There is something magical about the month of September. It holds a promise of fresh starts which come with back to school mentality. New winter coats, a swishy hair cut, shiny shoes and brand new stationary, all tied up in your new favourite bag, each evoking excitement and wonderment.
With the changing of the season and Henry’s upcoming new school adventure, I take the opportunity to start planning my kid’s new autumn-winter wardrobes.
I love shopping for my three. but before I start adding items to my basket, I firstly compile the kid’s current clothes into three piles:
- From Henry’s wardrobe, I pull out what is worth keeping for his younger brother Georgie. Such a small pile as everything has been lovingly worn during nursery playground antics and are not longer fit for the outside world.
- Next; I collate what I can sell at the NCT table top sale or my new Peonie and Me Preloved site – the proceeds going back into the kid’s wardrobes. Win win.
- And lastly, for charity or throw (the throwing is in the extreme – too many holes or beyond stain removing repair).
In these new sustainable times, I’d love some tips on what to do with old unusable clothes?
After my clear out, I’m then left with the bare bones of their new wardrobes. For Henry his new school uniform hangs proudly, waiting for my little boy to bring it to life. He also has an array of skinny jeans and hooded tops that were a preloved gifts from his cousin Maxim. For Georgie, I head into the attic to pull out the box labelled Henry 2-3 and there are some gorgeous knitted jumpers and a few items that are great for the nursery.
I then sit down and write a list of what each child needs, to make up a capsule wardrobe, to see them until early spring. I know what shapes work for them and I keep comfort and practically at the forefront of my list. There will be the odd update in between, with Christmas and general wear and tear, but generally this has to see them through to the new year.
With it being the autumn and winter season they all need boots, a waterproof coat, knitwear (both light and heavy) everyday tops with leggings or jeans and then I throw in some special items for days out as a family. I then set a budget for the three kids to ensure I stay within it. Henry now has a uniform 5 days a week, so technically he doesn’t need as much as previous years.
Now for the creative part which I relish, the shopping. I always start with Zara kids as it’s my favourite shop for my little ones and will also take up most of the budget. I go through every clothing category the kids need and add to my basket what I love and take a screenshot of each item.
When I’ve finished I then collate all my images, by each child, in an app called MOLDIV that pulls everything into a grid. This is my way of ensuring I have everything on my list but most importantly to check that everything has multiple complementary items that can be mixed and matched together. I long for simple mornings. I can also see from my little mood board if I have any duplication in items… does Posy need that many knitted rompers because they are freakin cute?
Before I check out I then go to my other favourite shops Next and H&M to do price comparisons on items such as coats, footwear and knitwear. These are usually the items that are pricer on Zara. But also to arm me ready for the conversation that inevitably arises from my husband, “would that have been cheaper at xzy? ”
When it comes to Next I love their PJs and sleepsuits and they also do beautiful girls clothes. They are also my go-to this year for waterproof coats for the boys. For H&M it’s all about wrap baby vests and stripe tops. Stripes are my life and they will forever endure.
I then ‘check out’ and the kids are ready for a new season. Easy peasy until the days of “I don’t like that”.
What are your top tips for buying clothes for your kids?