I wish I could say I have some amazing system to share with you guys — like I buy “x” amount of shirts/pants for each season and make sure everything is color coordinated — but my approach to shopping for our kids is a pretty laid back.
One key to buying our boys’ clothes, however, is that I mostly try to buy clothing that can be mixed and matched. If you really look at our kids’ clothes closely, you’ll notice a lot of blues, grays and olive greens with some occasional pops of mustard yellow, orange and red and that is fairly intentional. I try to keep patterns relatively neutral (I love stripes and plaids but not too many super-bold looks) so most of their tops can be paired with their pants.
That being said, kids are kids and I am not super controlling about their apparel. If they really want to wear an outfit that looks like a hot mess, I say go for it because I’m all about picking my battles in motherhood. If they are proud of an outfit that completely clashes, I’d rather them feel confident in their clothing than wear something I like better.
I also have some random tricks that might already be obvious (shopping end-of-season sales and consignment at the start of the season, for example) and also wanted to highlight some of the retailers and brands I love for the boys’ apparel and shoes as well. Keep on reading if this is of interest to you and, if not, hopefully I’ll see ya back here on Friday!
How I Shop for Our Kids’ Clothes
(Chase’s new-with-tags Adidas shoes in the above pic were one of my best consignment finds! The hoodies on both boys are from Stitch Fix Kids.)
(Ryder’s button-up top in the first pic and his geometric top in the second pic are both Zara Baby finds from thredUP!)
Ain’t no shame in the consignment game! A lot of our boys’ clothes come from consignment shops. We have one local shop I love and I have found some serious steals at that shop — we’re talking brand new $40 Adidas shoes for Chase for $13! A trip to our local consignment shop at the beginning of a new season is one of my kid clothing “musts” so we have some seasonal clothing ready to go and aren’t left scrambling for shorts when the weather all of the sudden hits 80 degrees one day in the spring! This is also when I’ll often go through our boys’ clothes and get rid of anything they didn’t wear or like or thought was uncomfortable.
(Chase sporting brand new Converse slip-ons from thredUP)
I am also a very regular thredUP customer because that site makes finding gently used (or even new-with tags) clothes for kids a breeze. I’ll peruse thredUP for specific items (jackets, snow boots, etc.) and sort by size or favorite brands so I’m not totally overwhelmed because thredUP has SO much that it can almost be intimidating. Some of my favorite brands to search for on thredUP include Zara, Tailor Vintage, Threads 4 Thought, Converse and Vans.
End of Season Sales
Whenever the seasons change, I take full advantage of end-of-season sales to stock up on clothes for the boys for the following year. Though it can be a little hard to predict your little ones’ size in the beginning, as they grow it gets a little easier to guess what size they’ll need next summer when you’re shopping for summer apparel for the following year in September. Old Navy end-of-season sales are my absolute favorite because they often have tops and shorts for as low as $3-4! I do think shopping the Old Navy end-of-season sales online is better than in-person shopping at our local store because the clearance section at our local Old Navy is always so picked over… and seems to have WAY more girl clothing than boy clothing for some reason.
Small Business Favorites
(Rhett in his Kyte Baby Christmas jammies!)
(Ryder in his Childhoods Clothing joggers — hand-me-downs from Chase!)
(Rhett in a cozy Childhoods Clothing hoodie)
There are a few small businesses I absolutely love for our boys clothes. They’re often a little pricier but I typically find the quality to be fantastic and they make great hand-me-downs. Plus, the style is so cute and I honestly find myself a little sad when the boys have outgrown some of my favorite outfits from these online shops! Some of my favorites: Childhoods Clothing (my go-to for high-quality joggers that look more put together and fit slim kids! Bonus: You can cuff them in a way that makes them last for a LONG time), Kyte Baby (the best soft footie pajamas and toddler jammies), Bitty Brah (for adorable hats that stay on — my code JULIE15 gets you 15% off) and Spearmint Love.
