Buying children's clothes ahead of time, how to do it frugally? - Mothering Forums

 
Thread Tools
#1 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 01:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
Olma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Sunny side of Brussels
Posts: 123
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I always buy my children's clothes on clearance at the end of season for next year. I hate to pay full price for anything, so I stock up when given the chance.
But, I end up with duplicates because I can't remember exactly what I have already, or with clothes that my children won't wear because they don't like them -- either the fabric is too scratchy, or not comfortable enough or whatever reason...Also, it's a bit of a gamble sizing wise...
I came to realize that it's no longer frugal what I do because I spend money on stuff that doesn't get worn and I can't take back. I can sell them twice a year at a mom's club semi-annual sale, but I don't make my money back.
Money is very tight this year and I would like to take advantage of the sales ( i have gymbucks to redeem from gymboree as well) but I don't know anymore how to do it really frugally. Should I just give up on clearance sale and buy less as the need arise? I really, really hate to pay full price though.
I feel I should be able to figure out this myself but my brain is failing me at the moment...
Any thoughts?
Olma is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 01:42 PM
 
painefaria's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: On the road again
Posts: 1,196
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We buy basics at the sales. Only plain fabrics, jeans, and shirts. Things that you really can't have too many of. The other thing that we do is if something doesn't work for DS we put it in the gift pile. I keep all of the tags on everything and just wait. It works well for those last minute Christmas presents, but i am not sure if that would work for you. We also keep everything in one place and I will check what I have before we are heading out to Kohls, CP, or carters because we are heading there for sales etc.

S & Y
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
and 3 DS... H (8) and K (4) and Mr Impatient S (33 weeker born in July 15)!
  
painefaria is offline  
#3 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 01:48 PM
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 4,867
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
You can get name brand clothing in good condition at resale/goodwill shops.There is usually one day a week when cloths is half off or 50 cents per item. I have seen some that load up on cloths,and turn around and resell them.

Unfortunately more people are shoping at thrifts and I see those prices going up.My mom swears by Kohls and JCpenny for good clearance options.

I only buy at regular stores/regular price if we REALLY need it....like a coat or boots.With all the resale shopping we do I feel it is OK to buy new once in a while.

Ebay is getting pricey with all their charges,but you can still get a decent amount on craigslist when selling things.
sahli29 is offline  
#4 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 02:15 PM
 
bobandjess99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Northern IN
Posts: 5,835
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Well...how old are your kids? If they're older than about 4, they can probably be in on the choosing of the clothes. Size wise, you just have to be as careful as you can. It involves work, like knowing how different sizes run in different stores/brands.
Or, alternatively, you could pick one place and just pertty much shop from there.
I got dd's entire summer wardrobe for next year from a childrens palce sale last summer. Sicne it bought it all at once, iknew exactly what was there.
I actually think you should probably buy less, regardless of when you buy. Chances are, you buy too many clothes, especially if there are so many you forget about them.
There are 7 days in a week. If your child has more than 7 outfits...why? There are some reason why of course..a potty training toddler might go througha number of pants ina day, you might need ot have a set of "school" clothes or uniforms, and a set of play clothes, as well as a couple oif dresses or "church" clothes, but in general, there is absolutely NO reason, none whatsoever, to have more than about 10 changes of clothes, there just isn't.

I actually found that simply by reframing my mind to THAT mentailty....itmade things so much easie. I no longer HAD ot shop around fo rth "best deal", but could buy things at a reasonable price, because when you only need just a few outfits, you can spend a tad more.

CPST
bobandjess99 is offline  
#5 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 02:43 PM
 
karlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Rapid City, SD
Posts: 865
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I shop thrift stores and garage sales for the bulk of my son's clothing. I can get much better quality and brand names then if I were to buy new. Plus, if they don't fit right or whatever, it's not a big deal to sell them at a garage sale or give them away. Plus, buying used fits in with my compacting philosophy. There's so much good used stuff out there, may as well use it.
karlin is offline  
#6 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 02:48 PM
 
ASusan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Midwest
Posts: 4,839
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobandjess99 View Post
I actually think you should probably buy less, regardless of when you buy. Chances are, you buy too many clothes, especially if there are so many you forget about them.
There are 7 days in a week. If your child has more than 7 outfits...why? There are some reason why of course..a potty training toddler might go througha number of pants ina day, you might need ot have a set of "school" clothes or uniforms, and a set of play clothes, as well as a couple oif dresses or "church" clothes, but in general, there is absolutely NO reason, none whatsoever, to have more than about 10 changes of clothes, there just isn't.

