Children, I read, are hogging appointments with personal shoppers at posh department stores because their mothers are too busy to keep abreast of the latest wardrobe must-haves.
Now I frequently fear that, when it comes to motherhood, I'm a failure. I rush to check my blog stats before I greet my children. I shout at them when they're obtuse about decimals and supper is often a panicked improvisation with the Vicar's breakfast leftovers.
But deficient as I am, my daughter does have a personal shopper. Me. And I am expert in the latest wardrobe must-haves. In winter I am tireless in my pursuit of insulating thermals. I steer her knowledgeably away from kitten heels in Barratts to the supportive rubber soles of Clarks. I can sniff out a polyknit from a hundred yards and my sartorial savvy allows me to guage, at a glance, the most durable pyjamas and the most washable wools.
But does my ten-year-old appreciate this personal service that unluckier children have to pay for? Not a bit! Her uninformed eye is distracted by leopard-print wisps and confections of spangles that would be murdered on a hot cycle. She teeters on metal studded heels in New Look and lusts after £40 T-shirts in Hollister that can be got for a fiver in Marks.
Her childish ignorance confirms just how vital is the expertise of a seasoned pro like me and I am therefore relieved that juvenile demand for personal shoppers has doubled in the last twelve months.
As I fold the sensible knickers from an M&S multi-pack, I can feel the dismay of my watching daughter. But when she hears that personal shoppers are the latest wardrobe must-have I know she'll thrilled to realise that, for once in my life, I've started a trend!
What do you think about parents recruiting personal shoppers so their offspring can keep abreast of fashions? Would you let yours do it?