School Clothes Shopping Tips | 3 Types of People

2015 August 12

Author: Katie Zufelt

It’s that time again. Hot August days. Back to School Orientations. Long lines of school supplies and fashion wishlists.

Kids are dreading it but admit it, moms are thrilled for the free time! But it’s also kind of like a kid New Year right?! All those new writing tools, tablets, binders, books, scissors, crayons; sharpened and stacked for the first day of school.

Back to School clothes shopping stresses a lot of folks out, fretting over when, where and WHAT to buy. Others love the idea of packing all their littles into the family SUV and carting them off to the craziness that is Back to School? Whether you love it or hate it here are a few tips and tricks to help with all types of Back to School Clothes shopping styles and attitudes.

school supplies art vector

School Clothes Shopping Types | Which Type are You?

Who knew? It turns out there are only 3 types of school clothes shoppers.

  • The Stockpiler


Carissa's friends posing for back to school fashion.

Carissa’s friends posing for back to school fashion.

If you’re like most of the back to school population, you most likely have to shop for more than one kiddo . But short of starving them all for a month or two how to cut down on the cost to clothe them all? The “Stockpiler” has this one figured out. She waits and researches and then pounces at the very last second of the End of Season Sales. She gets the best deals on clothes that are not wearable for almost a whole year. She bravely purchases everything she needs for each child i a size or two larger than they currently wear. This is a serious skill. Mom has to be able to guess what size her kiddos will wear the next year. Plus she has to pray the current fashion won’t be out of style in a year.

I’m impressed with her courage! I have a 6 foot son with size 14 feet and he could grow 2 sizes in 6 months or 4 in a year (or more?)! If you have younger children– planning ahead, stockpiling and snatching up deals in advance is a great way to save on your BTS Clothes shopping. They’re too young to know or care if the style is right and most likely won’t outgrow a size or two.

Bonus…No need to take them shopping with you since everything will be too big for them to try on. You get a fun day out all to yourself!

  • The One & Doner

This shopper is the super busy parent. She has no time to spend the entire summer hitting 18 stores with 25 pages of lists to grab what she needs.

How does she do it? She sticks to a 24 hour rule. Everything tried on, purchased and bagged in one fell swoop. {TIP: If you’re this type of shopper be sure to schedule your one and done day on a tax free weekend for your state–saving 3-7%.}.

Enlist a friend, mother, MIL, Spouse, or anyone over the age of 15 willing to help wrangle kids, bags and chaos. Gather the kiddos, along with those 25 pages of lists and head to the nearest mall or outlet stores. This mom is prepared in advance with a budget amount she’s willing to spend in that one weekend having put away a little money each month so she’s not hit with a huge expense all at once. Bonus…this lucky mom is done for the time being, all she’ll need later are a few cooler weather items.

She sits down at the nearest TCBY with her mother/MIL/sister/friend and watches all the other frantic moms shopping to and fro knowing she doesn’t have to set foot in another clothing store for at least 8 weeks! (Or until her 14 year old’s feet grow 3 sizes at once.)

  • The Hunter/Gatherer

This mom loves to shop and has time to spend on weekends hunting the racks and gathering the best deals of the current season. She has older and slightly picky children. Let’s face it she has kiddos who wouldn’t be caught dead in last month’s clothing, let alone last year’s. Summer clothes in Summer and Fall and Winter clothes in in Fall and Winter.

You get the picture. She shops a little at a time. {Tip: Start early and look only for the best bargain deals} When School starts they have a few favorites picked along with a few other items to mix and match into their attire. . When cooler weather hits all she needs are a few items to warm up the other ensembles each child has. Christmas and Fall and winter Birthdays are the perfect time for some fun new winter outfits too. Bonus…you never get a huge amount of overstock clothing. There is time to go weed thru the old making room for the new Catch of the day BTS Clothes you’ve so proudly acquired.

10 Extra GoodNCrazy Tips to Save Money and Sanity when School Clothes Shopping

I’ve compiled a few of my favorite tips and several I stole from friends. Including a few from above:

  1. Start Early.
    Applies to all type of shoppers!
  2. Check for your state’s tax free weekend.
    If there isn’t one—maybe you should move? (Kidding, go shop in THAT state!)
  3. Make lists.
    Life is one big distraction, and the one kiddo who most needed shoes will get forgotten in the chaos. Trust me, make a list.
  4. Separate Wants from Needs.
    Leave the WANTS for deal shopping and Christmas wish lists. This time of year is about Back to School Shopping, just the basics ma’am.
  5. Shop Online.
    Bonus points for not leaving your house! Often the best deals are online anyway, stick to the sites with free shipping and make sure you know the sizes you need.
  6. Quality over Quantity.
    It comes down to math, if you have to replace the same pair of pants a couple times, (and with 7 year old boys you will, TRUST ME), go ahead and buy the jeans with extra knees!
  7. August = NOT the Best Month for School Shopping.
    Contrary to popular thinking, September is a better month to shop. Sales are bigger and stores will be pushing their BTS Clothes out the door.
  8. Yard Sales are your Friend.
    No shame in that game. Only offer to pay 25% of what you’d pay in a store for any item. Consignment shops are another great option at back to school time.
  9. Make a Budget (and Stick to It).
  10. Sort and Sell.
    Go through the kids old clothing and sell anything that doesn’t fit or is in good condition.

Katie is a mom to 4 kids ranging in age from 5-18. Elementary, high school and one starting college. She’s is an avid runner, Jamberry consultant, kid-wrangler and loves 4-wheeling with her family in all her ‘free’ time.

Katie is one of Carissa’s 6 GoodNCrazy sisters.
And we’re excited because she’s going to start writing a column here on GoodNCrazy!

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