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Tips for mixing and matching kids clothes

Molly Cerreta Smith loves writing about all things mommy, parenting, food, health and travel. When she's not staring into the face of her Mac, she loves to hike, read, do messy crafts with her kids and compete in BBQ competitions with he...

Mix and match

It's more important than ever to really make your dollar stretch as far as it will go – and that is especially true when it comes to kids' clothes since children grow so fast and seem to constantly need new clothes. To make the most of your children's back-to-school clothes, try mixing and matching! Here are some quick and easy tips on how to maximize your kids' wardrobe by mixing and matching.

1. Stick with solids

When mixing and matching, it's important to have a "base" of solids – such as gray, black, khaki or denim "bottoms" that can coordinate with various shirts with patterns, style or adornments. You don't have to go monochrome, through! If your child is wearing solid pants/shorts, let him/her express his/her style with a fun shirt. Pair a solid shirt with patterned or adorned "bottoms."

2. Mix and match for less

Head to consignment, thrift and discount stores to stock up on budget-friendly basics such as jeans and khakis and t-shirts, tanks and long-sleeve shirts than can be easily interchanged.

3. Forget the sets

Clothing that is purchased as a set and meant to go together is tough to mix and match, so when you are doing your back-to-school shopping, take that into consideration. If neither part of the "set" can be worn with another bottom or top, it might not get as much use as you intended.

4. Collect a collection

Many clothing lines – particularly for young kids – are designed to mix and match with other items in the collection. Be selective when shopping and stick with a mix and match line so any way your child combines an outfit, it'll work!

5. Transition time

Mixing and matching is ideal when it comes to dressing for the transitional seasons. You can easily pair shorts and a t-shirt with a light cardigan for crsip morning walks to the bus stop. Think layers!

6. Accessorize

There is nothing like a little accessorizing to make an outfit look entirely different. A fun necklace, a neat pin, or a cute hat could be just the thing to make a mix and match outfit look new again!

7. Get creative

Let your children express their individuality when it comes to their personal style. Just because you may think something doesn't match, doesn't mean your child feels the same way. Your child could just be on the cutting edge of a new mix-and-match trend. Mixing and matching should be fun, so don't take it too seriously – and your kids won't either! Giving them choices on what to wear teaches them responsibility and it puts them in charge of their style. They'll love picking out the perfect outfit just as much as you do.

more back to school shopping tips

Splurge vs steal: School supplies edition
Dos and don'ts for backpacks
Stylish school supplies for teens

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