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Baby Clothes: A Tale of Parental Vanity & Bodily Functions


Sometimes it amazes me how many clothes my infant son has. Our home, once pristine, is overrun with baby clothes. He’s monopolized a decent portion of our closet and doesn’t seem to be relinquishing it anytime soon. I tolerate it because I don’t need the space nor do I really care. What baffles me, though, is how many articles of clothing this 6 -week old already owns.

Babies outgrow their clothes in a matter of weeks. It is extremely counterproductive to even dress them in the first place. If you had anything else that grew that rapidly, you would not bother keeping it constrained in a covering that so quickly was rendered useless.

Think about it.

You plant a flower in a larger pot and let it grow. You place the yeasted ball of dough in a large vessel, knowing it will expand over time. If you’re lucky enough to have operated a lawnmower with a rear bag, then you know why the bag is virtually the size of the mower…because it will fill up quickly!

But my assertion about placing small things in large containers in order to support their growth does not apply to babies. Babies need baby clothes…they need extensive, form-fitting wardrobes. Why? Two reasons.

Firstly, because babies urinate uncontrollably and with the reckless abandon of R. Kelly at a Junior Prom after party. Indeed, babies will seemingly intentionally have a one-man pee party at any moment. Nothing within a 5’ radius is safe. Diapers are merely preventative maintenance. A baby will capitalize on every opportunity to pee on or into something else; clothing, the adjacent wall, the arms of the person holding them…anything! Snug clothing can occasionally keep these episodes under control when the strength on the stream permeates the defensive fortification or if you’re letting his nether regions get some much needed ventilation. [adToAppearHere]

An extensive wardrobe will prove paramount in driving down your electrical bill from all the laundry you will be doing. The myth in all this is that baby clothes are expensive and you can’t afford to buy an entire chiffonier of onesies. And don’t get me wrong, they absolutely are pricey and a horrible value considering the sheer volume of material it takes to make miniature clothing! However, baby clothes can be acquired for virtually nothing from all the sentimental charlatans (also known as family, friends, and co-workers) who will be undoubtedly overeager to purchase you some needless, colorful, plastic crap for the new baby. See, the frivolous, materialistic nature of weddings has permeated the infant world and it is now possible to set up baby gift registries. You want clothes. Trust me here.

But protection from the inevitable pee sprinkler is not the only reason your new baby needs a wardrobe. Parental vanity will also come into play, as if a newborn actually gives a shit what it looks like or that its attire is consistent with current trends. Newborn shoes will fit for roughly two weeks. Onesies, maybe three or four weeks. Seriously. This post is beginning to sound as if it should be one of my How to Save Money diatribes. But in all honesty, the materialistic desires of mom, dad, and even granny will ultimately be expressed through a closet full of newborn baby clothes that the kid will literally wear a handful of times and not actually have a clue what he looks like.

What I’m getting at here, is that two factors contribute to the need for an extensive infant wardrobe. One is practical, the other is superficial. But as a man, it barely matters because both needs are very real and will be exacted upon you and your wallet nonetheless. While I’m always reticent to embrace the cosmetic and depthless aspects of this superfluous culture we live in, I fully advocate the baby gift registry idea and pigeonholing your own group of charlatans into a selection of baby clothing. [adToAppearHere]


  1. Why buy shoes for someone who can’t walk?

  2. Pingback: How to Save Money, pt. 4: The Bondage of Baby Clothing | Dad for Beginners

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