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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

How To Stockpile Kid's Clothing

Of course I went to yard sales over the weekend, and this time I stocked up on some clothing for the Babes.   I'm not ashamed to admit that most of my kid's clothing comes from yard sales or hand me downs.  

I also don't like to pay more than .25¢ for clothes either.  I will spend more for a dress or outerwear and as the older two kids are getting bigger their clothing does tend to cost a little more.   However, I've found that it's pretty easy to spend .25¢ for clothing up to size 6.  The easiest way to do this is buy it in bulk.  Most people will give you a better price if you buy a lot.

Sometimes you can get lucky and buy it by the bagful.  One yard sale was selling their clothing for $2 a bag.  The bags were the size a grocery bag.  If I found at least 8 things that would make it .25¢ per item.  Turns out I was able to stuff 22 items into that bag making each piece cost about .09¢!

Here is what I got for the Babes:
6 pair of leggings
2 pair of jeans
5 long sleeve tops
6 short sleeve tops
1 two piece pj set
1 fleece jacket


And the funny thing about that fleece jacket, is I have an almost identical one.  Yes, that is a Columbia name brand jacket that I got for .09¢

Keeping track of what clothing you have and what you need is also easy to do.  It makes no sense to buy clothing if you don't need it, no matter how cheap it is.  

To keep things simple I use the number 10.  I like to have 10 pairs of pants, 10 shorts, 10 short sleeve tops, 10 long sleeve tops.  I also like to have 2 nice dress outfits for church, 2 swim suits and 2 coats.   I write down what I have and what I need in what sizes.  The Babes is currently wearing size 3 but I might buy up to size 5 if it's a really good deal.  I don't like to buy and store clothes for longer than 2 years ahead.

One thing to keep in mind is that because these clothes are used, they have been washed numerous times and might not be true to size.  The clothes I bought the Babes were mostly size 4 (I was thinking she'd wear them next year) but it turns out they are small enough to fit her this year (except for the jeans and pjs which will be packed away for next year).  I also measure my older kids to make sure what I buy will fit no matter what the size says or if the tag is cut out.  I measure for shirt and pant length, and keep a small tape measure in my purse so I can measure the clothing on the spot at the yard sale.  You could also measure according to your hand if you didn't want to pull out a tape measure to make sure the pants your considering buying will fit your super tall kid.  Currently Sweetie Pie's inseam is 3 of my hands long and the Spencinator is 4.

As far as storing the too-big clothing, just put it in a labeled bin.  That bin can be in the closet, under the bed or in the basement - wherever you have room for it and won't forget about it.  So when you get more clothes in that size, cross them off your list, wash them and pack them away.  This is great if your kid has a growth spurt.  You won't have to go out to the store and pay retail for something in their new size.

Shopping at yard sales and stocking up on kids clothing is a great way to save money.

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