Dressed to the nines

As the invitations flood in, there are many reasons why youngsters want to look great, writes Andrea Li

PUBLISHED : Friday, 19 October, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 22 October, 2012, 2:45pm

A growing number of designers are taking children's formal wear increasingly seriously, offering a greater range of choices and wider price points, as parties are becoming ever larger and more extravagant.

Harvey Nichols, which stocks one of the city's largest collections of children's party wear, says the trend of dressing up has gained popularity as children now attend more social events.

"We can definitely foresee party wear for children as one of the potential growth points in the global children's wear market," the store says.

The store features many exclusive designer children's wear brands catering to a wide range of formal occasions, from christenings to birthday parties, weddings to Bar Mitzvahs.

Highlights include BabyDoll, a children's line designed by local talent Dorian Ho. Already an established couture designer renowned for his bridal gowns and evening wear, Ho launched BabyDoll, a premium children's wear line for special occasions last year.

For more affordable options, there is the Matilda Rose Boutique available at mother and baby superstore Bumps to Babes.

One of the store's most popular party-wear brands, the label is known for its Pettiskirts, knee-length tutus made of soft double-layer nylon chiffon with an adjustable satin waistband and ribbon detail, and worn either at the front or back of the dress.

These skirts can be matched

with Pettitops, cute yet simply embellished machine-washable

T-shirt vests.

"Party wear depends so much on the type of occasion your little one will be going to and the style the parents choose for their children. We find a lot of our customers opt for more simple everyday wear for some children's parties where they know that they will be in a playroom or joining an outside activity," explains Lucy McLennan, marketing manager at Bumps to Babes.

"For those occasions where your little one has an opportunity to really dress up, it is a great opportunity for parents to follow either the chic, classic trend, a more traditional formal party dress style for toddlers and young girls, or a more modern and fun twist with something like the Pettiskirts," she adds.