Spotting the clearance rack, my heart pounds, my palms sweat, and my feet move me swiftly to my target. I scan quickly for a tag which reveals my reward. I am ruthless and cunning, I am the Clothing Huntress!
Okay, back to reality. One of the many ways I’ve save money for my family is clearance and thrift shopping for clothing. If you have a child at home, you know how fast little ones grow. My kids are finally slowing down a bit, however I still get a thrill of stocking up on clothing after the season is over. I usually save 80% off the ticket price of clothes and my kids are excited to open their clothing bin and find a whole new wardrobe of colors and styles. The only downside of this technique is storage and size prediction. Ya gotta have a place to store these clothes bins and you have to be able to estimate what size your child will be the next year. I’m horrible about predicting shoe size (hey, I’m the Clothing Huntress, not a foot fortune teller) so I never buy shoes one year in advance. But everything else is fair game (read prey).
Today I went through all the newly acquired clothing, sorted it out, and put the bins away for the next season. I have a two bins for each child. One for summer and one for winter.
Here’s some major scores I found this weekend at the outlet mall in Lincoln City.
I don’t usually go to outlet malls thinking that I’m getting deals, however when items have been marked down a couple of times, I then start considering it.
And I also like heading to local thrift stores. I found this GAP skirt at Value Village for only $1.50.
I never pay full sticker price on clothes and I don’t think you should either. Here’s some ways I save:
1. Shop around on websites to see when things are getting marked down.
2. After the season is over, walk to the back of the store to find clearance racks.
3. Do a google search for coupons and promo codes for the store you want to purchase at. I often find 15% off entire purchase deals online.
4. Make a list of items that you need and already have so you don’t double up.
5. Swap clothing with friends who have children that are smaller or bigger than yours.
6. Make sure buttons button and zipper zip up (tug to make sure zippers stay intact), especially at thrift stores.
7. Go in with a plan but be open minded. There’s no way to predict what’s super affordable the day you stop by.
8. Know when your local store marks things down, if you don’t know, ask.
9. If you have different sex children try buying items that can be worn by either sex.
10. Repurpose. If your younger daughter doesn’t like the plain jeans that have been handed down to her, she can always add rhinestones or trim to make them her own.
11. Make hand-me-downs fun. Set up a store and let your kids try on hand-me-downs at home. Put on some music and have a fashion show or hand out pretend cash for their purchases.
12. Check local listings on craigslist and the newspaper for buying clothing second hand.
Most of all, enjoy the thrill of a deal! Bask in the glory of a good shopping expedition. And remember hunting and gathering is not a thing of the past, it’s just evolved a bit.