Every time I crack open a new glossy magazine and start to leaf through the first few pages of the ads therein, Himself asks why the feck I buy them when they're so rammed with non-content. The thing is, I actually quite like these printed advertisements. Not because they make me want to buy the products featured, but because they're often so beautifully done with glorious styling and locations and photography.
I do not like the recent trend of supplementing my lovely ads for grown-up things with ones for kiddie stuff.
While Dolce and Gabbana have long played on the close-knit Sicilian family in their ads, with Monica Belluci regularly taking on the role of sexy matriarch, lately it seems that the under tens have been seriously outnumbering the adults in their shoots. When I happened across a double page spread of mostly urchins clad in Dolce and Gabbana recently I did a double take, tutted to myself and shook my head a little bit, and turned the page.
Where I was greeted by an ad for H&M Kids, then one for Tommy Hilfiger childrenswear, with a Benetton Kids single pager to round out the quartet.
For a split second, I genuinely (in the style of Miriam O'Callaghan) thought maybe I'd accidentally picked up a copy of Mother & Baby.
A couple of days later I was flipping through August's Marie Claire and happened upon an entire section dedicated to smallies. Apparently it was a kids special, featuring “the new mini fash pack” as well as an article about how to parent like a French maman. The remainder of the magazine was liberally sprinkled with smiling youngsters in various states of cuteness advertising clothing for kids.
Now, unless I'm completely losing my mind, women's glossies used to be a fairly resolutely child-free zone, and I prefer them that way. And I don't think that's because I don't have kids. If I did and I wanted to swot up on children's fashion trends (WTF?) and parenting tips, I imagine I'd prefer to turn to a dedicated source of information.
With my feminist hat on, I think there's something deeply objectionable about the placement of these ads and features in my lady mags. I don't see anything like them cluttering up Himself's blokey equivalents, fetishising fatherhood or suggesting that of course the reader is interested in kids, sure isn't he a man!
Have you noticed kiddie ads popping up in your regular reads? What do you make of it?