pretty, cute practical togs

Iof the glories of summer is that it allows a kid to play about carelessly and laugh hysterically while snatching her hand from a conniving dog's mouth. That is if she is dressed for the outdoors and is allowed to play to her heart's satisfaction.

Iof the glories of summer is that it allows a kid to play about carelessly and laugh hysterically while snatching her hand from a conniving dog's mouth. That is if she is dressed for the outdoors and is allowed to play to her heart's satisfaction.

If she is dressed like a Cinderella, chances are that she will come home having not been allowed to climb one tree.

Let's face it, little girls sometimes feel like little boys and vice versa.

"The difference with little boys though is that their clothes allow for so much freedom. They are allowed far better free time than little girls," says fashion buyer for Ackermans Bongile Sikhutshwa.

"Little girls have to watch the colours that almost always border on white and pink; they are taught to sit like ladies; to mind their hair and generally be careful not to spill things on themselves."

But that can change with a little consideration for the fact that there isn't a better time than now to let them explore.

"Pre-schoolers especially learn by imitation. They paint, climb trees, play house and play soccer sometimes. The least parents can do is to provide them with the kind of clothing that will not earn them a hiding if they come out of the games with marks all over them."

If you are the proud parent of a baby girl or toddler, you may already have discovered that nothing is quite as fun as dressing her up.

Boutiques and children's clothing shops are full of adorable clothing items for girls, but high-end outfits can get pretty expensive. Instead, why not dress her up by accessorising her everyday wear?

Just as you would coordinate your own outfit with accessories, you can pull together your baby girl's wardrobe with some key items that will make her the best-dressed child with the most practical wardrobe.

Hats

Little girls look adorable in hats, so shop around for outfits that come complete with matching hats. You can also buy a basic hat that will match most of her outfits. Think white, pink or purple, yellow, green, even red or that whole combination. A baseball-style cap will look cute with outfits that are more casual.

Socks

Socks can be the key to pulling your baby's outfit together. Because kids' socks are mostly reasonably priced, you can probably afford to buy matching socks for almost any outfit.

Earrings

If your daughter already has her ears pierced, choose neutral earrings that will match most of her wardrobe. These are especially handy when outfits tend to look unisex.

Sunglasses

Many children's clothing stores sell baby-sized sunglasses that match the outfits that they sell. You can also buy a neutral pair of glasses in your daughter's favourite colour to coordinate with a larger variety of her outfits.

Tights

A stylish pair of tights can be the perfect finishing touch for many of your daughter's outfits. Look for colourful striped or patterned tights that will look great with a plain skirt.

Have a pair of pretty lace tights on hand for special occasions.

Ribbed tights come in a variety of colours and are a great accessory for the cold weather and tree climbing.

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