Classic baby fashion
Buzz Baby is a column about life with babies from the perspective of a first-time mother.
The fashion industry is ever-changing. Styles come in, out and back again like stone-washed jeans. The same goes for babies’ fashion. Some, like smocked baby clothes, stand the test of time, while others fade.
The school my twins attend is like a baby catwalk every morning. Most of the kids are wearing smocked outfits, monogrammed “bubbles” (one-piece rompers) and white Keds. A few outliers strut through the parking lot, toting their nap mat while wearing pink Converses, skinny jeans and a trendy T-shirt that sometimes I wish came in my size.
Do the babies care? Of course not. But it’s fun to dress your kids while they let you. Soon enough, you will have no say in the matter.
Anna Kimball, who works for Hewlett Packard Enterprise, dresses her boys, 1-year-old Simon (“Si”) and 3-year-old Phin, in “classic outfits with fun colors,” she said. “I love simple plaids, stripes and checks.”
Anna’s husband Tripp, who works in real estate and construction, said he is not a fan of anything that snaps and is happy not to choose. “Anna usually has their outfits already picked out.”
For dressier occasions, Anna typically selects classic bubbles and rompers for Si, and a button-down with a fun belt for Phin. “I know a lot of kids insisting on dressing themselves,” she said. “At this age, Phin has not. Now, I’m not saying I haven’t had to bribe him to put something on with a lollipop.”
There’s usually a favorite piece that gets passed down to the younger sibling. “Phin had a white-linen infant guayabera bubble,” said Anna. “It was passed down to Si. I loved it so much we did his first Christmas card in it.”
Gone are the days of dressing siblings in the same outfits; many places sell a coordinating romper and button-down shirt, so the print is the same, but the style is different. “One of my favorite [outfits] is a navy, white and pale-red plaid, short-sleeve, button-down, linen shirt that Phin has worn with white or navy shorts,” said Anna. “Si has a matching romper that is the most precious cut.”
This summer, Anna has several checked rompers for Simon. “Phin will wear shorts in the same color with a white guayabera,” said Anna. For warmer months, she buys plain white shirts from Walmart and has them monogrammed in bright colors like lime green and orange.
For shoes, Anna said the boys like the lightweight, slip-on brand called Native. “The brighter the better. We let them pick the colors.”
Messes happen. “Recently, my mom [Debbie] kept them for the weekend,” said Anna. “She got them dressed in nice white shirts for an outing. Phin talked her into taking them on a TCBY outing at the end of the night. [She] called me and said the outfits were covered in chocolate ice cream.” Nothing a little stain remover couldn’t get out.
Paige Foote, a mom of 9-month-old twins, Henry and Ellie, said her go-style for the babies is “classic.”
“I want them to look like babies for as long as possible,” said Paige. “I love smocked bubbles and dresses for Ellie, and Jon Jons and rompers for Henry.”
Paige said she selects light colors like baby blues, pink and pastels and simple patterns such as polka dots. She also loves baby moccasins from the brand Freshly Picked. They’re colorful, soft and great for pre-walkers.
Paige’s husband Brandon, who works for Shell Oil, bought the kids their first fishing shirts for the lakehouse from Prodoh Youth Outdoor Apparel. “He doesn’t like the bubbles I put Henry in. Too girly,” said Paige.
Shopping can be time consuming. “I mostly shop online,” said Paige. “I follow a lot of shops on Instagram too, like Smocked Auctions and Cecil and Lou. I find a lot of clothes that way.”
It can be a challenge keeping beautiful baby clothes clean and wrinkle free. The twins “both wore long, traditional baptism gowns, and I was convinced they would wrinkle in their car seats,” said Paige. “We brought them to the church in pajamas and dressed them in the parking lot. Looking back, that wasn’t the best idea.”
Even though the chocolate stains may not come out, and the wrinkles may stay wrinkled, this mom thinks it’s all worth it to see your little trendsetter show off his or her (mom’s) style this summer.
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