Thursday, July 12, 2012

How Do You...Determine the Size of Your Children's Wardrobes?

How do you determine the size of your children's wardrobes? We seem to have clothes everywhere!
submitted by Jana

This is a hard questions because I don't have a great, do-what-I-do method!  I am a organizational freak, though, and I don't have excess storage space so my short answer is...I only allow what will fit in the dressers and closets.  If it doesn't have a place, it doesn't stay.  (This doesn't include the out-of-season clothes that we store in our shed and in my parents' attic.)  

The majority of my children's clothes are hand-me-downs from relatives and friends so we tend to have bits and pieces and not everything has a match.   When determining what items to put in the dresser for the season, I ask myself 3 things. 

Do I like it?  Just because it is free doesn't mean I'm obligated to keep it.

Does (s)he have something to wear with it?  Plaid shorts are cute, but if all we have are striped shirts, the shorts have to go.

Do we need it?  This is more relative because I'm not above keeping ten dresses simply because I like them.  (My girls love dresses so I can justify it.)  I'm also not opposed to keeping a few more boys' shirts than I think we need just in case one of them has a run in with a mud puddle.  But it I'm out of space and someone gives us another pair of shorts, something (either the new item or something else in the drawer) has to go. 

One last thing: before filling the drawers for the season, I lay each child's clothing in the floor and pair things up or group them according to what matches.  If I see a gap in the wardrobe-- no jeans, for example-- I'll add it to the list of things to buy.  If I see an overabundance-- five sweaters, for example-- I'll weed it out.  

How do you determine the size of your child's wardrobe?  Let us know in the comments. 

Also, if you have a question for a future "How Do You...?" post, share that in the comments, too, or send me an e-mail! I'd love to hear from you. 


  1. This is such a difficult one for me because their Nana buys WAY too much for them. I can't tell you the number of outfits I've weeded out that have been worn once or twice or not at all. We also face a lot of tears when it's time to weed out because it won't all fit because Nana bought that, but especially with 3 girls there just isn't room for it all. I try to look at it as a blessing though, because it's that much less we need to buy and we are able to bless others with barely worn clothing that is "second hand."

  2. We also have to stay on top of our kids' wardrobes. We get a lot of hand-me-downs as well and actually rarely need to buy clothes, although I do sometimes alter things we've been given.

    Since we have three girls, if we are given girls clothes in our oldest's size I typically store a few items without her ever wearing them. I'm hoping that by doing this our third girl will still have some nicer clothes, instead of wearing fourth hand clothes :)

    Our basic rule is if it doesn't fit in the closet or drawers, something's got to go!

  3. I pretty much use the same method as you. If it doesn't all fit in their closet/dresser, it's time to weed some out. I share kids' clothing with my sister (my daughter's clothes get passed down to my baby niece and my nephews' clothes get passed down to my son) and all of it gets stored at my sister's house because she has the space and I don't. We try to restrict it to one tote per size and season for each gender so no more than two totes per size. Any more than that and the two of us go through the totes to pare it down to fit.

  4. This conversation has been going on at my personal FB page, too, and it sounds like we are all similar in our methods!

    Hannah, my youngest sister is 11 and only a size or two above my oldest daughter who is almost 8. We store all the girl clothes at my mom's house in her attic and we go through and sort out together.

  5. I like the idea of laying things out in groups and looking for gaps. I never really had a hard time with the two boys. I mean, khaki shorts are my answer for everything. :) But I'm finding with my daughter, since we've gotten lots of hand-me-downs, that I have lots of pieces but not a lot of outfits. So I know that her drawers are stuffed, but I feel like she wears the same outfits a lot. Guess I've got some sorting to do!


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