Dismayed at how quickly your child has outgrown that expensive dress? Here are five tips to keep him looking well-dressed – without spending thousands
By Tasneem Sariya
The children’s clothing section is definitely one of the best in any mall or shopping area. The variety, colours and sizes they come in can leave you wide-eyed, as can their prices. Yes, the prices of children’s wear are pretty steep, especially when you consider the repeated wear value of these. I mean, how many times can your child wear a particular outfit before she outgrows it?
Which is why you often end up lamenting the stack of nearly new clothes in the closet that no longer fit your child – those various cute outfits that you thought were just perfect for him and he wore just once before outgrowing them!
It surely then makes sense to avoid spending a sizeable portion of your budget on your child’s clothing. Of course, that doesn’t mean that she has to be shabbily dressed or that you should be a miser and let her wear the same stuff all the time. However, if you want to save money without compromising on the cute, tidy and practical aspects of your child’s clothing, take a look at these five tips:
1. Buy when there are offers, discounts and sales – This may seem like a definite no-brainer, but it is one of the most effective ways to cut your spending on your child’s clothing without compromising on quality. So shop during sales, discounts and off seasons. Stores, large, small or online, have various offers all through the year and you can save a lot if you keep an eye out for these. Buying when there are sale offers available is a great way to get branded good quality wear at much cheaper prices.
2. Buy a size or two larger – This doesn’t mean you should buy oversized clothes and let your child float around in a cloth balloon till it finally fits him. Definitely not! But you could try buying certain clothes that are a size larger. Seasonal clothes, such as sweaters, raincoats, and jackets can easily be worn for multiple cycles if you buy a slightly larger size. The chances of your child fitting into them the following year too are high. Besides, the wear and tear on these clothes will be limited as they will be used only for a short period of time. Similarly, night clothes, pyjamas and so on can also be comfortably worn if a size larger and they will last longer. A slightly bigger size ensures that you buy less frequently and this will help in cutting spending on your child’s clothes.
3. Be innovative and imaginative – This essentially means that as a parent you must be willing to be creative and think differently while dressing your child. Buying solid colour T-shirts that can be matched with other colours and clothing types or neutral colour pants that can be worn with different tops are smart ways to invest in your child’s clothing. Buy clothes that can be swapped and mixed and matched, instead of a complete set that has to worn on its own alone. Besides, be innovative with clothes that no longer fit. For example, cut out the socks from your toddler’s full length tracks and let her wear the pyjamas alone with her feet uncovered. Or, cut off the pants and convert them into shorts to be worn at home. Think out of the box to try and reuse old clothes.
4. Use hand-me-down clothes – There is nothing wrong in making your child wear clothes that have been handed down by siblings or cousins. After all, it is common to make the second child wear clothes that the firstborn wore. Children’s clothes are usually in good condition since they have been worn for only a short time, so it makes sense to contact close relatives who wouldn’t mind sharing clothes that their children have already outgrown. As a parent, you too should try and preserve the good clothes that your child has outgrown and hand them down to others.
5. Do not buy gender specific clothing – It is best to buy clothes that can be worn comfortably by both boys and girls. This means that you can invest once in buying the clothes and after your child outgrows them, keep them, perhaps for your next child, whether a boy or a girl!
Children look absolutely adorable when they are dressed up. This is why as parents we sometimes cannot resist picking up clothes that we long to try out on our little ones, even if they are expensive. However, the good news is, using the tips given here you can make your child look as endearing and lovable – and at only a fraction of the cost.
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