Author Topic: Kids' Clothing  (Read 3924 times)

coppertop

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Kids' Clothing
« on: October 25, 2017, 11:53:12 AM »
I'll start by saying I am a grandmother. My grandkids are out of town, so I don't buy them clothing all that often, and when I do, it's usually from an outlet store, or Target, or Kohl's with a discount coupon.  My daughter buys all of her kids' clothing from upscale consignment stores at a fraction of the original cost, then she resells the ones that are still in great shape once her kids have outgrown them.  However, several years ago, I bought a niece some clothing from Justice for her birthdays and Christmas, which was her preferred store at the time.  Sometime later, I received information about a class action against the store, and I signed up for it.  I received a $30 voucher, good only in the store.  The niece has since moved beyond the Justice brand, so I thought I'd take the voucher in and get something for my six-year-old granddaughter.  I was floored by the prices in there.  $30 for a sweater that a small child is going to outgrow in a short time!  I realize my age is showing, as well as my usual habit of shopping for discounts.  I did manage to find a pair of leggings and a top that cost me just a bit over the $30.  But Lordy, how do parents now manage to keep their kids clothed and shod at those prices?  Do most MMM parents buy at consignment stores and discount stores?

Cranky

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2017, 12:22:05 PM »
I think they probably hit the sales at Target and Kohls, which are a lot more reasonable.

I admit that my own kids' clothes were almost all from the thrift store, but I am willing to pay a bit more these days for truly adorable grandboy outfits, which I suspect is part of the marketing plan of many of these stores.

kanga1622

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2017, 12:32:05 PM »
It really depends a lot on the household. We have two boys that are hard on pants but reasonable on shirts/pjs.

We prefer to spend a bit more on brands we trust to hold up so both our kids can use the clothes. We have had great luck with The Children's Place for pjs and shirts. I don't feel like $5 for a shirt that will get washed/worn at least weekly for 2+ years is a bad price. Yes, it is hard to drop the cash at the outset but it pays off overall. We shop their clearance, buy a size ahead when possible, and use coupons/free shipping on every order. We have learned that our kids are a little on the smaller side for their ages and tend to stay in each size for a solid year.

Pants are a whole other story. I hate buying pants for my kids because they don't make it more than a season once the kids are school aged. We try to keep our per item cost down but it is getting hard to find even basic jeans or sweatpants for less than $10 a pair. And the cheaper Walmart type pants don't always make it through the season. Even if there are no holes at the end of the season, the knees/thighs/or seat are often too thin to expect another season of use.

slappy

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2017, 12:44:08 PM »
It really depends a lot on the household. We have two boys that are hard on pants but reasonable on shirts/pjs.

We prefer to spend a bit more on brands we trust to hold up so both our kids can use the clothes. We have had great luck with The Children's Place for pjs and shirts. I don't feel like $5 for a shirt that will get washed/worn at least weekly for 2+ years is a bad price. Yes, it is hard to drop the cash at the outset but it pays off overall. We shop their clearance, buy a size ahead when possible, and use coupons/free shipping on every order. We have learned that our kids are a little on the smaller side for their ages and tend to stay in each size for a solid year.

Pants are a whole other story. I hate buying pants for my kids because they don't make it more than a season once the kids are school aged. We try to keep our per item cost down but it is getting hard to find even basic jeans or sweatpants for less than $10 a pair. And the cheaper Walmart type pants don't always make it through the season. Even if there are no holes at the end of the season, the knees/thighs/or seat are often too thin to expect another season of use.

