Thursday, August 5, 2010

thrifty thursday - end of season shopping

I know, I'm a bit late in posting today's thrifty thursday. I was out thrifting most of the morning and picked up lots of great treasures. But I'm not sharing those goodies today...I have a non-crafty thrifty thursday for you today :)
I'm a clearance rack kind of gal. I'll admit it. I'm not embarrassed. Don't get me wrong, designer stuff is pretty. I have 2 coach purses sitting in my closet. Notice I said 'sitting in my closet'. This is actually the bag I'm carrying around right now:

The thing is, I don't like spending regular price. It kind of makes me a bit ill. I get a weird kind of high when I snag something up for a great deal, even if it needs some 'work', like my daughter's doll bed, wire baskets, or furniture.

So, a lot of times you will find me paroosing through the clearance racks at Target and other dept stores. Now, if you're a Target shopper you might know that they usually have multiple clearance racks, usually 30% off, 50% and 70%. I usually skip the 30% off rack all together cause the deals aren't good enough for me.

I will tell you that most of the things I buy on the clearance racks is for the next year. Because, after all, that's what is on clearance - the end of the season stuff. So you have to be willing to shop ahead and plan ahead for the following year. Now, this is easier where I live because we wear shorts 9 months of the year, t-shirts 12 months of the year, and pants are for only when it's really cold in Jan-Mar months and chilly nightimes in the winter. However, I did this when I lived in other states, too, so it's possible. You just have to use your best guess as to what size you think your child will be in the following year. And I'm usually spot on. The thing is, if I'm wrong and the piece of clothing doesn't fit the next year, I'm usually only out a couple bucks. Whenever I'm in doubt I always buy bigger rather than smaller because I'd rather something be a little bit big than too small.

My typical rule of thumb is that I don't spend more than 5 bucks for any one piece of clothing (unless it's a coat or fancy dress, something like that)

But shopping ahead can save you lots of money. Check out the swim trunks I picked up just the other day...

They were 5 bucks a piece, regularly $10 each. Now, these will probably be too big for my son next year. We might have to wait til the next summer to wear them. But that's ok. And the thing about shopping ahead is that when your child grows out of their clothes or goes through a growth spurt, you don't have to immediately run out and get new clothes. You already have some stored up!

And I don't only clearance shop for clothes. Summer items are great for buying at the end of the season. Now, you have to be willing to settle for way less selection but sometimes it really pays off.

Like this slip n slide I also picked up during the same shopping trip as the swim trunks:
That slip n slide was regularly priced at $42. My kids had spotted it at the beginning of the season. But there was NO way I was paying that. It had been marked down 3 or 4 times down to $10. Yep, 10 bucks! And they love it!

My kids have gotten used to the fact that sometimes I buy clothes for them that aren't for 'right now'. So they're ok with it. I've even done it with shoes and it's worked out pretty well. Especially sandals, you can get great deals on sandals this time of year. I actually stock up on sandals for myself about this time for next year. Kohls usually has great end of season prices on sandals. The selection isn't the best, but I got these sandals there last year for just 3 bucks!
I actually picked up 2 pair cause they were so cute and such a good deal.

Other items I buy on clearance are bookbags and lunch bags. I don't buy the kids new stuff every single year. It's usually every other year. But once school starts the stores will start marking down the school supplies. I bought this messenger bag/school bag last year for just 5 bucks (regularly 15 or 20 bucks):
It's too big for my daughter so I figure she'll probably use it next year. So I have it stored away til then. The book bag she used last year was also a clearance find that I had picked up for just 4 bucks. There's really no reason to spend full price on school bags. Especially considering that they usually only last for one school year (if you're lucky).

Keep in mind that sometimes when clearance shopping stores will mark things down multiple times. Target does this a lot. I always wait til an item has been marked down more than half off.

That's all I have for go out there and do some shopping for next year!!



Jenn said...

I am with you, Michelle! I love to clearance shop. It thrills me to get more for less.

Kim's Treasures said...

I shop the same way! I buy stuff on clearance all the time and sometimes it's stuff I stick away for Christmas. I love it! You found some great things on your trip to Target and Kohl's!

Mara... said...

I love Target and I love Target on sale! You got some amazing deals!! And I love those flip flops, too.

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