Buying clothes for your growing child or children doesn’t have to be an expensive proposition. There are some easy ways to save vast amounts of money, while still dressing your kids nicely. You don’t have to wait for back-to-school sales to pick up bargains. All it takes is a commitment to be willing to search through several stores to find the good deals that exist. While my personal choice is shopping off clearance racks, and buying for my kids a year in advance, it's not the only way to rack up huge savings.
Department stores are always three months ahead of any season clothing-wise. This means, when it’s 90 degrees out in the middle of August, long-sleeved shirts and pants are already hanging on clothes racks. The current season’s clothes are moved to a clearance rack to make room for the next season’s clothing. By buying off the clearance rack, you could potentially save lots of money. Some people buy a year in advance, which means they have to estimate what size their child will be the following year. This is simpler to do than it sounds.
Most children grow an average of two to three inches a year after the age of two, so anticipating a huge growth spurt at any given time doesn’t usually happen until the child reaches adolescence. Going one size up is usually sufficient, but depending on the clothing, it’s wise to try everything on the child to make sure it’s large enough to fit the following year. Remember to keep receipts, just in case anything needs to be returned.
The best time to get amazing savings on summer clothes is between the end of July and the end of August. Clothes usually start out on the 60% to 70% off rake, but eventually some items can sell for up to 90% off the original price. Looking through racks in mid January through mid February is usually the best time to pick up winter clothes bargains. Sometimes, going to several different department stores makes it possible to buy a complete wardrobe for your child for only several hundred dollars or less.
If you’re someone who loves certain brand names, such as Children’s Place, then you know they hold their annual Monster sale twice a year. Usually the middle of January and the middle of June are the key times to save 50%, plus an additional 15% off their clearance clothes. Lots of clothing is also priced $5.99 or less, so keeping an eye out for this sale might be worth it for you. It’s also a wise idea to inquire about clearance sales from whichever children’s clothing stores you frequent.
Discount and Consignment Stores
Stores like TJ Maxx, Marshalls, and Ross offer designer and name brand clothing for up to 60% off department stores every day of the year. There’s no guarantee the size you need will be available, so this type of store should be checked out on a weekly basis for best results.
If you’ve never been to a consignment store, then you don’t know what you’re missing. The clothing that is sold through this type of store has to be in excellent condition from the seller or it won’t be accepted. Lots of times, name brand clothing will sell for less than half of what it was originally bought for. You might have to dig through some racks to find the size you’re looking for, but you could possibly find some items in wonderful condition at a great price.
Thrift Stores or Yard Sales
This is a hit or miss as far as kids clothing is concerned. If you go to Goodwill, in a nice neighborhood, you’ll be surprised at some of the quality clothing being sold. On occasion, people will donate clothing in excellent condition. If you’re someone who has the time to visit one and to search through their merchandise, the possibility of finding something nice can be quite high.
Yard sales are another way to be able to outfit your child for less, provided you can find someone who is selling the sizes you need. Yard sales are typically held on Saturday mornings, so several different yard sales might be going on at the same time in your area. If a person is inclined, he or she can visit several different sales in a matter of hours.
It doesn’t have to put you in the poor house to dress your child or children nicely. With some careful planning and several visits to various stores at the right times, you could possibly save yourself a significant amount of money.