How I Save Time, Space, and Money on Kids Clothing

posted by Andrea | 01/12/2015
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how I save on kids clothing

Even before we had kids, I was no stranger to the fact that kids clothing was a large source of clutter in so many homes. After all, I worked with countless moms who were struggling to manage the massive amount of tiny clothes that were currently too small, too big, the wrong gender, the wrong season, or being saved “just in case” — not to mention all the clothing that actually fit!

While I can FULLY understand the many reasons so many parents choose to hold onto their baby and kid clothing, I personally have tried extremely hard to drastically limit the amount of clothing I store and also, the amount of clothing I let myself accumulate in the first place.

I explained more about my decision to purge almost all our too-small baby clothes in this post… but today, I’m sharing more about how I avoid overbuying and over-spending on kids clothing in the first place.

Oh, and I should note, some of the suggestions I share below are much more applicable to infant and toddler clothing than to older children, but I think many of them could also work for older children’s clothing as well.

1. I Buy Used

Besides a few clothing gifts we got when Nora was born, my children have worn almost no brand new, tag-attached clothing. I realize this might change a bit as they get older — but for now, we’re enjoying $0.50 garage sale clothes and lots of deals from ThredUp.com (using credit I’ve accumulated).

I have periodically looked through 75% off racks of kids clothing thinking I would certainly find a deal — but it’s still often $6-$8 for a pair of leggings or a t-shirt — no thanks! I’ll stick with used 🙂

{“shopping” from my cousin’s daughter’s clothing}

2. I Borrow Special Occasion Outfits

Special occasion outfits like Halloween costumes, dance outfits, wedding or other formal attire, etc. are such a huge source of clothes clutter since they are usually only worn once and then stored.

These items of clothing can also be extremely expensive — so if I can’t find them used, I will most definitely try to borrow them. We’ve borrowed many costumes (including Nora’s monkey costume for her Curious George birthday party) and have saved so much space and money.

In fact, now that I think about it, I’ve been borrowing and lending clothing since way back in high school when my friend, cousins, and others would trade dresses and accessories for formal dances, prom, etc. It was such a huge cost savings for everyone and it was nice to have dresses worn more than once.

3. I Skip Sizes

This is one of those tips that will probably only work until about size 4T — but I can’t tell you how many baby and toddler clothes I didn’t have to buy because I skipped sizes. Not to mention, the clothes I did buy were worn SO much longer than if I didn’t skip sizes. This means my baby clothes get more use and I don’t need to rotate nearly as often.

So, for example, I usually don’t have any newborn clothes because my babies are pretty big. Maybe I’ll just borrow a few onesies or sleepers for the first week or so. Then I jump right into 3 month clothes. Yes, they are big — but who cares. Babies are all curled up and squishy anyway.

When the 3 month stuff starts getting significantly too small (like really too small), I’ll jump straight to 9 month clothing. This is usually around 4 months — so yes, the 9 month stuff is too big, but it’s actually not as bad as you might think.

It’s not that I refuse to buy any clothing for the in-between sizes, I just try to drastically limit those in-between items as I’ve found there usually isn’t a massive difference between 6mo. and 9mo. clothing.

Simon has actually been wearing 12mo. clothing since about 6 months old (I skipped over the 9 month size) and it’s all starting to get too small. I recently began rotating in the 24 month items we have… and surprisingly, most of them fit already! He won’t even miss wearing those 18 month clothes — and I certainly won’t miss buying or storing them!

4. I Get Double-Duty Out of Clothes

Often times Nora can wear her leggings for pants in the winter — and then keep wearing them as capris the next summer. Same thing with dresses — she’ll wear it as a dress one year, and then as a shirt the next year.

Also, since we potty trained Nora over the summer, she was able to wear the same shorts and skirts for two summers in a row (first with diapers, then with undies) so I literally didn’t need to buy any summer stuff this past year.

I think this tip is more applicable to girls than boys — but we’ve saved a TON of space and money on Nora’s clothing using this concept!

5. I Limit Matching Outfits

Even though I almost never buy new clothing, there are still plenty of cute matching outfits for sale at garage sales, second hand sales, and ThredUp.com. However, I rarely buy anything as a matching set as I feel it often limits my options.

