Something for the Kids

One for me, Two for you

These sites offer a chance to pick something up for yourself while you’re shopping for the kids. Here’s where you can kill two birds with one stone.

Boden and MiniBoden $$

The kids brand from the UK-based catalog company Boden is one of my favorite places to shop for my kids, partly because their catalogs are fun – full of kids radiating personality. It’s the only source of clothes my son really gets excited about. They offer discounts year round, but for deepest discounts, shop at the end of summer and right after Christmas.

Gap $-$$

Since the children’s stuff is not in the same store as womens’ in the mall, you may as well shop online and see everything under one roof. The designers for the kids stuff seem to have more fun than the womens’ – I enjoy shopping for boys and girls much more than I do for myself. There are only so many striped sweaters and solid color knit tops that I can find room for in my closet. And I haven’t found any pants and jeans that fit my curvy bottom – I feel like the store is really trying to dress college kids, without any of their willingness to take a fashion risk.

Hanna Andersson $$

Beautiful and easily wearable kids clothes designed in Sweden, often made from organic or certified Eco-Tex sustainable fabric, don’t come cheap. I justify the higher price tag by telling myself the clothes will last for at least three runs of hand-me-downs, if not longer. All the used “Hannas” that I have ever received from friends show no sign of falling apart, even though the colors have understandably faded a bit from endless washings. If there is a way to buy this brand at a significant discount, I haven’t found it yet. (Do tell!) I have never bought the adult clothes there, but I would imagine it would be a great place to buy the casual playground pants you plan to wear season after season.

J.Crew/Crew Cuts $$-$$$

If I’m looking to dress my kids for a fancy party or a school concert, I might look at Crew Cuts, the kids label for J.Crew. Otherwise  I find their clothes overpriced – though if you’ve been wondering where to get a cashmere hoodie for your 3-year old, look no further. The womens clothes, on the other hand, offer a great mix of dressy/office ready and casual chic. They have managed to infuse their ultra-preppy roots with freshness, and the result are styles that feel timeless and totally current all at once.

MyHabit $-$$$

There’s a lot to love about Amazon’s daily deals site: Deep discounts; a broad range of brands, from mainstream to upscale; free shipping and free returns; and a complete range of sizes (not just the ones no one else wants either). If you’re a member of Amazon Prime, you also get your goodies in 2 days flat.

Old Navy $

Sure, you can shop in the store, but why search the racks for your child’s size when you can get what you need in a few clicks? The quality reflects the deep-discount price tag, but the designs are trendy and fun, and last at least as long as the child fits into them. Caveat – the clothes tend to shrink more than other brands, so size up in anticipation of a growth spurt. Insiders tip: Subscribe to the email list for frequent coupons of 20% or more off. The Old Navy Credit card entitles you to 10% off every Tuesday at Gap and Old Navy, in retail stores only.

Pink Chicken New York $$$

I’m pretty sure I loves this store more  than my daughter. Fantastic prints with a vintage/bohemian quality, bold colors, great quality. Too bad the price tag is so steep. That’s why I get excited when I see their stuff go on sale, more likely at resellers than on their own web site.

Tea Collection $$

The clothes that everyone hopes to get as hand-me-downs, because they’re cute, durable and not that affordable if you’re buying new. The retailer’s own web site is not the place to look for deals (they don’t want to undercut other stores that sell their stuff) – but check for resellers such as for better discounts. You can also expect a better deal if you buy invest in a set of 3 to 5 items which sell as a bundle. Their womens clothes have the same international, artsy sensibility as their kids clothes – but I have a hard time shelling out $90 for a casual blouse.

Toms $$

This philoanthropic apparel company that gives away a pair of shoes to a child in need for every one you buy. That should help to ease the guilt you feel when you come to the site intending to buy shoes for your little cutie, only to come away with a comfy t-shirt and cute pair of suede wedge booties for yourself.

Zulilly $-$$$

I’ve been soured by my experience with this daily deals site whose banner ads appear all over the web. They are slow to ship (2 to 3 weeks is common), so shopping for gifts or for the birthday party next weekend is out of the question. Shipping isn’t cheap unless you’re placing a big order. And most items are not accepted for returns. Combine that with the fact that these items are often on sale because of some problem you can’t see (inconsistent sizing or bad fit has been common for me), and you may be stuck with an item that you end up giving to Goodwill, tags still on.


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