I’m Right, You’re Wrong: Summer Fashion

by Marinka on June 5, 2011

I’m Right, You’re Wrong is back.

Dilemma: Should a 12 year old girl get a pair of $58 shorts?

Exhibit 1:

Abercrombie-&-Fitch-summer-shorts

Hi! I'm a pair of shorts! I cost more than you do!

Disagreers: Marinka and Marinka’s 12 year old daughter. As always, I will not reveal who is Position One and who is Position Two, to preserve the integrity of this post.

Position One: Yes! They look great! And they’re really well-made so they’ll last the whole summer! And when I outgrow them, I can hand them down to a smaller friend, so it’s like recycling and good for the environment.

Position Two: FIFTY-EIGHT AMERICAN DOLLARS? THIS IS AN OUTRAGE AND HIGHWAY ROBBERY! WHAT’S WRONG WITH THESE $12.50 SHORTS FROM OLD NAVY? I CAN’T EVEN TELL THEM APART!

Exhibit 2:

Old-Navy-shorts

I'm a pair of reasonably priced Old Navy shorts. You can buy me and still have money for food!

Position One: You seriously can’t tell them apart?

Position Two: No, I don’t think I can.

Position One: If you seriously can’t tell Abercrombie and Old Navy apart, I don’t see how we can possibly continue this conversation.

Help. Us.

One year ago ...

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{ 74 comments… read them below or add one }

Halala Mama
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 4:15 pm

I would contend that if the shorts have an inseam of 1″ then she has already outgrown them. Let her smaller friend buy them.

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Halala Mama
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 4:16 pm

Oh…let me correct. Let her smaller friend’s mother buy them as most 12 year olds are, sadly, unemployed.

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Hi, I'm Natalie. June 5, 2011 at 4:25 pm

If she has a job and can afford them, tell ‘er to go crazy with the $60 shorts. (I am NOT looking forward to this! =)

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GrandeMocha
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 11:03 pm

Absolutely!

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ziggyzabel June 5, 2011 at 4:27 pm

To strictly answer the question, No, a 12-year-old girl should not *get* a $58 pair of shorts.
However, I can totally tell the difference, and the first pair is way cuter. Especially on a 12-year-old, and I miss the days that I could buy myself said cute pair of shorts and look cute in them. Sadly, those days are gone.
Also however, I wouldn’t spend money in Abercrombie even for a magic fat shrinking pair of shorts. But I would pay $30 for them at American Eagle.

Perhaps if said 12-year-old wants them so badly, she can pay for half? Or if she has no money she can work it off with manual labor? If neither of these things is acceptable, then the oh-so-cute shorts must not really be worth it.

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Mom101
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 4:28 pm

Exhibit 1 is way more stylish and contemporary.
Perhaps if said 12 year old likes exhibit 1, she can earn a way to pay for them?

Too practical?

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Kati
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 4:29 pm

Ummm yeah…no. No 12 yr old needs $58 shorts. In fact, no 40 yr old needs $58 shorts.

That’s insane. You can buy her two pair of the Old Navy ones and still have money for food! Of course here I’d buy her 4 pair of $7 ones from Walmart, or get them for $2 a pair at Goodwill, but that’s likely not one of the choices, huh? So as you’re handing her the Old Navy shorts, just remind her how lucky she is to not have to live with those mean poor people in Georgia.

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DodiM June 5, 2011 at 4:31 pm

I would not be above telling her that rolled cuffs tend to make all women’s thighs look chunkier by adding a horizontal line at the legs thickest part. Is it true? No. Is it going to keep her out of the booty shorts? MAYBE.

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Nona
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 4:31 pm

Position Two gives Position One $12.50 toward the purchase of denim shorts. If Position One really wants these finely crafted envirmentally friendly shorts, she can earn the rest of the cash.

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BrassyDel
Twitter:
June 8, 2011 at 10:57 pm

I applaud Nona’s finely crafted verdict!

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calliope June 5, 2011 at 4:40 pm

I’m with the “if you want it, you buy/earn/work it off” crowd.

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Juli
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 4:41 pm

I can’t tell the difference either. This is why shopping is so difficult for me. Too many choices. Does the belt come with the first pair?

