I used to buy myself really nice, cute clothes. Then I had Flynn. And instead of keeping up with the newest Marc Jacobs line, I was busy obsessing over the latest Kickee Pants and Splendid Littles collections and perusing Etsy for the most adorable kid accessories and leggings. I could shop for hours and spend thousands dressing my two little ones, but I would like to stay married and so I have to figure out to indulge this habit without sending Dominique into a tizzy. I have developed a few ways to make kid clothes a tad less expensive.
Amazon Wish List
This is my favorite activity of all time, probably more than Pinterest and Instagram. I create a wish list on Amazon and put all my favorite things in the list. I then periodically check the list filtering for items with a price drop. I can then see items decreasing in price and catch an item while it is on sale. I just recently watched a Splendid Littles Romper go from $42 down to less than $10 in just a few short weeks. Amazon carries some of my favorite brands from Tea Collection to Kate Quinn Organics. The majority of my kids clothes have been purchased from Amazon.
This is a great go to store for basic things like leggings, t-shirts and hoodies. I never pay full price here (or anywhere really). There is often a 30% promo code that floats around or a groupon where you can get $40 for $20 or $80 for $40. Sometimes it is a double bonus where you get to use your groupon and a promo code (although I think they caught on to this because last time it didn’t let me!)
Most of the things I put my kids in are “soft” and preferably organic. H&M has a socially conscious line that is 99% organic and super soft. You can find organic t-shirts and onesies for less than $4 a piece. They also have cute accessories like cute scarf bibs.
Etsy and/or StoreEnvy
Etsy can be a hard place to catch a deal. You cannot really search the internet for a promo code and there aren’t really holiday sales. However, I have found if you start to follow some of your favorite Etsy shops on Instagram – they will post a flash sale or 24 hour sale with 10-20% off promo codes, which always make it a great time to stock up on Flynn’s tight pants and Nola’s knotted headbands.
I haven’t really done this all too often, but during the end of Nola’s pregnancy I would stop by a few local shops just to check things out. I have been able to find a few great things from a Kate Quinn Organics pajama set to a pair of Toms shoes for Flynn. You can really maximize your money here if you sell your own clothes and use the earnings to buy items in the store, however, I am not ready to part with any baby clothes, but I may start to consign a few items just for fun.
Similar to above, except I use this to find specific items I want. Think about the number of things your kids outgrow rather quickly (shoes, coats, fancier outfits). They often do not get too worn out before they grow out of them. This past winter I wanted to buy Nola a Patagonia coat, similar to the one we loved for Flynn. I was able to find a used one that seemed barely lived in for more than half the price of buying it new. Anytime I am looking for something, especially a high ticket item, I check Ebay first to see if there are any previously loved items that would fit the bill.
- Never trust the sizes. Every companies sizes are different and so if your child is in the 3-6 months size, take a look at some of your 6-9 and even 9-12 month clothes. Some of those may fit too.
- Never take the tags off items…especially gifts. You will receive a lot of gifts when you have your little one. Some of them may not be right for the season once your kid hits that size or may not fit for very long (especially newborn sizes) when you receive it.
- Shop Ahead. When summer ended last year I estimated the size that Nola would be come June. I was able to snag a lot of great items for this upcoming summer dirt cheap. Anytime I see something I like, even if it is not going to be Flynn or Nola’s size for sometime, I grab it. Just don’t forget you have it!
- Once Flynn hit size 4 shoes he pretty much needed the next size up every few months. If you find a good price for a shoe in an upcoming size pick it up.
- Get a lot of wears. I often put something on Flynn or Nola when it is a tad on the bigger size and then let them wear it until it is a little snug. Flynn has a coat from last winter that was a little big then, but he can still squeeze into now if he needs to. Don’t be afraid to try something on that is a few months ahead.
- Think Gender Neutral. Obviously you don’t want to outfit your kids in all yellow or have your daughter rocking navy blue every day, but when it comes to certain items you really can get more long term usage by avoiding gender specific colors. For instance, Flynn had a Patagonia fleece vest with plain brown patches. They make the vest with blue or pink patches, but sticking with the brown it can easily be worn by Nola. Same goes for a navy blue pair of Tom’s shoes Flynn got and Minnetonka booties (maybe a tad girlie for Flynn, but he loved those shoes!)