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.