Britney Dearest: Shopaholic Strategies for Tight Budgets {Part 1: Clothes and Shoes}

/ Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Shopaholic Strategies for Tight Budgets {Part 1: Clothes and Shoes}




Hey Ladies!

I hope your week is going grrrrreat! Today, I thought it would be fun to talk about... SHOPPING! More specifically, how I shop without breaking the bank. My husband is the only person in our home with a full-time job so we're usually on a strict budget, however, with great money management (which I will get into in another post) and great shopping strategies, we manage quite well :-)

Let's get started!

My Clothing and Shoe Shopping Strategies
  • I have a special email account designated for shopping. Any and every store I shop at, have shopped at in the past, or want to shop at has that email address. It's where all the sales events emails go to. I only check it when I can afford to, for the most part. If I don't check it at least 3 times a week I'll have 400-500 emails at the end of the week and I don't want to miss the one day flash sales. I don't want my main email inbox to be flooded with sales and advertisements.
  • I have -0- credit cards. I paid them suckas off years ago and haven't looked back since. If I can't pay cash/debit I don't get it.
  • I will only shop online when the shipping is FREE or the amount to free shipping is low, like, "free shipping at $25".
  • I ONLY shop during sales and/or the clearance section. It's rare that I buy an item that's not on sale, but when I do it's because the regular price is within my budget at that time or the regular price is just as good as a sale price.
    • End/out of season sales are good. I stock up for the following year. 
  • I keep a list in my phone of specific things I want to buy. If I see something extra I like and it's within budget, I'll get it sometimes, but I'm usually really good at staying focused on what I'm looking for because I don't want to feel the guilt of overspending after I promised my husband I would only spend a certain amount. Here's a screenshot:
    Cozi lists can be managed online and on my phone through the Cozi app.
    *UPDATE: I switched all my lists over to Evernote. I have had the app for years and recently realized how great it is and why I downloaded it in the first place :-)*
  • Be open minded. I'm picky with my fashion choices, but open minded. Clearance selections are SOMETIMES hard to shop, but I have found many of my best and favorite, most complimented pieces on clearance. You have to be creative and think of ways to wear certain things. 
    • I purchased some cream colored skinny jeans with light pink flowers and olive green leaves printed on them. I couldn't think of what I would pair them with right away, but I knew they had potential lol. I pulled up Pinterest and searched "floral jeans outfits". I saw some gorgeous outfits with floral jeans! I snatched those things up off the Body Central website for about $6! $6.29 to be exact. I just went on the website to my order history and checked.
  • Since we're on the topic of being open-minded, shop some thrift stores and consignment shops. I have found so many great things thrift store shopping, mainly home items, but clothing and shoes as well. Also, children's consignment sales- LOVE 'EM! That's where I find a lot a name brand clothing and shoes for my kids super cheap. I've found multiple pairs of barely worn Nike Air Max for $7 each for my son's, Sperry's, a full Polo Ralph Lauren outfit: a sweater vest with a button up collar shirt and khaki's in great condition for about $10!
  • I utilize websites and apps that are based on saving consumers money. 
  • I will not pay more than a certain amount for certain pieces of clothing. For example, I will not pay more than $6 for tops or bottoms for my kids ($7 is pushing it), and no more than $13 for a dress for my daughter. I'll pay more for a special occasion. I have a kids clothing shopping addiction (you should see their closets and drawers and under bed storage bins and closet bins, oh goodness...), so I have to keep myself in check. Higher prices instantly turn me away. Seriously, I think, "that's too dang much for a piece of fabric". I RARELY pay $6 for a shirt for my kids, $3 is more likely.
    • For my clothes, I won't pay more than $15 for bottoms, no more than $13 for a top (very rare). No more than $20 for a dress unless it's a special occasion. I don't have set limits for my honey, but I have not paid more than $20 for any article of clothing for him. I usually just shop clearance and sales for him. He's not picky at all, doesn't like buying clothes, but I like him to look nice with the rest of us so I pick out and buy his clothes.
  • I keep in mind, it's unrealistic to expect to shop every single sale. If it's not within my budget to shop at the time of a good sale, I just don't. Another good sale will come again. And again. And again.


My top 3 favorite stores to shop the best clothing and shoe deals for my family and me are:

1. JCPenney- I only shop when I have $10 off $25 purchase coupon or a $10 off $10 purchase coupon. I shop sales and clearance racks when I have a 20% off coupon.

2. The Children's Place- I ONLY shop here when they have a 30 % or 40% off coupon sale, which is every 1-3 months or so. I stock all the way up! TCP is my top shop for my babies. They also have end of season sales where they mark things down so much and offer a low coupon, like 25% off and the price of the item is still great, like 50%-85% off. Can't beat that!

3. 6pm.com- I buy Sperry's and other name brand shoes for my hubby and me here. I bought myself some leopard print and gold Sperry's for $20 and bought my husband some all white canvas Sperry's for $30. Both times I used a 10% off coupon. I also bought my husband some Kenneth Cole Unlisted tan boat shoes for $30 at the same time I bought his Sperry's. Go to Macy's, Nordstrom, or Dillard's and try to find some Sperry's that cheap. Don't waste your time and gas, you won't find any that cheap.

At other stores I shop sales events and/or clearance ONLY (and I usually have a coupon as well).  For example, I shop at Charming Charlie only when they have a BOGO free sale on clearance or specific items (ie sandals). Other stores I shop at a few times throughout the year include:
  • I love shopping Target's clearance, especially online.
  • Macy's. The clearance racks are always on point. I shop there mostly for my husband.
  • BodyCentral.com has great sales often. My two favorite jackets I bought on clearance; a gold brushed denim jacket for $15 and a camouflage anorak for $7.49. They were both purchased during a "50% off clearance plus free shipping on all orders" sale. I recently bought two kimonos and a few other items on sale (not all are shown).

  •  
  • I shop on CharlotteRusse.com during their BOGO and free shipping sales. 
  • VictoriasSecret.com has great clearance sales throughout the year. I have about... 10 VS bras that I purchased at $16 and less. I shop Maidenform.com during their $15-$8 bra sales and I have about 10 of those too!
  • Old Navy when they have a 30% or 40% off sale. I shop there mostly for my kids
  • I have shopped at H&M more for my daughter than I have myself. Their kids sale and clearance prices and selections are off the chain. 
  •  Lately, Famous Footwear has been running a BOGO half off sale and I had a $10 off coupon and a 20% off coupon. I bought my kids tennis shoes for school and paid a little under $15 for each.




I shop at many of other stores as well, I just find myself drawn to certain stores more than others.


So seriously, let's talk. Do you have some hidden shopping strategies I don't know about? If so, tell me PLEASE! Comment below. :-)


Also, Stay tuned for Part 2 where I will discuss how I save money on groceries, hygiene items, home items and all kinds of other stuff :-) I had it all within this post at first, but it was way too long.

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About Me

Hi! I'm Britney. I'm a wife and a mother to 3 children + 1 fur baby. I write about everything family, home, and DIY related. I'm slightly obsessed with home decor Instagram accounts and DIY blogs. Junk food is my peace. Read more

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