This is what I do. I used to buy from facebook and moms group yard sales site, but it was just wasn't worth it. People wanted way too much for stuff and I often had to go out of my way to pick stuff up. After a couple of no shows, I said screw it. I'd rather pay the few extra bucks to have something shipped directly to my house. I keep the prices reasonable anyway by shopping clearance and buying ahead, so I just found the yard sales to not be worth it for me. Plus, I feel like I actually spent more buying used, because I was always browsing the sale posts and picking stuff up constantly, rather than only buying what I need.

kanga1622

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2017, 12:50:09 PM »

This is what I do. I used to buy from facebook and moms group yard sales site, but it was just wasn't worth it. People wanted way too much for stuff and I often had to go out of my way to pick stuff up. After a couple of no shows, I said screw it. I'd rather pay the few extra bucks to have something shipped directly to my house. I keep the prices reasonable anyway by shopping clearance and buying ahead, so I just found the yard sales to not be worth it for me. Plus, I feel like I actually spent more buying used, because I was always browsing the sale posts and picking stuff up constantly, rather than only buying what I need.

I found garage sales very helpful through size 3T and sometimes size 4. After that, boys clothes were beat to heck and not worth what they were asking. The Facebook rummage prices are even worse! No way am I paying $5 for a used t-shirt when I can buy brand new for that price and know it will last through my kids.

We just donate outgrown kids clothes in good condition to a local church. They have a kids "closet" where families can come in and get what they need for free. We have a pretty decently sized low income population (many with parents working their way through college).

golden1

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2017, 01:48:42 PM »
Justice, from what I can remember, marks its clothes up riculously and then usually has some sort of sale, or they have those coupons that you can “earn” like “spend $50 and get $25 off”.  Horrible store.  And the few times I bought clothes there, they weren’t great quality. 

Now the same daughter who used to be into that stuff prefers thrift store clothing.  I must be doing something right!

furrychickens

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2017, 06:51:23 AM »
For me shoes are the biggest expense as I've had terrible luck with anything other than name-brand brand new items. Outside of shoes, boots, and jackets our clothing spending has been minimal.

We got a LOT of clothing given to us, either new items typically from discount stores, things purchased at a thrift store, and some hand-me-downs (mostly when they were really young). My oldest two (11,10) are also starting to enjoy buying their own clothes with their $ at thrift stores.

slappy

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #7 on: October 26, 2017, 06:52:18 AM »
Justice, from what I can remember, marks its clothes up riculously and then usually has some sort of sale, or they have those coupons that you can “earn” like “spend $50 and get $25 off”.  Horrible store.  And the few times I bought clothes there, they weren’t great quality. 

Now the same daughter who used to be into that stuff prefers thrift store clothing.  I must be doing something right!

I feel like most stores do that these days. Kohl's a big one that does that too.

Sibley

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #8 on: October 26, 2017, 07:35:28 AM »
Not a parent, but my friends who are use a combo of these strategies:

1. Thrift stores, consignment stores, garage sales, etc.
2. Gifts from family/friends. They try to steer those towards items that can't easily be found second hand.
3. Hand-me-downs from friends/family with older kids.
4. Target, kmart, walmart, kohl's. Other places if there's a sale or coupon that makes it cost efficient.

The younger the kid, the easier it is to find decent clothing used. They grow fast enough that they don't wear stuff out, so you can reuse it pretty easily. From what I'm hearing, around 7 or 8 is when the used market drops off considerably, but I've only got one source for that age. Most of the kids are 6 or younger.

Books, toys, etc are similar patterns. Library is helpful for books obviously.

honeybbq

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2017, 09:51:57 AM »
I don't shop at the mall 90%+ of the time for my daughter's clothing.

We do a ton of:
neighborhood free exchange
garage sales
thrift stores
gifts from family members (usually purchased from Kohls/TJ maxx)
H&M has cheap $$ clothes that are cute

I do a bit of online shopping. I did order quite a bit of Tea Collection stuff for the next year - it was on sale and also some % off (maybe 30? or 40?%) and then it was quite reasonable. I'm going to give kiddo one or two dresses for Xmas and save the rest for next year.

I can't *believe* retail prices in stores like the gap, justice, etc. There's just no way I'm buying her a $30 sweater. I would have to think twice to buy myself a 30$ sweater!

mm1970

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2017, 10:08:10 AM »
It depends.  I have boys, and pretty low standards.

We used to get a lot of hand me downs, but at some point - they dry up because they wear them out.  So, hand me downs happen for shorts, but not pants.  Especially after the age of 4, because they all get holes in them.

