With Virginia's tax-free school weekend right around the corner, August 7th-9th to be exact (you can find the other states participating here). It's time to go back to school and get all of the supplies you will need for the coming school year. We've got pretty much all they need in regards to school supplies from the other tax-free weekends that we've done. It might be tempting to buy clothes for all-weather scenarios that might arise during the school year. If you did that, though, it would be a mistake, believe me we've tried that before, now we only get for the upcoming season (winter). You'll just end up spending more money. Try these tips to effectively buy back to school clothes for the new school year.
How to Shop for Back to School Clothes
1. Only get one or two special outfits for the first day of school. You just don't need a new outfit for each day of school.
2. Make a clothing buying calendar (you can find a low-cost one here.) Figure out what is absolutely necessary for clothing and figure out the best times to buy. Sweaters are best purchased after the season because they'll be cheaper that way. You can split up your purchases to use them as gifts for birthdays and holidays. This way it will help fill out your gift giving and you'll also save money by not buying everything all at once.
3. Utilize consignment shops for buying and even selling clothing that your children have outgrown.
4. Remember, the kids are going to keep growing. Buying for the whole year could leave you with clothes never worn because your child had a growth spurt you were not anticipating.
5. Swap clothes. If you have friends with kids a little older and a little younger than your own, then work out a clothing swap with them. You can do this at the change of each season even, to keep rotating the clothes out of the house.
6. Wait until after Labor Day to shop. Those back to school sales aren't as great as they might seem. It's great for school supplies, if you need to stock up on glue and crayons, but clothes not so much. So wait until after Labor Day to get the savings.
7. Buy clothes that can be worn during many seasons. A nice polo shirt can be worn over a long sleeve shirt in the colder months. A summer dress paired with some leggings will get extra wears.
8. Numerous mix-n-match outfits can take one outfit and turn it into ten different looks. This will ultimately save you money while helping your kids remain in style and fresh so they aren't perceived as wearing the same clothes every day.
9. Shop those clearance racks. Snatch up that out-of-season sweater in a size up from what your child is currently wearing to make sure you get extra wears out of it.
10. Don't forget about the thrift shops. You can get some nice high-end items very cheaply, to help fill in any wardrobe to make it through the entire year in style.
Back to school shopping is often a cause for anxiety and can really break the piggy bank if not done right. But if you plan things out, like only getting what they really need right away, shopping sales, and only shopping the seasons instead of buying all at once, then you'll save yourself a lot of headaches and money.