We all know that panicky moment when you realise the dryer appears to have eaten a single sock of every matched pair your child has ever owned. Or the day you find out their school shoes have mysteriously worn through completely in the space of a day. Or the time when they turned around five minutes before the bell rings and told you their plimsolls are too small. Those days when your child has to go out and face the world, but all their really important wardrobe staples have mysteriously malfunctioned or vanished. How can you prevent them?
First of all, keep a close eye on all of your child’s clothes – especially school clothes. In my house, shoes are polished once a week and during that polish they are closely inspected. Even so, my eldest has a knack for wearing through the tops of his school shoes, so we keep an eye out every day and make sure he isn’t wearing rags – they can go from acceptable to hole-ridden in no time!
Keep spares of everything. This sounds expensive, and obviously you can’t keep spares of everything, but think laterally and you’ll be able to set up a nice little stash. A pack of spare socks – plain, black or grey – is easily purchased for a few quid. Stick them aside and, should your child run out of acceptable socks, you’ll be able to simply chuck them some more and go out for another pack. The same goes for underpants, trousers, and polo shirts. In fact, when it comes to trousers and polo shirts, I like to keep a few in rotation so that anything holey can be chucked without any concerns about running out.
Even if you feel you should buy school-specific jumpers and polo shirts, you can keep some cheap, logo-free specimens ready. Sainsbury’s, ASDA and any other supermarket will carry cheap, logo-free polo shirts and jumpers. You can simply have cheap alternatives which are easily used for a day while you drum up more branded units. Similarly, cheap shoe shops can sell you school shoes for under a fiver which will last a few days while you nip out for a more durable pair.
Keeping spare clothes handy for your child will help you deal with wardrobe emergencies easily and in a relaxed way. Don’t worry another moment about what you’ll do next time a cuff turns out to be torn or a shoe sole has come undone – you’ll be prepared.