(Chase’s buffalo plaid jacket and slim-fit Hudson jeans are recent Stitch Fix Kids finds!)
(Chase’s Hurley rash guard and swim trunks came from Stitch Fix Kids last summer.)
(Ryder in a button-up top and cozy joggers from Stitch Fix Kids)
Ordering Stitch Fix Kids deliveries for the boys is my absolute favorite way to shop because it requires such little effort on my part. I keep Chase and Ryder’s Stitch Fix profiles up to date with their sizes and styles and always make sure to take the time to fill out the request box before ordering a fix so I can be sure to receive apparel and/or shoes the boys really need. (For example, I’ll request things like short sleeve pajamas, sandals, a rash guard top + swim trunks in the beginning of the summer.) I don’t order their fixes on any set schedule but request them from time to time when I feel like there are some gaps in their wardrobe that I’d like filled with clothing that’s a little higher quality. Chase’s Stich Fix clothes have ended up being some of my very favorite hand-me-downs for Ryder! Stitch Fix has also introduced me to some of my favorite kid clothing brands, like Threads 4 Thought, Runway and Tailor Vintage. And one final thing I love about Stitch Fix Kids deliveries… now that they’ve added a “Shop” section to their website, I love buying some of my favorite items for the boys in the next size up right from their site. So convenient!
Three kids in and I definitely have a handful of go-to retailers I frequent for staples based on the fit of the clothing and past good experiences.
(Chase in Old Navy jeggings and both boys are in GAP puffer vests)
Old Navy: My absolute favorite for slim-fit kid jeans/jeggings. I have these jeggings for the boys in the dark and medium wash. And yes, it says they are “girls’ jeggings” but they’re absolutely unisex and work for boys and girls. And these are my favorite slim-fit olive green chinos for the boys!
(Ryder in a GAP jacket, Nordstrom Rack joggers and H&M high-tops)
H&M: Another winner for on-trend apparel that works for slim kids.
Nordstrom: Nordstrom’s annual sale is my favorite for quality kid shoes and jackets. I bought the boys’ their high-top Vans (pictured above) during last years’ sale.
Nordstrom Rack: A serious winner for athletic shoes at a discounted price. I’ve had great luck finding the boys cute Nike and Adidas sneakers at Nordstrom Rack.
Amazon: I read reviews and also go by recommendations from other moms on Amazon kid apparel since it can be hit or miss. I’ve had some great luck, though, and love Amazon for pajamas (Vaenait Baby are my favorite) and no-skid kid socks. These socks are my absolute favorite and look adorable peeking out underneath joggers or jeans! And just ordered these no-skid ankle socks for summer!
(Our favorite summer shoes — Natives from Zappos!
Zappos: Zappos’ return policy is amazing, making this retailer a personal favorite for kids shoes since our boys can test them out and if they don’t work or give them blisters, we can return them, no questions asked. I buy the boys’ Natives from Zappos every spring. They are the BEST summertime shoes and I’ve been able to have Ryder wear all of Chase’s as well so they pass the hand-me-down test!
Target: Our “fill in the gaps” go-to. Target is where I impulse-buy random clothes our kids need… and some they don’t. Ha!
(Rash guard + swim trunks from Mae! And our fav Bitty Brah hat!)
Okay this is a joke that’s not really a joke. We’ve lucked out with some amazing grandparents on both sides of the family who love to surprise the boys with new clothes from time-to-time. They do a great job of selecting clothes that cater to the boys’ interests and styles and we are always very grateful when Mae and Nona surprise our kids with some snazzy new clothes or pajamas! I’m also not overly picky about what our boys wear (with the exception of “Mommy’s Little Helper” kind of stuff — not a fan of that at all!) so I’m always thankful for any clothing sent our way!
Question of the Day
- Do you have any tips and tricks when it comes to shopping for kids and/or getting them dressed every day?
- Any small business favs for your kids’ apparel?