I actually found that simply by reframing my mind to THAT mentailty....itmade things so much easie. I no longer HAD ot shop around fo rth "best deal", but could buy things at a reasonable price, because when you only need just a few outfits, you can spend a tad more.

This. I cannot seem to be successful in buying clearance ahead of time. I keep DS wardrobe to an absolute minimum. I rarely pay full price, but I no longer attempt to stock up for an upcoming season. I just can't predict what size he will need. Basics, like t-shirts and leggings, I will buy ahead and in larger sizes. But other than that, I get things pretty much as needed.

DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

ASusan is offline  
#7 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 03:03 PM
 
Leta's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Ishpeming, MI
Posts: 3,458
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This is my method.

1) I keep one plastic storage box of clothes per kid. That's it. But, I only have two kids, and they are different sexes.

2) I let my relatives know that I love thrift store/garage sale/hand me down finds. Consequently, I get boxes of stuff mailed to me at least once a year, by my mom, my SIL, and an aunt.

3) I create outfits. DD and DS share a super tiny closet and a tiny dresser, so this system was born out of desperation. All that goes in the dresser are socks, undies, and pjs. Everything else gets hung up in complete outfits- shirt, pants, sweater or dress, tights, for example. Each complete outfit exists on a single hanger. This saves time getting them dressed and TONS of closet space. It takes a little, but not much, longer to put laundry away.

4) When I have my size five boxes of magical mail clothes for DD, I sort thru, create my outfits, and see what's left over. Last box from SIL contained a black tank top with sparkly pink and white rhinestone skulls on it. DD loved it, but had nothing to go with it. So I went to the thrift store (we have 8 on fairly regular rotation) and bought her a long sleeved black T shirt and pink jeans for a total of $2.50. To complete her fall/winter wardrobe, I also bought a yellow sweatshirt ($1), two pairs of jeans ($3), a pair of pink snowpants ($5) and a new pair of waterproof mittens with clips ($7). So that's under $20 for clothes, including outerwear.

5) If there's anything left over that I cannot create an outfit for, or just don't like, I donate it. This happens quite a bit, but it's no big deal. My kids always have tons of clothes.

6) I do shoes separately. Because shoes are more expensive, I buy further ahead. I pay between $1 and $5 for kids shoes. I'm more inclined to shop retail sales for shoes, as well. I've established a shoe wardrobe for DD (DS isn't walking yet): dress shoes, loafers, tennis shoes, rubber boots, sandals, and snow boots. Right now, DD is a size 10 or 10.5, so I am buying size 11 shoes and boots. I've found tennis shoes and rubber boots for $1 a pair, and it'll be awhile until she's in an 11, so I have lots of time to look around for the other four pairs.

ETA: 7) We just buy socks and underwear retail, though my relatives sometimes include them in their magical mail clothes boxes.

Trying to turn hearts and minds toward universal healthcare, one post at a time.
Leta is offline  
#8 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 03:10 PM
 
ASusan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Midwest
Posts: 4,839
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I agree with the "creating outfits" method. I used this until this winter. Now almost all of his tops go with all of his bottoms, so there is less need to do this.

The method works well for seasons where you have to choose short-or-long sleeves, pants-or-shorts each day. In the winter, DS wears the same type of athletic pants and long-sleeved top each day, so very little choosing. (and very little decision making when I buy, too!)

DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

ASusan is offline  
#9 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 03:29 PM
 
spring978's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Oregon
Posts: 599
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I buy only certain color groups so all of DS clothes will go together. So he has 2 sweatshirts that still fit from last year that match this years stuff and 2 larger sweatshirts that will follow into next year.

He can pick out what he wants to wear and it always goes together.

This saves me money since I dont just pick up cute things that are a good deal. If the dont cordinate they dont get purchased.

