East Bay Momma

A Frugal Momma Providing a Rich Childhood

Thrifty Toddler Clothes Shopping

The cute clothes hand me downs have waned as my daughter emerges into full blown toddlerhood. Some of the moms who often gave me clothes are holding onto them because they are planning to get pregnant again. Other moms have fewer clothes in decent condition to pass on because toddlers are super hard on clothes: lots of messy eating, tumbles, etc. Half the fun of being a toddler is getting messy!!

For the first time I have had to actually shop for clothes for my kiddo. There are a bunch of resell shops and thrift stores to check out but a friend told me The Children’s Place was having a 60% off sale currently so we went there. The Alameda South Shore shop is the branch we went to. The staff were super helpful and toddler-friendly. I found quite a few deals. Here is the criteria I used to get the most use out of each purchase:

1. Buy the next size up. My kid fits in the 12-18month clothes perfectly but we all know they will be getting snug soon. The 18-24month clothes are loose but not so baggy they look weird or get in her way.
2. Buy clothes that disguise stains. No whites for us!
3. Stick to light weight long pants for the summer. Although the dresses, shorts and skirts are crazy adorable my toddler needs protection for her knees. She is running everywhere and does lots of tumbling. She climbs and crawls outside all day long. Light long pants protects her from scratches and the perpetual toddler skinned knees. Also it means using less sunblock on her fair skin.
4. Light weight long sleeve shirts. I choose these mostly for the added sun coverage.
5. A ton of socks. You can never have too many!
6. Light weight sleep rompers with zip closures. Unlike mommy and daddy who can wear the same pjs for several days in a row, baby needs a fresh one every night (breakfast stains and/or diaper leaks and/or morning playtime dirt). In the Bay Area the summer nights are cooler so I opt for the long sleeves and covered feet. Elsewhere you might do just short sleeved onesies.

It was really fun shopping for her. I think my thrifty ways may have denied me some of the pleasure new mommas find in choosing such cute things. I would recommend thrifty moms every once in awhile check out the baby stores… especially at sale times!



  1. Gwen

    Great advice, thanks!

  2. Hello! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you
    I really enjoy reading through your posts. Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same topics?

    Thanks for your time!

    • I actually haven’t found any others. Let me know if you do though!! My blog reading topics are all over the place from fitness to finance stuff to politics lol! Thanks for reading mine and I will check yours out now too 🙂

    • Thanks! I haven’t really seen any other parenting thrifty websites but I am sure they are out there!! If you find any good ones please let me know! Xoxo

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