My daughter starts school next fall but I'm already on the hunt for khaki uniform pants with an elastic waist and no button (a fake button and zipper is fine, but she needs to be able to pull them up with one hand). She often uses a walker and when she's having a really bad day, she needs to hold on to the walker and pull her pants up with one hand. This would be next to impossible to negotiate with buttons and zippers. I keep thinking someone MUST make a khaki uniform pant she can manage. It's early to be looking but I'd rather start now and stock pile if I find any.
Also, she is built like her mother - long waist. From her father, she has the gift of a bubble booty. Not an easy fit for pants. Most girl's pants either come up way too high or don't cover her rear end all the way. I've thought about jumpers but she would need to wear shorts or tights under.
Assuming you are OK with mixed fabrics...
Is a skort allowed? Lands End has one that is pull-on for little girls (up to size 7). They also have an elastic waist chino that doesn't show up in the uniform section, only the regular pants section. This is one of my favorite places for uniform pants, though pants/shorts are only allowed for boys at our school.
thechildrenswearoutlet.com has an elastic waist/pull on pant for both boys and girls. I have found that their shorts wear really well for my son, though the fabric is a bit stiller than he would like.
A jumper with pull-on bike shorts might be a good option -- those are always easy to get on and off. I usually get our shorts from monkeybarbuddies.com
Thank you! I will look into all of those. I think a skort is allowed but I don't know if she'd wear it because, well, she's picky. The elastic waist chinos look great!
I was all for uniforms before I had a kid, now I'm just not sure if they make any difference and as my daughter is all about "soft" clothes, I don't know how she's going to go for this.
My children are at a school with very strict uniform code, so we don't have many options. But if clothing is going to be a challenge for her, you might want to start by talking to someone so you know just what is allowed. For example, can she wear leggings (since she likes soft)? Yoga pants? Pull-on knit pants? Luckily khaki should be easy to find in lots of options. There are lots of on-line sources out there once you have some idea of what your options are.
From experience though, I would suggest identifying options now and maybe even ordering a single item to try on. But don't do the "stock up" buying before about August (assuming school starts end of August/September). I once bought all sorts of options at the "end of year" sale at the uniform store. Not one of them fit come September! And by then they weren't returnable either. Total waste of money.
My kids attend a private school that gets the Jr. K and Sr. K uniforms from http://www.classroomuniforms.com/shop/category_style.php?category=30005 I love them and they seem to hold up pretty well. Good luck!
Thanks so much for the link!
Thanks for the advice, E&A'sMom! I want to get a few things for her to try and get used to. She can wear shorts, skorts, skirts, a jumper, and khaki pants. I'm not sure about leggins and such under skirts or jumpers and I'll be sure to ask. I want to find something for her to wear a few times this summer to kind of get used to them.
I know it sounds silly, but this child has refused jeans and real pants forever, I don't know that she's worn either since she's been old enough to express an opinion.
I forgot to mention - she's tall and big for five. She's regularly mistaken for a second grader. That makes things harder. Pull on pants are fairly easy to find in smaller sizes but when you need like, an 8 - they're a bit thin on the ground.
I understand this completely. My DS went through preschool wearing nothing but sweats and knit shorts. But when he started K he was so proud of the button shorts and belt that were required that it was never a problem. You may benefit from some peer pressure here. Of course, you have a physical limitation to deal with as well, so that makes it harder. But still, don't despair -- you never know what starting a new "big kid" school will do.
We are transitioning out of private school for next year and the public schools here do not have a uniform requirement, so I am faced with the opposite problem -- I have no idea what to buy for back-to-school this year.
if you need larger sizes. My DD1 refuses to wear pants without an elastic waist, as well. In her case, I think it's just a preference for comfort, and that's fine with me. But now that she's moved out of the little girls' sizes (she wears size 7 now) it's getting harder and harder to find this sort of pants with elastic. So when I find them, I grab them up!
FWIW, Lands End is also extremely hard-wearing, which is a nice feature in uniform pants since they will be worn and washed so often. Plus, they tend to cut generously, so no issues of not enough coverage in the rear and stuff like that. My kids are all tall and long-waisted, so I'm used to figuring that into my choices for their clothes.