I use to find I was buying that cute whatever casue it was only a coule of bucks and it might never get worn

I use the tub method and I keep a list on the outside of the tub pants summer shirts, winter shirts, jammies,shoes and shorts.
spring978 is offline  
#10 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 03:49 PM
 
HappyLittleHouse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: California
Posts: 188
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I made a spreadsheet of a complete wardrobe in each kid's next size, keep it in my wallet, and mark off when I get things.
HappyLittleHouse is offline  
#11 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 03:49 PM
 
Ruthla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 43,687
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
I would stick with only the basics when you hit the clearance sales. Pants can be tricky to fit- you can't just "buy big" because then they're unwearable and dangerous. Also, your child might need a husky or a slim next year, even if they're not wearing that now (what if your kid shoots up in height but doesnt' gain much in the waist or hips?) I'd suggest waiting with pants and then buy them closer to when they're actually going to be worn. Exceptions to this rule are leggings and thermal underwear style pajama pants- those CAN be worn big.

Tops you can definitely buy ahead. Whatever size your kid is wearing now, go up a size or two for next year (for ages 3 and up- baby and toddler sizes change too unpredictably for this to work.) Shirts can be a bit too big and still work, and "exact fit" just isn't as important as with pants. And I'd stick to basics- no turtlenecks or itchy designs, but basic solid (or simple prings) crewnecks or henleys shouldn't go to waste. I also woudln't buy more than 3 or 4 shirts per size. Dresses and pajamas generally fit like tops- those things are OK to buy ahead.

If you buy socks and/or underwear in the next size, they'll be used eventually, even if they're still too big next year (and even if they're needed BEFORE next winter.)

Maybe make up a small notebook of what clothes you already have in what sizes, so you can keep the list with you when you're out shopping.

I don't recomend buying ahead for infants or preteens, especially not adolescent girls. IT's really hard to predict how fast babies will grow, and there's a real risk of winter clothes fitting the summer before OR after you planned on using them. With pubescent girls, their bodies change shape from month to month, and it's nearly impossible to plan for a full year ahead (not even with underwear.) A girl wearing a size 12 might need a girls' 14 next year, or she might need a junior's small/ women's XS, or she might even jump two or three sizes (in either girls OR women's.) Besides, many girls are very picky about their clothes and want to pick them out themselves long before rapid size changes become an issue.

Ruth, single mommy to 3 quasi-adults
Ruthla is offline  
#12 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 04:10 PM
 
cschick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 896
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I only have one kid, which makes it a bit easier . . .

What I generally do is, just before the clearance sales are about to start, I go through the closet and pull out everything I already have, and organize it. Like right now, I have various piles of 4T, 5, and 6 clothing (my child is just about to grow out of 3T height-wise). I'll probably head over to Old Navy to shop seasonal clearance this weekend, so on Friday I should pull out the 4/4T and 5 sized clothing and see what I have, see what I need.

Generally what I like to have per season is 7-8 pairs of bottoms, 10-12 tops. A winter jacket, a pair of boots, snowpants and a couple of pairs of hats+mittens for winter. A couple of sweaters/hoodies/sweat shirts per size. 3-4 pairs of nightwear. 2 pairs of shoes per size, something tennis-shoe like and something a bit nicer (generally, Lands End all-weather mocs). 1 pair of sandals per summer.

I tend to purchase simple things clothing-wise. Basic striped shirts, basic solid shirts. My child currently refuses to wear jeans of any sort and has for over a year, so say for next winter I'll probably want 4-5 pairs of sweats and/or flannel pants, 1-2 pairs of khaki-type "dressier" pants, and 1 pair of jeans if I can find one really damn cheap (in case he decides he will wear them over the next year . . . .)

I know I don't need winter jackets for the next two or so winters, because my neighbor gave me several high-quality size 4, 5, and 6 winter jackets.

Now that I think about it, I think I'm almost there in size 4 anyhow. Target had sweatpants and flannel pants on clearance for $2-3 a week or so ago, and I bought 5 pairs. I also bought 4 long-sleeve shirts that were about $2/each as well. Along with the stuff I've inherited from neighbors and other stuff I've bought, I may have a full size 4 wardrobe.

