How Much Do You Spend on Kids Clothing per Month or Season?

Updated on August 23, 2011
M.W. asks from Elkridge, MD
26 answers

Wondering what the average amount per month other moms spend on clothing per child per month?? My little girl is only 2 so clothing for her is still relatively cheap, but I'm sure it gets more expensive per piece of clothing as they get older...?

How many outfits per month or season do you account for within this monthly budget?

How drastically does your budget increase per month as they get older... say.. clothing expense per month for a 6 year old compared to a 2 year old??

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answers from Gainesville on

I sell kids clothing on in my search for nice things to sell, i run into almost everything i need for my own 3 toddlers. I dont spend much at all this way and it makes it a fun way to cloth my own children. I find some really adorable outfits! I have started sewing my girl simple little dresses....i get my ideas from etsy. Fabric is not much because i need about a yard for her dresses!

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answers from Washington DC on

I just spent $80 on three kids for the season at a used clothing sale. Then I might have to buy a few more things new on sale like socks and undies and/or shoes so maybe $100. I get a lot of new clothes from the grandparents for nicer occasions.

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answers from Dallas on

i typically buy the kids clothes 3 times a year, their bday, christmas & back to school...typically i spend about $100 each of these times on each child, not counting shoes, which i typically spend $50-$100 on. also my sisters & I hand clothes around between us for the kids so this typically "fills in the cracks" with play clothes & jeans & such...
I only shop sales & clearance...i pick up clothes all year round even though they only get them usually at these times.

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answers from Norfolk on

if you plan ahead it's very cheap. depending on how many outfits you want you can go to yard sales and get items for 50 cent, thrift stores for $2, and craigslist for cheap too. if you want brand new go to jcpenny, kohls and the childrens place at the end of each season to get stuff marked down to $5 and lower. undergarments, socks, tights and leggings should always be kept and can be used a few seasons or a couple years. so for me i probably spend 200 a year. they grow out of most thigs so quick that it's best to get stuff used.

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answers from Chicago on

We suppliment hand me downs, rummage sales, garage sales with a few new items here and there. I buy pants that have the adjustable waists, I hem so a pair of new pants bought a little big will fit for a while, same thing with shirts although you can't get too far ahead on size you can make stylish adjustments to be able to get more wear out of clothes with scarves, bands to help shirts that are getting too short. I have 3 kids and just spent 106.00 on back to school clothes including shoes. I possibly will have to get a mid-season or end season winter coat replacement for one of them if they grow alot and possibly new shorts for the youngest one as the clearance sales get to 75 percent plus off. I thought as a young 20 something I would never let my child wear "used" clothes, but as a 40 year old I see the sense in taking those very wearable clothes and making them into great outfits for pennies on the dollar. My kids wear brand names that I often have gotten for free or small change. No one has ever singled them out as dressed funny, in fact one girl asked if she could borrow half of my daughters wardrobe as her closet is stuffed with very cool stuff. As far as budget per year we budget 200.00 per person per year for a family of 5. Keep in mind they grow and don't get too many clothes for a season in one size as they may never wear them and others will love buying your still tagged items at a garage sale for a 1.00 an item. Also consider if any of your grade schools do Clothing and child supply resales to participate so you can get some money back for the clothes and equipment as she outgrows it so it doesn't clutter your home or rot.