I don't know if girls' pants are cut the same, but my string bean of a DS went through a phase where he'd wear regular pants with the elastic button adjusters, but use them as pull-ons without bothering to do and undo the zipper (because it was easier than bothering with the zipper). If you get to a point where you can't find an elastic waist, an adjustable elastic inner belt might do for your DD in a pinch. Also, I wore uniform skirts as a child, and I remember one year my grandma made me a few skirts. I think it ended up being cheaper than buying b/c she used the same pattern for all three, and that might give you more control over the fabric, if there's a SAHM or cheap alterations place in your neighborhood that would be willing to try making something.
Oh my gosh, what a nightmare. I mean, seriously. I am seeing kids left and right who still need help with buttons and there are certainly plenty of kids who aren't skinny...yet finding uniforms for my daughter has been IMPOSSIBLE. She is somewhat overweight but she's not fat (she has a normal appetite, but she can't run and many days has trouble walking so she doesn't burn off what she eats). I see plenty of kids bigger than she is. Finding regular clothes for her is no problem because she's also fairly tall so I can just size up - but uniforms? Yikes. We're two weeks from school starting and I'm beginning to freak out.
She also can not manage buttons. I'm helping her "practice" but I am mostly hoping I can find a great jumper and she can just wear that. Part of the problem is that she has a fine tremor in her hand and low hand strength (most likely, we now thing, due to one of her meds) but also because if she can't do something right the first time, she gets frustrated and freaks out (ask me what it was like trying to show her how to hula hoop a few weeks ago). My brother was JUST like this as a child and I can remember when he DECIDED he wasn't going to do that anymore. It was a huge relief. But he was also 15...I can't wait ten years! ANYWAY, she also has to manage a movement disorder that can be unpredictable (she can go all day without much problem and then she'll put weight on her right leg and it will jerk off the ground. So fun when you're trying to button your pants) and occasionally, a walker.
Now I'm also looking for velcro shoes in a size 12 with a very very very flexible sole. Because of her trouble walking, she does best when she's as close to barefoot as possible.
Tell me someone else has hard to fit kids. Please. I am just feeling like there's not a damn thing in the world that isn't going to be a struggle for her.
Her needs might be restrictive enough that you need to abandon the mass market. Can you make them or arrange to have them made for her? Maybe a friend who would make the pants in exchange for babysitting or something else? While pants aren't the easiest of things to learn to sew, they aren't too bad. It takes time, but then you can get just the right fit. I learned to sew by reading the instruction manual for the sewing machine. From there, the first nightgown I made was a disaster (I put the sleeves on backwards), but now I can whip out an acceptable nightgown in one hours' work.
Have you contacted the school? Surely she has accommodations for her condition already in place. Clothing very easily can be one of those accommodations. Can you find something that fits with the spirit of the uniform that will suffice?
ETA: Vibram makes shoes for kids now, down to little kids sizes 11.5. They're velcro and you can really feel the ground with them. They look funny. Might attract attention from the other kids, but they might fit the bill quite well.
We are in the process of working on her accommodations. So far the school has been really helpful and they just keep saying, tell us what you need. Possibly because her needs are fairly few - she needs a little more time to get from place to place, she needs a place to park her "roller," etc. I really hesitate to get anything for her that LOOKS different because she's starting to become aware that some kids see her as different.
Thanks for the suggestions. If I were going to have something made, it would be a jumper. I know they're hot (most of the girls wear leggings or bike shorts under them at her age), but she wouldn't have to manage tucking in a shirt and dealing with a belt.
We're having a hard time finding uniform pants, too. DD wears a size 6 (waist size), but she is short, so size 4 is the right lenth for her. I went to 5 different stores looking for pants that fit. No luck. We had to buy from several different stores, because for some reason, each store we went to only had one or two pairs of pants in size 6. Oh, and they always stock slim, but never 'plus size'. My child isn't fat, but she could probably wear a 5Plus if they carried it. I ended up buying size 6 and cutting off about 6 inches. Hopefully she doesn't grow a whole lot in the next few months. It took me about 3 days to re-learn how to use the sewing machine! lol
Now that you mention it, I don't know that DD has ever worn pants with a button. Hopefully she manages ok. She also will be required to tuck in her shirt, which she has never done before.
