How To Let Kids Pick Their Outfit But Still Match

Let’s face it, I’m an organized, like-things-done-the-right-way mom. So when I heard multiple times that letting your kids pick their outfit for the day is a good thing to do I felt torn. I want to be a good mom and following this good parenting practice, but the type-A side of me really wants my kid’s clothes to match and make sense. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s adorable seeing a little kid in a princess costume and mis-matched socks running around the grocery store. And, who knows, maybe that will be my kid some day. But for right now my control-freak personality needs some practicality. There’s a happy ending… I figured out a method to let my kid pick his own outfit while still matching!

Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make small choices to build their confidence and independence. Little girl and little boy closet / drawer clothes hack.

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Why you should let your kid pick their outfit

Kids (especially young kids like my 15-month-old) can’t control very much of their world. As their parent, you decide a lot of their day. (When to go somewhere, what’s for dinner, when it’s time for bed or a nap, etc.) You also baby proof and don’t let them touch certain things. (They can’t touch the computer, they can’t open this cupboard, they can’t grab the dog, etc.) Essentially, a lot of their world and the choices that come with it are decided for them.

However, letting your child make choices helps foster independence and confidence. Because of this, I try to let my little boy make decisions that don’t really matter but still let him feel in control. For example, at snack time, I will let him choose between two different options. When he wants to read a book, I tell him to go pick one out. At the grocery store, I let him choose between picking out a banana or an orange. And when it’s time to get dressed, I let him pick what he wants to wear.

Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

How to let your kid choose their outfit but still match

So how can you let your kids pick their outfit but have their clothes still match and make sense? The answer: fold an outfit together. I will grab two different outfits from his clothes drawer, hold the options out to him, and let him pick which one he wants to wear. He’s only 15 months old and he can’t talk yet, but he LOVES making the decision. This method may seem like a no-brainer, but it has been a simple yet perfect solution for us.

How to fold an outfit together

Here are some step-by-step instructions for how I fold my little boy’s clothes together into outfits.

Step 1) Grab a matching shirt and pants combo

How to fold kid clothes. Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

Step 2) Lay the shirt flat

How to fold kid clothes. Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

Step 3) Fold in the shirt’s sleeves

How to fold kid clothes. Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

Step 4) After folding the pants in half, lay them across the shirt’s body so they stick out about halfway

How to fold kid clothes. Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

Step 5) Fold the pants in half again so they are centered on the shirt

How to fold kid clothes. Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

Step 6) Fold the shirt in half over the pants

How to fold kid clothes. Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

Step 7) Place the outfit in the drawer with the rest of the matching outfit options and have your kids pick their outfit

How to fold kid clothes. Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make choices.

Don’t have a drawer?

If you don’t have a drawer, consider getting something like these colorful hanging shelves. The cute labeled days of the week on that clothes organizer means your kid can pick their outfits out in advance for the whole week and would make morning rushes easier.

What do you think?

Would this be a good method for you to help your kids pick their outfit? What works for you? Please leave questions and comments in the comment section below.

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Tip for how to let kids pick their outfit but still match. Parenting advice for letting child dress + choose clothes for the day. Let kid make small choices to build their confidence and independence. Little girl and little boy closet / drawer clothes hack.

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2 thoughts on “How To Let Kids Pick Their Outfit But Still Match

  1. This is a good idea! Sometimes it can be stressful letting my daughter pick her outfits because she wants to wear skirts and shirts that DO NOT match haha! I’ve also thought about buying all her clothes in the same color scheme so they match no matter what she picks! That sounds hard though! I like your idea, better!

    1. Thanks Chelsea 🙂 I totally agree about it being stressful. And I think just giving Johnny a choice is what he cares about so it’s not important that the shirt and pants are separate. Glad this tip was helpful for you! 🙂

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