Buying clothes for next year - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 18 Old 02-11-2011, 07:37 AM - Thread Starter
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With so many sales and the end of the season on winter clothes - there are great deals.  Do you purchase clothes for next year in advance?    


My DS is 2.5 yrs old and wearing 2T for just about everything.  He is pretty much on track for height and weight.     Is it pretty safe bet to purchase winter clothes in 3T for next year?

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#2 of 18 Old 02-11-2011, 08:00 AM
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i've always had awful luck buying ahead.


dd1 would often wear the same size for 2yrs.



though i'm still tempted by the sales.  i just bought dd2 a winter coat for next year (she's 12m and bought a 24m) and i just tried it on and it fits now!  so now i have to decide if i should get a 3Tdizzy.gif

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#3 of 18 Old 02-11-2011, 08:19 AM
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DD is all over the place with sizes.  When she was 9/10 months old she was already wearing 2T!!! Guess what she's wearing now that she's 2? 2T/3T!  She kind of fluctuates between the two depending on if it's right before or after a growth spurt (right before a growth spurt she puts on a big belly and then overnight she's an inch taller and has lost the belly completely).  I don't think buying ahead is a problem but we usually buy stuff slightly bigger that she can already wear (for instance, if we're buying something new for her it's always 3T or 4T now). 

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#4 of 18 Old 02-11-2011, 08:20 AM
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I always buy ahead, very rarely have I ever had it not work out. I have to tailer it individually to each child, their growth, and age. It sounds like 3T should work for your DS next winter. 

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#5 of 18 Old 02-11-2011, 09:08 AM
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I have just started to buy ahead.  I buy clothes that can be layered for the winter time and not too hot for the summer.  

For example, tea collection had their short sleeve and sleeveless dresses on sale.  I know my daughter will be fine in them for the summer and I can add a long sleeve shirt with leggings for the fall/winter.


Also I try not to buy more than a year ahead.


Good luck

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#6 of 18 Old 02-12-2011, 12:33 AM
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I've found that buying on time and maybe going to local second hand stores or consignment or thriftstores is a much cheaper choice than buying clothing even for half a year ahead in time. I had tried this late last spring during a large consignment sale for the summer and a lot of things I bought to big, because he did not grow as fast I expected. In the fall I bought some snowsuits, sweaters and mittens for the months ahead and was wrong again because the same guy went through 2 sizes of clothing already since october.  


In the long run, it just does not seem a very prudent shopping method to me.

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#7 of 18 Old 02-12-2011, 05:21 AM
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i think it works out for non-season specific items of clothing. even generally "warmer" weather and "cooler" weather stuff (like sweaters versus shorts) because then you're working with a longer time period, but for something so specific like a winter coat that really NEEDS to fit for a 2-3 month period, i wouldn't bother. but i don't know how cold it gets where you are... if you're just talking like a couple sweaters and long sleeves, then yeah you probably can. i've bought my dd some bigger stuff that can be used anytime, but i wouldn't dare buy her a snowsuit this far in advance... she's just too hard to predict in the growing department.

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#8 of 18 Old 02-12-2011, 05:30 AM
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We live in Brazil so even our "winters" are pretty warm.  Normally just a light sweatshirt will do and layering so buying ahead will be pretty easy for us (we've gone swimming at the beach before in the middle of winter, for instance).


ETA in the summers it's so hot most kids just run around in a diaper anyways too. winky.gif

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#9 of 18 Old 02-12-2011, 09:24 AM
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I can't buy ahead, I tried with DS and ended up with a ton of clothes that he outgrew before we hit the right season and a bunch of clothes that he didn't fit in, in the right season and outgrew before we hit the season again.  I will occasionally now buy him clothes 1 size ahead for the following year, but in general I just go ahead and buy on sale for that season in that season.


With DD she is so tiny I can't buy ahead for her either.  She is almost 2 and in 12 month pants and 18 month tops.  She is still wearing half the clothes we bought her last year before she turned 1.  She doesn't actually need any clothes this summer because she will fit in everything that she wore last summer at this point in time.


I think it really depends on the child, but with both of mine I tend to just buy in season because I hated buying things at the end of one season and never getting to use it because it fit in the wrong season, because of their growth patterns.