Instead, I stick to solid color pants whenever possible — and then mix and match shirts as I find good deals. I get so much more wear out of my kids clothing this way and can get by with just a couple pairs of pants for the appropriate size/season.

6. I DON’T Shop Ahead.

I know this might seem like the opposite of what I should be doing — but in my experience shopping for 2 different kids, 2 different genders, born in 2 different seasons, I’ve been burned many more times than I’ve been successful. It seems I can never accurately predict how big/small my kids will be a year from now, and everything I buy ahead seems to be too big or too small when the appropriate season rolls around.

So I’ve stopped buying ahead. Period. And I’ve honestly saved a bunch of time, money, and storage space as a result.

Since my kids wear each size of clothing longer (see #3 above), I have plenty of time to note when their clothing is starting to get snug… and then start looking for a few good deals on the next size I plan to buy.

The picture below is honestly EVERYTHING Simon owns right now (plus a handful of pants in one of the dresser drawers). I just purchased a couple items for spring/summer (we’re going to Florida over Spring Break so I’m trying to plan ahead a little bit) but that’s it.

7. They Wear The Same Clothes… A LOT!

I personally don’t have a magic number of clothing items you should have for each size or season — but I will say that in my own experience, you almost always need significantly less clothing than you think. Seriously, it’s amazing how few items you can rotate in and out for months at a time (especially when they are tiny and don’t wear anything out).

I always think my kiddos look cute (obviously!) however I will say that they wear the same few cute outfits over and over and over again.

After the first few months of Nora’s life (when she finally outgrew the bazillion clothes gifts she amassed) I have continued to buy less and less items per size. A couple pairs of solid colored pants, a handful of coordinating tops, a couple sweatshirts or sweaters, socks, onesies, PJ’s… and we’re good to go.

I often smile when I’m writing blog posts and see Nora and Simon are wearing the same things in 2 or 3 of the photos — even though they were taken on different days. I’m guessing readers don’t even notice (or care!)

Apparently I’m big into quarter-zip fleece tops this winter 🙂

nora's fleece simon's fleece

8. I Don’t Designate “Play Clothes”

Yes, we do have a couple outfits that are just for church or nicer occasions, but other than that, I could honestly care less what clothes Nora chooses to wear outside to play. If something gets dirty, I wash it. If it gets stained, she keeps wearing it until it’s too small and then I toss it. I figure the items were so frugal and she wears them for so long, that it really doesn’t matter to me.

I realize I may change my stance on this once she starts school — but for now,  not having specific play clothes greatly reduces the number of clothes my kids need — and eliminates MANY arguments with my opinionated fashionista who insists on wearing skirts outside ALL the time!

I know these tips might not work for everyone, but they have significantly reduced the amount of time and money I’ve spent shopping for, washing, and storing kids clothing the past 3+ years… and I have a feeling these tips will continue to work for several years to come.

And yes, I’d LOVE to hear any other tips you have… or any cool clothes-clutter strategies that have worked for you. 

How do you control your kids clothes clutter?

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44 comments

  1. Anna

    01/13/2015

    Thanks so much for these tips, especially the one about skipping sizes. I was going to have to purchase some 12 month winter and 12&18 mo summer for my son (he’s 4 1/2 months) but I just tried some 18 mo winter and 24 mo summer saved from my 2 year old and was so excited to see that they will work! They will be a little big, but we stay home most of the time anyway. This should be called the tip retailers don’t want you to know 😉

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    haha — thanks Anna. And I like your “Tip Retailers Don’t Want You To Know” title suggestion 🙂

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  2. Jen

    01/12/2015

    I did keep all of my daughter’s clothes as we weren’t sure if we were going to have another baby. We did…five years later…a son.

    Luckily, my best friend had a son first and four years later had a daughter. We give each other the clothes we had saved. I have purchased a few items for my son, but it was because they were “too cute to pass up”. I didn’t have to purchase anything for this winter.

    We have both saved some serious $$.

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  3. Lauren

    01/12/2015

    Tip to remember is that I find used clothes are about a size smaller than on the tag. Most moms machine dry their kids clothes and they shrink terribly!

