Shopping: it's a love/hate relationship. I’ve managed to sidestep a lot of the necessary and mundane shopping by deploying Amazon Prime for things for the kids like diapers and wipes. I know, I know... I'm supporting a gigantic corporation and all that shipping can't be good for our environment. I don't love the idea of priming-it, but driving 20 minutes to Central Ave in Scarsdale to Buy Buy Baby is about as appealing as, oh, I don't know: getting a cavity drilled in the dentist's chair. At least I can close my eyes at the dentist and rest, so maybe that's better, actually.
But there are aspects of shopping that I do enjoy: pining for a pair of boots that will last me for seasons to come, perusing on Pinterest, imagining a refreshed space in my home, or purchasing a toy that becomes a beloved part of our repertoire. When it comes to shopping for clothes and toys for our kids in particular, I've come to realize and embrace the idea that I'm a slow shopper. You might be thinking: what is a slow shopper exactly?
A Slow Shopper...
- Thinks about her purchase for a while before buying.
- Favors higher quality pieces over the cheaply made.
- Makes a purchase with the idea that the article of clothing or toy or piece of furniture will be with them in their space for some time.
- Forgoes sentimentalism. If something isn't working in their space or closet, it's in the donate pile without a second thought.
The Benefits of Slow Shopping
- Less purchases mean less impact on the environment.
- Less stuff means a tidier, neater home and a clearer head space.
- Will save you money in the long run because you’ll sidestep impulse buys and won’t need to replace items as frequently.
- Frees up time. Shopping for shopping’s sake isn’t a thing to do.
How I Slow Shop for My Kids
- Hand-me-downs or thrift store purchases make up the bulk of their wardrobes.
- Less is more. They don't have or need a ton of clothes or toys.
- We welcome hand-me downs for the kids but the same principles apply: if we don't love it and use it, we donate it.
- We buy a few quality pieces each year for the kids and often it’s the sort of things that will get used every day like a hat, jacket, or shoes.
- We buy gifts at our favorite local stores and boutiques, not Target.
- We now favor unisex pieces so both our kids can get use out of the same clothing.
My Favorite Boutiques for Slow Shopping for Kids (in the NYC area)
- Hudson St. Organic in Montclair, New Jersey for clothing that is beautiful, high-quality, and organic
- Shoofly in Tribeca, NYC for adorable kid's shoes
- Sweet William in Williamsburg, NYC for clothing for the Billyburg kiddo
- Swing in Cold Spring, NY for hip and quality children's clothing and accessories
- Chelsea Dry Goods in Hastings-on-Hudson, NY for baby clothes and toys
- A holiday gift guide for the kiddos
- Where I like to buy gifts (online): Sycamore Street Press, How we Montessori shop
- Where I like to buy gifts (Hudson Valley): The Shop at Stone Barns, Cold Spring General Store
- My shop of custom nursery decor + family heirlooms: Hudson + Daughter
Photo by Rebecca Pitts.