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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Baby Style on a budget

When  Isla June popped out and we found out it was a little girl all along, everyone told me, "you're going to have so much fun dressing her up!"
yeah right. I thought. 
Ahhh...little did I know.
I mean, have you stepped into a baby gap lately??
On a side note- baby style has a lot of trends- preppy, overly gender specific (super frilly), or extremely casual, with everything in between.  I don't really fall into any of these categories.  As beautiful as the smocking dresses are, they just aren't our style; same goes with the super girly, frilly, heavily-bowed outifts.  So cute, but just not us. 
 I want Isla June to look like a girl, and age specific (no toddlers in tiaras here), but finding that balance can be hard. 
And doing it on a budget is even harder (again, have you stepped into a babygap recently? yikes.)
But, as I've now mentioned twice, I'm more of a babygap fan.  Cute, casual I would describe it.
So, how do I do this on a budget???  I mean, I want this little girl to look cute and well cared for, but a 40 dollar sweater?!? (that she's just going to spill food on....) c'mon. 
I had to find a better way.
Enter my sister-in-law, Julie. 
When Isla June was around 4 weeks old, she came to visit with a huge box of little girl clothes age 3 months to 2 yrs that were our sweet little cousin Annalise's.
Wow!  These have really come to our rescue. 
Every time the season changes and I think, man, I've got to go out an buy all new clothes for Isla June, this box full of clothes comes to my rescue.
 (on a side note, how unfair is it that Isla June gets a whole new wardrobe every season.  oh to be a baby again).
Just a small sampling of some of the clothes from the cousin box.  All Janie and Jack or Carter's.
Jer's cousin Jennifer also provided tons of barely worn hand-me-downs from her 3 little girls with sizes from 3 mos to 1 yr.  Isla June was so well dressed in her first year of life!
We're also lucky enough that Isla June's birthday and Christmas fall about 6 months apart from each other.  So, we're blessed with beautiful outfits from friends and family twice a year.  This really is wonderful and helps get us through.  When people ask what she needs, my response is always, clothes!!  She grows so fast, I can't really keep up (and neither can my wallet!)
Consignment items all Babygap for less than 20 bucks-total!
Another great option for us is consignment stores.  I read somewhere that making a new shirt kills like 2 trees and uses a million fossil fuels, so instead we should be buying used and repurposing.  Plus, it's very cost effective!  In the Carolinas, we have a chain of consignment stores called Once Upon a Child.  They typically have a lot of name brand items set-up reasonably organized.  All the stores I have ever been to are crammed with stuff, so you definitely need to have some time to look/dig.  And it is normally well worth the efforts.
So, my best advice for dressing up baby on a budget, find a mom who is willing to donate clothes, and find a good consignment store!  I know used is not everyones cup of tea, but for us, it's good for the earth, for our wallets and it works for our family. 
Happy Shopping!


  1. Ha! I don't think this post is very inspiring...but if you say so!

  2. hey! we have once upon a child here in Ontario as well. Last spring they had this crazy $1 item sale... oh let me tell you that i stocked up like crazy!!

    Little girls are so fun to dress indeed. :)

  3. A $1 sale?!?!? I definitely need to keep my ears open for that!! I bet it is a madhouse.

  4. YAY! I decided a few years ago to only buy used clothes (Except for socks and undies) or to beg hand me downs off people for all the reasons you say.

    Do you know about It is an online clothes swapping website.

    And, I don't know if it is where you are, but check out Just Between Friends, which is a huge kids consignment sale.

    I use those for the kids, and Goodwill for me and for David. All of my maternity clothes were either from Goodwill or Craigslist. It makes me feel good and I don't have to feel bad about shopping!


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