Written by Charlotte Morley for The Little Loop Clothing. Read time - 5 minutes
We all wish we had more time. Time to spend with our kids. Time to read a good book. Time just to be. But the reality of life as a busy parent, whether you’re working or a full-time carer, is that there’s rarely a moment to go to the loo alone, let alone anything else.
Each and every time-saving we can make is a winner in our eyes. Which is why we’ve collated our top 5 tips for reducing the time it takes to dress your kids. From shopping to sorting and disposing of them, we’ve got you covered. No more Sunday afternoons spent in front of a mountain of outgrown clothes, trying to work out what they need next and what the hell you’re going to do with the stuff they don’t. Plus, our tips may just save you money and space into the bargain!
Tip 1: Find a style and stick with it.
Once you know what your children look great wearing, and what you feel excited to dress them in, do a stock take of what it is that works for you. Is it the Colours? Pattern? Style? Type of item?
Then identify the brands which will help you achieve that look time and again. And ideally find an independent retailer which stocks several of those favourite brands, for sale or to rent. That way you can access them all in one hit, from one place.
You’ll save a ton of time and, if you choose rental or are following social and newsletters for sales, you could save money too.
Tip 2: Take good care of your kids clothes.
This one may seem counterintuitive. Often the reason people don’t take great care of their kids’ clothes is because it seems like such a hassle to put on a bib, or treat a stain before bunging it in the wash. But ultimately it WILL save you time. Time (and money) shopping for replacements. And time spent trying to find somewhere to dispose of clothes which you can’t easily sell or hand on.
It really only takes a couple of minutes to rub a stain with washing up liquid or stain remover before you wash it, but it will make such a difference. And, if you start early enough, making a habit out of your kids wearing bibs for messy meals and painting sessions will save you a lot of hassle down the line.
Plus, you’ll be able to sell your kids’ clothes on to resale services (see below), making it far easier to get rid of them when you no longer need them.
Tip 3: Try a clothes swapping service
Even better than having to find a way to dispose of outgrown clothes, there are subscription services out there which allow you to access a revolving wardrobe of clothes for your kids, swapping when you need to for a whole new set. Say what??! Oh yes you heard it.
You pay around 70% less for each item (to reflect the fact that you don’t keep them forever) and can swap them anytime you like. It’s perfect for reducing hassle, storage, and cost. A bit like a hand-me-down service for the 21st Century but with all of the choice, and none of the responsibility for getting rid of them again. Some people may be put off by the fact that some of the clothes may be past their best. However the services all have strict quality-control guarantees. And one, thelittleloop, even allows you to choose between brand new items (priced a little higher) and items which have been worn before (priced lower so you get even more for your subscription fee). Check out thelittleloop to find out more.
Tip 4: Find a clothing takeback scheme
Hands up who’s got boxes of kids clothes shoved in the attic / garage / shed / under beds / on top of wardrobes simply because we can’t bring ourselves to do anything else with them?
There is NOTHING more time consuming than trying to get rid of outgrown children’s clothes. And while half of us have been known to throw them away, it’s increasingly common knowledge that the textiles industry is one of the biggest polluters on the planet and adding to the piles of clothing waste does nothing for our conscience.
But messaging friends who don’t reply, braving the nearly-new sale battleground, or listing things on facebook or ebay are not only time consuming, but soul destroying as yet another sale falls through or a kind offer is rebuffed.
So why not try a clothing take-back or buy-back scheme? Some of the best brands, like Mori, offer their own. And increasingly there are businesses building a service out of reselling or renting them to make sure they go on to have their best life. And they make it easy for you to do it. thelittleloop is one of them. If you have clothing in good condition from ethical and organic brands like Frugi, Boden, Little Green Radicals, Jujuni, Kite, Pigeon Organics, Tobias and the Bear, Toby Tiger, Maxomorra, Muddy Puddles and more, just visit our site to find out how much you could earn from sending them in.
Tip 5: Plan ahead.
If none of the above appeal, you can still make conventional shopping work harder for you. If you find something your child, and you, love, why not buy it in a few sizes. It may mean a bit of time to pack them away and store it for when they’ve grown, but you’ll ultimately save time shopping around again in the future. And, if you wait until the end of the season to buy things in the next size up, you could get some amazing bargains.
We hope you find the above useful. If you’d like to explore clothes swapping and clothing take-back further, please head over to http://thelittleloop.com or email us any time on firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to chat x