Kids grow up entirely too fast. It seems like one minute they’re taking their first step, and the next they’re off to their first day of high school. All of the milestones along the way are cause for celebration, but they also remind us that our “babies” won’t be babies forever.
Kids grow quickly in the literal sense of the word, too. They go through clothes at lightning speed, often growing into a new size before the clothes they’ve been wearing start to look worn. Keeping them in attire that fits can be a chore, and it can also put a strain on the budget.
But you can get kids’ clothes without paying an arm and a leg. Here are some ways to do so.
1. Make use of hand-me-downs. Maybe a friend or family member has a child who is the same gender as yours but a little older. Ask her to send clothes your way when her child outgrows them. If you have more than one child, save the older kids’ clothes for the younger ones to wear.
2. Visit a consignment shop. These stores usually have gently used clothing that is in very good condition at much lower prices than you would pay for a new item. You could even take your child’s best used clothes in and ask for store credit instead of cash when they sell.
3. Check out thrift stores. They sell second-hand clothing at dirt cheap prices, sometimes as low as a dollar or two for a bag full. Some clothes will be in better shape than others, but if you look hard enough you’ll usually find some gems.
4. Go to an outlet store. Outlets sell overstocks and factory seconds at much lower prices than the norm. If you’re fond of a certain brand, check to see if they have an outlet store nearby or online.
5. Make use of coupons. Sometimes you can find coupons for clothing in your local newspaper. You can also find coupon codes for online stores on the Internet. Just do a Google search for the store name plus the words “coupon codes.”
6. See what eBay has to offer. Moms often sell children’s clothes in the size that their child just outgrew in lots at low prices. You can also find great deals on new kids’ clothing.
7. Stop by some garage sales. If you can find a garage sale with clothes in your child’s size, you might be able to get some excellent deals. Prices are often negotiable, and if you take several items off of the seller’s hands, he might even give you a discount.
8. Check the classifieds. Those with small children often find this to be the easiest way to sell clothes that they have outgrown. It’s not unheard of to get a large box full of baby clothes for the price you would pay for one or two new outfits.
9. Shop at the end of the season. This is the time when clothes go on clearance, and you can find awesome deals on brand new items. The tricky part is guessing what size your child will be in when the season comes around again. But if you miscalculate, you can always sell the items online, at a yard sale or in a consignment shop.
10. Try your hand at sewing. You’ll need a sewing machine, but the initial investment will pay off in no time. And best of all, you can make numerous unique outfits from one pattern by using different fabrics.