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  4. Heidi

    01/12/2015

    The area where I live in South Carolina has huge semi-annual children’s consignment sales. I can get super cheap clothes for everyday use. I also consign at a local store every season and use my profits from that as store credit. That way one season/size of clothes helps pay for the next season and size.

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  5. amber

    01/12/2015

    I have two daughters (10 and 7) and I also rarely buy anything new. I can go to my local goodwill store and get kids pants and shirts for $1.50 and dresses for $3. I go to yard sales in the summer and will buy nicer dresses for $5 or less. Since to have two girls I will buy ahead but, I will buy it in a size my oldest daughter can wear and then the younger one.

    We home school so I don’t have to worry about school clothes. We have either around the house/play clothes, going out clothes and church clothes.

    Once my youngest daughter outgrows the clothes I will sale them to Once Upon A Child. (I will also go there when they are having their $1 an item sale.) Whatever they don’t buy I pass them on to our church friends.

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  6. Kim

    01/12/2015

    I have three girls ages 4, 3 and a new born. I’ve saved most of their clothes since I know I have someone to pass it down to quite soon. I used to do a lot of buying ahead but between their two grandmas great thrifting skills we would get inundated with way too many clothes. Now I just buy ahead when I find great deals on the basics (leggings and tees in solid black, pink etc). I find that the leggings especially tend not to make it to the next sister and then I have basics to pair with all of the items from the grandmas. I also try to have a price point in mind for most clothes so I don’t over spend.

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  7. Ashley

    01/12/2015

    I always buy jeans at a dollar . My boys go through them all the time . It is hard to store stuff for them . I have 3 kids and a small house . One thing I also buy also is jackets ahead all the time . I too am starting to buy less and less because we were missing things all the time .

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  8. Tai

    01/12/2015

    This was a great article! I too skip sizes and re purpose my children’s clothing. Another tip that I think people overlook a lot of times is, care. I take great care of my children’s clothing by using a gentle detergent and using stain removers. Anytime my children get a stain that might damage their clothing like paint…I pre-treat it right away. This allows me to pass down their clothing to the next sibling or cousin.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Yes! And I think that goes with almost everything. If you take care of your stuff, it will last longer and be able to be passed down versus just trashed. Great point!

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  9. Christie

    01/12/2015

    These are such great tips! I never thought about skipping sizes…that is genius! I find myself struggling with being frugal with kids clothes because I like to have a lot of variety. I’m realizing, though, that I need to just kick myself in the behind and stop indulging those feelings :). I had that problem with my two boys, but now it’s infinitely worse with my girl! So, posts like this are encouraging to me and help me to remember what’s important.

    I’m thankful that I know a lot of people with small kids and we’ve been able to pass kids’ clothes around. I stopped buying ahead for my oldest because right after I would buy something he would get a bunch of hand-me-downs from his cousin and then we had too much. So annoying!! Anyway, thanks for the tips!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Christie — and yes, skipping sizes was HUGE for me when they were babies and young toddlers. Nora is just starting to wear 4T (we mostly skipped over 3T) and I doubt we’ll be able to skip sizes anymore. However, at the same time, I think she’ll be able to wear the clothing for longer too, so skipping sizes won’t be as necessary!

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  10. Sandra

    01/12/2015

    I recently got rid of a ton of kids clothes while trying to simplify our lives. I made 10 cute outfits for each of my 2 kids to cycle through. I place the whole outfits in their drawers so they’re ready to go. They each have their own laundry hamper and I do laundry once a week. PERFECT! It’s so simple, I have to tell you I’m loving it so much that I think I’ll have to do this for myself! I should note that they have special occasion stuff in their closet (a couple of things – Christmas, Easter dressier occasions, and gym stuff).

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  11. JJ

    01/12/2015

    I only keep the clothes I loved on them that worked well. I don’t do well with a lot of button up sleepers. Let’s just say in the middle of the night, a zipper goes much smoother–haha! The rest of the clothes I have found someone for each gender who loves to receive them. I do keep essentials if we have another baby. I have consigned, but the best thing I ever did was sell a box of clothes for $25. I also bought a box of clothes(60 pieces, including jackets, coats, etc.) for $30(size 24 months/2T)!!! I didn’t keep/use all of them but gave the rest to someone else who wanted and needed them. I like to call it a wardrobe in a box. It’s so much easier to sell that way, as you get rid of ALL of it in one sale. The lady I bought from had similar taste, so that was even better!

