Like most moms, I do my shopping one season behind. With three kids, one a budding fashionista, one who doesn’t feel like he has worn something unless he wears a hole in both knees, and one whose feet and legs are growing at a crazy rate – I have to shop when the prices are lowest… even for myself!
So for me, it is spring and summer shopping at the end of summer, and for the really great deals – after labor day.
First thing I do is go through our closets and take out any spring and summer gear that:
- Does not fit
- We haven’t worn in two spring/summer seasons
- Is worn out
FOR ME: Next, I check to see what I didn’t do that last spring – did I do all pants? Am I missing fun skirts? Did I avoid shorts altogether? Do I have lots of dresses that I can update with a belt? From there, I can make a nice wish list.
FOR THE KIDS: I try to anticipate their size for the next year. It is pretty easy until they get to a certain age – and shoes are really difficult to predict. I do a lot of t-shirts in various colors, because they usually last them two years, and I can use them in the winter to go under sweaters as well as in the summer. As far as kids clothes go, styles change VERY little from year to year. I check to see IF they need anything (usually it is swimsuits and flip flops yearly, but every other year for everything else – my oldest is getting taller, but not any wider, so shorts tend to work for at least two years). If they do, I make my shopping list.
My favorite spots are Children’s Place, Gymboree, and Carters for baby girl. For my Mr. Social, it is a combination of hand me downs and Children’s Place. For my teen, it is a mashup of stores – Burlington Coat Factory usually has some good deals on and off season.
Did you notice that it is a wish list for me, and a shopping list for the kids? As you know, I am not a fashion blogger, I am a parenting (and sometimes blah blah) blogger, so my kids clothes, not mine, will come first. I am not growing, and as long as I have a cute outfit (or 10) to wear to events and date night with the hubby, I am good…. well, except when it comes to shoes – shoes are an issue.
So we have the lists. Once my wish list and shopping lists are complete (usually mental, but if you are particularly organized, I don’t see anything wrong with writing it down) ! gather up coupons, and by “gather up”, I mean search my inbox for them. I shop online for me, and in the store for the kids. They are old enough to have opinions, so I let them choose SOME of their stuff. I still retain veto power, and they know not to ask about anything that is not on sale.
At the end of the shopping trip, I usually don’t have a single item (other than maybe some jewelry) that we can wear right away. If instant gratification is what you are looking for, shopping off season is probably not for you. I put it away, and when summer comes, I may grab one or two trendy pieces to update my basics, but for the most part, our shopping is done! For the new season, I get to pull out new sandals, white purses and jeans, shorts, dresses and tops that I got for a steal! So yes, I do white, linen, and sandals after Labor Day. Wear it, no. Buy it, absolutely!
After going through my closet, I was ready to do some sandal shopping… check out what I scored!
Check out your favorite stores sale links and see what great deals you can find for next season – since most of us mix and match for at least three seasons (or more) – you have nothing to lose, but LOTS to save! Find more deals on my board on Pinterest.
Do you do off season shopping? Why or why not? Do you wear sandals, white, and linen after Labor day? What is your rule?