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answers from Topeka on

Put it this way my 3 kids have enough clothes that they don't need to wear the same thing twice in a month,except for shorts/jeans.I'am always buying them clothes I see a good price I will get it for them.I don't mind Walmart Target clothes it depends on the style or the brand but it is usually polo shirts/character shirts or plain shirts to wear under other clothing.They are still young they have an abundance of clothing so they won't wear out as fast for cheaper clothing & what I pick out for them is still ok,they know mom will pick what they like if not they don't have to keep it.Shoes I just bought my son 3 pairs for the new school year they are name brand I won't let them wear cheap shoes to school those are for playtime,fishing,whatever they do in those is their buisness but school shoes are just for school.My daughter she has 3 pairs also she is in preschool so they won't wear out as fast,my 2 yr old she will be getting more shoes soon.So roughly i'll try to keep it under a hundred a month on the kids clothing school time is where I buy lots my son still has all new shirts from summer that he never wore so I only bought him 12 new shirts/4 shorts to begin the school year with.I also rotate their clothing once it has a stain or faded it becomes play clothing I put these types of clothing in their dresser all others I hang up in their closets,it keeps my sanity that I know where everything is at plus I know what new items I need to purchse.The budget goes up & down monthly as long as I know that they have good clean clothes to wear the next day i'm fine.


answers from Dallas on

Too much. But my kids are small also, 3T and 4T. So they are pretty cheap. But webusually spend about 50- 100 a month. We go to the mall every weekend, andni might spend 20 one week, 40 the next. Some weeks I don't buy stuff, butbit seems like my kids are growing faster then I can buy.... But sears has good sales, also JC Penny's so I get alot of bang for my buck... And don't let me find a big consignment sale.



answers from Seattle on

I probably spend $200 per year for our (almost) 4 year old, including shoes (which we spend the most money on).
Since I insist on high quality shoes, I usually buy them on sale online, spending about $30 a pair (instead of $50-$60) and we go through about three pairs a year.
Since the climate is relatively mild here year round my daughter wears a lot of clothes that are in season all year and we layer them in the winter. Lots of leggings and "playpants" and shirts/dresses from Target, we also shop a lot of Old Navy and H&M. Coats I usually buy a size up and so far every coat has lasted us through two winters.
I only buy stuff on sale and we stick with clothes that do not have licensed characters on them.



answers from San Francisco on

The thing that gets hard for me is when a growth spurt occurs at the same time that a sport season starts up. New cleats, new cross-country shoes...things like that. Hard to budget for because I am sometimes not sure what extra sports equipment will be needed.

Otherwise, my boys wear uniforms, which are expensive when we buy them, but we buy good quality and then hand them down to the youngest.



answers from Seattle on

My son's 9.

I spend about $250-$300 on new clothes come fall, and about $50 on clothes come summer. 6 or 7 pairs of pants, ditto shirts. 2 pairs of shoes. Couple packs of underwear when the weather starts to turn. Then it's shorts in the summer. At this particular point... clothes last about 12-18mo before being outgrown, and shoes about 6mo.

He wears his clothes HARD, so it's really worth it for us to spend the money on high quality clothes that will last through his wearing them for a month, much less a year.

This isn't counting "sports" clothes.



answers from Spokane on

I wait till Old Navy has their stuff on sale and buy a bunch :) I just bought my oldest daughter who's starting kindergarten 8 pairs of pants/leggings and 6 tops for $80. My younger two get the hand-me-downs and I buy a couple of new things each season....may $50 worth or so?

One lucky thing for me is that my oldest's birthday is in August and she LOVES clothes, so her birthday wish-list always includes clothes - easy for the family to buy, cheap for me!



answers from Honolulu on

My kids are 5 and 8 and grow like weeds.
They both started school already like last week.

During the summer, I bough a pair of sneakers for my son. Um... well, 2 months later, he OUTGREW them. So the other day, I had to buy him new ones, again.

My daughter, over the summer was fine in her jeans. Then, well, 2 months later, just like her brother, she outgrew them! And so, the other day, again, I had to buy her more jeans.

All of this is for school.

I shop online... SALES only.
Old Navy.
The Children's Place

I only buy, what I know my kids WILL wear. I don't force my style on them.
Less waste that way.
I KNOW what my kids like.
I have never had them complain, about what I buy them.

Here, we only have 2 seasons though. Summer. Winter. The months do get cooler from Fall though... in the 60's at the lowest. Still.
We don't have to buy 'winter' clothing.
So that is a nice thing.

