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Category: Mum Fashion, Kids Fashion, Sustainable Fashion, Capsule Wardrobe

  1. Keep your clothing costs down with subtle fashion

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    In 2019 I have decided to do a no-spend year on clothes for myself.  I’ve asked my husband Ben to join in too, but we’ll see if he does.  My wardrobe is down to approximately 50 pieces, not including nightwear, gym wear or underwear.  That’s approx. 50 pieces of normal clothing, including 2 occasion dresses.  Though those dresses are more smart/funeral type, so let’s just hope we don’t get invited to any weddings in 2019!

    I love being minimal and was already on this path before it became a trend.  I unknowingly had a ‘capsule wardrobe’ before I read any articles about it.  I wasn’t always like this as I used to have a massive shopping addiction, clothes addiction and debt problem.  I would wear an outfit once and then never again.  I’d shop on store cards and the debt and addiction accumulated.  When it was time to get myself out of debt and go on a debt management program, I really had to learn to budget.  I had to sell most of my belongings, including nearly all my clothes, and I lived in a bedsit for the cheapest rent possible.

    It was here that my minimal journey really began as I lived in one room!  That room was my bedroom, kitchen and living room in one!  It was small, but it had to do.  I had to learn to lie minimally as I simply had no space for anything else – not even one storage cupboard!

    Now I love to live minimally.  I also like a challenge and I have a financial savings goal this year too, so I’m interested in all these no-spend challenges I’ve been seeing flying round the internet.  We’re going to try a couple of no-spend months and I’m personally trying a no-spend clothing year.  I did buy a backpack as I didn’t have one and a couple of bras as mine didn’t fit and now that’s it.  That was all I really needed to get me through a year when I looked at my wardrobe.

    Whilst not buying any clothing for an entire year might be a little too extreme for you, there are still ways you can cut back on your clothing spend, but still look and feel great.  One of these ways is with subtle fashion.

    How to do subtle fashion and keep your clothing costs down

    Keep your clothing costs down with subtle fashion

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    Subtle fashion is simple fashion.  It’s knowing what looks great on you and keeping it understated, but at the same time also looking great!  It’s perfecting your own style and throwing together a look that looks effortless.  I want to show you why subtle fashion is the best fashion, and how you can easily achieve the look without it looking boring.

    Here’s how to do subtle fashion:

    Keep it neutral

    You can’t really go wrong with neutral colours and most people actually like to wear simpler things.  You can still look great in neutral colours by picking the best fits for you.  It doesn’t have to be boring as you can match it with a nice bag, some shoes, and some accessories.

    …and minimal

    Minimalism is a key part of subtle fashion as it’s about being subtle and not going overboard screaming look at me!  It fits well with a capsule wardrobe and minimal lifestyle.  It’s about choosing pieces carefully for the wardrobe and choosing well.

    Accessorising is essential

    It’s easy to make the plain and subtle fashion look more interesting through accessorising.  This is always a cheap and cheerful way to add interest, colour and pattern to a neutral outfit.  It also keeps costs down as you can alter the look of the same outfit with a few new accessories, which are much cheaper than buying clothes.  One great way to keep the look subtle and not clunk it up with jewellery is with a lovely pair of earrings.   It can add some bold features to the look, especially if you have your hair out of the way. But for a subtle look, we think simple earrings are the best, rather than going for something like big hoops or a statement pair. Minimal jewellery has been on trend and suits the subtle look perfectly.  Choose thin band rings, dainty necklaces and bangles.  Then just wear one or two at a time.  In the winter months a simple hat or scarf in a bright colour or monochrome pattern could be all you need to make your outfit more bold.

    Keeping it comfy

    There’s nothing better than being able to keep it comfy and that often comes in the form of the shoe that you’re wearing.  Subtle fashion for me is all about being comfortable and not overdressing, so flats are a must for me.  A good pair of comfy flats such as TOMS are great for a casual daytime look and some flat lace-up boots are perfect in the winter.  It’s possible to look chic, but also be comfy in slim stretch jeans and oversized jumpers.  Leggings, ponchos and flat knee-high boots.  It’s about being comfy and stylish all at once.

    Adding subtle colour

    Sometimes if you find yourself wearing all neutral colours, you need to find a way to add a bit of colour without making the look too bold. Bags can definitely do this for you. If you’re wearing all black then a contrasting colour such as mustard or red will really make the look pop, without making it look too chunky in colouring. Again, you can also choose a scarf or hat for a pop of colour.

