New Season. New baby clothes.

Slowly but surely the temperature outside has been dropping. So much so, we slept with the windows open last night. As nice as it is to give my air conditioner and electric bill a break, its still August, how can it only be 67 degrees? Where did my summer go? I’m still working on losing my baby weight so I can go to the pool. I’m not ready for the cool autumn weather. Neither is my son’s wardrobe…

This morning when I went to pick out a warm outfit for Ollie, I could not find one!  Not one long sleeved anything.  I ended up having to dig through a storage bin filled with odd baby clothes. Luckily, I found one of daddy’s finds from when I was still pregnant, a full camoflage baby outfit. (photo below) At that moment my heart sunk, I realized I needed a whole new winter wardrobe for my baby. 

Panic ensued…

The following is my line of thought… or panic attack. Whatever you want to call it.

1. Shit, we really cannot afford a bunch of new clothes.  OMG!

2. Wait. Does he really need that many clothes? It’s not like I need 30 new pieces of baby clothes. 

3.Oliver doesn’t care if he wears the same onesie everyday for a year. I could seriously only buy seven outfits and go with it.

4.No, I need nine outfits, so when he throws up or explodes, I will have a back up plan.

5.OK, this is ridiculous, nine outfits only. Really? 

6. I need to look at our budget.  Maybe I can move things around to afford a shopping trip.

7. I’ve lost the plot!  Baby clothes do not cost as much as mine do.  I bet I could get a bunch of clothes for $50. 

Hubs wakes up, comes into the living room and sees the boy in the camo outfit, does a “look at my camo boy” dance, then looks over at me. Instantly he is sorry he got out of bed and says, “What’s wrong?”  I take him through the last five minutes in my crazy brain.  He says, “Oh God, woman!”

I close my laptop and join him for coffee. We discuss the fact that this is not a bad thing. We can have fun with this. Then dad drops the big bomb, “Oliver is only 6 months old. We have to buy him heaps of clothes. You can’t freak out every time the weather changes.” 

Crap! We have been so lucky so far with hand me downs, shower gifts, and picking up odds and ends, that we have yet to buy a bunch of clothes at once.  I did a bit of research, called my sister (mother of two boys), and came up with a game plan. First of all, it's time to enter another line item on the family budget. Second, be smart, savvy and creative about buying baby clothes.

Bottom line, babies need clothes, and lots of them.  The biggest issue with that is the constant growth. Something that fits brilliantly one week, will not even snap at the ankle the next. There is a fine line between chubby baby and growth spurt. 

Being that most seasons last three months, it’s important to try to buy the correct size and just what you need for that season. Buying all at once is probably not the best idea. At about 6-8 weeks into the season all of the clothes for that season usually go on sale or even better, clearance. If you buy just what you need early in the season, you may be able to snap up the other half of your baby's wardrobe for a fraction of the cost later. Do I even need to add you may need a larger size by then anyway?

Here are tips on how to shop smart and savvy when buying baby clothes

1. Keep an eye on the Sunday paper circulars, and websites for places like Target, Wal-Mart (Big W), The Children’s Place, Babies R’ Us and any other baby clothes store for upcoming promotions, specials and exclusive online clearance.

2. Discount stores like TJMax, Marshall’s, Burlington Coat Factory and so on, are great places for finding name brand baby clothes at super discounted prices.

3. Thrift Stores & Consignment. Places like Once Upon a Child are fabulous for quality clothes at affordable prices.

4. Garage/yard sales.  The season for yard sales is not behind us yet. You would be surprised at what you can find.

5. EBay & Craig's List You can find an entire season of clothes bundled by one seller.  If you are short on time and cannot be bothered, this is the method for you!

6. Shop Online. I love Plum District for this. (Link Below)  Right now there are all kinds of spend $10 get $20 worth of clothes from Brand X being offered.  Check out the website of the company Plum District is offering the special for. If you find something you like, go back to Plum District and buy the special. 

I cannot recommend enough subscribing to them. I have found out about so many mom and baby sites I never ever would have known about. Plus, Plum District has been around for a long time and gets all of the best family deals. It's free to subscribe.

I will most likely use Plum District’s specials to find a great winter coat for Oliver. I want to get him something funky and fun and will spend a few extra bucks to get it.  Since that’s what people see when we go out, I want him to be stylin’!

I’m sure there are ideas and tips I am leaving out.  Please let me know what you do to cover a entire season of clothes.

While it's a fuzzy photo...
It's clear he's up on all fours and rocking away!

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Two confused parents=One amused baby Hopelessly we are trying raise a baby who is clearly smarter than both of us. April is an award-winning writer and blogger. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more on April, Visit