Shop Smart For Your Children and Style them on a budget
If you are like me, you love styling your kids. Pinterest is my personal inspiration for each season’s style for my kids and myself, and I have a feeling it just might inspire you for your children’s wardrobe next season as well. That being said, Pinterest can make us feel well, like we have to have everything we see, but it isn’t always financially feasible. Continuing onto my personal story of self-realization that I had went over the shopping-deep end…
When my daughter was born, I had well, a bit of a problem keeping money in my pocket when it came to buying clothes for her. Have you ever had this problem? You see something in the store that is too cute to resist. You imagine how adorable she would look in Christmas pictures wearing that Santa tutu with the green and red glitter. Let’s just put it this way: I had hundreds of dollars of clothes I had spent on her that I had never even taken the tag off of. Anything like this ever happen to you? This was my wake-up call that I was wasting a ton of money. This is when I started finding ways to continue dressing her stylishly, but on a budget.
Steps 1-5: Shopping For Your Kids on a Budget
- Consign and Shop at Local Consignment Sales: Consignment sales are the new big “thing” now when it comes to buying children’s clothes on a budget. Basically, everyone is realizing what a waste it is to spend buckoos on a new shirt for someone that will outgrow it in a few months. So they are hitting up localconsignment sales, buying barely used clothes at a fraction of the price, and saving a ton of money. But here’s the real trick to saving money on your child’s clothes: Consign clothes from last year and take that money and put it on this year’s clothes. For instance, what I do every season is: Consign my daughter’s clothes from the year before –Shop at theconsignment sale for my daughter (I also get to go in before the public does since I’m a consignor) -Take the money I make off of her clothes and put it toward her new wardrobe. I usually come out spending next to nothing on her new clothes. It’s basically a tradeoff.
- Consignment shops: These are becoming super-popular and you should be able to find them almost anywhere. They usually carry high-end brands at low prices that have been lightly worn. Good news is you can find other baby items here too, such as cribs, strollers, etc…
- Consignment Apps such as Kidizen and Totspot make buying and selling used clothes simple to do, and you can do it right from your phone/computer.
- Shop for next Fall’s wardrobe at the end of winter/beginning of spring. Think about it: Retail stores are itching to get rid of all of their Fall/Winter inventory when Spring is right around the corner. Go to the mall (or Target, or your favorite children’s boutique) at around February or March, when they are desperately marking down the end-of-season clothing and shoes, and buy for next Fall. Genius, right? I have gotten some super cute clothes and shoes for next to nothing by doing this.
- Tip on buying shoes: I want my kids to wear comfy shoes. I know good shoes for children can come at a high price tag. Definitely hit up the consignment sales for shoes, and keep in mind that the high-end boutiques will be marking these down at the end of season as well. Before I was enlightened on this, I was spending $50 for a pair of good shoes, now I spend $10 for that same pair, just lightly worn (or $25 on a pair marked on clearance in a boutique).
Congratulations! If you took the advice above, you should have some extra money in your pocket and a new wardrobe for your kids! Now that you’ve bought it, let’s get to the styling:
Tips 6-15: Styling Your Children:
- Consult with Pinterest: I created a Pinterest board with kid’s fashion pins. The pins give me great ideas on pieces to put together that I never would have thought of myself (such as boots with socks pulled up etc.) Remember not to purchase everything you see on Pinterest – this is for inspiration, read: INSPIRATION ONLY.
- Add accessories: You may just assume that your littles will hate scarves, headbands or bracelets, but don’t knock it til you try it! Accessories on adults and kids are an instant way to spruce up a “just-ok” outfit!
- Roll their jeans up: The new style this year is to wear rolled up jeans with ankle boots or flats. This is easy (and free) to incorporate with your kids!
- Roll up the sleeves of a button up shirt, and add a cute tee underneath. This turns a boring button-up into a stylish piece.
- Layer, layer, layer: It’s fall, y’all and time to pull out the layers. Layer shirts on top of shirts, socks over tights…the possibilities are limitless.
- Speaking of socks… put long socks on, so that they come up above her boots. Such an adorable look this year.
- Iron-on letters: These are super cheap and easy to do. Go to your nearest Hobby Lobby or Michaels and purchase the iron-on letters to add her name (or whatever you wish) to an outfit.
- Monogram it: Usually, monogramming can be done for only a few dollars for each piece and adds instant poshness to an outfit.
- Play with the hairstyle: Does she have long hair? Put it in a pretty braid. Does he have enough hair to put product on to create a cute Mohawk? Then do so! Hair is so much fun to play with…especially at this age when they can get away with so many more looks than we as adults can!
- Let them have input. Make it fun for them too, and you just never know when what they pick out just might be better than what you had in mind. The other day I had picked out a shirt and pants for my daughter, when she insisted on putting the shirt with a tutu and boots, and it looked fabulous! She got so many compliments on her outfit and I had to give all the credit to my little fashionista because I never would have thought to put it together!
Most of all, have fun: Fashion is never anything to be serious about, especially when it comes to kids. It’s all about having fun, being creative and trying new things! If he absolutely refuses to wear his jeans rolled up and wants to wear his army pants instead, go ahead and let him (under most circumstances :)) This is a chance to let your kids show their creativity as well!
Do you have a bun in the oven? Check out our Maternity Style and Shopping Tips on a Budget.
Related links on styling and saving money:
- Eight Tips to Save Money At Home
- This One Tip Will Help You Save Money When Buying Organic Food
- Save on Invitations By Designing Your Own with This Tool
- DIY Budget Party Favors
- A Great Way to Decorate On a Budget
- Does Your Child (or you) Have to Carry an EpiPen Around? Here’s How to Save $100 Next Time You Have to Purchase a New One
- Tips for Party Planning on a Budget
- Try this Budget Party-Planning Tip!
- No Money? You can Still Decorate! Here’s How!