We live in a year round good climate.  My kids mostly live in shorts and T-shirts.  They last a really long time.  I can buy plain T-shirts for $2-3.  I don't worry about stains or anything - because they get stained on day 1 of art class.

Honestly I buy my kids' shorts and such at Kmart. 

travelawyer

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #11 on: October 26, 2017, 10:17:35 AM »
There are a lot of places to buy kids clothes that aren't that expensive.  I buy a lot of Target and H&M, and combine that with family hand-me-downs and re-sale stores.  Mini Boden is my guilty pleasure, but I only buy from their sale section!:)

BeanCounter

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #12 on: October 26, 2017, 10:30:09 AM »
I have two boys ages 8 and 5.

Shoes are where we spend the bulk of our clothing budget. And it pays to buy the name brand shoes that actually have rubber bottoms. I try to shop sales, but a good pair of sneakers still runs us $35. Oldest requires a wide width making it even more difficult.

The rest I try and shop sales and use store coupons. I shoot for no more than $5 for a shirt and $15 for pants, sweaters and sweatshirts. I tell family that team or school sweatshirts are a great gift for the boys.

I only bought used clothing when they were under aged 2. After that age it's really not worth it. I can usually match or beat the used/consignment store prices if I shop sales. For example, last year I found a great pair of snow pants at Goodwill in the fall for $10 so I went ahead and bought them to be prepared. I was so proud of myself for actually thrifting. The winter ended up not being a bad one and two months later my DH found brand new snow pants at a "overstock" discount store for $6. So once again I would have been better off buying new.


elaine amj

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #13 on: October 26, 2017, 10:46:53 AM »
Nearby us, there are a lot of giant kids yard sales. I'd score killer deals at those. I don't know how much I spent, but my target was $0.25-$1/top or bottom. $3-$5 for a fancy outfit. Yes, sometimes people wanted a lot more. I just skipped those and moved on to the next seller. I also shopped store sales sometimes but in general, something I could score for $2-$3 at a store sale, I could get for $0.25-$0.50 at a yard sale. I don't remember how much I spent a year, but I'd drop $30 on one shopping trip and come out with a carload of stuff. I was a patient shopper and this meant they had beautiful things and people often commented on how nicely my kids were always dressed (unless DH was in charge of dressing them - then it was more like backward pajama tops with ragged pants).

To this day (my kids are teens now), our whole family shops at thrift stores. My DD's Grade 8 grad dress was $3. Unfortunately, I dropped $10 on her (new) shoes that still ended up hurting her feet :(

I do generally buy shoes new, but shop sales. Our entire family usually wears Adidas running shoes (most durable for the price IMO) and spend about $15-30/pair on sale. If I'm lucky, I snag used shoes cheap. I am currently wearing a pair of motorcycle boots. I had a hard time finding what I wanted in thrift stores so I started hitting up regular stores and was looking at $30-60. Eventually I found what I wanted at a thrift store for under $10 (still highway robbery IMO but better than my other options).
« Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 10:49:14 AM by elaine amj »

99to1percent

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #14 on: October 26, 2017, 10:50:27 AM »
yes, it's crazy expensive nowdays. We just shopped for fall and winter clothes for our 1 year old daughter, and we spent more than we had budgeted even though we went to a cheap outlet mall.

Also, it's hard to get gender-neutral clothes nowdays.  Since, we have a daughter now, and maybe might get a son next time, we try to get gender-neutral clothes, but it's very hard.  All the girl clothes come with flowers, or princesses, or diamonds,...on them even if the colors are neutral such as yellow, green, white...

Hula Hoop

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #15 on: October 26, 2017, 01:59:58 PM »
We have 2 girls which is very Mustachian as the younger one wears almost 100% handmedowns.  Surprisingly, at least half the handmedowns that she wears come not from my older daughter but from older daughter's friends.  Older daughters' friends are either only children or have younger brothers so they just hand the clothes down to my younger daughter since they know her.  Younger daughter has a huge closet as a result. 

