It appears he’s telling her to “simmer down”. Harlow’s dress is c/o Hucklebones
In my humble opinion the best way the extend the life of kids clothes, is to hand them down when each kiddo is done with it. Pass them down to a sibling, a cousin or even a friend – being able to share clothes and pass them on, giving them a whole new life span is the ultimate way to extend the life of little clothes. We personally love hand me downs (giving and receiving), over half of my daughters closet is composed of items her brother once wore (or his adorable little friend). Generally when I shop, I keep the hand-me-down mentality in mind, which has helped me streeeeeeeetch my dollar and lower even more possible excess shopping. So I thought, heck why not share some of my cheapo, I mean frugal tips – how I shop for clothes that can be handed down.
COATS When buying big ticket items like coats, I try to really stick with classic or more unisex styles. Since my son is older I buy him a coat in a style that his sister will also be able to wear in a year or two. When it comes to outerwear I always buy it a size or two too big, they can then grow into it as they wear it – and sometimes get a year or more of wear out of it (and then hand it down). And I always buy at end of season sales, winter coats are pricey so I try to avoid the wallet hit by buying on sale – generally most of my kids outerwear is a year old because I try to shop sales.
TEES I think I naturally gravitate towards styles that work for both genders, mostly I stick to classic styles or prints that are timeless or unisex. I often buy King tops from the boys section that I would have bought Harlow anyways, if it had come in her size. When the top fits a bit too big for little Harlow’s girly frame; I layer it, roll up the sleeves, or tuck it in – changing up how itvis worn is one way I try to make hand-me-downs new again.
BOOTS and SHOES Buy unisex styles and colors, especially when it comes to winter boots. Those bad boys are not cheap, but if you can get a few kids to wear the same pair of boots, the price is not too bad. Sometimes, when Harlow gets a hold of King’s old boots, to make them new I sub the laces with a fun color OR I have been known to paint or dye shoes. Shoes are another item I like to buy larger and on sale, I rarely ever buy shoes that will fit them NOW (buying shoes they need now makes it hard to buy on sale) – I keep my eyes open for sale shoes and buy large so they always have shoes to grow into.
PANTS Buy pants for boys from the girls section, as long as there is no girly stitching, embroidery or rhinestone action no one will be able to tell and sometimes they fit way better anyways. Then in a couple years (after you have extended their life) they can be handed down to a little girl (in our case little sister Harlow). Also when it comes to boys jeans (I have talked about this one before, here), they make the BEST brother jeans (my name for kiddo “boyfriend jeans”) when handed down to little girls. When it comes to buying jeans I stick to a couple stores, I find even in the land of kiddo jeans every store has a different fit that fits every little differently. So it may take some shopping around to find the right fit, then you can keep your eyes open for sales.
SHIRTS Button downs are the best for being handed down, you can extend the life pretty great for your boy and they also have so much versatility when handed down to little girls. A simple denim or chambray shirt, plaid or striped shirt are all so very classic and unisex to begin with it makes it an easy switch to take them from a little boys closet to a little girls. To make shirt hand-me-downs new, I like to belt them, layer them under sweaters, layer them under dresses, layer over slips, or roll up the sleeves a bit.
ACCESSORIES Buy unisex when possible; backpacks, hats, touques, belts, cardigans, even ties and bow ties. My kids share hats, backpacks, belts, and suspenders – so I only have to buy ONE. Bow ties when they get too small, I have in the past cut them and turned them into little hair clips. Sometimes if an item is really boyish (especially when Harlow was a tiny baby), I added little embellishments to make them new for her; a simple bow, colorful stitching, or I just pair them with a girly item (like hot pink sneakers).
The first 11 months of King’s life I had not a thought in my head that his clothes would one day be handed down to a sibling, so at first I just got really lucky that I gravitated towards classic or unisex items. But once we learnt of a coming sibling I changed how I shopped, and literally started shopping for items that could be handed down later – of course I don’t apply this to every item but generally it is one of the first things I think of when looking at an item for my kids.
These tips will work if you have an older daughter and a younger son (buy her boys items, style them girly and hand them down later). Also even if your little has younger cousins or your friends have younger babies – everyone loves hand-me-downs!
