My daughter never had a problem wearing bibs—in fact, I always considered the ones with the food-catching pockets to be the breakthrough invention of the century. (A harried-parent hack that I heard from “a friend”: On mornings when you’re racing out the door, pour some Cheerios into the pocket and let your kid eat breakfast in the car.)
My nine-month-old son, however, hates bibs. Whenever we put one on him, he tugs at it and tries to wiggle his body out. We usually end up taking it off mid-meal because it’s such a distraction. His clothes get splattered with spaghetti sauce and banana mush, but what’s the alternative?
Shari, a fellow parent of a bib-averse child, shares a good one. Before meals, she simply puts a slightly large black T-shirt on her child:
I purchased some plain black shirts from Amazon. I bought them one size up from her current clothing size. Before a messy meal, I simply pull a black shirt on over her clothing. When she’s done eating the shirt gets removed and thrown in the laundry. Then it gets washed with her dark clothes or our towels. I’m sure there are food stains on them but a black shirt doesn’t show them!
The nice thing about T-shirts is that they transport better than stiff plastic bibs, too. After restaurant meals, you can just roll them up, messy side in. If your child has a large head like mine does, you can cut small slits on a shirt’s neckline so that it can slide off more easily, whether you pull it up or down.
When your kid gets older, you can also use black T-shirts as art smocks. Just cut the back open and add Velcro or buttons as a closure.
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