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Miss Britt
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 4:52 pm

Cut the seam off the $12 pair and flip them up. Now they’re contemporary too!

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JillyF June 6, 2011 at 3:29 pm

Brilliant.

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emily June 7, 2011 at 10:21 pm

that’s exactly what i was thinking – they’re totally different shorts and the first pair is cuter, but just cut off the bottom of the O.N. ones, flip them up, buy a cheap black belt, and they’re basically the same.

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Backpacking Dad June 5, 2011 at 5:00 pm

” As always, I will not reveal who is Position One and who is Position Two”

This comment is the written equivalent of when you hear something your friend say and you think it’s hilarious and you just repeat it back to them but full of incredulous laughter.

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awesome dude June 5, 2011 at 5:04 pm

She wants them because she can have them.

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ChiTown Girl June 5, 2011 at 5:06 pm

missbritt took my comment. I’m with the others, as well. NO ONE needs a $58 pair of shorts, especially someone who can’t pay for them herself. Is it possible that we’re ALL just mean?

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sophie June 5, 2011 at 5:16 pm

I vote for Position 2. Halala Mama brings up a very valid point, but perhaps that is for a different version of I’m Right, You’re Wrong. Never in a zillion years would I consider paying $58 for a pair of shorts–for me or for a small person who will outgrow them before I blink. Of course, I am another mean poor person in Georgia. I think my mother would have had a stroke if I ever asked for a pair of shorts over $15. Since I am an old person, Position 1 may have some leniency for cost of living increase.

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Suzy
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 5:17 pm

If you hadn’t wasted money on your cancer you would be able to afford the A&F ones.

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dusty earth mother June 6, 2011 at 9:06 am

So wrong, and yet, so right.

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Jill
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Why does it seem like they charge more for pre-worn / pre-ripped clothes? It took me about 10 years to get my normal shorts to look like that … and sadly I just threw them out. Who knew they’d be back in fashion!

Totally voting for Old Navy! And if whoever wears them long enough … they’ll end up LOOKING like the A&F shorts in a few years anyway.

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Marta
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 5:41 pm

$60 for shorts is unreasonable. I’ll admit I pay attention to brand names but I wouldn’t buy $60 especially ones she will outgrow in a season. Go with old navy and throw in a tank for $8 and you’ve got a great $20 outfit!

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Nancy Davis Kho
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 7:15 pm

I can offer no help, only sympathy. Last weekend I was staring at a pair of white jean short shorts which would pass no dress code on the planet where I reside, next to a sighing, huffing, eye rolling 13 year old saying, “they’re FINE, mom, they’re FINE.” We’re just too old and stupid to understand the children, I guess.

I like to go back to the line my grandmother used to use on my mother when she was a girl and making questionable clothing choices: “If I MADE you wear that, you’d cry.”

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Kim @The Fordeville Diaries
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 7:39 pm

I think what Position One is trying to say is that the ON pair looks like the equivalent of mom shorts or Duggarwear to her, with the lengthy 3″ inseam and all. It’s practically a burqa to her peers. So I would totally make her wear them.

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ShallowGal June 7, 2011 at 1:51 pm

LOL at Duggarwear.

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Megan June 5, 2011 at 8:02 pm

Fifty-eight dollars is a lot for shorts that will only be outgrown. But damn, they’re cute. Cuter than the Old Navy ones. But not $58 worth of cute. Take Britt’s advice and cut and roll the $12.50 ones.

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MommyTime
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 8:04 pm

Surely she has some very cute and flattering full-length jeans she has outgrown. In all likelihood, because she is 12, these pants are much too short but fit just fine everywhere else. I would tell her that if she wants teeny tiny jean shorts, she should let you cut off the too-short jeans she already owns to make them into too-short jean shorts. Since they are pre-approved as passing the tween dress code already, your problem is solved. Voila.

If she complains, tell her she should be glad you aren’t making her wear them as too-short pants.

Otherwise, I’m with the camp that suggests you provide the $12.50 and she comes up with the rest of the $$ for the expensive shorts.

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K-Line June 5, 2011 at 8:26 pm

I just bought my daughter those Old Navy shorts. And they’re really cute fyi…

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K-Line June 5, 2011 at 8:27 pm

Oh, but did I mention that she’s rolled them up, like, 3 times so they’re totally inappropriate.

