Written by Julia Halewicz
Families with young kids feel the burn of shopping for clothes, as little feet grow bigger and fall and winter coats are snug for only one season. TLC reports that the average household spends about $2,000 a year on clothing. While it might be appealing to think of clothes as disposable and try to cut your costs by buying cheap, some items are worth the investment, even if you don’t want to pay retail prices.
Consider buying handmade sweaters, shoes, and dresses on Etsy, or gently worn kids gear on ThredUp.com. Mom-to-Mom swaps that focus on kids gear are also gaining momentum (if you haven’t found any in your area, you might consider getting some friends together and starting one). Local vintage shops and reuse chains like Buffalo Exchange also have great coats and accessories that are affordable.
Here are 5 investment pieces to consider for everyone in the family this fall and winter:
FOR DAD: Sturdy Boots
We understand the need for comfort (sort of) but consider investing in a pair that doesn’t telegraph how supportive the arch is under your weight.
Why it’s worth the investment: Quality shoes are known to be expensive, but the shape and durability last. You won’t have to replace them as frequently as less expensive brands, which lose their support.
FOR MOM: Anything leather
A faux or real leather jacket or pair of leggings is an easy way to wear this trend. Pairing leggings with a slouchy thick-cabled knit can easily make your outfit more casual.
Why it’s worth the investment: Leather lasts for a long time, always looks fresh, and can work for both dressy and casual looks.
FOR GIRLS: Mary Janes
One pair is all you need in a color like black patent leather or merlot. The best brands, and most pricey, feel like sneakers, so she’ll never complain of discomfort.
Why it’s worth the investment: Mary Janes are classic and go with everything from dresses to jeans. Better quality brands will survive trips to the park and recess at school. It’s the only other shoe you’ll need aside from a sneaker.
FOR BOYS: A navy blazer
Boys are instantly transformed when you toss a classic navy blue blazer over their T-shirt or button down.
Why it’s worth the investment: Great for picture day and holidays, you can save this classic for the younger boys in the family. It can also double as a coat on warmer days.
FOR ALL KIDS: A puffer coat
One layer is about all you can get most children into on cold mornings, and puffers make it easy for kids to manage dressing themselves for recess. The more costly versions also keep kids the warmest and driest.
Why it’s worth the investment: Ease is everything when it comes to parenting and knowing your kid is warm and cozy is priceless. Not to mention the hours of endless fun kids can have playing in the snow—sans frostbite.
TELL US: Which clothing items do you spend the most money on and do you only buy them retail? What local stores offer the most durable clothing that has lasted your family through several seasons?