The uniform paperwork from our school says that they will make special arrangements for children with special needs or sizing requirements. I'm not sure exactly what that would entail, but maybe your school has something similar? My younger daughter wears pants that have Velcro in the front. They look cute, and very similar to the 'button' version. I wonder if they would allow something like that for your DD.
" rel="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/familybed2.gif"> DD1 12/05, DD2 12/08
Computer Engineer- I write better in 1's and 0's. ;-)
That's something real to take into account. Honestly, in your situation, I'd probably make the pants/jumper before getting a uniform variation too. I thought I'd throw it out there to make sure all options were considered.
I've also seen some on Amazon which also come in husky sizes. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004H8GIGQ/ref=asc_df_B004H8GIGQ1637051/?tag=dealt1-20&creative=394997&creativeASIN=B004H8GIGQ&linkCode=asn
Thanks, I'll check those out!
I keep flashing back to my aunt, years ago when her kids' school went to uniforms. She was SO against it and I kept saying - but it will make things so much easier! She swore that they didn't make a uniform to fit her son (thin kid, but muscular from sports at a VERY young age, and a bubble butt and looking back we are pretty sure he had some serious sensory issues so even when something would fit, he couldn't concentrate because it didn't feel right) and I kept thinking - WHY do you have to make everything so difficult! Now I get it! Some kids are just hard to fit.
Once again, I eat my words!
This is really turning into the suck. I wish anything could be easy for her. I wish I could get her all excited about school shopping and go try things on but no one carries the plus sizes or elastic waists in stores. I just want one damn thing to be easy. I am becoming very bitter over all the little things other people take for granted that are just so damn hard for us.
I have ordered tons of stuff. Once I get something that fits in her waist, the chest is huge. Things are too long. The jumpers are so big they look ridiculous. If the pants fit, she can't button them. If the skirts fit, they have a freaking attached short under, so she still has to deal with the buttons. And why does every skirt need pleats, why do all the jumpers need (useless, btw) pockets? Then you can't even shorten them.
You would think someone would make a pair of elastic waist pants, a pair of shorts, a plain a line skirt with an elastic waist, and a plain a line jumper. They would be the most basic things in the world.
I am pretty much putting all my hopes on a knit scooter that I'm not even sure they'll let her wear without having to go through making it an official accommodation. There are also some pants from one of the links above that look promising and plain enough to easily shorten to thanks again for providing links
She's not even that over weight, really. It's not like she's some 80 pound three year old or something. And to make this even more fun, I've now had a big blow out with my husband over it. Apparently my saying, "this hunting for uniforms business is really stressful, I'm afraid I won't be able to find anything" is my being negative God knows all feelings that make him uncomfortable should be pushed down till I gag on them.
This should be fun, this should be exciting. This should not be so hard.
Sorry to hear about the continued uniform issues. I wanted to comment on the Vibram shoes, my DD1 has a pair. She hates shoes, refuses to wear most pairs, finding ones that she will wear is always a challenge. DH came home with a pair for her one day, she adores them, willingly wears them, and while they attract some attention from the other kids, it is good attention! Every child who has ever commented on them, has loved them, and wanted a pair for themselves. She was the hit of the schoolyard the first time she wore them.
My daughter has an extremely curvy booty (from me) and swimmer's thighs, and these fit her well.
Sizing is unisex, so fairly generous compared to typical retail girls' sizing.
YAY! The Classroom brand elastic shorts and pants will fit. The size smaller is too small and the size I got is slightly too big but that can be fixed easily. WHEW! HUGE relief, thanks so much for all the links and support.
Awesome that you found something! I was flipping through a LL Bean catalogue this morning and thought of you. In the boys sections (I know but sometimes they don't have to know) they had cargo style pants in uniform colors with elastic waists, from small to big kid sizes. Just throwing it out there.