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deborah l quinn
Twitter:
June 5, 2011 at 8:34 pm

I’m w/Miss Britt & the suggestion that she “customize” an old pair of ripped jeans by cutting them off, then rolling the cuff. Hip and cheap. And then if she insists on the $58 shorts, give her the money that a pair of Old Navy shorts would cost, have her pay the difference. My parents gave me a “clothes allowance” in middle school, through high school. So long ago that the amount was infinitesmally small and I made some seriously horrifying fashion choices (hello horizontally striped cowl neck sweater?) but it stopped precisely these “conversations” (fights? arguments? spats?) between me and my mom.

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Magpie June 5, 2011 at 10:07 pm

What Miss Britt said. And then she could buy 4 pairs of shorts and have money leftover!

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Jennifer June 5, 2011 at 11:28 pm

I feel your pain. I agree with Halala about the inseam and like Nancy, I seem to be too old and stupid to understand why we should be spending this kind of money on shorts that barely cover anything.

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kimberly June 6, 2011 at 12:03 am

The Old Navy ones are ugly.

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Rachael
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 12:13 am

My complaint is not with the price but with the length. I do not understand the need for a 12 year old to wear clothes so short that their behind hangs out. This also goes for shirts that are to small, short, tight and low so you see all of their stuffed with tissue “cleavage”.

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Stasha
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 4:44 am

I am so confident you were position ONE I will support it just to take your side. We cannot possibly let the young one win with her outrageous claim to want to wear Old Navy. Unless they throw the Gay Pride T-shirt in with it.

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Sophie@Fabrications June 6, 2011 at 5:41 am

The old navy ones can be refashioned to look like the damn expensive ones. I can do the work for you… for, say, 45.5$

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kirida
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 5:57 am

I love the old navy ones! The only people could get away with rolled shorts are kids. But I was a chubby kid so there’s no way I could get away with that look.

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Lex June 6, 2011 at 5:59 am

Cut the bottom off the Old Navy ones and teach her about thrifting. Otherwise, let her work chores for those expensive shorts.

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Mwa (Lost in Translation) June 6, 2011 at 6:27 am

No way should anyone who is still growing get anything with so little acreage per dollar. Ever.

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tracy
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 6:57 am

Yeah, you can totally tell the difference and she needs the A&F ones. Totally. Also – she can pass them down to my eldest when she is done. No charge.

I think I may have a 40% of coupon for there. Let me check.

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Kate Coveny Hood
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 7:32 am

You can never win this one… I very clearly remember being on the other side of that fence… Back in the good ol’ days when I was thinking someone else’s money grew on trees.

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From Belgium June 6, 2011 at 7:38 am

How much did you say…. I think I misread it…

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Wendi
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 8:19 am

I thought girls in your compound were only allowed to wear ankle length skirts…? Confused.

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Alexandra
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 8:19 am

My serious hat today:

there is never no way nohow I would EVER drop a penny with Abercrombie b/c of their teen and preteen soft porn shopping bags.

Easy decision.

Old navy all the way. For family values.

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Marinka June 6, 2011 at 10:03 am

Well, obviously I prefer the hard porn, too. But I figured that the soft was a good start.

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anna ~ random handprints June 6, 2011 at 10:44 am

i agree i would buy the old navy just as an anti-abercombie move.

i would also agree to give the kid the savings, so she would be well on her way to buying the anti-family-values shorts herself if she wanted them soo soo badly.

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Becky Rice
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 8:21 am

I have to agree with Nona. Here’s $12.50 toward the $58 shorts. Earn the rest.

It appears to me the Old Navy shorts come with more material. Or is that an optical illusion?

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Diane June 6, 2011 at 8:37 am

I would never buy a pair of these for my almost 13 YO and for the longest time, I thought she eschewed this fashion. One day, on her way to swim practice, she was wearing some. I didn’t recall her spending her allowance on these hot pants. She didn’t. She found them in the lost and found at the swim center and made them her own. That’s another way you could go.

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dusty earth mother June 6, 2011 at 9:09 am

Tell her it’s far too much exposed skin and look what happened to Ma’s nose. Obviously, I go for the scare tactics.

