The Style Question…

We have already received quite a bit of feedback about our company, site, and service, which we love. Thank You so much! Oftentimes people are asking about why a DIMS (Does It Make Sense) Score question is worded the way it is – or scored the way it is. So we created the DIMS Score blog series so we can take you through the journey of thinking that lead to each one of the questions you see in our Gift Surveys today. The first in the series discusses “the Style Question”.

The last question Gifting Sense users are asked to answer every single time they generate a DIMS Score (except for a Toy) is as follows: “Style is a way to tell people about yourself without saying a word. Does the styling (icons and sayings used, colour, design, length) of [the item being scored] tell people what you want them to know about you?” Let us say upfront this question is not about how much an item costs – but rather what it says – in some cases literally!

Let us say upfront this question is not about how much an item costs – but rather what it says – in some cases literally!

Some people have marvelled at how we were able to distil the importance of recognizing that sayings or icons on t-shirts for example can sometimes telegraph a message you don’t really want to deliver. Other people really dislike this question. We believe the question is an important one and that it can really help kids by giving them pause for thought when they are buying clothing in particular. Here is why.

Parents have told us stories about their kids being sent home from school in order to change into more appropriate clothing. Parents have told us stories about their kids being asked to turn a t-shirt inside out at school so that a slogan such as “Your Mom is Hot” is not on display. Parents have told us stories about their kids attending dances and not being able to walk in the high heeled shoes they wore, or even dance in the dress they chose for the event. Parents have told us stories about their kids playing music whose lyrics contain almost only expletives. When we all care so much about our kids and put so much collective effort into their upbringing – how do these situations occur? We think it is in part because kids aren’t used to really thinking before they buy something.

The “Style Question” was designed to get kids into the habit of just taking a moment to consider if the icon on a t-shirt represents an idea they believe in – or if shoes they like are both flattering and functional. It has nothing to do with how much you spend, or who manufactures or sells what you are purchasing.

Does the boy wearing the “Your Mom is Hot” shirt really want a date with one of his classmates’ parents? We suspect not. Do you want a call at work saying your child has been sent home to get clothing that isn’t covered in artwork suggesting violence against women is acceptable? You probably do not. Does your daughter really want to go to a dance and then be embarrassed to walk up a flight of stairs in shoes she can’t really walk in? And although there are as many views on the use of expletives as there are people – most people find their excessive use discomforting.

The “Style Question” was designed to get kids into the habit of just taking a moment to consider if the icon on a t-shirt represents an idea they believe in – or if shoes they like are both flattering and functional. It has nothing to do with how much you spend, or who manufactures or sells what you are purchasing – but rather if your choice is consistent with who you are and what you want to be able to do when using the item in question. Does It Make Sense? As the scoring labels for this question indicate, if it doesn’t, it should.


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