton, v-neck t-shirt within a 15 kilometre radius.  I know when the purveyors of plain clothes have sales.  I am well-versed in which stores will allow me to exchange a Minnie Mouse ensemble without asking me the loaded question “Is there anything wrong with this garment?”.  But then it happened.

Ben frigging 10.

All the effort and hard work, fighting the good fight, only to discover that children grow up and begin wanting – nay demanding – the very thing you’ve been fighting against!  A thousand curses on humungousaur’s house!

I fear that I’m fighting a losing battle.  I know that just around the corner skate wear and Barbie await me.  I will concede small defeats and use up all that I have left for the great fairy fight.  Please.  Pray for me.


Do you care whether your children wear brands?  Do you try to steer them away from slogans and princesses?



  1. lulu froufrou says

    I only indulge my girls need (or their grandmother’s persistent nature to go against every limit I set) for slogan or ghastly licensed pictured crap through underwear and pyjamas – that’s it. All the rest that mistakenly enter the house get placed in the box of shame and will never see the light again.

  2. Lee Alexander says

    I tried.
    And failed.
    I now have a daughter who owns approximately 12 Dora items and is now gathering Princess garments.
    The boy loves a Wiggles t-shirt more than anything else in the world.
    So sad.

  3. Sam-O says

    Before children, I used to say I was merchandisaphobic. Then I had Mickey Mouse freakaholic children. I gave up. Mickey, batman, spiderman and batman are all represented.
    Le sigh.

  4. says

    my kids don’t wear brands, but it is sooooo hard to find decent clothes with nothing inappropriate or branded on it. Often it is more expensive to buy an unbranded outfit than a branded one! For some reason unbranded little boys clothes tend to have skulls all over them, which is hardly appropriate for a 2 year old. And sooo many little girls clothes have skanky slogans which I would be horrified if my daughter wore as an adult, let alone as a 6 year old. There has to be a market out there for un branded age appropriate slogan free clothing!

    • says

      I hear you. Industrie and Witchery are expensive but don’t always put their slogans on everything – sale time is good. I find Big W the best for plain t-shirts?

  5. says

    I’ve managed to limit our branding to PJs, undies and ‘play’ clothes (i.e. never worn outside the house). I’m really anti it, but I think it might be more for the pure ugliness of branded clothing rather than concern over the commercialisation of our children.

    • says

      I tried the PJ’s route on the “Ben 10 incident” day but sadly there weren’t any left. I need to go back to online shopping!

  6. Kate @ Our Little Sins says

    I’m another whose children wear licensed PJs but aside that any other licensed stuff is hand me downs. My inner tight arse is stronger than my anti-branding nazi! I’m dreading Ben10 – I hate that stuff… Ick.

    • says

      I always looked at Ben 10 merchandise like “what the heck is that badly drawn cartoon about?” – unfortunately now I know x

  7. says

    hmmmm I managed to escape the thomas and wiggles and little kid fads, but unfortnately I now find myself dealing with kids who want Quicksilver, Deisel and Rip Curl. I am such a sucker for a puppy dog pout and a pleeeeease mum!. My hubby’s mum had the right idea. she used to make his clothese and then cut the label of his fave clothese and sew it in! If only I was that talented!

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