    Mostly it’s about comfy clothes that are still stylish – a minimal wardrobe of your favourite fits that look great on you with accessories to add interest, colour and pattern.  Keep costs down by replacing key pieces when you really need to and looking to accessories to rejuvenate your outfit instead of an entire new outfit.

     

    Read these next!

    Why every woman should create a capsule wardrobe

    Dressing for a summer wedding on a budget

    How to save money on shopping all year

    Tips for saving money when buying kids clothes

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    Keep your clothing costs down with subtle fashion

     

  2. Tips for saving money when buying kids clothes

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    Let’s face it. Kids grow fast. One day they’re crawling around in their onesie and the next they’re choosing their own clothes in their favourite High Street fashion store. It’s crazy how quickly children grow and how often they need new clothes, especially in those younger years.   No matter what kind of kids’ clothing you’re looking for, be sure you’re giving particular attention to their functionality.  And, believe it or not, there are even some ways you can save money when buying kids clothing.

    Tips for saving money when buying kids clothes

    How to choose functional clothing for your children

    Not only does buying functional clothing serve a purpose, but it will also save money in the long run.  If you’re buying clothes that suit their intended use then they will stand the test of time and won’t need replacing so often, or get ruined easily. For example, if you know your child is going to wear the clothes in the rain or the snow, it might be a good idea to look for something that repels water instead of soaks through when wet.  If you’re constantly hanging wet coats to dry then they’re going to need a spare whilst one is drying out.  By buying a suitable water repelling coat in the first place then you’ll only need to buy one and not waste time and money on drying wet though jackets.

    You might also keep an eye out for the quality of the clothing. Cotton is very popular since it is the least likely material to contain substances that can be harmful to your child.  Choosing organic cotton which you know has not been sprayed with chemicals is even better.  Quality clothing like this washes well, maintains its softness and feels great on the skin.  Additionally, be aware of your child’s needs. Do they have sensitive skin? If so, wool might not be the best choice (plus it’s a pain to wash!)

    If you’re not sure what size kids clothes to buy, get something a little bigger than you think. Even if your child cannot wear it now, they’ll eventually grow into it, plus it saves a trip to return it to the store if it was too small.   That’s one less thing you have to buy at that stage when they do fit the item!  Plus, if you’re anything like me, clothes can shrink when washed and tumble dried for the first time, so allow for an element of shrinkage!

    Of course, you always want to consider your child’s style preference. Once you’ve determined that what you’re purchasing fits your child’s needs and is functional, you can take a moment to find something that they’ll enjoy wearing.  Kids can be stubborn and I’ve often bought clothes that my kids refuse to wear at all.  Perhaps it’s best to take the kids with you and let them pick, then you can guarantee they’ll wear it and you won’t be wasting money.

    Lastly, after you purchase clothes for your children, you want to be sure they’re safe. Wash them before letting your children wear them, just like you would do with your towels or linens. This helps to remove any remaining substances or residue that may cause skin irritation.  If you’re choosing organic clothing then you might want to skip this step as they should have no chemicals on them at all.

    Kids clothing can quickly add up, especially when they outgrow it so quickly.  Here are four ways you can save money on kids clothes.

    4 quick tips on how to save money when buying clothes for children

    • Buy a size larger – obviously not so they look ridiculous or their clothes swamp them, but often with my daughter I have been able to buy a jumper or coat a size larger and it’s lasted for two years instead of one.  For my son I’ve been able to get away with buying even t-shirts a size larger as baggy t-shirts suit him more.
    • Check for second-hand bundles – check online marketplaces for people selling second-hand bundles of kids clothing at great prices.  These are particularly great for buying clothes for messy play, forest school and pre-school as you’ll not care about them getting marked or covered in paint!
    • Buy out of season – check the end of season sales for clothes for the following year.  Choose sizes a year ahead ready for next summer in the end of summer sales, for example.  Do the same in the winter sales and you’ll never have to pay full price for clothing again.
    • Swap with your friends – if you have older kids or your friends or family have older kids, then pass on your outgrown kids’ clothes and they’ll be happy to do the same to you.  I once even borrowed a big box of baby clothes from a friend and returned it once my son had grown out of them, ready for my friend’s new arrival!

