Today in my ongoing organization series, we are going to tackle being organized while kid’s clothes shopping. It is a fairly easy way to be organized that will save you both time and money…and if you don’t like to shop, like me, shortening the time you are actually shopping is always a plus!
As I’ve mentioned many times here, I don’t like to shop. I particularly don’t like to shop for my kids clothes. I know, I sound like such a great mom when I write that out. ;-p I just don’t. I have one child that gets into the dressing room and turns into a sloth and stares at herself for 15 minutes per outfit and another that wants to try on everything in the store. I don’t have that much patience. It usually ends with me grumpy or having yelled at the kids or something that requires a good case of Mommy guilt. Hopefully, you know what I mean and we aren’t all wondering what nutball is behind this blog. I liked it when the kids were younger and I could just go do the shopping and bring home bags of clothes. Then I could pour a glass of wine and they would try on the clothes. I didn’t care how long it took, but alas, they have gotten older and want to be involved. Out of necessity, both to stay on budget and to stay sane, I prep and get organized before we go shopping. I don’t want to spend extra money (money I likely don’t have) and extra time looking for things my girls don’t really need. I feel like I’ve perfected a system that works well for me and I wanted to share it with you as a part of this series.
This is part of my weekly real organized series where I am sharing one small(ish) project each week to help us get our home and our family a bit more organized. The goal of this series is for us to be able to organize some of those things that we as moms have to deal with on a monthly, weekly, or daily basis. By organizing those things we can free up time in our week as well as space in our homes and minds. All of these things free us up to pursue spending more time with our family as well as find some time and space to do something we love and find fulfilling as well.
So, I know these storage system pictures may seem as they have nothing to do with being organized for kid’s clothing shopping. It totally does! You have to start with what you’ve got. If you have more than one child, you need a storage system to save old clothing for the next child. I’m telling you, it will save you so much money and knowing exactly where things are and what you have will save you time and possibly sanity as well. 🙂
Start at the end of a season, so I’m doing this for our winter clothes now. Pull everything from your oldest child’s closet that no longer fits. Get yourself a plastic tote/box to put all of the clothes and shoes in the box that could be worn again. I usually just get these at Target (affiliate link) because they are cheap. You can order online and just walk in and pick them up. Yay! These are the same thing on Amazon (affiliate link) if you don’t have a Target near you.
Don’t save the clothes with rips, tears, or stains. Make sure you label the box and that you fill in the editable sheet for what you just put in that box as well as where you are storing the box. Put those sheets in your family binder (or a binder or other location that you will remember). If you have more than two children, keep going on down the line saving clothes in this fashion.
Now next winter, you will start here. Pull out those sheets you just filled out that show what clothes you have in what boxes. I usually make sure to be specific (i.e., size 12 – 4 pair jeans; size 10 – 6 winter PJ’s, size 5 winter boots, etc.) It makes it easy to know what is in the box before you pull it out.
Regardless of whether you have any saved clothes or not, you can use this printable to help you figure out what you have and what you need. This process usually takes me about 30 minutes to 1 hour, which I know is a time investment, but it helps me when I go to the stores to make sure I get only what we need. That helps me stick to our budget…though as my girls get older, it is getting hard to stick to our budget, which actually makes this system even more important.
Whether going through boxes of stored clothes or their closets and dressers, I go through what they have and I make them try on things that are questionable if they still fit. I have in mind how many pants, shorts, tops, etc. I want them to have for that season. When we are done looking at what they have, I mark it down in the have column. Then I can quickly and easily mark down how many they still need. I would personally fill out the form in pencil so that it is easy to make changes as you go, but pencil doesn’t photograph very well, so I am showing it to you using pen.
I do one of these sheets for each of my girls. Then the sheet either comes with me or more likely, I put this in a shopping list in Out of Milk(Android and iOS) because I am not the best at getting the piece of paper with me to the store, but my phone and app…I’ve got.
The beauty of doing kid’s clothes shopping this way is that you will have the list and you can watch for sales as they come into your inbox. If you see a great sale coming up at a store you know your kids like, you can take advantage of that sale and be purposeful with what you purchase. You will have the list, so it will take away most of the impulse buying and you will end up with what you need instead of a bunch of mish mash or too many shoes and no PJ’s. 🙂 Yay! A little piece of Mommy sanity restored. 🙂
Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook, where I’ve got more great ideas and inspiration for you. Yay!
How do you keep kid’s clothes shopping organized and on budget? Leave me a comment below.
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