[disclaim]This post may contain affiliate links. This means I will earn a small percentage from each commission, at no additional cost to you, if you make a purchase through my links.[/disclaim]
Call me crazy
…but I love children’s clothing.
Call me crazier, but I loathe cartoon characters and sassy sayings on children’s clothes.
A random puppy, cat, dinosaur, or bird? Fine. Spaceships, bicycles, or cars? Cool. Polka dots, stripes, flowers, and plaid? Love it! Minnie Mouse? Not so much. “I love drama like my mama” tee shirts? No. Way.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love Minnie, but I just don’t want her pasted on all of my kid’s clothing. A rare shirt with a cartoon character or slogan my kid loves is fine, but it seems like 90% of what you find in department stores has some sort of branded character, name brand, or ridiculous tagline all over it. Modern trends are embracing the idea of ‘more is better’ and not ‘less is better’.
So where can you find some great basics?
7 Great Shops to Find Kids Clothing Basics
[warning](Don’t forget to use Ebates for online purchases to earn cash back! If you don’t already have an account, click here and earn $10 with your first purchase to get you started!) [/warning]
(Online Shop) This online store takes pride in basics only. “No logos, slogans, or sequins just the softest fabrics we could find”. These clothes are excellent quality. They often run promotions, including a first-time buyers coupon (see link below!). Sizes range from baby 0-3 months to kids 10-12. A size small short sleeved classic tee shirt is $8.00*, but prices decrease if you buy three or more of the same style item.
Get 20% off plus free shipping on your first order at Primary.com with code AFF20PCT
(Physical Stores, Outlets, and Online) Lots of options at Carter’s. It’s usually a good mix of basics and the modern trends. Carter’s clothing seems to hold up well to wear, but the quality is not always consistent. I’ve purchased a few items that have simply fallen apart in the wash. Nevertheless, they are an excellent option for affordable baby and kids clothing and can be found discounted in a number of department stores and Costco. Personally, I buy up the 3 piece jammie sets when they are on sale at Costco for $7.99! They run about a million sales throughout the year, and often have coupons for 20% off $40 that you can find online. It’s worth mentioning that Carter’s online carries a large selection of shoes, including Stride Rite and New Balance. Sizes range from Newborn up to kids size 8. Kids size small short sleeve tee is $7.00* in girls, $9.00 in boys.
(Physical Stores, Outlets, and Online) This is my personal favorite. I can get a decent deal for sale items and earn Gymbucks to pay for current season styles. The quality is excellent, styles are cute with a mix of modern and classic details. They host sales pretty regularly, and 20% off coupons are sent in the mail once a month or so. One of the details I really love about the Gymboree/Janie and Jack/Crazy 8 empire is the clothing collection themes. They debut several themes throughout the season with items that match perfectly. This is great when buying online. You KNOW that tops and bottoms will match, and you can also get coordinating leggings, cardigans, sweaters, skirts, and dresses that will also match. It’s sort of like a seasonal kids capsule wardrobe! A large bulk of my children’s wardrobe is Gymboree, from first to the third baby, the clothes are all still in ‘good’ or better condition. Gymboree offers a limited selection of matching clothing for mom and dad during the holidays. Also, they sell shoes that coordinate with their clothing. Sizes range from 0-3 months up to kids size 14. Kids size small short sleeve tee is $16.95.*
60% Off Select Styles at Gymboree
Janie and Jack
(Physical Stores and Online) The luxury line of children’s clothing. These are (at best) adult clothing retail prices, sometimes higher. These are excellent for family pictures, special occasions, or events. What makes this line so unique is the quality fabrics (which means it will hand down to your next child looking brand new) and the matching themes between baby and kid sizes, and coordination between boy and girl styles. Also, they offer mom and dad coordinating styles for the holidays. Shoes are offered, but the prices are so high, it’s really hard to imagine many people buy them (just saying!). Sizes range from 3-6 months up to size 12. Kids size small short sleeve tee with decorative buttons at the neckline is $26.00.*