I buy older daughter's clothes either second hand - usually at the school second hand sale twice a year - or on sale in a size bigger a year in advance.  The semiannual school second hand sale was 2 weekends age and we scored an almost new pair of Superga sparkly sneakers in younger daughter's size and a bunch of clothes in older daughter's size.

Chesleygirl

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #16 on: October 26, 2017, 02:29:07 PM »
I don't buy clothes in retail stores.  I buy all of them second hand, at consignment stores when they have clearance sales. Or get hand me downs from friends. My goal is to spend under $200 per year for three kids. I might have gone slightly over that this year. My children are still young, so when they get older, I'll probably spend more.

I've also found a lot of Justice clothing at thrift stores.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 02:31:11 PM by Chesleygirl »

gatortator

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2017, 02:30:12 PM »
yup, we are 80% thrift stores as well-- we call them treasure hunt stores.  We are even lucky to have good options for consignment winter gear. Shoes, socks and underwear are the main things we buy new and high quality.

I have slim kids so brand is becoming more important as they age.  thefrugalgirl website has been useful for me in finding "bang for the buck" sources with this.

I also buy 1 year in advance so I can grab things as I find them.

CNM

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2017, 03:45:52 PM »
I hate running errands, so I buy most of my child's clothing (he's 5) via online thrift stores, thredup and schoola.  When he was a still a baby, I'd go to a huge 2x annual pop up consignment event where most items of clothing were just a few dollars and stock up.

wordnerd

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #19 on: October 26, 2017, 03:55:28 PM »
So far, we've been living off hand-me-downs for two years. After that runs out, we'll likely go the consignment route or buying from other parents on parenting boards. Some people care what their kids' clothes look like; I really don't.

Chesleygirl

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #20 on: October 26, 2017, 04:48:10 PM »
There is a lot of expensive children's clothing out there, it doesn't mean you have to buy it. Zulily, Hanna Anderson, Robeez shoes, Matilda Jane, Well Dressed Wolf. The women I know in Moms of Multiples club buy all this expensive, silly stuff. They want their twins or triplets in matching, frilly, monogrammed outfits. (A new Matilda Jane dress is around $70, just for one dress). They also seem to live off credit cards and paycheck to paycheck. And it's not going to matter someday what their kids wore when they were young. The clothes get dirty, ripped or spit up on.

Illgetthere

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #21 on: October 27, 2017, 10:51:56 AM »
I have boys age 12 and 5
I really like Carters through age 7 or so. I only go when they do their $5 shirt sales, and they seem to last well.
TJ Maxx and Marshalls can be good
Kohls with the credit card coupons
Some consignment stores, but even the good ones seem to get iffy as the kids age
Old Navy has good jeans! I always bought them for my oldest there when they did the $10 jean sales, and they would easily last the year. He hasn't wanted to wear jeans for a couple years now, and I noticed the sale price has gone up to $12. Hopefully the quality is the same
Stores like Academy or Dicks when they have a 25% off clearance sale. Still hit or miss on prices

brycedoula

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #22 on: October 27, 2017, 11:45:11 AM »
I would say that probably 75% of my daughter's "everyday" clothes have been purchased @ a thrift store. We have a Value Village nearby & I will wait until they're having a 50% off clothing sale. The "premium" brands like Carter's/GAP/Children's Place are more expensive than the Walmart/Superstore house brands, but still WAAAAAY cheaper than buying brand new. Last spring I bought a 2T 2-piece snowsuit for $3.00(!), in great condition because it was likely worn for only one season. I have also gone to large community sales where one can find AMAZING deals like "fill a plastic grocery bag with as many clothes as you can for $5".

For less common clothing items I don't have a problem buying new: we just spent $50 on toddler Sorels (which is expensive, but we walk to daycare and our winters can easily in the -30C to -40C for weeks at a time).

All of her "fancy" dresses have been purchased by family members.

