Baby Capsule Wardrobe (Works for Toddlers Too!)

Baby capsule wardrobe

With six kids, I’ve done my fair share of seasonal clothing changes and wardrobe organization. Without fail, the youngest kids are the toughest when it comes to clothes. I switched all of our kids to a capsule wardrobe system, but switching to a baby capsule wardrobe was by far the toughest.

Baby Capsule Wardrobe … Is It Possible?

If you aren’t familiar with the term, a capsule wardrobe is just a highly functional wardrobe that contains only items that coordinate. Seems like a great idea, right?

And it is a great idea, but there are a couple of extra factors to consider when dealing with baby and toddler clothing:

  1. Babies and toddlers do need more clothes because they are naturals at getting food (or spit up or diaper blow outs) on clothing.
  2. Little ones grow faster and don’t always fit sizes at the exact age they are designed for. This makes it tough to buy ahead for other seasons.
  3. Baby clothes are impossibly cute and extremely difficult to get rid of or not buy.
  4. There is also more leeway with baby clothes since coordinating is a more relative term.

It Is Possible … with Modifications

I found that it is certainly possible to pare down to a capsule-ish wardrobe for babies and toddlers. It does take a little creativity and won’t be for everyone. If you got dozens of adorable outfits for a baby shower, use them! But if you got more than you could ever use, consider returning or donating some to make room for the ones you really like!

Since babies grow so fast, I changed her wardrobe last and just used the clothes I had on hand until they didn’t fit. After being handed down through four girls, most of our clothes were not wearable anyway, so when I did have to find new items, I just made sure they were intentional and functional.

Baby Capsule Wardrobe List

This list works best for about age 6 months on. I always stick to kimono style bodysuits and sleepers that don’t have to be pulled over the head for babies 0-6 months. I kept all of these items in one drawer and she wore onesies or sleepers (depending on weather). Check out my list of baby items I actually used and baby clothing here.

My goal with capsule wardrobes was to have just enough clothing to do laundry once a week only. The baby’s wardrobe took some tweaking but it finally fits our system.

Baby Capsule Wardrobe Spring & Summer List:

  • 6-10 onesies/bodysuits
  • 5 other tops/dresses (for my daughter, I chose dresses that were short enough to crawl in and that could be shirts as she got bigger).
  • 4 pairs of leggings or jeggings
  • 2-4 pairs of shorts
  • 7 organic sleepers (not pictured)
  • 2-3 swimsuits or rashguards
  • 1 neutral sweater or cardigan
  • comfy socks
  • 7-10 homemade bibs (these are absolutely necessary to keep clothes clean and reduce laundry)

My little one actually prefers to be in just a onesie on warm days, so I could probably have pared down the pants and shorts even more.

Baby Capsule Wardrobe Fall and Winter List

Another benefit to capsule wardrobes is their ability to layer. If clothes still fit, winter can be as easy as adding warmer layers and warmer shoes, at least depending on the climate. For baby, her Fall/Winter wardrobe includes:

  • 6-10 onesies/bodysuits
  • 5 other tops/dresses (for my daughter, I chose dresses that were short enough to crawl in and that could be shirts as she got bigger).
  • 6 pairs of leggings or jeggings
  • 7 organic footie sleepers (not pictured)
  • 2 sweaters
  • 2 cardigans
  • 10 pairs comfy socks
  • 1 warm jacket and snow pants
  • Warm boots (neutral color)- Uggs and Bogs are our go-to boots because they can last through several kids
  • neutral closed toe shoes
  • 7-10 homemade bibs (these are absolutely necessary to keep clothes clean and reduce laundry)

This year, I was able to just add a jacket, some sweaters,  and warmer shoes to her wardrobe and she was good to go.

Fall and winter capsule wardrobe for babies and toddlers

The Items I Chose (& Why)

I kept or used secondhand & consignment items for as many baby items as I could. They outgrow them so fast! I did get a set of organic onesies and sleepers for her for the first few months. I also bought some basic staple items for her once she hit a year old.

Like my older kids’ wardrobes, I bought the supplemental items from three main places:

  1. Hanna Andersson (HA) – I order a few staples for all of our kids from HA because they carry quite a few organic items. Cotton is one of the most highly sprayed crops, so I choose organic as much as possible, especially for really little ones. Even for the older kids, I get organic underwear, PJs, and undershirts to reduce their exposure to conventional cotton by half. I also get all swimwear from HA because it lasts so much longer. Click here to check them out and see any current sales..
  2. Primary – Great for onesies, tops, and dresses. Make sure to use this affiliate link and the code “AFF25PCT” to get a 25% discount as a new customer if you check them out.
  3. ThredUP– An online consignment/secondhand store that is searchable. I use this for jeans and other name brand items. They typically have a lot of great baby items since these don’t typically wear out. This link will give you a $10 discount on your first order.

A Look at Her Wardrobe

Here’s a more in depth look at baby girl’s wardrobe:

Baby capsule wardrobe tops

She has a mixture of bodysuits and onesies from HA and Primary. HA has organic but Primary is less than half the price.

Pictured here are:

Top row L to R: Primary bodysuits in petal, grape, raspberry, heather gray, and pool.

Bottom row L to R: Primary baby dress in raspberry, gray dress from ThredUP, teal stripe dress from HA, flower dress from HA, green dress from HA. (And yes, I know the green dress breaks the color palette, but it is a complete outfit and is perfect with her strawberry blonde hair.)

Little one does have a couple other dresses not pictured here for special occasions, but these are her everyday staples.

baby capsule wardrobe bottoms

Top row L to R: Primary baby sweatpants in charcoal, HA jeggings, HA leggings in flower and gray, Primary baby shorts in aqua and charcoal.

Bottom row L to R: A bunch of warm socks for at night, HA swimsuit, HA rash guard, Primary short PJs in raspberry, Primary cardigan in heather gray.

Not pictured: Other sets of organic PJs and sleepers from Hanna Andersson.

Baby Capsule Wardrobe: Bottom Line

The baby capsule wardrobe was the toughest of all of my kids’ wardrobes to pare down. I only switched because the baby clothes I had were mostly unwearable after three other kids. This is the system that worked for us and your system will be different.

Start with what you have and pare down and only buy the items that you really need. The biggest advantage to this system (besides reducing laundry!) is that it makes it so much easier to stay organized!

How do you handle clothes for babies and toddlers? Any great advice or tips to share? Ever tried to create a capsule wardrobe for your kids? Let me know in the comments!

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