Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Baby clothes advice from an experienced mommy (and compulsive shopper)

Miss JamieD asked me where I get my clothes for Karl. She mentioned she likes the high quality of baby gap and gymboree, but also wanted some advice where to get some original stuff.

I started to just answer her in a comment, but I thought this may be one of those helpful hint type answers, so I thoughts I'd just do a quick post about it.

First, to answer questions about "original" stuff. My favorite sites to get stuff for my kids are
~ BabyWit
~ Little Showoffs
~ Baby Rock Apparel

Second, I wanted to mention the aspect of the "high quality" of clothes and what you want to spend your money on.

It's true baby gap and gymboree have high quality. But it's also expensive, even on sale. In your baby's first 18~ish months, especially in the first 12, you go through clothes so quickly. Your baby grows so fast and clothes can only be worn for a few months. During this time, don't worry too much about "durability" as long as you buy things with nice and soft materials that are washable. Baby gap and gymboree fit the bill here of course, but not necessary. Places like old navy (the gap's little sister) are perfect. Soft clothes but much less expensive.

Having girls a little over a year apart, I have seen Ella destroy clothes and I have also seen clothes I can still give away / sell after two girls going through them. Toddlerhood is when you want to go for durability, especially if you are planning to have more kids or if you already know those clothes will be handed down.

My advice is:
A) go with materials. If it's soft to the touch, mostly cotton, you'll be fine. But if you buy much of the shit walmart and babiesRus sell (seriously, ~touch~ their clothes - it all is filled with nylons!), you are going to have 1) a baby whom is uncomfortable and 2) clothes that suck.
B) don't buy spendy things for anything smaller than 18-24 months. I learned the hard way and I have container after container full of clothes I totally wasted my money on. Sure, the people I give them to benefit, but I could have gotten away with spending ~thousands~ less. Invest in your toddler's clothes, but believe me, babies don't need "durable". They just need soft!

Anyone else have quick hints when it comes to baby clothes? Any cool places you like to go to?


areyoukiddingme said...

I like to go to ebay, craigslist, and garage sales. That way, someone else takes over the main expense, and I get to pick through their leftovers. Even in toddler stage, clothes last for one season before the kid grows out of it. I'm saving my money for the teenage years!

Anonymous said...

I like to go to yard sales.
Sometimes I get those nice expensive clothes, but for way super cheap. I just bought a ton of clothes (18 mon to 3T) clothes, coat and motorcycle jacket (and a ton of other things) for 15 dollars.
I agree with areyoukiddingme, saving money for the teen years is a good idea, my son is now totally into the name brand and he is not easy on clothes, I make him pay for half, but it's still expensive.

Hollie said...

My son is 7 months. I have bought a lot of nice, soft clothes from Target and BRU. It is super hot here so he wears mostly onesies and sometimes pants in the house.

I buy a few things from Dillards, Baby Gap, Old Navy to have cute stuff to wear for family functions, hanging out with friends, and church.

Jen said...

I'm also big on garage sales. Usually I'll check craigs list first to see who is having sales with girl clothes in the next couple sizes up for Jillian. Otherwise I'm usually shopping at target.

mommybird said...

I'm a yard sale and second hand fan. It's totally different for my girls and Dylan. Dylan wears things out before he grows out of them so durability is important, but so is price because I tend to go through more stuff with him.

Layla is in Mia's old clothes and neither of them has even come close to wearing out their clothes even the cheap Wal Mart ones, but they've grown a lot faster than Dylan so they spend a lot less time at one size.

Christina said...

Good advice! I haven't bough a single thing yet, yes, I don't know what I'm waiting for. My husband is in love with everything at Gap though.

Jenera said...

Before the financial crisis of '09 in our household, I had to go buy clothes for both boys because they grew out of them overnight.

I hit Target's clearance rack. I love their clothes-so soft and fit good. I got shirts for sam for a dollar and pants for aidan for $3. Granted this isn't all the time but still.

I recommend hitting the clearance racks of your favorites stores first then go back and fill in what is necessary.

I bought all new clothes for Aidan and Sam plus new shoes for the hubby, new jeans for the hubby, and socks and underwear for the hubby and Aidan for less than $100. All thanks to clearance racks.

