The following is a post from contributing writer Karen.
Children’s clothing can be expensive unless you know how to save money on them. Here are several ways to help you save money on stocking your children’s closets.
Ways to Save Money on Children’s Clothing
Form a Swap
Get together with your mom’s group or friends and start a hand-me-down swap. When my eldest son outgrows his clothing, I pass them down to my friend whose boys are younger. She in turn passes down her daughters clothing to my daughter. If you don’t have younger same sex children, this is a great way to save on clothing.
Look for children’s clothing at garage sales. At garage sales you can negotiate the prices and possibly get a discount for purchasing multiple items.
Shop local thrift stores for gently used items. Many times you can shop on a specific day and get extra discounts. If you are military, be sure to ask if they have a military discount day. Thrift stores are a great place to find special occasion clothing that may be worn only once. No one wants to spend a ton of money on an outfit like that.
Along the same lines of shopping thrift stores, you can also shop consignment stores. It’s also a great place to take gently used clothing and earn some money from the sales. Be sure to get the details on the percent you will earn, how much they mark it down after so many days, and when they decide to donate. If items are in the store for too long, many of them donate. If you’d prefer to have them back, ask ahead of time if this is an option.
Try to always think ahead and buy clothing on clearance for next season. There are lots of winter clothing items on clearance right now. Buy the sizes your kids will be wearing next winter and store them in the closet for when you need them. Nothing is worse than the temperature dropping in the Fall and you realize your kids have no winter gear. Just today I purchased gloves for my son on clearance that will last him next winter and probably the one after that.
Use coupons whenever you can at retail stores. I ran into Old Navy the other day and made a spontaneous purchase. They happened to have the item I had been looking for. Before I got in line I did a search for an Old Navy coupon on my smart phone and was able to save 15% off my purchase by showing the coupon on my phone to the cashier.
If you plan ahead, you can do this same thing before you go shopping and print store coupons from your home computer. Join store reward or email programs so you can be notified of sales or coupons that are available.