But I'll organize it all, and decide if I even need.
cschick is offline  
#13 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 04:18 PM
 
AlwaysByMySide's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Chattanooga
Posts: 1,658
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've been doing this ever since my first was born. (In fact, she's got some jeans that are four sizes bigger than she's wearing now, in a storage container down in the garage.) One of our local thrift stores does 30%/50%/70% off every day on particular colors of tags. If I see something generic like jeans, neutral sweaters, or basic shirts/shorts, and they are 50% or more off the thrift store price, I buy them. When it's $1 or $2, it makes no sense - to me - NOT to buy them. There also tends to be a run on seasonal clothes right when the cold/warm weather comes in, and you'll be out of luck if you're looking for jeans at the thrift store after the first good cold front comes in for the season, for instance.

I also shop yard sales, but will generally only buy one or two sizes larger at those. Also, if basics like underwear or socks go on sale for buy one get one free, or clearance, at a big box store, I usually go ahead and pick them up as well.

Kohls and JCPenney do have great clearance sales. I also buy winter coats 1-2 sizes larger when they go on clearance in the spring...my kids are wearing $50+ coats right now that I bought for $10 at Old Navy after Easter last year. I wouldn't be able to afford two $50 coats for a few months' of wear.

That said, I'm also working on coming up with a worksheet-type system for my purse, since my DS somehow ended up with seven pairs of jeans, when I went to pull everything out for the winter. (Some were hand me downs, but the rest just got accumulated somehow!) I also agree that the kids' wardrobes get out of hand sometimes, and I'm looking to pare down to 10 outfits each. Life is so much simpler that way.

Single WAHM to 5yo DD, 2yo DS, and forever 7 week old angel DD.
AlwaysByMySide is offline  
#14 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 04:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
Olma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Sunny side of Brussels
Posts: 123
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks ladies for all the ideas. My kids are 6 and 4, boy and girl, in school full time, so they need clothes for school (one outfit per day I find, with them playing outside everyday and being clumsy and with all sorts of accidents), clothes for around the house and couple of nicer outfits for church and such.

I realize now my biggest problem is storage. It's a really PITA to access the stored clothes to see what needs buying and what not. Also, outfits, thanks for those who suggested those, specially for my DD. I would find some cute top but with no bottoms to match or vice-versa. From now on, outfits is the word .
I also need to realize that my kids are not growing as fast as they used to and also they tend to have fewer accidents as before.

Thrift stores in my area (Belgium) are ridiculously expensive for the quality. I get better deals online from US, specially with the rate exchange in favor of the euro.

So many things changed from last year to this year, so the need for clothes as well. For instance, we moved to another area, another school and in the new school is warmer than in the old one. So, many warmer tops are left unworned as a result. Or my DS deciding that he likes better hoodies with zippers than sweaters. Etc, etc

Thanks again ladies, it's been helpful!
Olma is offline  
#15 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 06:25 PM
 
2cutiekitties's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Georgia baby
Posts: 1,150
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I just keep an eye out for deals and steals and I figure that makes up for when I do feel like buying something new. Baby Gap had tshirts for .97 and then I was able to buy a really cute VDay shirt for my son, full price from Gymboree with no guilt. I wanted it NOW not after Valentines Day, YKWIM?
2cutiekitties is offline  
#16 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 08:16 PM
 
boheime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,810
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We keep wardrobes simple. 8 shirts, 3 pants/shorts, if dd wants dresses or skirts, that replaces items accordingly. This way, it's easy for me to track what I find ahead of time. I did not buy things early when the kids were babies, though. I just couldn't estimate their growth.

Mom to Eoin (11/02), Eilis (09/04), Eamon (07/07), and Ellery (04/10)
boheime is offline  
#17 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 08:44 PM
 
luv-my-boys's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: stuck between baskets of laundry
Posts: 1,582
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Im somewhat of a clothes snob when it comes to the boys. i only buy new clothing for them unless its a designer/coutre type item than I might buy used if its in really great condition. me, im still wearing yoga pants from 5 yrs ago

I buy staples on sale. For instance TCP had their summer items on sale and I bought literally 10 pairs of knit shorts for $1.50 as opposed to full price. I know the boys will use them and frankly because they are "play" clothes they get dingy and worn out quite quickly. But I feel better that a $2 short gets ruined than say a nicer pair of walking shorts. My boys do have "play" clothes though and "other" (church,school,outings)

My kids are pretty predictable when it comes to sizes. I dont however pre buy anything that is somewhat fitted. For instance we only buy carpenter style jeans (little roomier imo) that have those elastic inner drawstrings (I could kiss the inventor of those) because it allows me to pass down the clothing from one kid to anothr. For instance my oldest is a little skiny compared to the brother down from him yet they both wore the same pr of jeans.

