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Are there ANY kid clothes out there without gender messages???

post #1 of 92
Thread Starter 
I am getting so frustrated trying to find clothes for my son and I wanted to see what you all do! He's 7 months, but he's big, and he's wearing 12 month clothes. I'm really trying to avoid strong gender messages all over his clothes. I mean, I don't mind some blue clothes or trucks or whatever, but I don't want ALL his clothes, ALL the time to scream "boy stuff!" I'd like some neutral stuff. It was easier at first - there are plenty of yellow, green and beige clothes for 0-9 months, with gender neutral themes like teddy bears or ducks. But now in the 12 month stuff it's harder to find anything neutral. I've looked at 18 month and toddler size stuff that he will probably need by spring, and it seems impossible to find anything gender neutral in those sizes!

I'm just really frustrated. Just because I have a boy does not mean he will automatically like sports, dinosaurs, and trucks - but I can't find any clothes that don't proclaim his love of those things. I was shopping in one store and EVERY single toddler boy outfit had a sports theme - they all said "All Star" or "Varsity Team" or something similar, with pictures of sports equipment. His grandmother got him an outfit that says "I like trucks and dirt!" on it... but he's not old enough to voice an opinion about whether he actually likes trucks. I did recently buy him some onesies with cars - like I said, I don't need EVERYTHING to be neutral. I just don't like that I feel like he's already being stuck in a box based on gender - what if he likes music or playing with cooking stuff, and doesn't like sports or playing with trucks? That would be fine with me! Heck, even animals are gendered - cats are for girls and dogs are for boys, at least in the world of baby clothes. Is anyone else out there so bothered by your child being told what they are "supposed" to like from such a young age? What do you do about clothes? What other gendered items (toys, etc) do you find problematic? I can't wait to read other mamas' experiences!
post #2 of 92
Originally Posted by April Dawn View Post
But now in the 12 month stuff it's harder to find anything neutral. I've looked at 18 month and toddler size stuff that he will probably need by spring, and it seems impossible to find anything gender neutral in those sizes!
When the spring clothing starts coming out at Walmart and Target (for example), you'll probably be able to find a lot of plain, solid-colored shirts and undecorated khakis and shorts. Old Navy generally has pretty unremarkable plain or striped shirts in the toddler boys section in those sizes as well (http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/category.do?cid=36097), and plain "gym pants."
post #3 of 92
We put m daughter in whatever we liked. She wore a little outfit that was green and red plaid with a dino on the front, and she totally pulled it off! I'm sure it was for a boy, but, you know what, she loves dino's too!

I sure that doesn't work for a boy as well, but we know how you feel.
post #4 of 92
At that age, I had a hard time too. My kids are older, but I love the kid's line at American Eagle. They seem to be better quality than Old Navy, Target, etc. and they aren't limited to trucks and balls. The smallest sizes are 2T though.
post #5 of 92
It's tough to find gender-neutral clothes for children at ANY age. I buy plain (solid-colour_ T-shirts whenever I can find them. Here in Canada, the chain department stores carry them, and usually the selection is better at the beginning of the season.

Actually, when my son was a toddler, we used to have fun fabric-painting his shirts. (By "we," I guess I mean me. He didn't try his hand at painting a shirt till he was closer to 3.5.)
post #6 of 92
I look for Levi's jeans for my children. Those are about the only jeans that I can pass down from dd to ds...
post #7 of 92
I hate baby outfits with stuff (esp writing) on them, and I never really have much of a problem finding things....

I found lots of stuff at Old Navy - I usually find most of my stuff there. Grey and blue striped one piece rompers with hoodies, beige and cream rompers with hoodies, a blue one piece with orange stripes on the sleeve and a kangaroo pocket, several rompers from Hanna Andersson that are either only stripes or solids, etc.

And sometimes just a plain or striped shirt with some denim or khaki overalls.

Can you tell I dress my babies in only one pieces?

Things like this:

And at Old Navy - here's a boat load of stuff: http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/category.do?cid=6177

BabyGap too:
post #8 of 92
Gymboree has gender neutral themes going most of the time. A couple or years back the did a really cute hedgehog theme. DS had a few items from the boys side (overalls, a polo shirt, etc) plus the vibrating hedgehog toy, and one of the little girls in his Music Together class had a dress and cardigan from the girls side of the store. It was so cute the day they showed up in matching outfits just by chance.

