dress detail

If you have a child, you know how hard it is to avoid wasting certain things. Half-eaten food, for example. The cheap plastic toys you swore would never invade your home. As someone with a blog that has a partial focus on sustainable fashion, I cringe hardest at the textile waste.

As a one-and-done family, we can’t do sibling hand-me-downs, but we do try to donate or resell as many outgrown items as possible. Special items go into a bin for either my daughter’s future child/ren or a trip down Memory Lane if she chooses not to have kids.

The things that can’t be donated have to be thrown out, and it’s almost painful to witness. Greying socks and underthings, of course, are unavoidable. But the clothes that can’t be donated because they shred? That’s the worst.

I’ve written before about why it’s important to buy high-quality children’s clothing, even if it’s going to be outgrown. I don’t think certain manufacturers are cutting corners because the clothes are going to be outgrown. The clothes don’t even last long enough to be outgrown. So many clothes for kids are cheap throwaway items, which sets up a lifetime of reaching for cheap throwaway items.

I really want to instill in my daughter the mentality that we pick out a few things we really love and that will last. It’s easy with kids to get caught up in wanting to take cute photos and constantly buying items for holiday photos, pumpkin patch photos, etc. Believe me, I’ve done that, too! I’m starting to think, though, that it sends my daughter the message that rewearing is bad. If last year’s pumpkin dress is in good shape and still fits, why not use it again? Although, this is all easier said than done. My track record resisting smocked items on Instagram is poor. I’ve cut back this past year, so it can be done.

Here are a couple more small businesses we love that aren’t on the previous list!

(Edit 10/21/22: This post has been updated to remove one of the recs.)

Ruth & Ralph
Bunch of Happiness