(Where to Buy) Great, Affordable Clothes for Tall, Slim Boys





When A. was an infant, he had the biggest thighs you can imagine on a baby. You can get a peek at them here:


A's 1st Bocce


So big were his legs that we couldn’t zip regular blanket sleepers over them. We tried sleepers from Walmart, sleepers from Kohls. Sleepers from Target, sleepers from Sears. We had a giant stack of fleecey jammies that did us not one bit of good since there’s no way A. would fit in them without serious risk of getting caught in the zipper.


The only exception? A red fleece sleeper that my aunt and uncle had purchased him from LL Bean. The legs of that sleeper were roomy enough to accomodate his chunk-a-lunk thighs without issue. I used to wash it over and over and over again because it was such a relief to have a garment that FIT.


Now, the average blanket sleeper comes in around $10 or less, typically. The LL Bean sleepers? Were $26. And this was nine years ago.


Nonetheless, A. got two more of them because, when all was said and done, we spent less on those than we had on the giant pile of useless jammies that wouldn’t zip over his legs.


Every child is built differently and some are more challenging to fit than others. When you have a child who doesn’t fit well into “standard sizing,” it can be a bit of a treasure hunt to find the garments that actually work well. And, once you find a brand and style that works? Well, in my experience, it’s sometimes best to just become loyal to that brand and roll with it.


These days, A. has an entirely different build: he is tall and very slim through the waist. He is not, however, one of these overall skinny kids. While he doesn’t have a big rear end or legs, they’re also not non-existent or stick-like. His shoulders are on the broad side, nine-year-old-boy-wise, and he’s starting to get some little ropy muscles on his chest and arms.


If you, too, have a very tall boy with a very slim waist, I’m here to help. Having been through dozens of brands, styles, and stores, we’ve culled through a lot to arrive at the ones that seem to truly work for this build, while not breaking the bank. So, without further ado:



Great, Affordable Clothes For Tall, Slim Boys





Boys with this build can usually wear standard size tops. For sweaters and oxford shirts, we look for a description that says something like “slimmer cut through the body” or “this garment fits more closely.” That’s a good thing for a long, slim kid, but true “slim” sizes often aren’t necessary if the child doesn’t have particularly narrow shoulders.





We’ve been through a lot of jeans. A LOT OF JEANS. The best brand and cut we’ve found, by far, is Wrangler (available at Walmart, Target, and many other stores.) ┬áBoth the straight leg and cowboy cuts (in slim sizes) are fantastic for the tall slim set, and, if the child has fuller thighs or rear, there are more relaxed styles that retain the nice small waist.





The very best khaki pants we’ve found come from Old Navy, in the uniform section. No, our son does not have to wear a uniform to school. Nonetheless, I wait eagerly for the “uniform sale” every July/August and then stock up these pants in a slim. They are sturdy, affordable, and adjustable, even in the higher sizes (like 12 and 14.) The size 12 slim, for example, is the length of a standard 12, with a size 8 waist. This is super helpful as a starting point for a tall, slim-waisted boy so he doesn’t wind up looking like he’s wearing a cinched paper bag.



Dress Pants


Here’s the deal– dress pants are WAY hard to find for this build. Just trust me. I spent hours upon hours looking for them before A’s first communion. In the end, I bought black uniform pants from Old Navy and my mom pressed a crease into them. They looked great.





We’ve had success with both Old Navy and The Children’s Place for boys’ slim shorts. Old Navy runs a tad larger than Children’s Place and is a bit longer in the rise, just so you know. Both typically have functional draw strings on the boys’ athletic shorts (unlike what is typical now for girls– don’t get me started), but we have been fooled by The Children’s Place a time or two, so be sure to read the reviews! Do not think that buying a very long style short in one size smaller will solve the problem– the waist will likely still be too big and the rise too short. (Ask me how I know.)



All of the stores mentioned above have very reasonable prices and excellent sales– Old Navy and The Children’s Place, in particular, run phenomenal sales quite frequently.


So there you go. There is all I’ve learned after years of attempting to find just the right fit for my tall, slim-waisted son. What other recommendations for or questions about this body type do you have?

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18 comments to (Where to Buy) Great, Affordable Clothes for Tall, Slim Boys

  • Brooke

    My skinny little guy was able to wear cargo pants for the first time ever this year when I discovered that the Children’s Place sells them in slims (online only). They have an elastic waist with adjusters inside, and fit really nicely through the hip and thigh, not huge and baggy!

