Money is a moot issue in a dream world, right?
I love picking out Anna's clothes. The fact that we don't live in a dream world, but instead, a world where we only have one full-time income, means that the process is creative and challenging. While I would love to exclusively dress my daughter in outfits that are spot on current trends, the budget - and, if I'm honest, my convictions about where our money goes - say nope.
Last week, Shannan shared her secondhand genius for girl shopping, which got me thinking about sharing Anna's fall/winter wardrobe.
I have a few guiding parameters when shopping for Anna. One, I steer away from animals and cutesie sayings. Two, I don't buy a ton of pink. I'm not die-hard against pink, but neither am I a huge fan of lots of pink and ruffles.
My basic process is to start with garage sales and thrift stores. During the summer, I look at the online classifieds to find garage sales that specifically advertise baby/toddler girls' clothes. Anytime I'm at a thrift store, I take a few swipes through the baby racks. Anything I find that is cute and cheap at these places comes home with me.
At this point in Anna's life, it works best to have her clothes paired into outfits. So after I have an assortment of secondhand tops/pants, I pair them together and take notes on what I still need. I still keep an eye out for those gaps at garage sales/thrift stores, but I also start looking on Ebay or ThreadUp. (More on ThreadUp at the end.)
As far as retail shopping, I rarely buy anything new full price. Mostly, I shop online, because we live in a small town where the extent of retail shopping is Wal-Mart. I wait for end of season sales or 30-40% off coupons and sometimes the stars align, and websites offer free shipping on top of the coupon.
Are you ready to peek into her closet?
Monkey pajamas: $0.50, garage sale
Carter's cotton footy pajamas: $1.00 each, garage sales
Carter's fleece footy pajamas: $1.00 each, garage sales
(Soo, my animal rule does not apply to pajamas. Let the girl sleep swaddled in a menagerie.)
Carter's aqua rain jacket: free, gift from Aaron's mom
Baby Gap yellow jacket: $6.00, Ebay
Old Navy pink fleece: free, hand-me-down
Old Navy navy/white striped jacket: $4.00, consignment shop
(She probably has too many jackets???)
New Balance tennis shoes: $1.25, thrift store
Tan booties: $1.00, thrift store
Slipper socks: $2.25, Target clearance
Blue shoes: free, hand-me-down
Brown boots: $1.00, garage sale
Black Mary Janes: $0.50, garage sale
(Neutral is the name of the game for shoes!)
Outfits (Short sleeves for early fall but paired with cardis to take them into winter)
Carter's hot pink cardigan: $7.00, carters.com clearance
Carter's love t-shirt: $5.00, carters.com clearance
Garanimals grey leggings: $0.50, garage sale
Old Navy white heart tee: $3.00, clearance
Old Navy heart leggings: $3.00, clearance
Old Navy gray cardigan: $8.00, sale
Old Navy yellow onesie: $3.00, clearance
Garanimals khaki pants: $1.00, thrift store
Children's Place white cardigan: $0.50, garage sale
Total: $31.00 (That seems like a lot after the other categories!)
(I'm obviously determined that she will love cardigans as much as I do.)
Carter's peach top and patterned denim leggings: $4.00, JCPenney with $10 off coupon
Old Navy ivory pullover: $1.00, garage sale
Children's Place jeggings: $2.00, consignment store
OshKosh striped tunic: $2.00, consignment store
Children's Place jeggings: $1.00, garage sale
OshKosh coral striped top: $1.00, garage sale
Garanimals brown yoga pants: $0.50, garage sale
(I think I would wear the patterned denim leggings myself, if I could.)
Uh, Mom, why are you laying all my clothes out on the bed? That's weird.
Garanimals ivory top with lace: free, gift from my mom
Zara khakis: $6.00, ThredUp
Carter's chambray shirt: $12.00, carters.com
H&M flowered leggings: $7.00, hm.com
Old Navy green shirt: $1.00, garage sale
White leggings: $2.25, Kohls clearance
Circo white tunic: $0.50, thrift store
Orange leggings: $1.00, thrift store
(The chambray shirt outfit is her birthday present. I really wanted to buy her this outfit, but $19.00 for a baby outfit is crazy expensive in our world, so that money came out of the present fund.)
Old Navy coral dress: $6.00, ThredUp
Circo brown dress: $1.00, garage sale
Circo butterfly dress: $1.00, garage sale
Grand total drumroll? 44 pieces for $101.75. $100 still feels like a lot to me to spend on baby clothes, but it's spread out throughout the year as I pick things up here and there, and it averages out to $2.31 per item, which seems a lot easier to swallow!
About ThredUp. Have you heard of it? It's an online consignment shop where I bought the Zara pants and the coral Old Navy dress. Although you have to wade through some not-so-great stuff, it's a good place to find nicer brands for cheaper than retail. Sometimes, the garage sales around here are full of animal/cupcake/pinkpinkpink little girl clothes. ThredUp is a way to find some labels I really like but could never buy new.
The best thing about them is their referral program. Every friend that signs up gets $10 credit, and if that friend makes a purchase, you get $10 added to your account. Since there are a lot of things priced under ten bucks (even with shipping added in), it's a win/win. Your friend gets something free, and you get $10 added to your account. Obviously, I would be thrilled if you joined ThredUp through my referral link. Then, go get yo' friends to join so you can get some credit too! Aaron teases me that this is my pyramid scheme - it isn't a pyramid scheme - but yes, I am excited about ThredUp.
And because I can't say pyramid scheme without thinking of that Office episode, here you go:
"Yes! Thank you! You will get rich quick. We all will!" Makes me laugh every time.
What about y'all? How do you shop for your kids? Secondhand all the way? A good mix? Wouldn't touch a garage sale with a pole? Do share.