Friday, February 22, 2013

Where To Shop For Boys {Baby and Beyond}


It's been a while since I've written about the boys' clothes and since I've received a few emails lately about where I find them, I thought I'd whip up another quick post about Shopping For Your Toddler and Baby Boy

You see, I buy a lot of boy's clothing. A lot. Probably more than someone with two children of the same sex  under the age of 3 should so by now I would like to think I am kind of a professional on the matter. Shopping for your little boys is a lot like shopping for yourself. You have your go-to stores for basic items and tend to hit trendier, more upscale places for "special" items. 

The same goes for shopping for your infant and toddler boy.

I think it's safe to say that regardless of whatever children's store you walk into, the girls' clothes outnumber the boys' clothes both in style and quantity nearly a gazillion to one. You may also notice that in many of the chain stores there happens to be only three  pant options for boys:  cargo, sweat and denim.

Now, while all in moderation the three of these pant styles are okay, I'm pretty sure my toddler doesn't need four pairs of pants with seven pockets. Not to mention, jeans and cargo pants can't be all that comfortable while climbing the jungle gym, now can they? And there's only so many pair of navy "sweat" pant that a kid can own.

Every Mom is different and today I'm sharing how we do here in the M family. 

Let's start with babies. First things first, I'm not a huge fan of the cutesy dinosaur and puppy-butt craze. Of course there are always exceptions to the rule and days where I couldn't resist a sweet little cartoon character-clad butt on my infant but for the most part? I try to dress my babies in sweet, soft layette onesies and sleepers. To me there is nothing sweeter than a brand new baby boy clad in white and light blue.

One of my favorites during the newborn/infant stage is Ralph Lauren layette. I shed many a tear when my youngest outgrew my absolute favorite white RL sleeper. There are some days where I wish I could keep having babies solely to bring them home from the hospital and keep them in RL layette. Although most of our RL Layette clothing has come from their online website (and as gifts), sometimes you can snag a great deal on them on the racks of Marshalls and TJMaxx

RL Layette


 
Absorba is also another one of my favorite layette brands. These pieces wash well and stand up to multiple babies. Most of our Absorba brand sleepers have come from department stores like Macy's and Lord & Taylor but you can also purchase select styles online through Amazon.

Absorba



At the other end of the spectrum, I love me some bright bold primary colors on babies. Again, I'm not over the moon for cartoon characters and sleepers splattered with characters, but I do love me some bright, bold stripes and dots. Offspring is another favorite layette sleeper maker. 

Offspring



Speaking of bright bold colors and patterns, one of my all-time favorite brands for both infant, crawler and young toddler is Zutano. Another great brand that washes well, stands up to crawlers and toddlers and has been handed down between my boys. You can purchase Zutano items from their online website as well as find great deals on them through Amazon. Zutano t-shirt and pants sets as well as short rompers are two of my favorite pieces to buy and two of the many styles I stocked up on for this coming Spring and summer.

Zutano



Let's say you're like me and looking to dress your not-so-infant-baby but baby-baby and maybe even your crawler-baby. I absolutely adore the GAP. None of those sayings that you see accompany so many of the chain store baby boy's clothes but sweet enough and "manly" enough that even my husband loves them. Some of my absolute favorite pieces come from the GAP "favorites" collection. They also have a fantastic organic and neutral layette line.

GAP baby



Speaking of favorites, I'm often asked where my FAVORITE place to shop for the boys is. After much deliberation, I have to say that it's a tie between the following two places: Hanna Andersson and mini Boden. Although each of these stores is a bit higher in terms of price point, the quality of the clothes is superior and well worth what you pay for them. I don't mind investing in these pieces because it's obvious that I hand them down between my boys. Occasionally these two stores do run promotions that make buying their clothes for your kids a bit easier to stomach. You can also snag Hanna Andersson jammies, a personal favorite, at some Costco stores for much cheaper!