It’s been a while since I shared some of my cheapskate tips, so it’s probably about time I shared a few more? You know those cute little cardigans, adorable baby headbands or your fav little jeans that got tooo short or a hole in the knee? Don’t pack them away – or maybe pull them out of storage if you already did!
I used to make Harlow baby headbands, so we have a ton – her head is way to big for them now (giant toddler brains) but she still wears them all the time (well not the newborn ones). She either steps in them and we pull it up like a pair of pants, or we pull it over her head – it’s stretchy so not restricting or uncomfy at all and super cute, right? Or buy a couple new headbands and get double the use out of them right now.
When a pair of jeans rips or just gets too short in the legs (too short for any of these tips even) but the waist still fits – I always try to cut the shorts as long as possible. Then we roll em up, so as they grow we can just keep unrolling and eventually they will fit like an actual cut off. Or when buying new shorts, I buy them a bit big – tighten the inside waist and roll them up!
The denim cutoffs from the top.
This cute little cardigan Harlow is wearing is actually a size 3-6 months, she is 29 months old. It used to fit like a long sleeve, perfect length cardy – now it’s a cute 3/4 length sleeve cropped cardigan. We do this a lot for some of her most adorable baby cardigans.
The snow leopard cardigan from the top.
Hopefully the next Styled To Last post won’t take so long for me to post! Which is your favorite tip from this edition?
Harlow was given a denim shirt dress when she was about 5 months old, it has turned out to be one of the longest lasting items in her closet. With each little growth spurt we find a new way to wear it, and it’s a staple with every stage. Here are a few of the different ways I style the little denim shirt dress to last.READ MORE
3 things my kids wear quite a lot, but can be difficult to find in stores. I’ve had many questions about; braces, knee-high socks and brother jeans (I call ‘boyfriend jeans’ brother jeans when they are for my little girl) I thought I’d share my tips on how to find and get the most wear out of them.
I love the braces that come with some little boys jeans, and was bummed every time King would grow out of a pair. Sewing 6 buttons on other pants he owns extends the life of the super cute braces. We buy trousers/jeans with braces from H&M, Zara and I have seen one pair at The Gap (a few months back).
I searched and searched for little girls or baby knee high socks and found nothing. So instead I bought Harlow socks a few sizes too large, and it worked like a charm! After a few months they fit like regular socks, huge bang for my buck! I buy most of Harlows socks from H&M.
Brother Jeans just sounds so much better when talking about the ‘boyfriend jean’ style for littles. Harlow is a skinny little thing, so most of the ‘skinny jeans’ I buy her that should fit, actually fit like loose brother jeans OR she wears a pair of her bro’s old jeans. Both ways ensure items we already own get double the wear/use. The best brother to skinny jeans I’ve bought have come from H&M.
I know most (if not all) mom’s with boys use these styling tricks when your little guys shirts start getting a bit small..but just in case! We like to extend the life of clothes as much as we can, also I only buy items I love (I cannot stress that enough, only buy things you LOVE) so I have an extra hard time parting with them (lets face it it only makes us moms sad when our kids grow out of clothes).
The little boys shirt as a shirt dress, makes the best little dress. Add a belt to make it a bit more feminine (Harlow specially asked for a “pretty” on her waist, my girl knows!) and like I did a little slip/under dress (this also helps to add a bit of length if the shirt isn’t ‘dress length’).
*If your little girl doesn’t have an older brother to hand-her-down shirts, have a look in the little boys section for a cute top to style into a dress! This would be a great way for an older sister to have items to pass on to a little brother too!
A Boys Shirt as a Little Shirt Dress works better when the shirt is a bit slimmer fitting, The Best Stores for Slimmer Fitting Boys Shirts are:
- Gap Kids : Love this short sleeve gingham.
- 77Kids : This checked plaid shirt even has a bit of pink in it.
- Zara : This colorful plaid shirt I used in this post would be great with all the wonderful colors.
- Crewcuts : Love the color of this flannel shirt.
- Little Vida : This Stella McCartney and Scotch Shrunk shirt would be adorable!