Feminine and Fabulous
October 11th, 2012
While my post on princesses might lead you to believe I’m opposed to all things “girly” that really isn’t true. I loved playing dress up as a child and I am fine with the fact that Miss Mouse prefers to wear dresses most days. Most of her wardrobe is pink and she has a number of baby dolls that she adores.
What I’m trying to do is find examples for her that expand the definition of what “feminine” is. Feminine doesn’t have to be royal and helpless and inextricably bound up in man-catching.
Exhibit A to illustrate my point: Fancy Nancy.
Mothers of daughters – have you met Nancy? I do hope so. She’s fabulous.
Nancy Clancy is the literary creation of Jane O’Connor and she is a favorite in our house. Nancy is smart, creative, artistic, adventurous, and sociable. She also loves being fancy. She wears big sunglasses and wild hair accessories and adds lace to everything she can. At one point, she seriously informs her mother that lace-trimmed socks make her play soccer better.
Nancy even likes fancy words and throws them out with glee, building her reader’s vocabulary as she goes. “My favorite color is fushia,” she confides in one book. “That’s a fancy word for purple.”
What I love about Nancy is that fancy doesn’t equal princess in her world. Although she has her share of tiaras and ball-gowns, you never see her playing princess. She’s more of a glamorous rock star than a royal darling. Her play comes entirely from her own expansive imagination. She dresses in ways that make her feel beautiful and happy…because they make her feel beautiful and happy. Not because someone said she should or because she’s trying to impress a boy.
Nancy always learns something in her stories, too, which I like. Whether it’s about making sacrifices for her family or learning to share the spotlight with a friend or the importance of working hard on a class project, she grows a little in each book. And sparkles while she does it.
I credit Miss Mouse’s love of Fancy Nancy as the inspiration for her outfit today. Aquamarine leggings, orange shirt, yellow and black striped socks, sparkly pink shoes. She picked it out herself and when I made a comment about it, she said. “Yes, I know. I look unique.” (A word we learned in a Fancy Nancy book, I might add.)
Yes, my girl. You definitely do!