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annie June 6, 2011 at 10:22 am

Oh i like this one. Ask her how she’d like mohs surgery on her butt!

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Vicki
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 9:27 am

Why not buy her the Old Navy shorts and pay her $10 to stomp on them with a rock and acid-wash them to the point where they are faded enough to reflect the Abercrombie level of coolness? Then take the $10 back, because who the hell ruins a good pair of shorts?

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renae June 6, 2011 at 12:01 pm

They have the same exact ones at Hollister (same exact ones, it’s the same company) for $36. Give her the $12.50 (or give her $18 to pay for half) like others suggested and make her find a way to pay for the rest, at Hollister.

I totally get why she wants the AF shorts, though. When I was in high school (granted, AF was a little more affordable) we all had them, and if we did not they were pretty much all we wanted.

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elizabeth June 6, 2011 at 12:15 pm

I may be well on my way to being able to collect my social security (if there is any left in 10 years, that is) and I am considered to be a senior citizen by some (Denny’s where I can eat off of the senior menu) but I do remember what it is like to be a young teenager and want a particular style of clothing that EVERY OTHER kid my age was wearing. There was always one magical wondrous piece of clothing that EVERY OTHER kid had and if I got it too, my world would be complete. And I wouldn’t be made fun of for having the wrong clothes.
This is a tough one, but I’m leaning towards allowing her to get these shorts if she works for them. Doing chores around the house or yard work or whatever else you can think of for her to earn the shorts. They will probably make this summer stand out in her mind for the rest of her life as the summer she had the most wonderful pair of shorts ever.
Kind of like when I was in junior high and everybody had a pea coat and my mother actually bought me a pea coat! and I still remember how good I felt in that pea coat. That I wore every. single. day.

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Marni June 6, 2011 at 1:34 pm

First of all they look nothing alike. The alternative would come from Aeropostale or American Eagle NOT Old Navy. SEcond of all you would never pay $58 for them becaue they are always running promotions. At the current say 30% off all shorts they come in closer to $40. If you still think that is too high then you pay say the reasonable $25 and she pays the rest. Or you do what adults do ~ pick the items you really have to have and spend on those and buy the rest at places like Old Navy and Forever 21. In this case the 12 year old could make up the difference by shopping for her tops at Hollister, Forever 21 and American Eagle on sale and saving money. Thus imparting a lesson of budgeting along the way. Here is $100 spend it how you like. Love the blog.

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Barbara June 6, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Well, you can tell the difference but the second is more appropriate (longer) for a twelve year old. But…..I have to tell you I did see a pair of what looked like the more expensive shorts at Marshalls this morning for $19.99. Saying that I still think the expensive ones are too short and will probably shrink so badly that her father will yell then yell at your for getting sucked into buying them. Lots of luck.

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Phoenix Rising
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 4:46 pm

Personally, I’d gladly pay $58 for a pair of shorts that made my legs look young, tone, tan and took all my cellulite and stretchmarks away.

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Penbleth
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 5:47 pm

The first pair are much nicer. The second are just, meh. Sorry. That is always the problem when comparing items from a more expensive shop with a less expensive one. Perhaps they can be part of a birthday present, or something else that you would have been getting her anyway. Or perhaps she can pay something towards them. You could get the second and try to distress them but unless you’re really good at that sort of thing.

No smart remarks today, she might not need them but pair one are the ones.

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Cherilyn June 6, 2011 at 7:51 pm

I gotta say, the Old Navy ones are “dorky” and look cheap. Not that I’d pay for the AF ones, but they do look trendy. There’s got to be a happy medium pair out there somewhere.

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babymama June 6, 2011 at 8:38 pm

LMAO!!

I hate to say it but the abercrombie ones are cuter. And I have a 12 year old. And she agrees.

*sigh*
But at $58 – it ain’t happenin’!
xo
babymama
avagracescloset

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Monica June 6, 2011 at 9:23 pm

amen!

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SuzRocks
Twitter:
June 6, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Okay…I can tell the difference between them… the first ones ARE cute- but by principle, I would never by anything from Abercrombie b/c they are ridiculously overpriced.

