Somebody asked me the other day how to dress children in a similar style as mine on a budget, and I thought it would make an interesting post. Firstly – I want to point out that childrens’ clothing isn’t worth putting yourself into debt for, as somebody who has been there. And secondly, shopping was – for me – a symptom of PND, and if your relationship with baby-related purchases is starting to feel a bit out of control or you find that you’re feeling dependent on the high of shopping as an emotional crutch, please talk to your GP. And I’ll also point out that sometimes I’m given clothes to photograph for my insta/blog or for other people’s and I get to keep them – so my kids’ clothing habit isn’t entirely from my own pocket (if an image features a clothing that was given to me in lieu of payment, even historically, I will mention that).
But over the course of my not-inconsiderable children’s clothes shopping habit, I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks along the course of the way. I’m sharing them today in case they help you to save a few pennies too. For the avoidance of doubt, none of the links in this post are affiliate links and I won’t receive anything for posting.
Most of my children’s wardrobes are purchased either secondhand or in the sales – I have to really, REALLY love an item of clothing to buy it new and at the start of the season, and have an intended purpose for it that can’t wait until the mid-season sale. It’s hard not to give in to temptation and I fill a LOT of fantasy baskets, but common sense tends to prevail when I see the total amount at the end! My favourite sale is from a shop called Junior Edition. I have a love-hate relationship with this shop as they do take weeks to dispatch their orders – WEEKS – but their sale is so good that I keep going back. Sometimes they release a code for an additional amount off of the sale price and it’s definitely worth signing up to their newsletter for that code. Likewise with Alex and Alexa (disclaimer: I have a working relationship with Alex & Alexa but this post is not a part of that relationship) – they also frequently offer a discount code on top of their sale prices and if you are planning a big order featuring lots of brands, it’s worth looking on Alex and Alexa. Allow about five days between ordering and the arrival of your box o’ joy!
I’ve been making an effort recently to try to support independent shops that have a smaller (but lovingly curated) collection, and when I’m actively looking to add to my children’s wardrobes I always look at Scout & Co, Pops & Ozzy and Dapper Baby. All three have excellent customer service and are run by the loveliest people! Dapper Baby has a group on Facebook where they sometimes host ‘pay as you feel’ events – literally as it sounds, the first person to claim the item gets to decide how much they feel it is worth. Scout & Co and Pops & Ozzy both offer 10% off of your first order if you sign up to their newsletter.
I’ve been keeping my eye out for actual, physical sales too – especially since Mini Rodini opened in Notting Hill earlier this year. They hosted a 70% sale in store recently and I bought a few bits at prices that were equivalent to Marks and Spencer! Their shop manager mentioned an upcoming sample sale – so we’ll see… It’s only useful if you’re in London or can get there easily, but if you aren’t far away it’s a good idea to keep an eye on the brands’ Facebook and insta pages for details of sales that are exclusive to the shops.
Most of my favourite brands survive multiple children really well, and I buy a lot of what we own secondhand via Facebook Groups. My favourite Facebook groups for kids’ clothing are Mini Rodini Love UK and albababy, beau loves, nununu, indikidual, bobo choses, mini rodini and more. That said, now that we have four children in more or less the same clothing size and a baby whom will – I hope – inherit much of it, I’ve been focused more on buying new in the sale rather than secondhand at a similar price point. If you have fewer children to wear out your clothes, it might make more sense to purchase secondhand!
We also like Lindex for bright and quirky clothing on a budget, and Zara often has interesting bits in – although the latter in particular definitely isn’t built to survive multiple children!
So.. that is it! Those are my tips. I’d say that I spend between a third to a half of the amount that my children’s wardrobes would retail for new and at the start of the season. But please remember that children don’t care whether they’re wearing supermarket brand clothing or high-end designer and that your ability to dress your child in one vs the other means nothing as far as your value as a mother. That said, if you enjoy kids’ style and this is how you choose to spend your disposable income, then I hope that my post helped you.