ChiefMomOfficer

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #23 on: November 01, 2017, 03:35:52 AM »
My kids clothes are all bought at consignment shops when they're young. As they get older, it gets harder to find good clothes for them. Although I can still sometimes find clothes at thrift stores now, I also supplement with clothes from Kohls for my 14 year old. I do think the consignment shops have the best deals on clothes for little ones, my two year olds entire wardrobe comes from them. After all, where else can you get designer clothes at less than Walmart prices?

I also love tag sales, but they have the same problem where it's much easier to find clothes for small children.

Chesleygirl

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #24 on: November 02, 2017, 10:12:48 PM »
I like going to the consignment store when they have their dollar clearance sale; everything on clearance is one dollar.

chouchouu

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #25 on: November 08, 2017, 06:04:55 PM »
I have to admit I like expensive branded clothes for my kids. I have a list that tells me what I need to buy so I don't over purchase. They get a lot of clothes from grandma and birthday presents from friends and then I fill in the rest. I buy some clothes from aldi since they have good quality stuff and the rest I buy when I'm in Europe or online. I guess it's the one thing I refuse to spend less on. Kids can wear clothes for at least two years anyway so they get a good amount of time in them. I can also sell stuff afterwards but I tend to give it to friends who have asked. Kids don't need all that much clothing anyway so once I fill in what hasn't been bought it isn't too bad. Eg they have enough t-shirts and a few dresses from presents so I buy a fancy raincoat, a few dresses, a pair of boots and sandals to fill in the gaps. The dress might cost $80 but they wear it for two years and then pass it on. They're in school now so only need a few dresses. I buy the raincoat for 50 euros on sale for one that costs $160 if I bought it in Australia.  They wear it for three years and then I sell it secondhand for 50 dollars, so it cost me around 20/30 for something I got three years usage of. The only things that don't sell well are shoes but leather shoes are expensive in Australia so when I buy them in Europe it's still cheaper buying expensive brands and they would last longer than equivalent priced in Australia.  I think if I didn't like fancy clothes it can still be cheap to cloth the kids, people always ask what to buy for birthdays so just direct them to clothing. For shoes canvas shoes can be used for both sport and casual. So theoretically you could spend less than a hundred a year without much effort looking for bargains. I shop in Europe during sale time so the boutique stuff costs around the same as retail stuff here. I also buy second hand from eBay,  some kids barely wear their fancy dresses. I also buy stuff outlet in Paris. People think the expensive clothes are fragile but they're actually easier to wash than the target stuff I've been given and much more durable they also fit longer. It's frivolous but is something that gives me pleasure.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #26 on: December 20, 2017, 09:21:45 AM »
I have two boys, ages 10 & 11. 90% of their wardrobe consists of athletic shorts & dry fit tshirts. Both are very forgiving, size wise, and hold up well. We cold wash & line dry. For things like underwear & socks, we buy these at Costco. Kids are especially hard on socks, so we replace them quite often. We live in a moderate climate (northern California), so they each also have a couple of hoodies, and a couple of pairs of jeans or warmup pants. Jeans & warmup pants were purchased at Costco for $10/each.

Things that are expensive for them - sports uniforms & gear (although, our club typically only replaces once every 4 seasons), and shoes. They each have one pair of shoes (plus soccer cleats & slides) at any given time. We usually buy Nike shoes, as they last best & can be used for cross country practice, etc. We need to replace shoes ever 3-4 months, depending on growth & how hard on them they are.

Our shoe & clothing budget for a family of four is around $1500, and the sports uniforms were $300. So, I think we're doing well keeping the rest in check. My running shoes were another big expense in the budget, so minusing out these two higher cost items, we don't spend much.

FireHiker

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #27 on: December 20, 2017, 09:49:27 AM »
We are finally starting to hit the end of the hand me down run (youngest just turned six but is almost the same size as the neighbor who was our hand me down source for the past five years). It was good while it lasted!

For my oldest (teen, boy) he almost exclusively shops at thrift stores because he thinks it's fun, with an occasional item from Target or jeans on sale from Hollister/Urban Outfitters when he can get them for $25. His biggest expense is shoes because we buy those new, but we do shop around.