I guess because I have boys some things are little easier. I only buy solid colored bottoms. Khaki,navy,black,brown or olive pretty much go with anything. If I see something that I like i might look for a bottom to match it because it will be easier then to find a matching item with that seasons "collection" than say the next yr.

there have been a few items that I have misjudged. For instance I bought some pants that tag wise were the right size but once they should have fit I foudn out the cut was too small. so knowing brand sizing is important but sometimes sizes even within a company might not match. I try to sell to neighbor or at my youngest school. Usually Im able to get waht i paid for it if not more due to the brand name.

I sort my items in tub labeled with sizes. Shoes are in a seperate bin moreaccessible since were constantly diggeing out "new" shoes.
luv-my-boys is offline  
#18 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 09:05 PM
 
Deir's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,277
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
my friend always buys tons of stuff on clearance and really ends up with TOO MUCH! This past summer she gave me 5 t shirts and 5 pairs of shorts for my son- these were EXTRA! It works out for me but she certainly isn't saving any money. I have generally found that when I do this- the thing ends up being the wrong size or something. I do better just buying LESS
Deir is offline  
#19 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 11:46 PM
 
Hey Mama!'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: MO
Posts: 2,903
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I have three girls so I buy anything that is cute and cheap in a size range that includes what my youngest wears through one size larger then my oldest wears. So, currently I'll buy 6-12. I also second the matching up outfits suggestion. I have done that since they were babies and it seems to work out better than a bunch of seperate pieces that may or may not match. I also like to shop at garage sales and thrift stores. Like a previous poster I participate in a bi-annual clothing consignment sale but it is worth my while as I at least break even between what I sell and what I buy, and I get a pre-sale pass to shop before it's open to the general public.

student/sahm to three awesome girls who are always on the go!
Hey Mama! is offline  
#20 of 30 Old 01-12-2010, 11:50 PM
 
StephandOwen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 8,613
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Olma View Post
I realize now my biggest problem is storage. It's a really PITA to access the stored clothes to see what needs buying and what not.
What about under the bed storage? I know they make some plastic bins that slide under the bed. Maybe get 1 of those for each kid and slide it under their beds?

Steph, DH Jason (1-1-11), DS Owen (10-3-03) and DS Kai (10-13-11)

StephandOwen is offline  
#21 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 06:04 AM
 
LaughingHyena's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 2,609
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
For me the key has been keeping a list of what I already have. I keep a tub for each child of "to grow into" clothes and have a list on my computer of what is in it. I do not plan to repeat the 20+ pairs of trousers that DS had one year (I had already overbought when my sister passed on some from her little one)

For store sales I tend to only buy 1 size ahead and mostly t shirts and stuff that will be worn year round.

When it's car boot season and things are 20 - 50p I'll buy a bit further ahead or more seasonal. I have had enough hits that the occasional thing that doesn't get worn is not a problem.

Socks and undies I usually get as the need arises.

Fortunately my kids are not picky about looks yet, although they are both picky about fabric and things being to stiff/scratchy.
LaughingHyena is offline  
#22 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 09:50 AM
 
BetsyS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: world of craziness
Posts: 5,307
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have boys. Until they are potty training age, they tend to wear one piece outfits (either shirt/overalls or one piece romper things). After that, it's jeans/khakis plus a t-shirt/polo shirt. Easy, easy, easy.

I, too, keep a list. We have a good amount of storage, and I'll buy any size if it's a classic and cheap (like $1 or less for clothing, $2 or less for like-new shoes). If it's the size I need for the coming season (like, right now, I'm looking for summer, since we start wearing short sleeves in March), then I'll pay a little more. But, by always looking ahead, I usually have quite a few things before the crunch time hits. Again, luckily, my boys aren't picky yet. We favor Merrells for winter (good for play and dress up) and Keens for summer (good for play, and the winter Merrells will work for dress up). Makes it quick to look through the thrift selection.

