Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Minimal & Simple Kids Wardrobes

I like to keep my kids clothes simple - both in design and in number. Simple clothing makes it easy for children to run and play and explore. Simple designs (and no "characters") allow their clothing to spark creativity and be a part of their play. A simple number of clothes makes it easy for Mama to keep up with the laundry and keeps the clothing budget low. All of this simplicity is a GOOD thing! 

We don't practice extreme minimalism at our house. We prefer 'rational minimalism'. This means that we don't live with the very fewest number of things we absolutely need. Instead, we think through how we live life and our family's systems and decide what we need based on that.

Some things that must be thought about before deciding how many clothes a child needs and things you should know about our home before I start sharing numbers: 
  1. How often do you wash laundry? I do each load of required laundry once a week - so that means I wash the girl's clothes once a week. 
  2. How much storage space do you have? We have a walk in closet for each girl currently (we do intend to move them into a room together soon, but even then they will have a lot of closet space). That extra storage space allows me to purchase up sizes second hand! 
  3. How often do your kids need clothing changes during the day? I increase the number of clothes for my kids during the summer - when we play outside a lot and get dirty enough to warrant clothing changes. I also increase the number of jammies during years when little ones are in diapers (and may have blowouts/leaks) and increase even more for reflux-y babies (Katie could go through 4+ outfits in a day. And, I only changed for massive spit-ups!). 
  4. What is the weather like? We live in Kansas. We get frigid cold temperatures with ice and snow in the winter. We get heavy downpours and storms. We get extreme heat and heat advisories. We must have clothing for every season. 

After considering all of those things, my clothing goal numbers per size (2t and up) are: 
  • Summer Outfits - play dress w/ shorts or shorts & tee - 10-12
  • Summer Church Dresses - 3 + a pair of bike shorts
  • Summer Jammies - 8 (this decreases to 4-5 after potty training)
  • 1-2 Swimsuits
  • Winter Outfits - play dress w/ leggings or pants and tee 8-10
  • Winter Church Dresses - 3 + black tights
  • Winter Jammies - 8 (this decreases to 4-5 after potty training)
  • Fleece Winter Jammies - 3 (to layer on frigid nights)
  • 2 Hooded Zip Up Sweatshirt (one stays in the car - Kansas weather is finicky and we need this one often!)
  • 1 Hooded Wind Breaker
  • 1-2 summer hats (to block the intense sunlight!)
  • 1 Winter Hat 
  • 1 Winter Scarf 
  • 1 Pair of Mittens
Sometimes the girls are given clothes as gifts, unless their closets get to overflowing, we will sometimes have additional outfits that they have been gifted. 

I hang up the girl's outfits on hangers with clips and that makes getting ready in the morning super easy - grab a hanger, socks if needed, and go!! 

(These pictures are from Meghan's closet - off season clothes are hanging on the top left, church dresses on the top right, drawers on the bottom left, and current season clothes on the bottom right.)

(These pictures are from Katie's closet - off season clothes are hanging on the top left, church dresses on the top right, drawers on the bottom left, and current season clothes on the bottom right.)

I also try to be minimal with their shoes - providing the things that we use and need. (They often get cute shoes as gifts from family members.) Here are my shoe goals for each size (4 and up):
  • 1 Tennis Shoes 
  • 1 Athletic Sandal (think Keens)
  • 1 Black Rubber Work Boots 
  • 1 Black Church Shoe (winter)
  • 1 White or Pink Church Sandal (summer)
I've found that with these pairs of shoes we have had what we needed for any and all events and activities we have participated in. 


These numbers are working so well for our family - we have the clothing that we need when we need it and the girl's closets are almost completely empty on laundry day. It seems we have found a perfect number of clothing items for our family. 

Disclaimer: I don't think we are perfect or that this is the "right" way to do things. This post was simply written to share our routine/system. Homemakers are busy people. I think it's very important for us to have routines for the mundane tasks whether they occur daily or every few months or once a year. I share our routines not because I think they are perfect or will work for any other home than ours, but as encouragement that we can find routines that work well for our families. It's always something we can be working to improve. I also share our routines as a springing-off point for planning a routine if you don't have one in place. I often find that reading what others do, trying it, and tweaking it for our family's needs can be a very helpful way to grow as a homemaker. I pray that these peeks into how we do the mundane are a blessing and an encouragement to those that read them

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