As I have three rapidly growing children it seem’s like someone always needs something for their wardrobe. Add to that my prolific pixie invasion whose little coats and shoes do not come cheap and my budget needs to stretch further than a pregnant ladies knickers. I am not a fan of low cost badly made children’s clothes for two reasons. Firstly ethically I like to be sure that my children’s clothes were not made by children in a sweatshop. Secondly it is a false economy as in my experience things become worn or misshaped so quickly they don’t last very long and you have to replace them quicker.

So I had to find the best way to kit out my children in good quality clothing, made ethically, without breaking the bank. These are my findings.

1. Charity Shops. This is a great way to find gently used good quality clothing at a fraction of the cost, and support a charity, win win. Visit your local affluent area, and scour the rails. my top tip is to label check, you don’t want to fork out for a supermarket brand when you could have payed the same new. A Mini Boden gem for £2 however is a bargain. You do need to visit regularly to get the best bits though so perhaps pick a day for your charity shopping and look every week.

2. Ebay and other online auction sites. Ebay can be more expensive than charity shops but you can be more specific in your searches. If there is a particular brand that fits your child well you can search for that brand and snap up the bargains.My top tip is to keep an amount in mind over which you will not pay, otherwise it is easy to get caught up in the competition and bid too much.

3.Hand me downs. I get loads of hand my downs for my children. Its great, absolutely free and good for the environment too. My top tip is to ask, if you have a friend with a child older than yours ask what they do with their outgrown clothing. Sometimes people might not offer out of fear of offending but will be glad to pass on what they no longer need.

4.Sales. I buy 80% of my children’s new clothing in the sales. It is so much cheaper and these days there are sales at the end of every season. My top tip, be organised, as the sales are usually of this seasons clothes plan for the ages of your children the same time next year. Do this for a while and you will always have the next seasons clothing waiting. As a bonus your children won’t be wearing the same as everyone else.

5.Make your own. Ive added this tip for those amongst you who are this way inclined. I am useless at sewing and most things craft so I don’t claim to make my children’s clothes. However I do get hand me downs from a lady who does and they are wonderful one of a kinds for the price of a couple of meters of fabric.

Home made hand me downs.