I take a lot of pleasure in dressing my children. Especially at the moment, as my own postpartum wardrobe is lacking in inspiration and excitement – I dress myself every day with two thoughts: “Can discreetly I whip out a boob in this?” and “Can I squeeze my Mama tummy into those without causing internal organ damage?” Consequently, my children have infinitely better wardrobes than I do.
Shopping for children’s clothes is a marvellous experience; mostly because it’s guilt-free. Busby and Indy are both growing at a rate of knots, and therefore need new clothes all of the time. I spend night feeds (and day feeds) perusing children’s clothing websites, looking for the perfect addition to each of their wardrobes… and I’ve also found that my favourite social network, Instagram, is a great source of inspiration and a fantastic place to discover new independent businesses and designers, as well as lovely online boutiques.
In preparation for the impending winter, Persil Non-Bio and Comfort Pure have partnered with a host of top 100 parenting bloggers* to share their tips to make dressing your baby up nice and warm, but stylishly, a doddle! Top tips include:
- Rolling down onesies rather than pulling them over baby’s head following a poonami (thanks Kerry from Oh So Amelia!)
- Using dribble bibs for gooey, drooling, teething munchkins, to save on washing loads (Mim from Mamamim)
- Buying smaller than size 0-3 months, just in case you have a ‘small’ baby – and by small, Gill means average sized – so your baby isn’t swamped in fabric! (Gill from A Baby on Board)
- And a delightful pearl of wisdom from me: “The most expensive (and whitest) outfit is the one most likely to be on the receiving end of an explosive nappy. Fact.”
As a self-confessed children’s clothing addict, I’ve shared a few of my top tips for shopping for and styling children below:
- Experiment with a few styles and choose clothes that you like, not just because they’re in fashion. Monochrome is very trendy at the moment, but that doesn’t mean it will suit your child. For example, both my children are fair, so black tends to wipe them out… and white isn’t very practical for a toddler who is still quite a messy eater!
- Remember, your child is an extension of yourself and you don’t want to look back at photos and wonder what on earth you were thinking… unless it involves bear ears. Bear ears are never a bad idea. Nor are bowties, as I discovered the other day!
- Don’t be restrained by the gender sections in shops – I vehemently believe in gender neutral clothes and get frustrated by the large amounts of unexciting ‘pink for girls’ and uninspired ‘blue for boys’ style-stereotyping. I frequently find clothes for Busby in the Boys Department, and Indy will definitely be wearing some of Busby’s clothes that have come from the Girls section.
- Do check out independent designers and makers. As I said above, Instagram is a fantastic source for finding amazingly talented parents who make clothes for children. Also check out blogs – new handmade businesses are often featured, and some blogs host children’s style linkies (I co-host #FunkyKidFriday with lovely Alex from Medicated Follower).
- Have a go at making your own! Before flamingoes became all the rage, I made Busby an awesome flamingo skirt using a very simple tutorial I found on Pinterest. I’ve recently discovered Made by Jack’s Mum who has a selection of wonderful patterns, both for free and for sale, and I’m currently on the hunt for some funky fabric so I can stitch the children a pair of their own harems.
- Check out your local charity shop. I love a spot of thrifty charity shop shopping, and always find something for the children in at least one shop. I’ve found some amazing bargains before, including vintage Baby GAP for £2 and a designer jumper which would have retailed at £30+ for £4. Both were in a like-new condition.
- Don’t forget to wash new clothes before wearing them as they may contain harsh chemicals from the manufacturing process. You can find out more in this post from fabulous Mama, Jo, of Mellie Green.
- Have fun and don’t spend what you can’t afford!
What are your top tips for styling your children?