But yes, clothing costs increase as they get older.
They need more and THEN there will be school supply costs too.
Not only per clothing.


answers from Tulsa on

I probably have spent $50 on my son's clothes for this year. He's four. I wait for sales and stock up for the next year or next two or three years. Two falls ago, Target had a sale of short sleeve shirts and shorts for a dollar each. He wore some of them last summer when they were a little big and wore them this year. His winter clothes I bought last new years when hoodie/sweat pant outfits were on sale for $5 each. I've only bought him one new shirt and pants that weren't on sale and that was because he needed a nice outfit for pictures. Oh, and a new pack of underwear. I will say that the sales are not as good for sizes 6 and up. I will probably be spending more for clothes in those sizes. The cheapest I've found is $3 each for shirts and $4 for pants.


answers from Rochester on

You know, it doesn't really get a lot worse. As they get older, they don't need as many clothes because they aren't becoming soiled, and they don't outgrow them as fast.

In fact, my six year old has all her clothes from last fall/winter. I just unpacked them, and every single thing still fit great (for the first time!!!) so we're getting TWO years of use out of these, which is so great. I am not buying her ANY new pants, because they all are still in great condition, but I'll probably buy a few new shirts because they look a little more "used" than jeans as you wash them. All her sweaters/sweatshirts still fit, and even her winter coat, so I am really, really happy about that.

And for the baby...15 months...of course, NONE of her clothes from last winter fit, so I have to start all over. So really, I'm spending way more on her than on my older one, who'll probably just need the few shirts and a pair of boots. My baby needs new everything.



answers from Norfolk on

I get alot of hand me downs from the babysitter/sister in law/friends/etc. So I don't normally spend much on the kids clothes. What I do get, I get on sale for the next season, or buy a bit big so they can get more wear out of them. Especially the shirts.

I also do a lot of craigslist and ebay and get great deals on "lots" of clothes. I weed through the lot, keep what we like, pass the rest on to friends of family who have children younger than mine.


answers from Chicago on

I think I spent more money when he was younger than I do now, my son is 4 and typically 4pair of long jeans (20ea), 5 plain longsleeve shirts (depends on time of year/sale 5-10ea), 10 short sleeve (layer over long in winter 7-12ea), 4pair of short jeans (20ea), 5(ish) play clothes sets (3-5ea), and 5/6pair of pj pants (2 for 10 usually), 5/6 hanes beefy T's (6 for a pack of 3), 20 3 or 4 packs of undies (5-8 ea) and probably 30dollars worth in socks and two stride rite shoes/year (35ea) not counting outerwear like jackets because grandma normally buys all the kids their winter snow suits and such all that will get me thru a year. So maybe around 500 for the year. I buy/replace as needed plus we donate and swap clothes with other families so he has more clothes than what I actually buy. I also tell people for gifts that clothes are always appreciated and his sizing. I hope that helps you out.


answers from Portland on

She is in 3T bottoms (pants, skirts) and 4T or little girls 4 tops... I noticed the price increased a little but not much. I shop discount sites for her clothes and I spend about $400-500 in the winter and $300 in the summer, including shoes. The higher price in the winter is because I buy a snow suit for her which is close to $100 ($70 this year) and snow shoes (which are anywhere from $45-$60) plus the winter jacket that's just for the chills. I noticed osh kosh has shirts that were buy 1 get 2 free so I take advantage of sales and look at deep discount sites ( or In the summer I buy summer clothes and usually her winter light jackets/pants fit from the previous winter (just in case), but in the winter I'm buying basically all 4 seasons b/c sometimes it's hot, chilly, or cold lol and she doesn't fit the previous spring/summer's clothes.