    Buying kids clothes can sometimes be a challenge or a costly experience for any parent, but don’t get overwhelmed. Just follow a few simple guidelines and you’ll have your child ready to go no matter what the season – you might even have next season’s wardrobe ready and waiting if you’re savvy about it. Whether you’re buying for your first child or the fifth one, you’ll be a pro in no time!

     

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    Tips for saving money when buying kids clothes

  3. Autumn style staples for kids – how to have a capsule children’s wardrobe

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    Before even being aware of the minimalist trend and capsule wardrobe trend, I was following it – even for the kids.  I believe my obsession with living with less started when I moved home around ten times in my twenties and also lived for three years in a bedsit.  I lived in one room and simply couldn’t have a lot of stuff.  Moving house so often was also such a pain that it was easier to simply live with less stuff to make for an easier move!  I also have this secret desire to pack everything up and travel the world, so that’s only possible without getting attached to belongings and having only few things!

    In recent years the capsule wardrobe and living minimally has become very mainstream and even a trend.  Many aspire to live like it, but find it difficult.  I think this is because of the emotional attachment people have to objects and also the fault of consumerism where we’ve been made to believe that having lots of things is valuable.  Having children is often an excuse for owning more and more things and having an excuse to go along with it!  Kids come with a lot of stuff.  Yes they do, but you can still live minimally.

    Could you have a capsule wardrobe for your child?

    A friend recently visited and saw my daughter’s wardrobe and exclaimed ‘are all your daughter’s clothes in there?’  Confused, I replied, yes and she explained that she’d never be able to fit her three year olds clothes in such a small space.  I opened it up and she was even more astounded as it’s not even full!  I then proceeded to show her my son’s wardrobe and my wardrobe and she was shocked questioning ‘where’s all your clothes?!’

    My children each have a child sized wardrobe.  Reuben has a draw of shorts and jogging bottoms, a drawer of PJs and underwear, then no more than 10 tops hanging on the rail.  Bella has a drawer with leggings, shorts and skirts, a drawer of nightwear and underwear and then half the hanging rail is school uniform and half the rail is for play clothes – more like a third and a third though as there is lots of space.

    Autumn style staples for kids – how to have a capsule children’s wardrobe

    Bella's wardrobe!

    I honestly don’t see the need for any more.  It would just be a waste of money. We have enough so as we don’t run out of clothes when I get a couple of wash loads behind and that is all.  Plus the kids probably have slightly more than they need to cover sickness and messy play.  At any one time they probably have around 10 tops, 10 bottoms each, a couple of packs of underwear (a bit more for Reuben as he potty trained this year and there’s still the odd accident), 1-2 hoodies or cardigans, a rain coat each and a warm coat each.  That’s all they need!  Bella has a couple of dresses too and often her jersey dresses last for ages as when they are too short to be a dress, she’ll use it as a tunic/long top over her leggings.  They have a pair of wellies each, boots and two play shoes.  Their feet have both grown two sizes this year, so I don’t want to spend a fortune here only for them to outgrow them in a couple of months.  Plus they tend to just stick to one pair of their favourite trainers each and wear them almost every day for play.

    More is just a waste

    Clothes are always getting covered in muck, food, mud, paint, etc, from school, home, the park and nursery, so they often only get worn once or twice and then thrown in the wash basket.  I’ve the washing machine on almost every day, sometimes more than once, so clothes are constantly being washed and re-worn over and over.  Once they are too stained, grown out or worn through then they go in a charity bag (we always have a charity bag on the go, hung up in a cupboard) – our local charity shops can even sell worn out clothes or ruined clothes to the rag trade, so there’s never any waste.  Then we buy clothes as we need to, in replacement. 

    I’m sure many people have far too many clothes than they actually need, especially for their kids.  I’m amazed that my friend has too many clothes to fit in one wardrobe for her three year old.  I can only imagine the clothes don’t get as much wear as my kids’ clothes.  Kids grow out of things so quickly too; we are having to buy new clothes every season!

    Kids outgrow clothes constantly

    Right now I’m thinking about buying some autumn clothes for the kids.  As the weather is cooling we need to get some trousers, long sleeved tops, jumpers and a new warm coat for both Bella and Reuben.  Whilst us adults can wear our same clothes from last year, the kids really can’t!  They have shot up so much – Bella is probably a couple of inches taller already, maybe more!  We will find kids designer wear online by checking selling marketplaces such as eBay, have a browse in our local charity shops and also try to source new sustainable pieces from companies like H&M who sell recycled clothes and organic clothes in their conscious ranges.  Sometimes the cheapest brands do not last as long, but there are some surprises like H&M that make really high quality clothes – I’ve had some items of clothing from them for over ten years!