When I was 12, I believe I was out starting my own curb painting business or something so I could buy stuff my mom wouldn’t. Either that or pilfering dollars out of my mom’s wallet. WATCH YOUR WALLET!

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anne flournoy June 6, 2011 at 10:53 pm

I envy you the summer war you’re fighting. Mine has to do with a certain 19-year old’s cleavage….now even featuring the occasional exposed nipple. Shoot me before I blow a gasket.

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ShallowGal June 7, 2011 at 1:54 pm

You know Marinka, if your daughter doesn’t want cute stylish shorts, really, you can’t force her. Let her wear the dorky second pair and be done with it. (wait, you are position one right?)

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Amy ~ Eat. Live. Laugh. Shop.
Twitter:
June 7, 2011 at 4:15 pm

Ok, I agree in theory, but the 1st pair truly is the much cuter pair of shorts.

My daughter would swear it’s the only pair of shorts she’ll ask for all summer. And then drive me crazy when she does indeed wear them every single day!!

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Fairly Odd Mother
Twitter:
June 7, 2011 at 9:47 pm

I do think the first pair are cuter—the second are jorts and totally not cool for a 12 yo. BUT, there is no way in holy hot hell I’d spend $58 on a pair of shorts for myself, never mind my daughter. I’d drag her ass to Kohl’s and tell her to find something there.

But, then again, we homeschool, so I’m sure I’m just a step up the fashion ladder from the Duggars. My poor kids. They probably think Abercrombie and Fitch is a hardware store.

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Short Attention Span Writer
Twitter:
June 8, 2011 at 1:00 am

Setting aside religion, politics, third world child labor and modesty issues–not to mention envy at legs that still tan evenly–this is a very practical exercise in budgeting aqnd choices.

I vote with the ladies who say give her the $12.50 and let her decide how to proceed.

Fast forward 10 or 15 years (I pray that your cancer survival rate will be at least 15 years) and the purchase decision may involve a $5800 wedding gown. Of course David’s Bridal will have a lovely gown for $1250, or even less.

So if she is experienced in the decision-making and tradeoffs, she’ll be able to choose to:
* forgo a pre-wedding trip to the Europe, or
* get a moonlighting job as a nanny or bartender or webmaster, or
* buy the cheaper dress.

{sigh}

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malibuskipper June 8, 2011 at 11:03 am

Just get the American eagle alternative. They look virtually indentical and they are 20 dollars cheaper. They usually have sales too. I have a 10 dollar coupon right now myself.
I don’t like the ON ones but agree they could be distressed to look similar.

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malibuskipper June 8, 2011 at 11:04 am

Identical I meant…the heat is making me stupid.

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Loukia June 8, 2011 at 4:02 pm

If I looked good in the ‘A’ jean shorts? I’d buy two pairs! Yeah, the first pair look way nicer. (And I’m a HUGE Old Navy fan.)

I’M SORRY! DON’T HATE ME!

P.S. Sonny forever!

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BrassyDel
Twitter:
June 8, 2011 at 11:04 pm

I like the $12.50 and make up the rest herself and letting her decide how to proceed and learn value arguements.

Of course, I don’t like the second pair of shorts. Can you say dorktastic? Wait, if that’s in our lexicon it’s probably self-defining. Oops!

Anyway, what about these cheaper alternatives from Kohls that are still kind of cute?
http://www.kohls.com/kohlsStore/juniors/shortscapris/shorts/denim/PRD~766684/Candies+RollCuffed+Denim+Shorts.jsp

http://www.kohls.com/kohlsStore/juniors/shortscapris/shorts/denim/PRD~766036/Wallflower+RawEdge+Cuffed+Denim+Shorts.jsp

Bonus: neither has a 1″ inseam!

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Lady Jennie June 9, 2011 at 1:15 pm

Sorry to say, but the first pair look rad (do they still say that?) and the second pair look dorky.

But I would NEVER spend $58 on a pair of cutoff shorts.

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GrandeMocha
Twitter:
June 10, 2011 at 6:58 am

Old Navy is having a sale on Saturday (when aren’t they) from 7 to 11 am, 60% of denim shorts. That mean those short are $5.

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Haley August 4, 2011 at 7:34 pm

i can tell them apart. the first ones are cute the second ones look like fat albert barfed on them

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