6 Tips For Dressing Little Ones


I never thought too much about dressing my son before he was born.  I was so thankful for all of the clothes gifted to us that I put him in everything other people had picked out for him.  Once he got older and we got through all of those little outfits and onesies that people had given us, I started thinking about how I wanted to dress our little guy.  It’s been fun to choose his style and shop for clothes that fit within my idea of good clothes for him.

I am by no means a style expert.  I don’t shop very often.  I don’t enjoy it.  I don’t claim to be stylish myself.  But I do think my son looks pretty good and has a good balance of play clothes and nicer [and still boy appropriate] clothes.  And I don’t spend a ton of money on clothes for him either.  So here is what I have learned about shopping for and dressing my little guy.

1.  Use what you have!

If you have clothes already — use them!  If someone has bought clothes for your child or given you hand-me-downs, use them! We were given a lot of clothes for Jack before he was born.  I didn’t love everything and wouldn’t have picked a lot of it out myself, but it was free and it was generous and he looked just fine!  Babies are cute enough that the clothes they are wearing don’t even matter.

2.  Plan ahead

Shopping at the end of seasons gets you good deals.  Fall clothes will start coming out soon, and summer clothes will be on sale. I take advantage of this and buy Jack’s swim trunks for next year and any other cute summer clothes that are marked down.

3.  Key pieces

Just like in my own wardrobe, I choose key pieces for my son’s wardrobe, too.  These are the things he wears over and over again because they go with so many different outfits.  Shorts that can be paired with a tee shirt, polo, or button up.  A white tee that goes with shorts, jeans, or under a shirt in the fall and winter.  For summer, he has a couple of pairs of good shorts that can be matched with several shirts.  For winter he has pants and a vest that he can wear with many different things.

These shorts have been worn all summer — and even pre-summer — long!  They pair well with a nice shirt, a tee shirt, or a sweater.


This pair of pants was a different kind of purchase for me.  I was nervous about how much wear they would get, but I have been able to pair them with different shirts from tee shirts to button ups to create many different looks.


4.  Invest in a few expensive items

I buy most of Jack’s clothes pretty cheap at stores like Old Navy and Target.  Because most of his clothes don’t cost much, I am able to spend more on some really special, nice pieces for him.  I bought these shorts for Jack when he was 10 months old.  He is still wearing them this summer!  They have a very stretchy elastic waistband and a durable fabric.  Because I paid more for them, they are nicer and have lasted through 3 summers of boy wear.  They also look really good, and since they are my favorite he wears them all the time.


Being the southern girl I am, I love to put my kid in a monogram.  While he’s still little I spend more money on monogrammed shirts and shorts because this is something that I like.  Since I shop and spend smartly on the rest of his clothes, I feel that it’s OK for me to spend more in this area.


5.  Buy the bulk of clothes cheap

Like I said in #4, I buy most of Jack’s clothes pretty cheaply from Old Navy and Target.  I also shop at Baby Gap — especially when they have a sale, I have a coupon, or am at the outlet store.  When Old Navy has the classic tee on sale for $4, plus a discount on top of that, I stock up.  I have plain staple clothes like sweat shorts, nicer shorts, classic tees, and jeans from Old Navy, and we also have some really cute shirts from there, too.  I try to always have a coupon or buy stuff marked down at Old Navy.  I’ve been really pleased with how well stuff holds up.  With a very active 3 year old, clothes can get ruined pretty quickly, but the Old Navy and Target clothes seem to hold up.

Target always has cute, stylish clothes coming in and out.  They don’t seem to go on sale as much as Old Navy, but the prices are generally low enough anyway.

6.  Pick classic styles

Occasionally, I will get something trendy for Jack to wear.  Very rarely.  Because trendy will come and go before he even gets enough wear out of it.  I try to buy classic styles for him.  Button ups that can be made nicer with khakis or more casual with jeans. Solid color shirts and shorts.  Stay away from words and pictures.  They will go out of style faster than your kid spills their milk when their cup doesn’t have a lid on it.  Everyone has different styles, but I decided for us that it was best to avoid shirts with words.  A classic gray, navy, or white tee will look just as good if I have another 3 year old in ten years.

dressingmykidinfant.kmb Nothing is more classic than a white onesie.  I always stuck the monthly stickers on and then peeled them right off.

dressingmykidclassic.kmb   dressingmykidwinter.kmb


These are just my tips for building a good wardrobe for a little one.  What are some of your shopping rules for your kids?  


  1. I was worried when I had a little boy that I wouldn’t enjoy picking clothes out for him but they have some super cute options for little boys! I love all your tips!


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