Hierarchy of Montessori Materials and Toys
Realistic Model Animals and People: A wooden alternative to Schleich, a realistic alternative to Ostheimer.

Montessori Self Dressing Area - How Many Clothes Should I Have Out?

Montessori toddler dressing area at How we Montessori

Our toddler wardrobe isn't a minimalist wardrobe, it is an age-appropriate, developmentally appropriate wardrobe. Perhaps your child can manage with more clothes, perhaps less.

"Clothing that is easy to remove and to put on oneself enables the child to practice these skills. These are things to consider when picking out any clothing, from shoes to pajamas, to coats, for young children.

A child's efforts at picking out her own clothes and dressing herself are satisfied if the parents hang up, within the child's reach, just two outfits, letting the child decide between them when she dresses in the morning. This is enough of a decision in the beginning. Eventually she will be able to select everything from drawers, hangers, and shelves." - Susan Stephenson at Michael Olaf: Age 1-3 Family Life

Montessori toddler dressing area at How we Montessori

In our toddler dressing area we currently have;

In the wardrobe (in Autumn) we have;

  • 2 short sleeve t-shirts
  • 2 long sleeve t-shirts
  • 1 woolen jumper
  • 1 pair of shorts
  • 2 pairs long pants
  • 1 pair of socks
  • 3 pairs of underpants
  • 2 pairs of shoes

Other shoes, boots and, coats are in our entryway. Specialist clothes like rain gear are also put near our entryway.  All of Otto's other clothes are folded in drawers in my bedroom. Sometimes we have more clothes out and sometimes we have less but around three weather-appropriate options are what I generally aim for.

Where possible our children's clothes are made from natural and organic fibers. Our toddler's clothing is chosen so that it promotes free and easy movement. Often the clothing, especially tops need to be on the larger side (loose) so that our toddler can get them on and off himself. Most of the pants have a soft elastic waist, that is easy to pull up and push down. At this age, we only present shoes that the toddler can put on and take off themselves. 

Otto natural coat hangers

You may also like a previous article I wrote when Otis was two years old (around 31 months) Getting Dressed at Two. He has a lot more clothes out than Otto pictured here at 25 months. 

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