    Where do you find good deals on new socks?

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Sounds like you do things very similarly to me (I just keep the essentials too). As for socks, we have a local dollar store that sells 6-packs of socks for $1!! So that’s where I stock up 🙂

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    JJ Reply:

    Thanks! I never thought to look there! I will for sure check ours out.

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  12. Laura

    01/12/2015

    I do pretty much everything you suggest and it works beautifully with the exception of designating play clothes. We live on a farm. With horses. And chickens. And my boys spend a LOT of time outside acting like boys. Non designating was totally doable when they were toddlers. Now, if I didn’t, my children would like they are homeless raga muffins all the time which then led to other problems of them just not being aware AT ALL of their appearance. I am NOT a fancy dresser or name brand girl. I love my horses and barn just fine. But I do want my kids to see they can look presentable and to take some pride in their appearance when it’s appropriate. Perhaps after your kids grow a bit you’ll change that one. And maybe not. That to me is more a choice based on surroundings and lifestyle rather than decluttering, which I am a HUGE advocate for!

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  13. Jenny

    01/12/2015

    Thanks for your post. The kids’ clothing clutter has been a HUGE struggle for me the entire time that I have been a mom. I have a girl and a boy like you. I saved all their clothing for a long time – just in case. I am trying to slowly get rid of it now, but it is overwhelming when you have 8 years of girls clothes, and 4 years of boy clothes. I am wondering what is the easiest way to sell my kids’ clothes?

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    Andrea Reply:

    Hi Jenny, I don’t want to sound like a debby downer, but I NEVER sell kids clothing because I just don’t think it’s worth the time or effort involved to make $0.50 here and there. In my experience, consignment shops aren’t worth it unless you have LOTS of super nice, super new, brand name clothing in excellent condition. Once the clothes are a couple seasons old, they won’t take them anymore (even if they are in excellent condition).

    2nd hand sales and garage sales are a lot of work because you have to price out every item and hope people come to buy. If not, you’re stuck with everything. And Craigslist usually only works if you say something like “huge lot girls fall/winter 2T clothes: $20 for everything” because there’s no way it would be worth it to list every single individual item (at least not in my opinion!)

    My perspective when it comes to kids clothing is: I buy/get it as frugally as I possibly can, wear it as long as I possibly can, and then donate it (either to charity or a friend/family member). I have kept a few of my favorite outfits for future kiddos — but obviously, I haven’t even used those yet, and with the next baby due in the middle of Summer, hardly any of my boy or girl clothes will work again (which is essentially why I don’t keep much in the first place).

    Anyway, I’m honestly not trying to sound negative or be discouraging — I just know that it could potentially be a lot of work for you to sell 12 years (combined) of baby clothes and make it worth your time and effort. I know it might seem like a huge “waste” to just donate them all (and I’m not saying that’s the right answer for you), but I try to think about it in terms of all the time I’d save and all the people I could potentially bless by donating my things.
    Hope this helps a little!

    [Reply]

    joy Reply:

    Jenny I have 2 boys, 2 girls. I couldn’t do anything with the clothing until I was fed up with the “stuff”. There was too much laundry, too many boxes hogging closet space and too many clothes in drawers. We are on a very tight budget and I do save clothes for the younger children. But the time and energy it takes to keep it all or try to sell stuffis no longer worth my time and space. I take 1 load per season to a consignment store and everything else goes to Goodwill. I decided if there is something that is oerwhelming, it probably needs to go out the door. 🙂 Now, onto toys!