  • I think it’s not long before I am going to have to find slim-sized clothes for my girl! She needs a 6 in length but about a 4 in the waist. Gotta love it. :)

    • Let’s not even talk about slim (okay, SKINNY) girls– ha! Girls’ clothes are easier in that they tend to run SO much narrower to start. However, they’re super challenging in that the drawstrings are almost always faux/decorative. Such a pain!! Also, girls’ necklines tend to be wider, so, for the narrow-shouldered, they can be challenging. I feel another post coming on! ;)

      • Yeah, Libbie has the same problems I do – the straps are always too long, necks too wide and end up falling off one shoulder. Blegh. (I am a small person’s frame with too much weight … I blame PCOS. And, you know, me. But talk about difficult to dress.)

  • earleyml

    I have a very skinny girl too. We have found a few pairs of slim jeans at consignment sales but even those fit baggy on her. We found these things on Amazon call Dapper Snappers, it’s a partical belt that goes on the back of the pants so that they don’t have to worry with undoing it to go to the bathroom. Shirts (tank-tops) do have a wide neck on her and sometimes seems inappropriate, I make her wear a smaller sized tank top underneath. Then there’s my other girl who is big boned. I appreciated your post the other day about how they are so different and if this will be an issue in the future.

    • Girls’ tops can be such a pain with the wide necks and loose straps! The only jeans that fit my skinny girl are actually from Justice– and they are literally the ONLY thing she wears from that store. They can be expensive, though. We were lucky to get some, with tags, as hand-me-downs. Other than that, she wears jeggings and my mom has to take the waistband in several inches for her. I’d never heard of the “dapper snapper”– sounds like a neat invention!

  • I saw the info on clothes for slim tall boys but what about pajamas – where do you go for those?

    • Hey, Dorothy– we don’t have as many issues with pajamas, to be honest. So many are designed to be close-fitting, so that helps. Also, our son doesn’t really care if PJ pants are kind of short on him, unlike pants he’ll wear out of the house. Sorry I don’t have any specific recs for you!

  • Diane

    Just wait until your boys hit a growth spurt and are into Men’s sizes. My son is now 5’10″ with a tiny waist! Adults sizes typically don’t have adjustable waist, and you can’t find much in waist 27″. Even elastic waistband shorts are huge. Ugh!

  • Terry O

    My slim pre-teen boy just keeps getting taller and not one bit wider despite the way he eats. He needs about a size 10 waist but length is 14-16 maybe bigger when it’s time to buy school clothes. He also won’t wear anything baggy. I also have a problem with his shirt length shrinking up. Any ideas?

    • I feel your pain, Terry!! My 10yo has a 22″ waist and a 28″ inseam. That’s HARD. The best place I’ve found for pants for boys with this fit is Lands End, because they’ll do custom inseams. Now, Lands End isn’t cheap. But if you wait for one of their $30 off $100/ $60 off $150, it’s not bad– and the clothes last beautifully. Hope that helps!

  • Dan

    As those boys get older, I promise the size problems don’t go away. I hit 6 feet tall in eighth grade and never had t-shirts that really fit well. I changed all that by founding TallSlim Tees, t-shirts designed specifically for tall, slim men. Our size small fits guys who are 6’0″ and 130 lbs. to about 6’4″ and 150 lbs. So when your tall, slim boy gets to high school, please check us out!

  • Do you have any suggestions for tall/slim sized jogger pants in boys size 10/12? My son used to fit into the large Old Navy joggers, but has since outgrown the length of those.

    • Honestly, for sweats and jogging pants, I typically just look for ones with functioning drawstrings. Beyond that, there was a stretch of time when both Old Navy and Lands End sold “slim fit” sweats and those were GREAT. I don’t know if they still carry them or not, though…

  • tmills

    I have an extremely skinny son. He’s 5/3 and weights 84 pounds. 14 size are too short for him. 16 swallow him in the waist, but the length is okay. Please help! He is 15 so he wants name brand jeans, not walmart wranglers. Anyone have any ideas? We usually go to TJ Maxx, but I was wondering if there was something else out there.

    • This may not help in terms of “name brand”, but I’ve found that Lands End pants fit my son the best– they will do custom inseams, so you can order whatever waist size you need (even if that’s a boys’ 10 slim or whatever) and then get an inseam that’s long enough. That’s where I order my son’s khakis and black pants for orchestra. :)

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