Practical Parenting – Kid’s Clothes

February 9, 2011

I am still amazed at how quickly my kids grow out of their clothes and just how much laundry 2 small kids generate. Here are my tips to make life easy.

Borrow as many newborn clothes as you can. They’re usually in great condition because they’re only use for a few weeks at a time. This will save you a fortune. 

Vests with a motif’s on the front make it a lot easier to work out the right way around when you’re struggling with a crying baby. And if you intend on having more children go for a uni-sex motif.

 When buying t-shirts I prefer the ones with buttons along the shoulders rather than down along the back. They’re much easier to get on. Similarly the easiest type of sleep suit to put on are those with buttons all the way down the front and inside of the legs.

You can never have too many bibs. I think 15-20 is about the right number for small babies. I prefer side-buttoning bibs cause you don’t have to fiddle around the back of your child’s head to get them on. Also I prefer snap fasteners to velcro or ties. I’ve found that Velcro looses it’s ‘stickiness’ over time and roll-up after frequent washing.  Tesco and Marks and Spencers do great side-buttoning bibs. Keep an eye on the sales for discounted bibs.

A lot of people swear by Grogbags but i prefer fleece sleep-suits over pjs. Grobags don’t cover arms and i found my kids woke up becuase of it. I also found growbags a bit of a liability when the kids started to move. They kept tying themselves up in knots in an effort to move around the cot. Dunness are my favourite for fleece sleepsuits. They’re also good for growbags, as are IKEA. 

The best way to avoid clothes becoming permanently stained is to steep them as soon as the stain hits them. When the kids were small babies I had two steeping buckets one for poo, and one for vomit. Word of warning make sure you turn the feet of sleepsuits inside out before you start washing poo off them.  

I’d advise buying dark babygrows from 9 onwards. Pale sleepsuits get badly stained as babies start crawling around floors. 

Kids grow so quickly and although you can get away with tops and dresses that are slightly too large or too small you really can’t with trousers. Too large they fall down, too tight and your child will complain bitterly. For that reason i like trousers with elasticated waists as you can get longer out of them but they can’t be too strongly elasticated.

Shop wise i like to keep an eye on Dunnes and Penney’s. They get some nice stuff in but it’s gone in a flash. I find Mothercare expensive but it does great sales. Marks and Spencers is great for special pieces but they also have value items if you take the time to look. I find Next expensive for everyday clothes but they’re great for occassion wear and their stuff washes brilliantly. And if you have the stamina their sales are legendary.  

Shoes wise, I’ve been advised that soft soled shoes are best suited for children until they’re walking on their own for about 2 months. on children with less than 2 months.  I like Dunnes and Tesco for up to 6 months and Next thereafter. My kids just love opening the velcro on shoes, which can be pain when you’re trying to get out the door. If this will bother you opt for lace-up shoes instead.

Hope some of those tips help.



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