And, luckily, we have an enormous amount of mom-to-mom style consignment sales to choose from each season (like 35+ in my county alone, and I live in a several county metro area). Those are a boon if I haven't thrifted well all year. They are a little more expensive, but easy to shop.
BetsyS is offline  
#23 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 09:55 AM
 
leavemealone's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,743
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I usually buy only basics and things that coordinate well to make different outfits. I also don't overbuy and to buy quality pieces.

I recently changed my username, but I still say "Hello" to all those who know me in real life! Hi P, S, T and K!
leavemealone is offline  
#24 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 03:38 PM
 
KariM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: at the sewing machine (in zone 5A)
Posts: 3,326
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I haven't read through the other responses so this will probably duplicate some of them.


1. Buy clothing in one color family for easier matching (DD1 likes pink, fuschia, purple)
3. We stick to solid color tops and patterned pants/skirts
2. Buy only clothing that is soft cotton without structured waistbands
3. Combine them into outfits as we buy and donate any extras that don't match (easy to do when we only pay 99 cents or less per piece)
4. Keep a computerized list of what garments (dresses, shirts, pants, skirts, etc) we have in what sizes and seasons (cold weather, warm weather, etc)

We shop primarily at thrift stores, garage sales, consignment shops, etc. Rarely will I buy anything new and even then it's on deep discount.

Over time we've narrowed our purchases down to a few brands that we really like - Land's End, LL Bean, Hanna Andersson, Children's Place, and some of the Target brands depending upon the weight of the knit. This has also enabled us to re-use the clothing for DD2. I'm not sure how many kids have worn these clothes, but they're still going strong!

95% of DD1's wardrobe is soft cotton knits because she won't tolerate wearing clothing with fixed waistbands (she even wears the elastic waist knit pants below waistline). Her outfits are often either loose playdresses with leggings or skirts with knit cotton tops.
KariM is offline  
#25 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 04:01 PM
 
Drummer's Wife's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Land of Enchantment
Posts: 11,487
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I was going to say use gymbucks to buy mark downs b/c I used mine last night, so it's on my mind - but you already know about that Most of the sale item are long sleeve and fall/winter stuff, so it might be nice to stock up for next year. Speaking of, gymbofriends has a buy/sale/trade board that you can get great deals on both new and used clothing (not just gymbo, but gap, J&J, Boden, etc.).

For me, I have 4 kids, the oldest being a girl and the younger 3 - boys 2 years apart. So, as long as DS1's clothes last, they can be passed down. It helps that their birthdays are within the same month, so season-wise they fit into the older ones clothes.

ribboncesarean.gif cesareans happen.
Drummer's Wife is offline  
#26 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 05:56 PM
 
jewelsJZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 503
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I buy only a few new things on clearance for just this reason. I find that it winds up fitting them but it's the wrong season or they don't like it or something like that. But sometimes deals are just too good to pass up. Like this week I found two sets of pj's for less than $4. Can't beat that. I bought them in two big sizes for the baby. If he doesn't wear them, the tags stay on and they make great gifts. Or I can re-sell on Craig's List.
I have gotten great in-season deals at Kohls and JCPenney. Also, my in-laws will always ask what my kids want for Christmas and birthdays and I always give them their clothing sizes so they get a lot of new clothes that way.
Everything else we buy used. And I save all my oldest son's stuff for my younger son. If a neighbor offers me their used clothes from their kids, I take it, keep what we can use and give away the rest.
jewelsJZ is offline  
#27 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 06:02 PM
 
ArtsyMomma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 1,020
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I can't really buy ahead frugally. I never know what size my kids will be and I tend to over-shop when I buy ahead. I may pick up things in the next size up, but they go right into rotation usually.

