AS a mum to four girls, Jennifer Barton was shelling out hand over fist keeping them kitted out . . . until she discovered children’s clothing rental firms.
Since learning of companies like thelittleloop and Belles And Babes in December last year Jennifer reckons she is on course to save thousands.
She also does three hours’ less laundry a week because her brood are more careful with their loaned garments.
Jennifer, who with finance worker husband Will, 36, has daughters Diana, ten, Liv, eight, Stella, five, and Ada, three, says: “There are now kids’ clothing rental companies that cater to a variety of needs.
“Bundlee, The Little Rental Company and Belles and Babes kit out newborns and tots up to age two. My Wardrobe HQ is the place to go to get designer clothes for up to age 12 — from Marie-Chantal, and skiwear from Molo.
“Graceful Changes and thelittleloop have lovely clothes up to age six.
‘It almost feels like Christmas’
“These companies suit parents looking to be sustainable, but give kids the opportunity to wear hundreds of pounds’ worth of clothes for less money.
“I had started charity shopping for the kids in an effort to get discounted items and be eco-conscious, but I heard about these rental companies in lockdown and had to try them.”
Jennifer’s favourite is thelittleloop, where there are options to pay a monthly fee of £17.50, a three-monthly £50 or six-monthly £90. She says: “I have gone for the monthly £17.50. You get around ten new pieces of clothing in each delivery, more or less, depending on the items you choose.
“When our monthly parcel arrives at our door there’s a flurry of excitement. It almost feels like Christmas. My daughters rush downstairs to unpack.
“They know what’s in there, since they went on a spree on the website. There might be a striped skater dress from Kite, a Frugi sunflower frock that feels like summer, or a smart, grey pinafore skirt from Jackalo.
“After a month, we pack it all up, and drop off the re- usable envelope bag at our local newsagent — which is a Hermes pick-up site, then choose our clothes for the next month.
“The clothes are gorgeous, built to last and ethically made from organic cotton and other good-quality materials.
“Over a six-month period, the clothing is worth anywhere from £600 to £1,000. Those Kite skater dresses that my two youngest love wearing normally ret-ail for about £30 each.”
Writer Jennifer, of Clapham, South London, adds: “Not having the clutter of old clothes is also transforming my house.
No longer are drawers full to bursting, or wardrobes overflowing, with items I’ve bought the kids that they might never wear
‘The best of both worlds’
“If kids’ clothing rentals had existed when my kids were babies, I would have saved a fortune. I also save about three hours a week that I used to spend washing clothes and putting them away.
“The kids try to be more careful with their rented clothes. I even noticed Stella taking off her rented cardi before dinner so that it didn’t end up covered in pasta sauce. I’ve been doing the wash once every few days instead of up to twice a day.
“It’s advised you wash but not tumble-dry the rental items, and they are sanitised between customers.
“If you’re worried your kids will trash the clothes, don’t be — there’s an understanding the garments will experience wear and tear.
“I’ve done the maths, and if I keep renting instead of buying clothes, I’m on track to save as much as £2,000 in the next year. This is on the basis of purchasing a couple of new clothing items a month for each of my children. Shipping is included in the rental fees, too.”
Thrifty Jennifer loves her new fashion find and will never go back to buying.
Meghan & Prince Harry made ‘dangerous’ comment about Queen that nobody noticed
Woman horrified after her ‘cute’ bikini snap goes viral for showing ‘penis’
Bride-to-be is flooded with sleazy messages after sharing wedding dress photo
March 22: State calmly what you need and don’t make others guess
Struggling dad desperate to see kids is left crying as he’s gifted £24k lifeline
LAWN AND ORDER
Mum creates stunning ‘secret garden’ with a flower arch using B&M bargains
She says: “While I’ve always embraced secondhand, and hand-me-downs, I have also loved to shop for kids’ clothes in the past.
“But renting is now the best of both worlds. I get such a thrill because it’s guilt-free, but also get to ‘shop’ as we choose the clothes.
“I wish I’d started renting sooner. I would have saved money, time and stress. But it’s never too late.”
GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL email@example.com