Thursday, 29 April 2010

Shopping for my boys - please help!

It's that time of the year - replacing whole wardrobes of clothes for little people who have outgrown last season's.

For me, shopping for and dressing our resident princess is fun. She loves pretty clothes, I know her taste (mostly)  - well, if I stick to pink and girl it will get worn. The funky combinations are all her own work. Last year I noticed that no matter where you buy for the kids, all the shops have their more "budget" lines and more expensive ones - and those budget ones cost the same, whether at Ackermans or Woolworths. The Lil Miss is also very tall for her age, but skinny - the Woollies pants fit so much better than the others.  And Woollies really is great with their "great value buy" lines - the girls R35 T shirts and R39 corduroy pants are all beautiful. The R45 polar fleeces are just as beautiful. Great patterns and very cute. Not so the boys. No, not so at all. And my boys are my more difficult customers. What I hear you say?

Well, some of it is due to the the twin thing. The rest is purely the lack of imagination or design by clothing retailers or their designers. When I found out I was pregnant with twin boys, one of my thoughts was about dressing - alike, or not? I settled on "similar, but not same" as a preference. Of course, they got many identical outfits for presents as people really do not know how else to do it. So I did dress them the same from time to time, until I read Joan Friedman's book "Raising emotionally healthy twins" (I really recommend this to parents with twins) After that I decided never to dress them the same and started giving them the choice of two same T shirts - they never chose the same, even at the tender age of a year and a bit. Never! But they do like to choose similar - for instance, if one chooses a Scooby Doo T shirt, the other asks for his too. So I now try to buy everything similar but not the same - which is really difficult. Sometimes I just buy different, as I have no choice. And last week I bought same - as in PJ's ,as really, the stock was limited. But they do not like to wear the same pair at night, so we swap them around.

This of course, even limits the already limited stock to buy from. Because now I have to find two colours/types of say, a  dinosaur T shirts. Last week I found one Scooby doo long sleeved T and one Jungle beat one. My word, Little man C totally lost it when his brother got the Scooby doo and he the Jungle beat. My luck was in as Little Man L immediately liked the Monkey on the Jungle Beat T , but I was just lucky. It could have turned sour. As it has in the past.

I also complicate it even more for myself, because let's face it, apart from the very limited cute clothing, it is only really character shirts left. I do not "do" Ben 10 - I watched one episode and really, it seems very violent. (I also didn't "do" Bratz - too tarty for my taste). Then I am totally uninformed about Bakugan - what is it? My boys are also just into the little boys stuff - you know, Scooby doo, Cars, etc. I's ok with the old Marvel Superheroes - I mean, I know them. But why is the choice so limited? What has happened with dinosaurs in general? My boys love any form of dinosaurs. Look at the girls (apart from the beautiful non character stuff) - there is Barbie in a miriad of formats, Hello Kitty, Tinkerbell, Hannah Montanna, High school musical, Disney princesses. All beautiful and acceptable. And remember - I have to find tow DIFFERENT spiderman shirts in the same size at the same time. I really also can not spend R180 on a Keedo designer T shirt for two boys. So, moms of boys (I am calling on you - this is serious) - please help! How do I shop for my boys?


  1. Shopping for boys seems like a headache. :-) Good Luck!

    I left an award for you on my blog. I always get a bit of sunshine here!

  2. I am not going to be any help because I have girls. What about sports? I think that's what my nephews wear.

  3. Something from the Toronto Raptors perhaps?

  4. I hated shopping for my boys when they were younger. Once they were out of the cute baby/toddler sizes the choices were just appalling - all skulls and camo patterns and ugliness. Sorry, that wasn't very helpful was it?

    What about using iron-on transfers or fabric paints/markers to decorate cheap plain t-shirts? You can even print your own transfers using your own designs or images you find online.

  5. That is some head ache you have there...maybe some of the other "twin-mothers" will have some advice.

    I am going to e-mail you the articles I blogged about.

  6. Eerste keer hier,R.

    Ek kan my absoluut verkyk aan jul pragtige kleingoed (hmm, kan sien dis wel van die "grootgoed" geƫrf...)

    GENIET hulle elke oomblik (party oomblikke is dit nie maklik nie; dit weet ek ook wel....!)

    Sooo slim hierdie "similar but not same."

    Alle sterkte met die aankope.

  7. Sjoe! That sounds quite tricky. I don't know about twins but my mom has 4 brothers and a sister and to avoid confusion about what belonged to who my gran allocated them specific colours. Not sure how she did it with the boys but on the two girls my mom got reds and blues and my aunt greens and oranges. To this day they still show preferences towards those colours when they shop!

  8. It gets even better Cat. They then tell you what they want you to buy. And its usually not what you wish for them. But I agree, with boys its tougher.

    Everytime I go shopping for my son, I somehow come with the Princess' stuff too. Girls are so easy to shop for.

    And Ben10 is one irritation that I found myself adjusting to. Happy shopping.

  9. What about little checkered shirts in different colors? I'm a pretty basic mom for my one daughter and I hate shopping. I would keep it simple for you and them. They aren't at an age where they care what they wear. I'm sure what you want is for them to look nice and be happy.

    If you really want character shirts can you shop directly at Disney on line or the other Warner? Another idea is to look for iron on patches and make your own shirts. Just a thought. I know a friend of mine finds some pretty creative things on ETSY.

  10. Hi Cat, I can't even blame the baby brain anymore... %-)
    I nominated you for the Life is Good Award, and it is up on my blog today!

  11. Hmmm, I know exactly what you mean - went to buy winter clothes for my two about 2 weeks ago and K, easy! TONS of cute girl stuff. For C, very boring boy stuff. At least he looks good in red and orange (D tells me I'm crazy when I talk about what looks good on a BABY!)

    If I had two boys, I'd give each one a colour - maybe red and blue and try and stick to that. I don't like the cartoons so much but we'll see. I don't say "never" any more :)

    Oh wait, I do the colours thing with them already - K has pink and purple bottles, and C has blue and green :)

  12. I was in Edgars today, somewhere i do not often frequent. but i did notice that they had a very wide range of boys clothes. and they did not seem to be too pricey. A short-sleeved t with a built in long sleeve under was R55 and they were cute i thought. why don' tyou go and look there?

    of course there is always (and dare i say this) but PEP. Since living in the boonies i have been shopping there for my littlest for school/play wear, and really, they are dirt cheap, have a huge variety, but also, the quality is really not that bad. Especially for your boys age - they are growing so quickly that their clothes only need to last a season. maybe going and have a peek?

  13. I found the option is SA to be much more limited than in the states.

  14. I am with Shayne - for Hooli I frequent Ackermans and Pep and have found great stuff for him. 'Camo pants' in soft tracksuiting in plain colours - navy, green, red, brown. He loves all the pockets. And lots of different longsleeve shirts - none of which are charactered. Must say Ackermans quality is on a par with Pick n Pay if not better.

  15. I only have ONE boy and I struggle. I wish I had some advice for you but I don't. Good luck though :)


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