I really have no idea if there are a bunch of "thrifty" baby Clothes post. I know there are for cloth diapers (and I will be writing my own and covering how all my cloth diapering ideas work out). But I have noticed that people tend to buy a LOT of stupid shit for their babies, and so I wanted to write about how I'm planning on dressing Smashface and what it cost for me to buy a full year's worth of clothes and a little bit more.
ALL the sleep sacks
When I was a nanny, I fucking hated how parents would make me change the baby out of pajamas into some stupid outfit for the day and then back into pajamas. I mean, we are talking about an infant, right? And have you seen what happens to an infant in a t-shirt and shorts or pants? The shirt rides up ALL DAY. It's basically just exposed belly, all the time. Babies in dresses are worse, because it's just basically a show of how saggy your diaper is. And socks and shoes are the most pointless gear for anyone not walking (but still pretty pointless even then). FUCKING HATED THIS SHIT.
Let me tell you what babies need :
That is it and that is all.
Clothing for 0-3 months is put away in the dresser
So when it came to Smashface, I mathed it out :
I live in an apartment building and I don't have my own washer and dryer. I do my own laundry once a week and it's usually one load. (Unless I'm doing bedding, which is two loads.) I want to keep Smashface to the same routine as I. Since I'm using cloth diapers, which are super effective at avoiding the dreaded blow outs, and because I don't really give a shit if a baby happens to drool on his clothes, this was my theory : At most, three changes of clothes per day due to vomit or poop or whatever. (But not because I want to waste time and money on cute outfits. One for each photo shoot will do.) Multiply three by seven days in a week, and you have twenty one outfits. Add a couple for padding, JUST IN CASE, and I stuck to this routine per age group...
TEN pjs (onesies with long sleeves and footed pants)
FIVE pants with footies
Sleep sacks for safety in bed (blankets are a no-no because SIDS)
THAT IS IT. That's all I Bought or kept.
Clothing for remaining size fits in ONE medium sized Rubbermaid container
I was SUPER LUCKY to receive a MASSIVE donation from the mother of a girl whose senior portraits I did. I mean, SO MASSIVE. This included disposable diapers, which I'm not using. (I kept some, just in case.) In fact, she gave me SO MANY clothes that I didn't have to buy any clothes for 0-3 months and I didn't buy any sleep sacks. In fact, I have no idea how many sleep sacks I have or would've bought, because they gave me an entire drawer full.
Because they gave me so many clothes and diapers, I was able to take what I wanted and sell the remaining lot for $50 (why make it expensive, you know) to a couple in a red pick up. I used that $50 to buy the bottles I needed. So basically, this lovely woman furnished me with the first three months or so of Smashface's life. So generous and so helpful.
I bought almost everything else at yard sales or the Goodwill. I TRIED Once Upon a Child and it was AWFUL. Too crowded and the ladies weren't nice. I had trouble finding footed pants, so I did buy a bunch of those online from Babies R Us, for super cheap! (They were $5 for a pair of two, I bought A TON.) I also splurged at Target when I was, like, two pj sets away from completing one age range and I just wanted to finish! When I regained my patience, I was picking up Adam from the island (about a two hour drive) and we stopped at two Goodwills on the way home. I learned that most Goodwills are organized by county and that stopping in two separate counties gave me cheaper options than I can find here and also more options. So don't be afraid to drive!
I have the above formula for every age range from 0-12 months and more than half of it done for the 12-18 month age range. My total cost was $159. Since I sold some of the donation I received for $50, that brought my total cost for ALL clothing for Smashface for the first year (and then some) to $109.
You can see my method and record keeping
Y'all, babies are only expensive because we make them expensive.
I promise, I'm not some super sleuth, either. I hit up one yard sale on one day and then went to a Goodwill where I was annoyed that the onesies cost $2 ea., but was too lazy to shop around. Hence the splurging at Target, where I spent $20 on three sets of pjs, the most I spent for such a small amount. I kept a list in my phone of exactly what I needed and, excluding the confusion over Carters' sizing (hate them), I was really good at sticking too exactly what I needed. I shopped for a total of five days in order to furnish everything because I am LAZY and shopping makes me tired, so you really don't have to work that hard, I promise!
I know that not everyone can receive an awesome donation like I did, but you'll find that Craiglist, Facebook Marketplace, and yard sales often sell in lots. By far, the most cost effective option was buying in a lot. ALSO, churches and other organizations often have resource rooms available...and some people are open to bargaining for the cost of their lots. I was not going to lower the cost of my lot, because it was a MASSIVE haul and I needed bottles, but I definitely know that some people will take lower than what they have marked. If I had to buy the clothes I was given, I expect I would've spent another $50-$75.
Should I find that this formula didn't work and I NEED to buy more clothes, I will keep you updated! (Eventually, I will do a "cost of baby for one year" post.)