Happy New Year!
New year, new beginnings and a chance to get back on track with everything after the mayhem of December and the run up to Christmas. I am glad to be getting back into a routine and the normality of life - with 4 kids, a puppy and a business to organise, nothing goes right if it's not planned, and when one of the kids has Aspergers as well, it's even more important for the routine to be as easy and manageable as possible.
One way I try to do this is to keep clothing management really simple. We use what I call the 4 drawer technique. Each child has literally a large 4 drawer unit for all their clothing. No wardrobes. No shelves. This is really helpful for younger children or those with additional needs as getting their own clothes out on a morning becomes so much simpler. No rooting through piles of laundry or struggling to find socks on a morning before school. Everything is in 1 easily accessible place. You can even label the drawers with pictures or words to help until they get the hang of where the various items are, or do a social story of getting dressed (very helpful for some children with autism as they learn what they need to do first and then need to do next).
We have a whole drawer dedicated just to school uniform. We have 5 sets (there's no chance boy-child will ever stay clean all day at school so 5 sets means there is always 1 set still clean if for any reason the laundry doesn't get done until the weekend) and I fold each set of 1 trousers, 1 shirt and 1 jumper together for each school day so my son can just pull out a whole set at once. Easy!
For weekends and holidays, he has a little bit more time but its still pretty easy for him as he knows the routine now of 1 item from the trousers drawer and 1 from the tops drawer when it's not a school day.
It also becomes a much easier task for the child to put their own clean clothes away! BONUS - 1 less job for mum!! And the child has a sense of achievement from becoming a little more independent.
After each large school break - Christmas, Easter and Summer - I go through all the drawers and get rid of anything too small, trashed or tired looking and odd socks etc and replace with new if needed. I find if there are too many clothing options, it is more stressful for everyone, so I simplify as much as possible to keep choices easy. If you don't NEED to buy anything else then don't, work with what is there instead!
If you DO need to replace underwear, school uniform or anything else (!) have a quick look on my shop super-cool-gifts website for really low cost options, such as school trousers for all ages for just £4. We try and keep the prices at super-cool-gifts as low as possible to help every family out a little bit more!