Janie and Jack Reveals Holiday Collection
(Physical Stores and Online) Another luxury line; this one is less dressy, more play. This Swedish clothing company offers all organic cotton Oeko-Tex certified mix and match pieces. They are pricey, but they regularly offer 20 – 30% sales throughout the year. This is another brand that you can buy once and pass down to your next child in excellent condition. This site also offers a small selection of women clothing, and family matching jammies during the holidays. A minimal amount of shoes are sold, but they are quite pricey. Sizes range from 0-3 months up to kids 12-14. Kids size small kids basic Pima tee is $20.00.*
(Physical Stores and Online) This is the lowest end store of the Janie and Jack/Gymboree empire. Clothing is noticeably lesser quality than Gymboree and in a totally different league from Janie and Jack, but it does offer affordable basics for toddlers and kids. Sales are almost constantly ongoing. A small selection of shoes are offered at reasonable (think Target) prices. Sizes range from baby 6 months to kids size 14. Kids size small pocket tee is $8.50.*
Up to 75% Off the Entire Store + $10 Jeans + $5 Tees at Crazy8
(Online Shop) This shop sells girls clothing only. KidPik offers a decent selection of basics, but they do also carry some graphic tees, lace, sequins, and tie-dyed items. Shoes are offered, but they are heavily patterned, decorated, or metallic! Sizes range from kids 4-14. Kids size small ribbed crew tee shirt is $7.50.
*Prices listed are non-sale prices as of 10/2017
What do you think? Do you have experience with these brands? Did I leave any out? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
Cat and Jack at Target are my seasonal go-to for character free kids clothes. They have a good mix of solids and prints that mix and match. They do have shirts with sayings but we usually avoid those too. I love that for my toddler I can buy 5-6 pants and shirts and they all mix and match which makes getting her dressed easy for my husband.
Ack, I forgot Cat and Jack! I love that line too. Great price usually pretty excellent quality. You can’t beat those $5 leggings!
I also like granimals. You can get them in retail stores and they have basic clothing without a ton of novelty printing. Not the highest quality, but a basic, plain tee is about $3-$4.
$3-4 is a good compromise for basic pieces. Well worth looking in to! Thanks, Kristen!
I feel the same way. I hate throwaway poor quality clothes. Even without a younger sibling to pass things down to, I look for well made brandless clothes. Polarn O. Pyret and LL Bean are my go-to lines.
Sorry for the poorly written first comment. Multi-tasking here with two kids underfoot.
Nathalie recently posted…Unwrapping the drug pricing mystery & understanding solutions
Awesome! Thanks Nathalie, I’ll be checking out these brands! No worries about the dupe comment, my kids are currently jumping around the house playing kazoos. I totally get you ; )
I so agree! I love Primary and Hanna Andersson! Boden is also super fun. So glad there are other moms who loathe the characters!
Elizabeth recently posted…Finishing A Writing Challenge
Thanks, Elizabeth! You are SO not alone! I haven’t bought anything from Boden, but I do love to flip through the catalog. One of these days (meaning: when they have a good sale) I will purchase from them!
I also get sick of the weird sayings and graphics on kids clothes. I avoid them when i can. I LOVE Carters! They seem to have the most consistent fit, and they have awesome sales online. Also love cat and jack! Thanks for the other suggestions, i haven’t tried a few of these!
Absolutely, Natalie! I hope you find some new favorites.
Yes! I can not stand those sassy girl’s shirts with sayings like “I’m the queen” or “you can’t sit with us”. Nothing like teaching our children to be walking billboards that automatically exclude people without them saying a word. I’m a big fan of Carter’s. There clothes are great quality and hold up well as hand me downs for little sister, and their sales are awesome (and frequent). We do have lots of Princess shirts though. Can’t completely avoid the character clothing in our house.
I’m so glad I’m not the only one who feels that way! Thanks, Stacey!