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.
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!