For my almost 8 year old (boy), he has a few pairs of shorts and pants from Target and some t-shirts. He will actually wear sports jerseys from past soccer teams, shirts from school fun run, etc, and doesn't much care as long as he's comfortable. Again, biggest expense is shoes. It doesn't seem to matter if I buy higher quality shoes or not; he is SO hard on them it's astounding. Although I remember that with my oldest.

Now that I have to buy clothes for my youngest who has gone through a massive growth spurt, we almost exclusively shop at Target for her and let her pick. She has....particular....tastes. I don't dare choose, but I'll give her a quantity or price range and we'll figure it out together. We have let her pick out a fancy dress at Costco twice a year the past two years (Christmas and Easter), and she wears those into the ground! I do a LOT of mending on her clothes actually.

I used to shop at the Carters outlet store or online when the kids were babies, but exclusively from the sale/clearance options. We have a decent thrift store about 15 minutes away now, but it's only been open for a few years. Before that it was too much of a hassle to go to one further away with mediocre wares and was a better use of my time/money to shop clearance online for the kids. I have never taken the younger ones clothes shopping at the mall, and actually they've only even been to the mall if we needed a repair at the apple store. I am going to avoid Justice like the plague with my daughter!

cats

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #28 on: December 20, 2017, 02:38:56 PM »
We've been pretty lucky with hand-me-downs for our son (almost 2).  I have a friend with a son who is a bit older so she keeps handing stuff over to us.  Sadly, my kid is almost as big as her kid now so I think we may be reaching the end of that hand-me-down train.  Aside from that, I find a surprising amount of stuff in the neighborhood freecycle bin up to about size 4 or 5T.  If it's in good condition, I take it home, wash it, and put it away for future use.

Most of our local thrift stores don't accept baby clothing so I hadn't thought of them as a source for kid's stuff, but I might have to take a look sometime.  There are some kid-specific consignment stores but from brief looks in they've seemed to skew towards fancier stuff--maybe a good place for a special occasion outfit but not everyday stuff.

My parents are also quite eager to give a few clothing items for Christmas/birthday (for the few we've had so far, haha), so if there are items we aren't likely to come across used, I steer them towards those.


Al

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #29 on: December 25, 2017, 08:49:42 PM »
This is an area where I refuse to spend a ton of money because my kid's clothes get stained or ruined so easily.  I buy most of their clothing from a consignment store near here.  They have a wide variety of clothes at reasonable prices- not quite as cheap as thrift stores, but much more organized and a lot less hunting.  My almost 11 year old son wears almost exclusively athletic clothing like Nike and Under Armour.  Occasionally, I have a hard time finding enough used pants so I have to pay retail and it's painful!  Over triple the price! My daughter is 8 and ruins her clothes constantly.  I feel much better about it that the clothes have already been through 1 other person already.  I find a lot of Justice, Gap Kids and Hanna Anderson clothes at really reasonable prices. 

GOFU

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #30 on: February 17, 2018, 09:03:36 AM »
"Do most MMM parents buy at consignment stores and discount stores?"

I can't speak for anyone else, but we sure as hell do. In fact consignment and discount is still too rich for us to buy clothes that will be outgrown or ruined long before they wear out. All of our kids' clothes are either hand-me-downs from family and friends, or they are bought used at the thrift store. We don't broadcast that (we're not ashamed of it either), but we select the good stuff and nobody knows the difference. My wife and I do the same for ourselves for about 80% of our own clothes.

Clothing is a consumption item. Part of getting and staying rich is reducing the consumption side of the ledger. So we stay far away from clothing and department stores.

$30 for a little kid sweater? Only a fool would get fleeced like that. (Fleeced - see what I did there?)

asauer

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Re: Kids' Clothing
« Reply #31 on: February 21, 2018, 01:25:06 PM »
I have 2 eleven year olds- a boy and a girl.  80% of their clothing comes from goodwill.  Every season they get 10 outfits plus 2 “fun outfits” like vests or crazy jacket or whatever.  They are both runners so we spend more on shoes and we get underthings at Target.  Luckily my kids aren’t clothes horses so that helps too.