Hanna

Hanna by ametzl01 featuring a ribbed tee



mini Boden has always been a favorite of mine for many reasons. Their style is unique and classic, full of bright colors and bold patterns. I love how you can mix and match just about anything in the mini boden and baby boden line not to mention that I love being able to snag the occasional  matching sibling outfits. Each of my boys have play clothes as well as special occasion clothes from here. My oldest also has a few of their swimsuits.  

Boden



And then there are places I like to head to for staples. Places to pick up play clothes basics and some things that I don't mind the boys playing outside and getting dirty in. Jeans. plain t-shirts. Legging-type pants for the crawling baby. Undershirts. 

American Apparel and Old Navy are two of the best places for these types of pieces. I recently stocked up on American Apparel ribbed onesies, T's and super soft cotton pants and leggings when Amazon was running their big kids and baby clothing sale. American Apparel even has a whole entire section of their website dedicated to the basics. 

American Apparel



Speaking of giant kids and baby clothing sales, one of the annual sales that I am sure to hit up is Old Navy's. Although I feel like the quality of their clothes isn't the greatest (the fit runs big and wide, the fabric shrinks, colors tend to run in the wash) you can't go wrong for the price. During their most recent sale I snagged nearly 20 pieces of clothing for my oldest's Spring/Summer wardrobe and spent no more than $100. 

In fact, one of my most favorite baby sleepers ever comes from Old Navy. Grey and chevron? I loved it so much that I made sure to purchase it through the largest size it came in. 

OLd Navy



Last but not least, here is one of my absolute favorite places to shop for sweaters, tops and t-shirts for my oldest. I can remember waiting for the day that he could fill a 2T in this store and I'm sure I cried tears of joy when he did so just shy of his first birthday. Jcrew's Crewcuts. I will say that because of their full price price point, this isn't the place I turn to for every day play clothes and I rarely buy anything for the boys that isn't from their sale section. However, when they're running a great promotion, I'm all over this place like white on rice. Not to mention that the quality and fit of their clothes is pretty awesome. 

Crewcuts




Let's talk pajamas. If you follow me on Instagram, you know I have a downright obsession with pajamas. Granted, my youngest does have a good deal of his older brother's hand me downs but in addition to that, his pajama stash houses about thirty-five to forty pair. As I mentioned earlier, Hanna Andersson sells my favorite jammies for both baby, toddler and little kid. Occasionally you can find a small selection of their jammies at Costco wholesaler. My second favorite place to snag sleepers for my youngest is The Children's Place. Although I didn't make much mention of them earlier, you will occasionally find me shopping for the boys in there as well. I think I would have to say that it is my favorite of the "chain" type stores. I love their footie jammers also known as "stretchies."



Jammies TCP



You'll notice I didn't mention Carter's or Gymboree in this post. I have nothing against these stores as I have found myself in them on many an occasion. To me, Carter's is like dinosaur and puffy-bear-butt central. King of monikers like "champ," "all-star" and "mommy's little monster." It's just not my style. Does this make me a better mother than you or my kids better than yours? Of course not. I failed to mention that I love me some Walmart pajamas, too. Hello, you can't beat the occasional $5 price tag for a two-piece set and my oldest loves his Elmo and Thomas character jams. And speaking of Carter's, I do love their plain white onesies both short sleeve and long and I also buy many of their three and four-piece pajama sets for my toddler. 

As for Gymboree, my thoughts are this: Cute clothes? Yes. Although, kind of overpriced if you ask me. I haven't been in this store since my first baby was about a year old and  I somehow got suckered into buying a pair of shorts (really cute shorts) and two (really cute matchy) t-shirts for sixty-five dollars. Yes, sixty-five. Now, I'm all about dropping some dollars on the boys' clothes as is evidenced by the post- but on patchwork shorts and two itty-bitty t-shirts that thirty other Johnny and Joeys are wearing? Not my style. Not to mention that for that amount of money? I could have bought maybe one or two pieces less from one of my other favorite stores like mini boden or crewcuts. To each their own. 