I had luck getting a coat last year for my 2 year old for this year, only $6 on clearance. At that price I almost bought the whole rack to donate to a local "Coats for Kids" charity. The coat was a great buy. Of course my BIL/SIL cleaned out a storage space and gave me all their sons hand-me-downs - which included 4 size 2T coats and 2 pairs of 2T snowpants.

shamrocksmile.gifAmber SAHM Fiber Artist Mom to:knit.gif
Maddison (9): Arwen (8): Finn (4): Aedan (2)

stork-suprise.gif Sept 2012

ArtsyMomma is offline  
#28 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 06:16 PM
 
RoundAbout's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 632
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobandjess99 View Post
I actually think you should probably buy less, regardless of when you buy. Chances are, you buy too many clothes, especially if there are so many you forget about them.
There are 7 days in a week. If your child has more than 7 outfits...why?
This is great advice. My 3 yo son has a huge wardrobe thanks to gifts, super cheap thrift stores, yard-sales, etc. and yet I always reach for the same 3-4 outfits when they are clean. I am vowing this year to buy much less even if it is only 50 cents an item. He just doesn't need that much.

I also agree with the advice to buy mostly basic stuff like jeans on clearance. Things that you can't go wrong with.
RoundAbout is offline  
#29 of 30 Old 01-13-2010, 11:24 PM
 
Ruthie's momma's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Monument, Colorado
Posts: 1,257
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
I purchase most of DD's clothing ahead of time (and have done so since I was pregnant with her!). I love taking advantage of end of season sales.... DD wears a lot of solid colors in soft cotton. Plus, I make sure that most every piece easily coordinates with several other pieces. Therefore, it is rather easy to size up and stock up on the basics. I store all of her clothes in her closet. Everything is hung up so I can easily keep track of what I have on hand. Most importantly, I don't buy too many pieces of clothing. DD has always had just enough clothing to outfit a week (with a couple of extra pieces to account for a necessary wardrobe change due to an accident).

Libby blahblah.gif, momma to my precious little girl (6/29/07) 
                        and wonderful little man (12/1/10)

Ruthie's momma is offline  
#30 of 30 Old 01-14-2010, 01:05 AM
 
Smokering's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 8,705
Mentioned: 105 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 110 Post(s)
I recently had the buy-in-matching-colours brainwave for DD. She's my only child and we haven't had many hand-me-downs for a while, and I've been learning to sew (and learning about the evils of the fashion industry, somewhat coincidentally). For some reason she has heaps of tops and very few bottoms, and the tops don't tend to match the bottoms.

So my plan for next season (the fall/winter seasons) is to buy about five different kinds of fabric in colours that all go together: mostly solids with a few dots/prints/florals. And figure out approximately how many of what she needs - trousers, tops, dresses, jackets, bloomers, hats, whatever takes my fancy. Then I can make them all and they'll all "go"!

What I should really do is figure out the colours I want now, so instead of buying all the fabric new I can look out for XL skirts in the thrift store and so on to make recons from.

Could you do a similar thing, only using store-bought clothes instead of fabrics?

Arizona backwards is still Arizona! It's a palomino!
Smokering is offline  
Reply


User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off

Online Users: 13,776

71 members and 13,705 guests
1babysmom , AliseInspires , AMG , aylasebmom , Bare2015 , cadence.clair , captain optimism , Cherry_Blossom , crystal_buffaloe , Dakotacakes , dangerbunny , elliha , emily11megan , EmilyVail42 , emmy526 , farmer , farmermomma , FloridaBorn , frugalmama , happyhats , hillymum , homeschoolingmama , ismewilde , Ivey Vines , Jbuck2013 , Katie8681 , lgalofre , Linda on the move , LLM21 , lucky3nyc , lyra33 , maiajay , mama24-7 , mamabear0314 , Marcimama , MasiyM , MeepyCat , Milk8shake , missythemom3 , MountainMamaGC , MylittleTiger , mymuzicalpath , Nazsmum , newmamalizzy , oaksie68 , oceansolitude , philomom , rabbitmomma , rocky , rubelin , samaxtics , SandiMae , sarafl , sashanaik , SchoolmarmDE , shanna-cat , shantimama , Shmootzi , siennaflower , sillysapling , Springshowers , starlein26 , SweetSilver , TheBugsMomma , Tracy , zebra15
Most users ever online was 449,755, 06-25-2014 at 12:21 PM.