    Oh – and regarding the size-skipping – for girls watch around 6 / 6x / 7 / 7x / 6-7 and 7-8. I am SURE that you can skip at least one of those sizes. 🙂

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  14. Kelly

    01/12/2015

    I have two boys, 5 and 2. I’m fortunate that all the clothes I did save from my older son have worked for the second, so I only have to get clothes once. I say “get” since I try to buy very little and rely a lot on hand-me-downs.. Even though we are offered many hand me downs, I only keep what I know my boys will wear regularly. It is so freeing to not haves billion clothes cluttering up our closets! My best tip to get more mileage out of boy clothes is to have mostly short sleeve shirts and a few long sleeves with solid colors on the sleeves. I layer the short over the long sleeves most winter days. Even though we live in Colorado, my boys have very few sweaters (for church and holidays) or sweatshirts and only a handful of long sleeves. By using short sleeves all year, I am able to buy ahead for my older son when I see great deals on them since short sleeves will always be “in season”.

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  15. Urania

    01/12/2015

    Great tips.. My girls get lots of hand me downs. I pass them to the shelter I work at and I do buy ahead.. I love to do Savers on 1/2 off days. The only things I splurge on is anew outfit for the first day of school and winter coats. But I buy the coats when they are on clearance.. Last week i got a great coat for my 4 year old for 10 its was a 90 coat score..

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  16. Amy

    01/12/2015

    Great advice, especially for infant/toddler clothing. Over the years, I have used all of these suggestions at one point or another and they absolutely work! After my 3rd kid, I stopped buying ahead. That was a real change in my thought process, but I was happy with the time it saved me in sorting through heaps of too-big clothes, wasting time shopping for things I didn’t need, and overspending at thrift stores or consignment shops.

    Something I have started doing more recently is setting aside clothes and outfits that are still in really good shape to take to Once Upon a Child, then redeeming for store credit to buy more clothing. Their standards can seem unusually high, but I usually do well if I take a small tote of well-selected items instead of taking every outgrown item and letting them do the legwork.

    Another tip for buying clothes for older children – take advantage of the $5 deals that come around at Target a few times a year. They often have coupons or Cartwheel to match up to those deals for even more savings. The only drawback is that the girls leggings usually don’t make it through hard play at school, but I am otherwise happy with the quality and usually am able hand down to another child.

    Another tip that might go well in with the double duty tip – cut off leggings for shorts to wear under dresses. They are knit and won’t fray. Since they are under dresses, no one even sees them so they don’t require hemming, but a person certainly could. I use them as an extension of underpants because even 7-8 year old girls aren’t always very ladylike.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    LOVE your idea for using the leggings as shorts under dresses! I will definitely remember that for the future — currently, all nora’s skirts come with shorts inside already 🙂

    Also, I should start using Once Upon a Child more — but they are pretty far away from us, and I know I’d be disappointed if I drove all the way there and made $8 or something. Maybe someday!

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  17. Suzanne H

    01/12/2015

    Great post. I do buy ahead for my son. We are fortunate enough to have the extra storage space (we have a guest bedroom with a dresser – my son’s next season’s clothes go in there – sorry guests!). I make it a practice to buy used only when I am confident he will definitely use it and it will definitely fit. For buying ahead, I only pick up super cheap items from Kohls – generally clearance + a 30% promo code. I net things for $2-$4 most of the time. Their return policy is so generous – you can return something years later if need be so if something doesn’t work out for the next season, I return it. I just keep my receipts in the drawers with the clothes. The times I’ve been burned buying ahead were when I bought used so I stick to current needs for used items.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Suzanne, we actually have a ton of extra storage space too (like a full empty bedroom with a huge, empty walkin closet) but I’m just really bad at shopping ahead. The clothes always seem to be the wrong size or season and it started to stress me out. The WORST was went I actually bought something that would fit, but forgot about it. SO aggravating for me 🙂

    So, now I just buy things about a month in advance, I don’t need to store, I don’t need to stress, and I don’t need to return.
    My mom ALWAYS shopped ahead, I just can’t seem to get the hang of it!

    [Reply]

    Tabitha Reply:

    Now that you have a child in “big” kid clothing, buying ahead might be easier. I have found that my older kids wear their clothing for a whole year. So for example, I can buy size 8 summer and winter clothing and both seasons will be used. When kids are younger, they will sometimes skip sizes OR do not need every size every season. Also older kids’ used clothes are harder to find (especially for boys) so catching off-season sales are necessary to save. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on saving – love to get ideas from others!