I also didn't mention Janie&Jack, Target or OshKosh, the last two mainly because I don't have much experience shopping with them for kids clothes. I will say that Janie&Jack has a fantastic way of taking those cartoon puppies and dinosaurs and making them absolutely prep-tastic. This store was a favorite of mine when my oldest was a baby. 


So there you have it. My favorite places to shop for all things boy! Who says shopping for boy's clothes can't be fun? Happy Shopping!




this post has been linked up here for trendy tot tuesday

22 comments :

  1. Great info. :) I have a three year old girl and I mostly buy her clothes from Target, Baby Gap and consignment sales. I get lots of Lilly Pulitzer, Hartstrings, Janie and Jack stuff for less than ten bucks at the consignment sales. A lot of stuff there is good quality because kids hardly wear clothes out in my experience so far. :)

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  2. I found that nautical sleeper the other day, and oh my goodness- Nanny Baby needs it for sure.

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  3. Great post! I agree completely on the Carters/Gymboree thoughts...I never set foot in Gymboree and the only thing I get at Carters is the white onesies because they fit the best! I can't stand that everything for boys has cheesy sayings or characters on it!

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  4. I am a sucker for cutie cute jammies!!! I'll definitely check out these sites. Jammies w/ feet on them though? Not our thing. The boys flip out being "strapped or zipped" in. I seriously fell in love with those orange pants and surf board tee. I want that. LoL.

    Now...next question...whereeee do you shop for SHOES!?!?! That's a big problem for me. I just did Stride Rite for the boys last week. Scored some awesome sneaks for Jackson. Loved the colors!

    Thanks for this post, Ma! Boy Moms rock! :D

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  5. I am a sucker for cutie cute jammies!!! I'll definitely check out these sites. Jammies w/ feet on them though? Not our thing. The boys flip out being "strapped or zipped" in. I seriously fell in love with those orange pants and surf board tee. I want that. LoL.

    Now...next question...whereeee do you shop for SHOES!?!?! That's a big problem for me. I just did Stride Rite for the boys last week. Scored some awesome sneaks for Jackson. Loved the colors!

    Thanks for this post, Ma! Boy Moms rock! :D

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  6. Darling picks! I do like gymboree for an outfit here and there - the sales they run are pretty good but I only shop them on-sale. I like coordinating my girls and it's one of the few places I can still do that now that my older girl is in the 'big' girl sizes. The boy clothes are also less cartoonish in the 'big' boy styles which my 3 year old can now wear and the shorts/pants are classics and hold up well (which at the rate my boy grows is needed because while he can wear a 3 now, I just took out the 12-18/18-24 month shorts!)

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  7. I love this post! I've never shopped at a couple of these but now I'm heading over to browse for baby #2! I'm always on the hunt for new places to shop! And we seem to have a similar style! For my son I couldn't and can't handle all of the cutesy stuff. I wanted to dress him like a little adult! Children's Place is one of my favs! And Gap, when it's on sale! I felt the same way about Carter's it's hard to find cute boy things in there that aren't all dogs and little animals! And I can't do Gymboree. At all. Too many animals and way too expensive for me not loving it and really not even liking it! And Old Navy is hard. Even as an adult. There stuff just fits awkward. And that ruins how cute it is. Plus sometimes for it not being made all that well I feel like they are overcharging when it's not on sale! I have found little girl clothes are different than boys though. With baby #2 being a girl, I LOVE Carter's. The girl side is bright colors. And stripes and polka dots. Super cute!

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  8. We have a gymboree outlet and I bought several of their pieces before I had kids (yes, I'm that weirdo), but it seems like they're prices are higher now and not as cute. Their girl stuff is much cuter, but what else is new?

    I love RL layette and most of mine has been scored at Marshalls. IN fact you just reminded me I wanted to go back and get a green longsleeved polo outfit for my newest boy.

    I have never purchased from mini boden, but jsut got a new catalog w a 15% off coupon and free shipping so I'm about to buy some bathing suits-matching for big and baby brother, of course!

