In the UK we love getting over excited about a season change – even when the season is not actually changing. This means that you’ve barely bid your knackered Christmas tree goodbye before you are required to start resisting Mini Eggs in the supermarket or admiring sundresses in shop windows.

We can confirm that it is still very much winter – and decent knitwear is essential, especially for children who act like they can’t feel the cold and want to take on the great outdoors in little more than a T-shirt or vests.

When it comes to kids, any knitted jumper worth its salt should be soft to the touch – there is nothing more frustrating than buying a garment of beauty only to find it’s “too itchy” to be bearable for young, sensitive skin. It should of course be visually appealing and fairly robust in terms of its chunkiness.

We also tend to favour machine washable clobber, especially for younger children who are prone to using their clothes as napkins and rolling around in the mud.

Here’s our top picks of knitted jumpers for little ones.

You can trust our independent reviews. We may earn commission from some of the retailers, but we never allow this to influence selections, which are formed from real-world testing and expert advice. This revenue helps to fund journalism across The Independent.

Joules pink spotty jumper: £22.95, Joules

This is just gorgeous. Not only to look at – grey and pink is a truly winning colour combination – but in feel and texture. The intarsia spots give this jumper an expensive-looking edge. Our four-year-old tester is besotted – and as a result it has had to withstand multiple turns in the washing machine, emerging good as new – no snagging, sagging or bobbling. We wish they did this for grown-ups.

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Next multi stripe textured jumper: From £10, Next

We love the texture of this pretty jumper – especially as it remains soft and touchable despite the chunky knit finish. The buttons down the back are a cute touch, too. Rainbow bright, it doesn’t feel too wintery – perfect for anyone dreaming of spring.

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Fatface waffle knit crew next jumper: £10, Fatface

So soft! So stretchy! This is going to be so comfy! These are likely to be your first thoughts, although adults will have a hard job fitting into this slimline jumper. A gorgeous, malleable feel, the waffle knit feels warm and luxurious but without the usual heft associated with knitwear. If the petrol shade doesn’t jump out at you there are a couple of other hues to choose from. Perfect for understated tweens.

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Rachel Riley red moss stitch cardigan: £65, Rachel Riley

Harking back to a simpler time where knitted clothes and simple designs were the order of the day, this traditional little cardigan is absolutely charming. The wrist and waist areas are ribbed to keep the cold out and the pockets are crying out to be filled with playroom treasures. This is however, only available for children aged four and younger – yet more evidence in the case against growing up!

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Stella McCartney kids cotton knitted sweater: £75, Children's Salon

Stella McCartney Kids never fails to produce playful, inventive and unusual pieces for little ones. The designs stand out and delight and this giraffe motif sweater – complete with a fringing “mane” – is no different. At £75 this is hardly an impulse buy but as far as special sartorial treats go, this one’s worth the money.

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Mori candy striped jumper: £17.75, Mori

Made with cotton – you can’t get much softer than this striped jumper for babies and very young children. The buttons between shoulder and neck on one side will make dressing and undressing much less stressful. A simple, classic design. 

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Matalan pink pom pom jumper: From £10, Matalan

Shoulder frills? Pom poms? Pastel pink shot through with silver? This knit has all the ingredients to be a firm favourite for children who love princesses, unicorns, sugar, spice and all things nice. Although synthetic, the fabric is soft and we’ve put it through the wash twice already with no sign of bobbling or shrinkage.

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Tu grey bright stripe jumper: From £11, Tu

 This manages to be cool and jolly at the same time, which is no mean feat. There’s a comforting weightiness to this jumper: it’s warm but thanks to being made from 100 percent cotton, will not allow little ones to overheat. Plus, it’s amazing value for money.

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The verdict: Children’s knitted jumpers 

We think the Joules jumper has the edge with its bold design, brilliant colours and soft touch. It feels and looks like a luxury product but the price point is reasonable.

IndyBest product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to bias our coverage. The reviews are compiled through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.