I’ve never been one for branding or logos. I always thought it was odd when people paid more to have a big advertisement on their sleeve or festooned across their back. That whole conspicuous consumption really gives me the heebie jeebies.
I’ve been trying to take this same aesthetic into the toys and clothing that I buy for E. It’s really kind of ridiculous to buy expensive clothing for children anyway because you are looking at one or maybe two seasons of wear anyway. It’s getting more and more difficult to keep this up though especially with toys. Wow, everything seems to be a tie-in to a movie or a tv show. Disney is the master. The stores are flooded with all things Disney. Right now in the toddler set, a fleet of Cars-related stuff is racing through. The shirts, pants, toys and all things Cars are there for your selection.
I’ve never seen Cars and I’m sure it’s a fine movie but the sheer volume of the Cars stuff is overwhelming. There’s really no educational or skills building in anything I’ve seen. Sure there is value in imaginative play but any household item can be great fun for a kid.
So, I’ve given up. I’ve decided to steer E towards the commercial products that assuage my guilt at least a little. The Sesame Street products are all wonderful and all kids seem to gravitate towards Elmo. I’ve always liked Spiderman and with that movie success there’s lots of Spiderman goods at younger and younger ages. I’m still looking for the blocks, the puzzles, and the games because I know soon enough E will be making the decisions anyway.