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#10 of 18 Old 02-13-2011, 05:27 AM
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I do buy ahead as well. Mostly, I try not to buy too much of anything. A couple pairs of pants, a couple shirts or sweatshirts. That way, even if he has a growth spurt, he'll still get use out of it. A few pairs of long pants for the summer, a few t shirts to layer in the winter.
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#11 of 18 Old 02-13-2011, 08:27 AM
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i do it but dd is only 16 months so it could still fail miserably. maybe i have more time on my hands with just one and SAH but i scour a nearby salvation army every so often where apparently enough well-to-do folks drop off their name brand kids clothes. so in that case i always buy. especially coats, i think i have up to 4t and they tend to run pretty generous (dd is still wearing a hand-me-down 9 mo size which her 2 yo cousin also fits in....huh....) so i figure there's gotta be one that'll fit for any year.


i also like the sale racks at target. every so often the cutest stuff is marked down to like $1.75 and around there. in any case, since i'm buying ahead and dd has plenty, i don;t buy anything over $5.00 unless it's extraordinary.


it also might be easier to make this work with a girl because you can fudge on sizes so much just due to the type of clothes. she's been wearing 2T peasant tops as dresses since she was an infant and they just stay in her closet until they fit her more like a shirt. or vice versa she can wear a too-small dress as a top. seriously there's a 3-6 month sweater in her closet that she still wears. 


and i don't worry so much about seasons. i can always layer in the winter so at some point everything's gonna get use..i think. 

there are a couple items i took gambles on like a summer romper type thing which pretty much can only be worn when it's hot and has to fit but since i bought it for like $3 it's water under the bridge if it doesn't work out. there may be another kid down the line, either mine or a friend's, who can wear it. (or you could consign!)

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#12 of 18 Old 02-13-2011, 09:41 PM
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I've used hand me downs and sometimes bought ahead and it has gone really well with both my kids.  They both grew like weeds as babies, but once they started running around they grew more normally/slower.  I tend to buy big and not feel bad about my kid wearing a big jacket.  So for winter jackets this year my DS's jacket is big - but you know what?  It still keeps him warm, the cuffs hold the sleeves up fine so they aren't a problem, and I don't care that it is a little longer on him.  So DS will use this jacket for at least another year.  I had DD wearing one winter jacket two years in a row too.  I do hope in the back of my mind that DD will fit hers again next year too (it's so cute and they coordinate!), but if she doesn't, oh well, DS can wear it later. 


I think it matters what item you're buying and what your expectations are.  General clothes like pants and t-shirts can be worn all year here, so they always work.  Long sleeved shirts have a long season too.  Shorts and tank tops are hardly worth owning, but we have a few.  So really, besides shorts we have long windows on when things will fit so we really don't have a problem.



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#13 of 18 Old 02-17-2011, 03:25 PM
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I just did this today. Kohl's had a bunch of clothes on clearance and I bought several items for DS for next winter, in 3T (sleepers, church shirts, casual shirts, pants). Great deals! We have cool enough but mild weather (Seattle) that he can wear stuff a good bit of the year if sizing is a little off. He's 22 mo and 2T fits him well now.

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#14 of 18 Old 02-17-2011, 05:58 PM
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I did this today! I was at Babies R Us looking for a gift for a baby shower and ended up buying my 16 month old some shirts in size 24 months for the fall. She is just like my other two were, right on the money with her sizes. She actually is very small for her age, only 19 lbs so I know by the fall and most likely in to next winter she will be in 24 months. :)

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#15 of 18 Old 02-18-2011, 06:51 AM
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I buy ahead for both my girls, and the only things that didn't work out initially were longjohn style PJs (because they're so snug, they're outgrown quickly). So now I buy PJs two sizes up. Everything else I just buy up a size. I've had really good luck doing it that way. 

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#16 of 18 Old 02-19-2011, 06:42 AM
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I don't think I would do it for smaller than size 3t, but my older daughter is kind of odd in how she has grown so far. :)  Both of my kids have been in 12 month clothes by 5 months and my 2.75 year old is wearing 4t.  But she wore 2t for almost a year.  *shrug*  At this point I will buy in advance because we live in Northern California and our weather variance isn't that big.  She wears short sleeves and leggings year round at this point because she just doesn't get cold.  I think it is weird, but she got it from my husband. :)

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#17 of 18 Old 02-19-2011, 01:12 PM
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Buying ahead never really worked for me.  I have some success with saving clothes and passing them down but you never really know what the child's choice will be, yk?  My daughter is *really* picky about what she will wear and has flat out refused certain things for years. She is also sensitive to clothing (doesn't really like stiff jeans, etc.).  Buying ahead for her is a huge waste of time and money. 


I've saved things for my toddler boy from his big brothers--but just wait until the season to get them their winter stuff. 


Lands End is constantly having sales, and I've never paid more the 50 per cent on their jackets. 

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#18 of 18 Old 02-19-2011, 07:07 PM
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I think 3T sounds like a safe bet for your little guy.  I always buy ahead, so far I've gotten all winter coats under $10 a piece.  I'd rather buy 2 different sizes at that price than one at regular price.  The only thing I've gotten "wrong" so far is shorts.  I'm not sure if my skinny guy will need the 3T shorts I bought ahead (brand new at $.74/piece) this summer even though he is in 3T pants for length.

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