Before you hit a single store to shop for children’s clothing, take the following four steps. You can trim the amount you spend on your kid’s clothes by fifty percent or more!
Step 1: Inventory and Evaluate
Set aside some dedicated time to inventory your child’s clothing. Weed out anything that is too small or not liked from the closet and drawers. You may be able to save these items for a younger sibling or friend, sell them for cash or donate them to charity. Toss anything that is stained, torn or stretched beyond hope.
Chances are that there are some good pieces already in your child’s wardrobe that for one reason or another aren’t getting used. Maybe they are hiding on the floor of the closet or in the back of the drawer.
Once you see what you have available, you should be able to create a list of just what is needed. This prevents overbuying later.
Step 2: Talk to Friends
Chances are that someone else is going through their child’s clothing as well. Find out if they have any clothing items that you can use. Better yet, gather those items you weeded from your own child’s closets, gather a group of friends and hold a clothing exchange in your home or church. Everyone gets new clothing for free and cleaner drawers and closets. Anything you find during an exchange can be crossed off your to buy list.
You can save quite a bit this way, and it is not uncommon to be able to give your child a complete new wardrobe for free.
Step 3: Find the Outgrown and Consignment Sales
The sale of previously owned children’s clothing has gotten very sophisticated lately. Outgrown and consignment sales take only the best name brand clothing from anyone who consigns, so you can pick up great, quality items for about 70 percent off. Look for larger well-known sales for the best selection and be sure to get there early. Competition can be fierce. Shop these sales first, as you check items off of your child’s wardrobe list.
Some of the best outgrown sales are kept under wraps and spread by word of mouth only, so get to know other parents and put the word out that you are looking to shop for pre-owned children’s clothing.
Step 4: Gather the Retail Coupons and Discounts
You are down to the last remaining items on your list. Search online and sign up for discounts with your favorite children’s clothing shops. Like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter and sign up on their email lists. This way, you will have access to coupons and notifications of great sales, thus slashing your kids clothing budget. When you see a good deal, jump on it. Shop off-season for the best buys.
Now is also the time to hunt for any gift card you have around the house. Gift cards are free money and can be used to reduce the actual cash that you spend on your child’s new wardrobe.