Another place we get neutral t-shirts is Threadless. They sometimes have really good sales, so you can hold out for those. If you sign up, you can vote for new designs and you can keep stuff in your shopping cart for ages waiting for sales (they even email you if they only have 5 or so left in the size you want while you're waiting.)
post #9 of 92
We've had good luck at Old Navy (lots of plain shirts in mustard, orange, brown and tons of striped shirts) as well as Target. Last year I got several one piece outfits from Target with stripes or sea animal motifs-- one had an octopus on it, for example.
post #10 of 92
I like the Garanimals stuff from Wal Mart... basic stripes and solids with no pictures/writing on them in cotton shirts pants... and the best thing is that they are only $3 a piece. Granted the boys stuff is in "boy colors" (blues, greens, browns, reds, etc) but I guess I don't worry too much about that.
post #11 of 92
I've been buying DS a lot of solid and striped thermals this winter from Old Navy and Target usually has some plain or striped tee shirts. Hanna has some nice stuff and for a wide variety solid colored basics you can try BasicBrilliance.com or American Apparel. (AA runs REALLY small but I love their hoodies and karate pants)
post #12 of 92
I guess I don't see what the big deal is about what is on his clothes unless he is very aware of it. My daughter is almost 2 and the only thing wardrobe-wise she cares about is having "pretties" in her hair because mommy does.
If he can't read yet what his shirt says only effects those around him not him or his perception of gender.

Then again, maybe I really don't understand the issue.
post #13 of 92
I love the baby clothes at Rugged Bear.
post #14 of 92
I had great luck at consignment stores. My little boy wore pink, blue, green, brown - all colors, really. It wasn't hard to find. Lots of bugs, butterflies, fish, stars, firetrucks, etc.

You could also try Lands End.

Also, Grow is closing out their line of cotton clothing and everything is $10 or less. It's super cute and sturdy, and there's lots of plain/stripes/non-gendered pics. If I had a little one, I'd be stocking up.

post #15 of 92
Try Target and believe it or not Macy's. There are a lot of brands of clothing there that are gender neutral and right now they have an amazing sale so the stuff is super, super inexpensive.
post #16 of 92
Zutano makes gender neutral cothing.

Cheaper clothing and mass marketed (GAP, Gymboree, mall stores and the like) are generally gender specific. Urban baby boutiques and specialty stores are the best places to look.
post #17 of 92
Lands End actually has some really good shirts. My DD got several from relatives this year that could easily be worn by a boy. They are more expensive, but if you go to their website right now, they have a good sale on.
post #18 of 92
it is hard to find "plain" clothes for kids of any age or sex. I hate having the boys plastered in cartoons or (IMO) worse advertisements. Some of the places I have been able to find plain stuff has been:

walmart: their garanimal lines have basic solid colored T's or Stipes. Minimally screenprinted pants and shirts as well. They tend to have a lot of plain basics

Target: Also have at teh start of each season some selection of plain t's or bottoms. The key is to shop EARLY in the season. Like target now has spring stuff out locally.

I like to shop at Gymboree or childrens place a lot as I hand down clothes from child to another and for us it seems to last and wear better. I only buy jeans from them (i have picky boys though) and they do carry a lot of solid colored t's (long andshort) and definately plain bottoms. I have rarely seen bottms with a print on them from them. Also they tend to do a lot stripes, some stuff is "sporty" to make them look like they are player #'s.
post #19 of 92
We've tended to buy very basic clothes for both DS and DD. DS has mostly solid-colored or striped shirts and jeans and khakis. They're all easy mix-and-match. It's great!
post #20 of 92
American Apparel's baby and kid clothes are almost all unisex. They run small though so order up a size (my 4yo wears a 6, my 6 yo wears an 8). Their t-shirts are very soft and are more fitted/flattering than most kids' t-shirts.
We also have lots of Old Navy and Gap. Gap usually has a boy, girl, and neutral option in their baby lines.
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