    How to create a kids autumn capsule wardrobe

    I’ll be checking what still fits them firstly, to ensure we aren’t buying things we don’t need.  For example, I do still have Bella’s winter coat from last year and it’s in great condition, so we’ll see if it does fit her still before getting a new one.  Occasionally coats are so large that they do last two year which is a bonus!

    Here are all the items you really need to create a kids capsule autumn wardrobe:

    ·         Warm coat

    ·         Rain coat

    ·         Wellies

    ·         2x Play pumps/trainers

    ·         Boots/hi-tops

    ·         10 bottoms

    ·         10 tops

    ·         2x hoodies/cardigans 

    That’s it!  I even think we are over buying with the tops and bottoms, but like I said, that’s to cover all messy eventualities and backlogs of washing like if we go away for a week and need extra clothes.  Two pairs of trainers are to cover when one pair might get soaked or super muddy.  Bella will have some winter boots, but Reuben will have some hi-top trainers for those cold wet days.

    Obviously this list doesn’t include pyjamas, underwear and socks and so on.  The kids usually have 3-4 packs of socks at any one time, 2-3 packs of underwear and around 4 pairs of pyjamas, though Reuben has been surviving on two pairs of PJs for a while!

    It’s totally possible to have a capsule wardrobe for your kids this autumn.  We make use of t-shirts that still fit from the summer to wear under hoodies and cardigans, until it’s really too cold to do so.  Providing they don’t have a sudden growth spurt then this wardrobe can even see them through the whole winter, saving money and making sure all the clothes get plenty of wear.

    At the moment my kids are six years and three years old, so they are still quite messy, especially the three year old!  I expect as they get older we can even cut down the amount of clothes they need.

     

    Related blog posts

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    How to create a warm and welcoming minimal dining room

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     Autumn style staples for kids – how to have a capsule children’s wardrobe

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  4. Unique ways to use a Femme Luxe mandala roundie circle beach throw

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    I was very kindly sent these beautiful paisley print and boho style beach ‘towels’ to try from online fashion retailer Femme Luxe.  The prints are absolutely stunning and they are the perfect accessory to take to the pool, beach and in fact a lot of other places as I will share with you below!  Read on to discover some unique ways to use a paisley print circle towel and I have a giveaway.

    The first thing to note is that these are not made from towelling.  Though they are called ‘towel’ they are actually a thin, lightweight silky material.  This makes them the perfect beach accessory and they fold up ever so small to be able to carry around easily, but they will not replace your actual beach towel for being able to dry you!  Because they are not actually towel material means they have lots more uses than just sitting on. And, of course, they’re also perfect for beautiful summer Instagram photos!

    Blog Giveaway – Win a beautiful paisley print circle towel by Femme Luxe

    Femme Luxe Blue Paisley Circle Towel

    Here are some of the many ways you can use one of these beautiful circle towels:

    On the beach

    These will be great for stopping you getting covered in sand; something beautiful to sit on at the beach if, like me, you hate getting sandy bits, especially if you won’t be hopping in the sea that day.

    For a picnic

    The prettiest picnic around!  Perfect for sitting on, but also a beautiful way to display and lay out the picnic food.

    At a festival

    I’ll be off to a festival this weekend and I’ll be carrying both in my bag!  Perfect for when we want to take a break and sit down, but don’t want to sit on the grass.  These will be so great for any situation where we need to sit on a floor or grass but want something a little protective to sit on.

    To pretty up your bed

    These make an excellent addition to a bedspread, as a sort of throw over the top, which will add more interesting textile and pattern to your bedroom.

    As table decoration

    Yep, forget dull or uninspiring table cloths and use this as a beautiful centrepiece for your dining table.

    I bet there are so many more ways I haven’t even thought of, but these pretty towels will be a staple piece in my handbag throughout the summer for sitting on at parks and festivals.

    Blog Giveaway – Win a beautiful paisley print circle towel by Femme Luxe pu

    Femme Luxe Purple Paisley Towel

    Giveaway – win a purple paisley print for yourself!

    I also have two to giveaway!  Today I’ll be giving away the beautiful purple colour and pop back to my giveaway section next week for a chance to win the blue version too! 

    Don’t bin it!