In the winter I buy 7 pairs of jeans, 1 snowsuit/snow boot, 1 winter coat, 2 light jackets, and I don't have a set number of shirts but it's usually a large variety b/c I go gaga over the little kids shirts lol, along with 3 pairs of shoes. In the summer I buy about 5 pairs of shorts, 4 pairs of sandals (they are the children's place $5 sandals), one piece swim suit and one rash guard swim suit, and a large variety of summery shirts. Any season I buy a couple dresses, leggings, and skirts.


answers from Boston on

I usually do a big back to school shopping spree. I spend about $600 - $700 on all 3 boys.
I have to share the latest deal I got though. I own an internet franchise so I do most of my shopping online. Well, I brought the boys to Old Navy the other day to try on clothes but didn't see the things they wanted online. I bought them in the store. The next night I double checked on Old Navy's website. It was completely user error and everything I got was online. Being curious I took my receipt and put everything in my online cart that I had bought. Get store purchase was purchase $148.98. I saved 69.38 and on top of that earned cash back for going through Total savings: $75.33 SAME CLOTHES/SAME STORE! Isn't that amazing. I obvioulsy purchased it all online and am returning the others to the store. Next time online only. :)
Check out and earn cash back on everything you are purchasing. It's actual cash....check in hand.



answers from Pittsburgh on

Well, I buy what he needs. When he needs it.
For example, too many years (son is 8, starting 3rd) I bought "back-to-school" pants that he didn't start wearing til October and had outgrown by November!
So this month (he starts school next week) I went and bought him about 4 pr. of shorts and 4-5 new summer tops and that, along with his "still-decent" summer stuff is what he will start school with. He has O. pair of pants from last spring that still fit, in the even of a cold snap! LOL
So for school, 6-8 pr. of shorts and 10ish "good" shirts are enough.
I do laundry all the time, so he never is "out" of clean clothes.
I'd rather have fewer, better quality things than a lot of junky, cheap pieces.
Once it gets cool, we'll get him 3 pr of athletic pants, 2 pr of jeans and 2 pr of khakis and some long sleeved shirts so...maybe $200? That will get him into spring, and hopefully the shorts I just bought to start school will still fit in May and NOT look like hot pants, like they did last year! LOL



answers from Kansas City on

We buy my kids 7 outfits at the beginning of the school year and they will wear those until summer. They get clothes for Christmas and they have leftover T's that they wear with their new jeans so it is not as bad as it sounds. My oldest (10) cost around $150 for her new clothes this year, my middle (5) cost around $100, and my youngest (3) cost around $65.
As they get older it gets more expensive! Luckily grandma helped with Back to School!!!



answers from Los Angeles on

To figure out how many outfits your children NEED, not want, figure out how long between times you wash clothes. If its once per week, then you need 8 days of clothes.

If you expect him to wear clean underwear every day, then thats 8 sets of underwear. ETC.

When I went away to college I wanted to wash once per month. I had 30 pairs of underwear, 30 pairs of socks, 15 pairs of pants, 30 shirts, etc. I washed every 4 weeks. It took all day, but I had my other weekends free of laundry.

Good luck to you and yours.


answers from Jacksonville on

I can't really remember the 2 year old vs. 6 yr old
But starting around age 11, my son's clothes started costing pretty much in line with my husband's. (Hubby is a casual dresser, not suits/ties, not Armani or anything like that... Just Nautica, Izod--not LaCoste--Levi's, Chaps... like that, and New Balance sneakers). My son's birthday shoes (his birthday present-- Sperry's) were almost $100 (With a coupon!).

I think the big jumps in pricing are when they go from any one age category to the next: "infant" to "toddler"...then from "toddler" to "little boy/girls", then "little boy/girls" to "Girls/Boys", and then when they hit teen/pre-teen and can start almost wearing adult sizes. All the jumps are gradual... so you don't notice but a few dollars difference in any one level. But if you add from say "toddler" to "Girls/Boys" through all the stages/levels in between, then you notice it a lot more.
Also, when they start noticing brands (or even just quality---cause my kids don't like ill fitting clothes or poor quality--scratchy, or thin, etc) then it makes it harder to buy the cheaper inexpensive clothing, too. So it costs more if they have an opinion... lol. :)

