Betty has been invited to her friend's Spiderman party, and they have specified that invitees must come dressed as Spiderman. Although we have a dressing up box brimming with fancy dress outfits of mainly fairies, princesses and ballerinas, we do not have a Spiderman outfit.
Being a firm believer in making kids' costumes myself, I got to work. I found some old clothes that vaguely matched the colours of Spiderman, I got out my black marker pen, and I chopped up an old holey pair of red tights. Both Betty and I were pretty excited about the outcome, and she proudly modelled it for Tom, who at the time smiled bravely and said 'lovely'.
However, when the kids were in bed he confessed that he found the outfit 'heartbreaking', and was worried that Betty at five is too old to wear homemade outfits, and that she would get teased for wearing a cut-out pair of toddler's tights on her head (with the leg holes sewn closed so they accidentally resembled ears), in an altogether unconvincing outfit.
I totally disagree with him. If Betty were actively into Spiderman, and dare I say it, a boy, every little detail might then be important, but she isn't, at all. And she thoroughly enjoyed making the costume with me.
However, this was a battle that Tom won. Basically he got rather emotional about it and told me how the whole episode may be somehow related to an unresolved childhood issue of his own, where he was teased by his peers for wearing clothes from C&A instead of labelled outfits from Tony Pryce sports.
So Oliver from Mega Fancy Dress (supplier of all things fancy dress) very kindly sent us a top notch Spiderman outfit for Betty to wear to the party. When I asked Betty which outfit she wanted to wear, she opted for the one with the professional finish.
Well, it does have a flashing red spider on the padded breast - I can't compete with that.