November 12, 2009

What is Up With Clothes for Kids?

Some days I feel buried in laundry, hence the title of this blog. The clothes my daughters generate in two days is the equivalent of what one child wears in a week. In order to keep the hamper from overflowing I do my daughters' laundry three or four times a week. I have come to the conclusion that the people designing childrens' clothing do not have children.
I expect to have to hand wash holiday dresses. They are frilly. They are delicate. They are everything a holiday dress should be. I do not, however, think many other clothes for children should require you to do anything other than throw them in the washer and dryer.
My daughters have a beautiful sweater that I rarely allow them to wear. Why? It needs to hand washed and line dried. Way too much work for a child's garment. I rarely wear any of my clothing that needs hand washed or dry cleaned, so I certainly don't have time to do it for them.
My daughters have a really cute pair of Disney Princess denim capris that require extra attention, too. Due to a design on the outside, the capris need to be turned inside out to wash and dry. This I am willing to do... thank goodness I actually read the label before I washed them. I've started turning all jeans and shirts with designs inside out before even putting them in the hamper.
The next time you are at a department store, take a stroll through the toddler section and look at the jeans. So many of them are made with thin denim. I send my daughters to preschool in jeans on a daily basis. I need jeans that can handle some wear and tear, especially in the knees, since that's the first area to end up with holes. Plus, so few pants for toddlers come with elastic or adjustable waists. Isn't the toddler age the time when most kids are being potty-trained? They need pants that are easy to pull down and pull back up (yes, I stole that train of thought from Laura C!)
My point? There is a time and a place for beautiful, delicate clothing. I will handle those garments with extreme care and do my best not to ruin them in the wash. But kids need to be kids... and for the majority of them that means having clothes that can take a beating without getting beat up in the laundry.

10 comments:

Stephanie Manner Wagner said...

Absolutely! I keep the few "special" things on hangers in the closet so they aren't worn every day by accident. That's it ... no time for much of those items beyond the special days.

My main rant on this subject would be the sorting of it all. Is it ok that I'm a tad jealous of you in regards to the folding and putting away part of laundry? Maybe I'm wrong, but my guess is they all wear about the same size and it all goes to one room?

I'm beyond confused with what belongs to who at this point even with large age gaps. Oh how awesome it would be to just put most of it one place.

Stephanie B said...

This should be true for EVERYONE'S clothes.

Having said that, I'm rarely careful with my own laundry. If something wants special care and I want to wear it, it generally gets tossed into the regular load. If it survives (and an amazingly high percentage do, repeatedly, for years), it's worth keeping. If not, why should I own something that's too much hassle to be worth wearing?

Your circumstances make this much more challenging, since kids get attached to things.

HST said...

I turn my kids' clothes inside out almost always, because their jeans and shirts inevitably will have some beadwork or rhinestone somewhere that will come off when washed regularly. There are some brand names I will not even bother to look at because after two times in the wash you can almost throw it away! I have found that some brands, even if not considered "couture" (and I put that in brackets for a reason!), are great quality clothes and I will always look at those first, before shopping for anything else. Four top things I look for in kids clothes : durability, extra length in the sleeves and legs, adjustable waistbands, pretty girlie design and cut.

Sandi said...

haha I am with you on this. I absolutely find it silly to have to hand wash kids clothes for the most part. Sure I'll hand wash it but after they've jumped in the mud, slid in the grass and everything else what's the point?

maryanne said...

I just throw the "handwash only" clothes in the laundry zipped into a lingerie bag with a cold wash and then air dray. Seems to work so far...

I never felt "buried in laundry" until baby #3 came along - but several times since her arrival I've wondered what your laundry must have been like with four infants!

Quadmama said...

I've put a lot of "hand wash only" items in the washer and most of the actually hold up pretty well.
Maryanne: let's just say "buried in laundry" doesn't describe how much laundry these girls generated as babies!

Kim said...

I can't even imagine what it must be like with quads, because I'm at my wit's end with just twins! At this point, I try to only buy leggings and—for lack of a better term—yoga pants for my 3-year-olds. Zippers and snaps are such a hassle!!

Quadmama said...

Leggings are so wonderful! I don't know why I don't buy more of them for my girls.

Brooke said...

It sounds like boys clothes are much easier (though way less cuter :) Though I always wondered why they make one piece footy jamies in size 3T - talk about impossible for potty training!

Quadmama said...

I bought some really cute Tinkerbell footie pjs for my girls last Christmas... they hated being so confined... and, like you said, forget about potty training in those things!

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