oops, forgot the 1st part of your question: I don't buy any number of outfits per season or month. When I start noticing (or they start complaining) that their clothes don't fit properly, then it is time to assess what is in their closet/drawers. I buy what is needed. They don't need 7 pairs of long pants. I do laundry regularly... And they will outgrow them before next if I can get through winter with 2 new pairs and the leftovers from last winter/spring, then that's what we do. They are older and can layer clothing, so don't need a ton of cold weather clothes, either. Sometimes I manage to find items that they can use for slightly more than 12 months (and if it times out right, they can get 2 winters or 2 summers or whatever out of that item). I find that I buy a new "set" of undies and socks every year or so.
How much on average do I spend per child per month? Maybe $10 or less most months. But around November I usually spend $175 or so total, and then a splurge in the spring for warmer weather stuff. Xmas usually brings them both a new set or 2 of winter PJ's or a bathrobe. Around April/May I usually spend about $65 to get the kids in swimwear (we have a pool and they use multiple suits, sometimes in the same day even). Most of this type of thing I pick up inexpensively at Target or Old Navy. The swimsuits there are usually good deals.



answers from Bloomington on

I think it depends on your financial situation and your attitude about used clothing. I love a good bargain and am prefer to buy as many used items as possible, but they have to be in great condition. It drives my two MIL's crazy, but they are getting used to it and see what my saavy shopping can buy us.

I am fortunate to have 2 girls, so I'm getting 2 uses out of most items that fit the second and the season. I have OODLES of clothes from size 12 months to 5T in both seasons and they maybe cost me $200 total. I have paper bags in a large closet that are labeled 5T winter, 5T summer. When I go shopping, I put them away by size and season, so I always know what I have. I shop kids' sales and off season. If I buy something that isn't used, I nearly sell it for what I paid for it. I'm then not out anything.

I sell everything that my youngest grows out of so I have room and money for more.

I let the Grandmas buy what they want. I have learned they will do what they want anyway. :)



answers from Chicago on

When my kids were younger we would have a set amount that we would spend. I would usually alot $100 each kid and we would go whereever we could get the best deal. Say J.C. Pennys or sears for the stuff like jeans and tshirts and underwear. I would supplement that with good deals at the thrift stores / garage sales. I have always been one of those moms who refused to buy the fancy jeans / tennis shoes / coats etc just so my kid could be just like everyone else. those types of things were gifts at birthday and christmas. you can spend as much or as little as you are comfortable with. we don't alot an amount per month. never have. there is no reason to buy new clothing each month. kids need the basics and one or two nice outfits. not new clothing all the time.


answers from San Antonio on

Am I weird for not budgeting/calculating my 3-yr-old son's clothing purchases? I take any and all hand-me-downs and go through them taking out what I want, giving the rest away. I let Gammie & Nana buy any clothes they want to for him. Last week Gammie got him new shoes ($17), but the shoes I had at home for him which still fit cost me $4 at the thrift store - StrideRites no less. I would say I spend only maybe $10-15 a month on clothes for my son, MAYBE.More of that is just b/c I see a shirt I think is cute. I stick with jeans a lot, as they match everything. In the winter, I buy a few long sleeved shirts and put them UNDER his summer t-shirts.



answers from Norfolk on

I don't really have a budget. I look for things that are on sale. I do a lot of my shopping at Kohls and target. I did this year buy a lot a Kmart cause they had a really good deal on their clearance clothes. My kids usually don't out grow their shirts has fast as their pants, so I always look for sales on jeans and pick them up when it is a good deal. I don't really buy name brand thinks unless it it a could deal. I do set price limits on how much I will spent on certain things. Like I usually don't spent any more than $10 on jeans and $10 on shirts too. I have found that has my kids get older that things have gotten a little more expensive but if you watch where you shop and make sure you catch things on sale then it is not that big of an increase.

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