What is it about kids that they can somehow have drawers absolutely overflowing with clothes, and yet not a single suitable thing to wear? And let’s admit it, we’ve all had that moment of being close to tears as we argue with a toddler about why they absolutely can’t wear their favourite shorts when it’s 5 degrees outside.

kids clothing hanging in a wardrobe

A kids capsule wardrobe is a great solution that can make dressing and dealing with clothes a whole lot easier. That can mean less laundry, fewer shopping trips and way less meltdowns in the morning (you and them).

Sounds great, right?


Why create a capsule wardrobe?


With a capsule wardrobe, the idea is that you buy a range of clothes in complementary colours and styles that can be easily mixed together to create a range of outfits. Because each piece works with each other, you’re able to easily put together outfits from a smaller number of items.


A kids capsule wardrobe saves time

Somehow the ordinary rules of time don’t seem to apply when it comes to getting kids dressed and out the door. One minute you’re trying to find a t-shirt to match their favourite patterned leggings, and suddenly a whole hour has gone by.

Creating a capsule wardrobe cuts down on the time it takes to get kids ready in the morning because there are simply fewer items to choose from. And by simplifying their wardrobe, it’s much easier to find items that go together.

It gives kids more independence

From about the time they turn two, kids begin to develop their own sense of style and personal taste. And this means they often want to have a say in what they wear.

Having a capsule wardrobe means your kids can have more input into what they wear, while avoiding those crazy looking outfits that aren’t suited to the weather or activities you have planned.

How to create a capsule wardrobe for kids

Creating a capsule wardrobe doesn’t have to be a time-consuming and overwhelming process. In fact, the best time to do it is at the change of seasons. It’s likely you’re already pulling clothes out of storage and getting rid of what no longer fits so it’s the perfect time to introduce the concept of a capsule wardrobe.

1. Start with a master list of clothing

First, you’ll want to create a list of the essentials you need for your kid’s wardrobe. This will vary depending on their age, activities and how often you want to do laundry (is never an option?). Likewise, if it’s coming into spring/summer you’ll want more dresses, t-shirts and shorts versus autumn/winter where it’s all about pants, jumpers and long-sleeve tops.

Taking all this into account, your list might look something like this:

  • 8–9 everyday t-shirts or tops
  • 8–9 everyday pants, shorts, jeans or skirts
  • 2–3 dresses or overalls
  • 2–3 jumpers or cardigans
  • 1–2 nicer tops and bottoms
  • 3 pairs shoes
  • PJ’s
  • Seasonal items, like swimwear, rain gear, sun hats and beanies

2. Choose a colour palette

Next, pick a colour palette and style for your kid’s clothes. Take a look at what they currently love to wear and build it around that. You can have a couple of outliers, but picking complementary colours, patterns and styles will make it easier to pull together outfits each day.

3. Review and cull

Once you’ve made your master list, review it against your kid’s current wardrobe and get rid of anything that doesn’t work.

This can be the most difficult part – especially if you’re getting rid of a lot. But clearing out anything that doesn’t work will make it much easier to fill in the gaps at the next stage.

Any good quality gently used kids clothing can be passed on to friends or even listed with us at Use-Ta! That could mean extra money as you move onto the next step.

Store next season and special occasion clothing – like ski gear and formal outfits –  separate to the daily wardrobe so you’re not having to push them aside each day.

4. Fill in the gaps

This is the fun part! Once you’ve made a list and got rid of anything that’s not working, it’s time to fill in the gaps. 

Keep your list handy while you browse online or hit the shops to avoid buying anything you don’t need. And shopping second hand kids clothing at a shop like Use-Ta! is a great way to top up your kid’s capsule wardrobe as you’ll find quality kids clothing for far less than buying new.

kids summer clothing
September 20, 2020 — Kiri Gorter

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