    [Reply]

    Suzanne H Reply:

    Yes, finding used boy’s clothes once they are older (mine is 6) gets MUCH more difficult!!! When he was a baby, it wasn’t a problem at all. Now all I can find are dress clothes as they are the only ones people can consign – their regular clothes are usually too stained or worn out. He does wear the same size for a whole year, sometimes more now so I can buy 1 size in both seasons and almost always be okay. This last year his growth slowed a lot and I did return some items that were still too large. Some I thought were large enough that they will make it this coming year so I kept those. I do love off season shopping – I am starting to see winter clothes moving over to the clearance racks now.

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  18. Nikki @ Growing Up Mom

    01/12/2015

    I re-use cotton dresses as “night gowns”. This way, when something is too small for the big sis, she can still wear it to bed. This helps a lot because there are just certain dresses she loves, and getting rid of them is hard for her. I also only buy things the big sis will like, because not only does it save time and money, it saves fighting over wanting her to wear something she just doesn’t like. I know she doesn’t like sweat pants, so I donate those and take them out of rotation. I know she doesn’t like sweaters or sweat shirts that have any type of rough material inside, it has to be silky smooth.
    I used to buy out of season clothes for the next year, and this worked until she was turning 4. All of the 4T things I bought were too short. She, finally went into big girl clothes last year, and these only last a season at most now. She is getting too big too fast, so I just buy items as they are needed. We are keeping her stuff for the little sis, and I am getting a lot of hand me downs for her too, since her cousin (who is also a girl) a year old. I started getting clothes from my sister before I even popped.

    Lessons learned from the big sis, will make clothing for the little sis a breeze (I hope).

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    great tips — thanks for sharing. Nora is entering size 4T now too (or size XXS in big girls) so we’ll see if things change once we’re out of toddler clothes and into “big girl” clothes!

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  19. karen b

    01/12/2015

    found you through money saving mom this morning 🙂 WOW hope this continues to work for you….we live on a dairy farm & my kids got DIRTY everyday so we had to have “everyday” clothes, better clothes & church clothes …..if not I would have been embarrassed to be seen w/ my own kids 🙂 we had to have more clothes because of this. I feel every family has to do what works for them. as they got older & in school we had to have a few more nicer clothes but other than that they didn’t have a lot…..now they are all teenagers youngest 14 oldest 19 so a few more clothes than I would like. yes we do have a daughter In between those ages & she got just as dirty as the boys & still does when @ the barn so a lot of laundry @ our house 🙂

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  20. Emily

    01/12/2015

    This is a constant issue for me as I definitely save more clothing knowing we desire more children (currently pregnant with #5) 🙂 and wanting to be wise in our spending. I also have to ask myself when packing items up “will I really want this in five years when my baby is ready to wear it?” I like to keep quality, timeless pieces. Anything that is “now” or a current trend gets brought to Once Upon A Child. I’m currently going through all the clothing I’ve saved and purging items to clear up clutter and truly save what I will use.
    I do the same thing with my girls’ leggings! After they wear them as capris, the knees are pretty worn through so I cut them into shorts to wear under skirts and dresses.

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  21. Kelly S

    01/12/2015

    Great tips! I am guilty of over-buying, even though we stick to used clothes. I try to cut the clutter by keeping a donate/sell box in the closet. As soon as I start to see bellies and ankles, I cull the outfit. It cuts down on the contents of the closet and drawers. It also keeps my fashion-ista from wearing the too-small outfits!

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  22. Jen

    01/12/2015

    My daughter has wayyyy too many clothes, but I paid very little for them using the techniques listed in the article, and I pass everything down to my niece. I have gotten better about not keeping stuff that doesn’t really match anything. I’m not the best with keeping up with laundry so it helps us to have some extras around.

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  23. Erin

    01/12/2015

    Both of my girls were born in the spring, so I’m glad I kept my older daughter’s clothes, but I’m being more purposeful about tossing items that have stains, rips, etc., once my younger daughter has worn them. It helps that they’ve had a good life of wear. 🙂

    On a related note, one huge source of clutter in the girls’ closet were all the blankets people made for them! I held onto them for a couple of years, but I finally got tired of seeing the huge pile, saved one favorite blanket for each girl, and packed up the others for Goodwill.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    YES — THE BLANKET CLUTTER!
    I bet we received 15 “handmade” blankets as gifts — plus more from the store. I was thankful that I kept the tags on the store bought blankets and returned ALL of them for store credit.

