Shopper’s Guide: How to Avoid Sizing Issues When You Buy Clothes Online for Your Kids
Online shopping allows you to get beautiful clothes at a bargain. However, there’s the uncertainty of buying something you haven’t seen or touched. It gets even trickier if you’re buying for someone else, even if that someone is your child.
Many people have different strategies to buy clothes online, but with children, getting the right size can be tricky. This article gives you tips to ensure you always get the size right when buying your children’s clothes. Read on!
Before You Start Shopping
Before you go filling your cart with clothes, do your background research to ensure you know your child’s size and fabric and style preferences/likes.
1. Have a Tailor Measure Them
The secret to nailing sizes when buying online is to compare measurements with the garment’s sizing chart. Therefore, before you go shopping, take your child to the tailor and get updated measurements of their exact size. Remember, children grow very fast; your measurements from last month may be obsolete next month.
For all the clothes you see online, garment makers provide a sizing chart that shows the exact measurements of their sizes (S,M,L or number sizes). The reason all clothes don’t fit the same is that different manufacturers have slightly different measurements for their sizes. This is also the reason you should have detailed measurements done by a tailor.
A good tailor can take measurements for all the parameters you’ll possibly need. For example, for sweaters, you need the chest, neck and sleeve measurements. For pants, you need waist and length measurements.
You may wonder why you shouldn’t just take the measurements yourself. First, unless you have experience in clothes-making, this is a bad idea. Consider the money spent on a tailor an investment; you’ll be buying clothes online for a long time, and they will fit just right because of this investment.
If you want to learn how to take measurements yourself, you can use an online guide, or get the tailor to show you how. This might make sense for your pocket because children grow fast and so going to the tailor every two or so months can become expensive.
2. Choose the Fabrics
A child is unlikely to stay in something they find uncomfortable just because it looks good. Therefore, the type of fabric is the most important determiner of whether or not you’ll buy something.
Think about the clothes your child favors now: what kinds of fabric are they made from? In addition, the fabric should be able to withstand rough treatment from play and tumble.
Cotton is the first choice for children because it is breathable, absorbent and very comfortable. There are about 90 varieties of cotton; so you have a world of options here. Linen, muslin, and batiste are also great for everyday wear.
Down, light fleece and wool are suitable for winter and autumn clothing, because they’re warmer. You can have cotton in the under-layers to ensure the child is comfortable. Children with sensitive skin favor bamboo rayon and microfiber clothing.
3. Choose the Styles
If the child is old enough, allow them to contribute to this process. Just like above, ask them which clothes they favor and make a note of the styles. Learn the terms and lingo used by the garment-maker and how they apply to your child’s tastes.
For example, shirts can be slim or regular fit. Slim fit is tighter in the waist, chest, and arms and is suitable for lean boys. Pants are a loose, regular, slim or relaxed fit. The last thing you want is to buy clothes that your child will never wear.
When You Are Shopping
Here are the things you should keep in mind when you’re shopping for your kids’ clothes:
1. Always Check the Sizing Chart and Retailer
Size charts are your best friend now that you have your child(ren)’s exact measurements. You don’t have to wonder whether large will be large enough.
Checking the size chart is vital every tie you’re dealing with a new retailer. It becomes even more so if this retailer is from overseas. Different countries have different standards – someone wearing a medium in the US may need XL in China, for example.
If you’re buying from a custom designer/clothier or in made-to-order shops, ensure they guarantee that the fit will be according to the chart they give. Alternatively, find out if you can send your child’s measurements so they can stitch for them – this will take longer, however.
If you’re buying from a curator like Amazon, remember to check the sizing chart for each brand separately. Such sites won’t have a site-wide sizing chart because they stock a variety of brands.
2. Note Down the Brands or Retailer You Like
You have plenty of options, such as DKNY kid, to explore when shopping online because you’ll be doing it from home. As you buy more and more clothes online, note down which clothes fit best for your child(ren).
Once you have some favorite apps, you may not need to consult the sizing chart each time you’re buying something. In future, you’ll save tons to time by doing this. For example, even though the child is an 8, the 6 gives a better fit for this brand and the 10 for the other brand.
3. Consider Made-to-Order Clothes
There are custom clothiers whom you can send measurements and wait for your clothes. Usually, they expect you to try them on and send them back if alteration is needed.
Even online custom clothiers will be open to making alterations if you find a problem with the fit. There’s a bit of a back-and-forth, but if you really want something from them, it’s worth the extra time.
4. Buy a Little Big
Children grow up way too fast; during their growth spurts, they can literally grow two sizes in a matter of weeks. Babies are even worse – they can literally grow in a couple of days.
Instead of ordering the exact size your child wears now, order something that’s a size larger. Your child won’t look too bad in it, and they’ll wear it for longer. If the size difference is too big, use a local dressmaker to make adjustments that you can reverse as the child grows.
Buy Clothes Online – Final Thoughts
Getting the right clothing online isn’t very hard; you just have to be willing to put in the work in the beginning. Once you have your measurements (or know how to take them), you can buy clothes online for your kids without fear.
Trust the process to become easier with every subsequent purchase. Soon, you’ll enjoy that feeling of buying clothes you’ve never seen and having them fit perfectly right out of the box. And you can tell everyone to call you the online shopping sensei.
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