Tara said...

I let Grandma buy the Gap stuff.

I too am a big fan of Old Navy baby clothes. I have picked up some really neat stuff from there at totally reasonable prices. Their sales rock.

Bay said...

Well, the first step is admitting you have a problem. Ha! Luckly that problem will benefit me (someday, hopefully...). I have no tips but I do think that when I buy your girls clothes (usually 1 size too big, almost every time. What is my problem?) I do love Target and I seem to think that they last. But maybe that is because I don't see them wearing the stuff until an entire year later, due to not buying the right size thing.... Like I said I have No tips. Heh!

JamieD said...


I was really shocked at how itchy/scratchy the Babies R Us clothes are. Isn't that supposed to be one of the best things about being a baby? Having the softest clothes ever?

Of the clothes I've bought so far, it has all come off sale racks. They ~are~ spendy for as little as they will actually wear them! I do have a lot of cheaper onsies and sleepers, but as far as 'outfits' boys are SO limited. People keep asking me about 'going home' outfits and picture outfits and I really just have a bunch of jammies.

I don't know why it never dawned on me to go to Old Navy. Doh!

Thanks for the links!!

Denise said...

We've found really good deals at the Children's World outlet at the Mills. We also go to Gap every time we're there, but I will only buy things there if they are on sale (and it's an outlet). Even then, we'll usually only get one or two items tops. I love the baby clothes at old navy too.

the mol said...

For my boys when they were babies, I really liked the Carter's clothing. I found that it was longer, which they need because of their long torsos and cloth diapers. Some of the other brands, particularly Gymboree, seemed to be shorter and wider.

I didn't buy a lot of baby clothing, because I got SO many hand-me-downs from the older cousins in California, who also have two boys. But it was very helpful to have so many different brands so that if I did want to buy something, I'd already know what works.

I love dressing my older son to look like my husband.

dianam17 said...

de lurking...

dont know if you have heard about it, but gymboree now has a "little sister" store. its called crazy 8. a little less expensive than gymboree, and very rocker-ish (at least on the boys side of the store).

they just starting sprouting up here in NJ, i dont know how new or not they are.

for baby clothes and jammies, i still love carters. their stuff is really soft and wash well. if you sign up on their mailing list, you get $10 or 20% off coupons like every other week. their stuff is reasonably priced if you have a carters stand-alone store, they are always having sales, etc. i have purchased many things for $2 there for dylan.

-diana (dianam17 webmd)

jenn said...

I definitely hit up local ggodwills, craigslist & garage sales. I never shop anything but the clearance racks at the brand name stores & we also live very close to an outlit center. I use coupons & the grandmas are always good for new outfits every time we see them & she's only 4 months!
(of course- I have also benefitted greatly from the generosity of your hand me downs- Caiden wore the awesome jeans yesterday!)
I'm glad the pp said that about the carter's e-mails as there is a stand alone carter's outlet about 10 minutes away... signing up now!
(brus clothes suck!)

keanetwins said...

Our Mama likes to Shop, too. We have more clothes than she does.

She also says to say that newborn mittens were her biggest waste of time. Never stayed on at ALL>


Krista said...

I shop the clearance racks. I have bought most of my toddler's clothes thus far from Children's Place, Old Navy and Kohl's. I get emails/snail mail with extra savings from each store periodically. I also have found some great dressier outfits at Marshall's (which is similar to TJMaxx - owned by the same company) at good prices. The key to clearance rack shopping is hitting them frequently. Somedays are successful and others are not. Often, I just walk straight to the sale racks and if I don't see anything, I walk right back out without shopping the rest of the store.

When she outgrows clothes, I wash them, write my initials on the tag and pack them up in rubbermaid totes. I keep a laundry basket in her room just for the outgrown stuff. I hope to be able to use them again myself, but it not, I'll pass them on to someone else. I had been putting my initials on them so my best friend could borrow them if she wanted, but she ended up with a boy.

baby clothes said...

good job done guys... very nice blog.... very interesting and knowledgeble... hope you will post newer content in coming days..