    We ended up just keeping the smaller handmade blankets and Nora uses them for her dolls. They get used nearly every day and are stored in her doll crib when not in use. We also keep one of the larger blankets for each kid in each car and in the stroller. These have come in handy so many times and keeps some of the blanket clutter out of the house!

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  24. Pamela

    01/12/2015

    I am a kids’ clothes minimalist. I have 3 girls (ages 6, 3, 8mo) who share a bedroom. We have one dresser with 3 drawers so each kid gets one drawer. They share a closet too, of course, so their hanging clothes must all fit in that. I do laundry about every other day so they are never short on clothes, even with just a few outfits.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Wow — great job Pamela! I’d honestly love to have even fewer clothes for Nora, but we are gifted LOTS of hand-me-downs from friends and relatives and my mom is a bit of a shop-a-holic when it comes to little girl’s clothing 🙂

    So we try to be grateful for everything we’re given, especially since she has plenty of space to store it, but it’s more than I would prefer. We’re very diligent about passing our things onto others those so I don’t hang onto the stuff forever and ever!

    [Reply]

    Verity@homemakerspectrum Reply:

    I am a kid clothing minimalist too!

    I think it helps to restrict the space they can keep their clothes in.

    Even though we have a four bedroom house, I keep all four kids’ main toys and clothes in their 10 x 10 bedroom.

    A single clothes basket for each child with a small amount of hanging space and drawers only for pajamas and undergarments. Once the space fills up, I have to get rid of something in order to add something.

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  25. Verity@homemakerspectrum

    01/12/2015

    YES! YES! YES!

    Since I have four children five and under, clothes storage has been a huge issue.

    Last year, I figured out that each huge box of clothes I kept saved me only $100. (that meant that I saved a full hundred dollars by saving a box of clothes for my girls, since I have three in a row and I get into the next box every year. However, that told me I saved only $20 a year for my son’s clothes – if I have another baby.) Consequently, I do not save his clothes anymore.

    I do the mix-and-match as well. Each of my children has five mix and match outfits only. (Plus dress clothes.)

    When I pack away baby clothes, I keep them in gallon size Ziploc bags because it works like SpaceSaver bags and then I can pull out the 3-4 bags I need quickly the next time.

    (I also divide up the kids outfits in gallon size bags when we travel – then their socks and outfits are altogether in one bag and I can grab it out quickly. This works especially well when they are at older relatives houses. You don’t want to deal with lots of little pieces.)

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    LOVE the gallon ziploc bag ideas for traveling! We’re traveling with both kiddos later this spring and I might have to use that idea 🙂

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    Janene Reply:

    The jumbo 2.5 gallon ziplock bags work great for storing clothes (2 bags fit perfectly in the bottom of a tote) and for keeping things organized in your suitcase for travel. I use them for everything! They lay flat and I can suck the air out and then several stack in a tote taking up much less room.

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  26. Siobhan

    01/12/2015

    Great suggestion on using leggings as capris! My 5 year old is now in school so I’ve been more aware of her having a few more items to mix and match but for the most part we stick with solid color leggings under skirts…she’s an everyday dress/skirt girl as well. Also, I didn’t get a chance to respond on Friday; thanks so much for your insight and suggestions from my comment on Friday’s post…was very helpful 🙂

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  27. lydia @ Five4FiveMeals

    01/12/2015

    I too don’t designate play clothes. But I also have boys and we just bought a farm so I have no hopes of ever keeping their clothes nice and neat looking.

    Also, it helps that my moms sews and cute stuff too! Everyone asks where I got shirts or twill pants for my boys and I just smile and say “Made by Nana.”

    I control the clutter by just keeping current clothes in their dressers. We have precious little closet space and that is designated for toy rotation storage, diapers and future clothe sizes for our smallest boy (hand me downs from his brother.)

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