    Does Crewcuts start at 2T? I think my oldest, at 3, has just sized in-I need to go check their website.

    I like Target for staples, solid color t-shirts and pants. I got several pairs of cords there at the end of season for a song.

    And all I have to say about boys pants is AMEN. Seriously, aren't cargos out of style for grown men now? Why are we forcing them on our littles.

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  9. I agree with so much of this. I despise run of the mill cliche statement clothes. "Mommys hero", "baseball champ"...etc. but it never fails that a family member will buy these types of clothes for my boys. So I do put my boys in these clothes sometimes, and only at home. I guess I'm a snob like that. lol. Anyway, I'm all for H&M, though I don't like that you can't shop online there. And Old Navy can have cute things for sure. Also, Tea Collection and Mini Boden...though I usually wait for sales. :)

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  10. Looking forward to checking a few of these out. I'm still a fairly new boy mom (my guy is 10mos.) But I have found shopping for him to be a little hard, I don't love the character stuff either. I also love a good smocked outfit though too! Thanks for sharing!

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  11. I just found your site and love it!! Thanks for the ideas of boy clothes :) I have a little 1yr old who needs some good cute sales ;)

    Come and check my new blog out @ analisascorner.com

    -AnaLisa

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  12. Great post!! If you like the look of Gymboree but not the price tag, I recommend Crazy 8. Some seriously cute stuff that is usually on a great sale because they change out their line so often :)

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  13. I'm a big fan of consignment and I"ve had luck finding barely worn or brand new stuff! When I go the consignment route, I like Baby Gap, Janie & Jack, and Bailey Boys. I do like plain Carter pants! I like Gymboree for some items. The majority of our Gymboree stuff were gently used from friends.

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  14. Great post! I'm always trying to find cute clothes for my little guy. I also HATE all that "mommy's little this" and "daddy's super that" type crap. I do like Carter's for striped PJ pants because they fit so well and my son will just wear them as pants. My son is 8-months-old and I have yet to set foot in Gymboree. I do buy a lot of Gap for him. Love H&M too.

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  15. Stopping by from the link up! I don't have boys but I love pretty much all those same brands! I'd definitely shop Mini Boden if I did have boys :-)

    As far as Gymboree, I do love it for my girls...but I agree that it tends to be a little cheesy on the boy side. If you know how to shop the sales and coupons though Gymboree is cheaper than Target and Walmart!

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  16. Great post. Thanks for the tips. I'm going to check out Mini Boden and Hanna Anderson!

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  17. Cute!! Boys clothing is definitely outnumbered by girls stuff but there is still great stuff out there! I have to admit tho, I have my days of loving puffy bear butts...on occasion ;

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  18. new follower from the link-up & I must say that was the run down of all run downs for mommas of boys :) I was suckered into cutest saying items when I had my son, but by three months it was very redundant, we still buy on occasion but I tend to go less busy :) I'll def have to look into mini boden :)

    Hannah

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  19. Thank you for joining us last week!

    I feel the same way about Carters and Gymboree. I hardly ever step into Gymboree and avoid the Carters section at any store!

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  20. I hear you on not liking the cutesy stuff - I avoid cartoon characters like the devil. LOVE all the pics you posted...jammies are my favorite for kids :)

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  21. You make me want to have BOYS!!!! haha

    I LOVE the way you dress your M boys!! They are always so on trend!! I LOVE the really soft clothes as well and prefer to buy "mini-me" clothes vs cartoons, etc. I just LOVE the footies and stripes though!! I still buy footie pjs for Liv just because they make her look a little younger which I love haha

    Thanks for linking up with us!! I'll contact you this week about having you cohost!! We are excited to have you!!! :)

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  22. Here here sister! WE totally have the same taste in baby clothes, like and dislike the same brands! I LOVE the Ralph Lauren Layettes and was so sad that big ole baby boy outgrew his way too fast! With your next baby you need to get some kissy kissy, pixie Lily or petite ami pima cotton layette stuff. So soft and sweet just like the RL...

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