How to Create a Kids’ Capsule Wardrobe

Kids are expensive. The clothes, the toys, the child care, the activities…and you are expected to feed them, too?!?! Kidding. But in all seriousness, parents spend a ton of money, about $13,000 a year. Yikes! Looking for ways to trim that number? You aren’t alone. I truly think that’s one of the reasons why capsule wardrobes are so popular (and maybe that popular Konmari Method book has something to do with it, too). Capsule wardrobes are great for kids not only because they grow so fast and tend to ruin clothes easily (my kids can’t be the only ones), but also because it makes the battle of what to wear each day much easier…you might do more laundry but it is oh so worth it!

What is a Capsule Wardrobe

A Capsule Wardrobe is a group of clothes that never go out of style. They are mostly classic pieces with a few accessories and graphic tees, funky socks, etc. to add some personality to your basic wardrobe. This mini wardrobe usually has between 30-40 pieces that you absolutely love (or in a child’s case, a combo of things that both the parents and child love). All pieces are easy to mix and match so finding something to wear is easy and efficient.

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What are best stores for creating a Kids’ Capsule Wardrobe?

The key for Capsule Wardrobes is to get high quality clothing that holds up well to multiple washings and wears. Janie and Jack, Gymboree, and Gap Kids tend to sell clothes that wear well and can take a beating (at least in my active little boys’ experiences). For fun and flashy additions, you can’t go wrong with the adorable Cat and Jack line, just about anything from my local favorite Half Pint Shop, and something to show your love for your favorite sports’ team. Lastly, Primary is a favorite for solid color, no frills clothes that look amazing wash after wash and are extremely soft to the touch.


How to Create a Kids’ Capsule Wardrobe

Step one—Completely clear out the closet

Step two—Divide clothes into categories (Love it, Maybe, Nope, Seasonal)

Step three—Add whatever necessities are absent from your pile

Step four—Donate or sell whatever you don’t want to keep

Step five—Relax!


Kids’ Capsule Wardrobe Checklist

As a boy mom, my list is most definitely geared towards little boys. But many of the same basic pieces can be integral parts of a girl’s capsule wardrobe as well.

1 pair sandals

1 pair gym shoes

1 pair boots

10 pairs of socks

10 pairs of underwear

1 light coat

1 medium coat

1 heavy coat

2 swimsuits

1 hooded sweatshirt

2 sweaters (one zip up, one pull over style)

2 button up shirts

3 long sleeve shirts

4 short sleeve shirts

2 tank tops

4 pairs of shorts

2 pairs of jeans

2 pairs of pants (corduroy, khacki, etc.)

1 pair of sweatpants

5 pairs of pajamas


Total Amount of Pieces FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR, including seasonal items: 56


This Capsule Wardrobe Checklist might not work for everyone, and that’s okay. I hope it serves as a guide for you to declutter and include some simplicity in your life…and at the very least, help avoid those “What am I going to wear today?” tantrums that tend to happen on those mornings when you are running late for school.


Want to shop for yourself? Here are my favorite pieces that transition from the pick up line to moms’ night out!


Happy Shopping!

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  1. robin rue says

    I’ve never heard of a capsule wardrobe, but my kids live in graphic tees & jeans/shorts, so I guess we were already doing that 🙂 Awesome idea.

    • Amanda says

      Hope this post inspires you to declutter and only keep what you really love. Think about the money you will save!

  2. Anosa says

    I love capsule wardrobe I have one of my own an essentials one and one for each season which is perfect. Lovely ideas for setting one up for kids

  3. Jeanette says

    I have never heard of this kind of wardrobe! It is really good idea. I go through my son’s closet at least once a quarter because he grows out of stuff so quickly. The stuff you have on here is absolutely adorable.

  4. Tomi C says

    I love capsule wardrobes for travel and Summer Camp but never thought of it as year round attire. When you think about it, it really is practical for kid’s clothing as well.

  5. Sarah Honey says

    This sounds cool! Haven’t heard of a capsule wardrobe. My son wears a uniform to school so his wardrobe is smaller. He only needs clothes for the weekends and summer stuff. I think having a uniform for school saves us so much money!

  6. Cheryl says

    OMG I love these looks! I miss the days when I could dress my son any way I wanted. Now it’s all about jeans, converse and “nerd” shirts.

  7. Marysa says

    I haven’t heard of this before, but I guess in some ways, I have done this. I find that a lot of clothes are patterned, so I try to keep bottoms solid, versus printed tops. This way it is a lot easier to mix and match.

  8. Our Family World says

    This is great. I should start looking into my kids’ closets. Instead of always running out to buy clothes just because they are in fashion, I would create a capsule wardrobe. Thanks for the checklist.

  9. Jaime Nicole says

    I LOVE this idea. My girls have SO MANY clothes. Their closets are so jam packed – I would love to get them simplified down.

  10. Adrienne says

    I love this! I’ve been really wanting to do this with my own closet but can definitely see how it would be a good idea for kiddos, too. Your boys always have the cutest outfits! I’ll be honest, though, the first few sentences of this post scared the bajeebies out of me. haha Especially since me and hubby are making our plans for starting our family. Kids can be so expensive!

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