    I really hope you’ll love your new towel for years to come, but if you ever get bored of it, please don’t throw it away.  Landfills are too full of things that can be reused, reworn and recycled.  For inspiration on what to do with your worn out or unwanted clothes and textiles, please read my blog post: 13 ways to get rid of unwanted clothes (without binning them)

    Enter here:

    The full terms and conditions are below, but simply enter using one or more of the entry methods in the Rafflecopter widget below and remember, if you win your delivery address must be in the UK.

    Check out my Giveaways section for more amazing prizes!

    Suggestions of my blog posts to read for one of the entry options:

    The top 3 ways I made money from home in 2017
    Get paid to test websites from home (£5 per 20 minutes)
    Get paid doing simple tasks from your phone with Streetbees
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    a Rafflecopter giveaway

     

    Term and Conditions:

    • There will be one winner
    • The prize is the purple paisley print circle towel
    • The prize must be claimed within 28 days of the first winner's notification email being sent.
    • There is no cash alternative
    • There is no limit on the number of entries per person, follow the instructions to enable multiple entries
    • Winners will be notified within 28 days
    • The winner must claim their prize within 28 days or it will be forfeited
    • All entries must be received by the date and time specified
    • The winner will be picked at random by Rafflecopter & notified by email
    • Giveaways are open to the UK only

     

     

     

  5. How thigh saver shorts can save you in the summer

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    The weather of the past few days has been more comparable to the British summers we know, but it’s still thankfully been very warm.  Before the past few days we were perhaps having the longest heatwave I can remember since being a child; temperatures in the top twenties and even thirties for weeks on end.  Bliss!  I live for the summer and long to wear lightweight clothing with fewer layers; however as a female that doesn’t come without its difficulties.  Today I’m going to share with you a female fashion item that is great for the summer and for so many reasons.  This confidence boosting summer fashion item is the thigh saver shorts which you can find at online intimates store Knix.  These lightweight innovative shorts are a staple piece for any female’s wardrobe.

    Here are 5 reasons thigh saver shorts can save you in the summer:

    How thigh saver shorts can save you in the summer

    Photo by Allef Vinicius 

    Stay dry

    Ever got up off a plastic chair on a hot summer’s day and left a sweat patch?  I have.  I’ll tell you the last time I did it too – at the hairdressers.  A warm environment anyway and it was during a heatwave so I was quite literally dripping  Embarrasing.  These thigh saver shorts are great for absorbing sweat and preventing such sweaty situations.

    No VPL

    Visible panty lines, also known as VPLs, can be banished with thigh saver shorts without having to resort to uncomfortable G-string style pants.  OK you may be a fan of the thong, but not me.  It’s uncomfortable and too revealing for me so it doesn’t make me feel confident or protected.  Previously it was the only option to stop knicker lines through tight clothing, but thigh savers are like a second skin that start high and finish on the leg, preventing any visible panty lines.

    Prevent chaffing

    No more painful chaffing or rashes when your thighs rub together as a thigh slip will provide a protective barrier.  There are powders and creams and all sorts of magical potions that promise to prevent ‘chub rub’, but thigh savers are reusable and provide so many other benefits making them a cost effective choice.

    No getting stuck to chairs

    Never mind sweating on chairs, but what about getting stuck to them?  Bare thighs and faux leather sofas or plastic patio chairs can be a nightmare combination in hot weather, but not when you’re wearing your thigh slips.

    No flashing

    Ooze confidence on hot sunny days when wearing short skirts or dresses without fear a gust of wind will flash your private parts to passers-by!  Thigh shorts will provide an extra layer of security between your most intimate parts and your clothes ensuring nothing is ever revealed.  Protect your modesty with ease.

    Whilst we all look forward to summer, it can also be a season us females dread with embarrassing body situations.  Luckily there are some great fashion products available to boost our body confidence whilst allowing us to still be comfortable whilst wearing them.  If you’re comfortable, then you’ll be confident and happy.

     

    If you want to check out my style and ‘mum fashion’ then click to follow me on Instagram where I share regular outfit posts. 

    More fashion blog posts you may enjoy:

    How to get the perfect summer look

    Tips for transitioning your wardrobe from winter to spring

    Unique and alternative uses for a fashion scarf

    Easy ways to update your look on a budget

    Find your perfect slimming swimsuit at Fashion World with Magisculpt

    13 ways to get rid of unwanted clothes (without binning them)

    How to shop more ethically and sustainably for clothing

     How thigh saver shorts can save you in the summer

    Collaboration