Yesterday on the Facebook page, I promised to share my smart sale-shopping strategies with you, and here they are!
After the 4th of July is one of my favorite times of the year to shop. Between now and mid-August, retailers are focused on getting rid of summer merchandise to make room for new fall arrivals. In the next couple of weeks, you'll see colors start to change in stores. The brights of summer will be phased out, and fall transition colors will creep in. The silhouettes will still seem summery, but the clothes will have a decidedly fall feel to them. Now is the time to scoop up the summer colors and styles--there's still good inventory left, and plenty of time to wear your purchases.
You might be tempted to go crazy with all the great deals you'll find, but a great closet is full of smart choices, not just full...so read on to find out how to maximize your sale dollars and avoid purchase regret!
One of my rules for building a wardrobe that works is "Shop Before You Need To". We've all been there, right? Needing something to wear last-minute, shopping in desperation for something that fits, flatters, and doesn't break the bank? I've been there too, and what I've learned is that my desperation buys have rarely become favorites in my closet, and I've almost always regretted my purchases. One of the goals of sale shopping is to fill the holes in your wardrobe-especially those items you don't need very often- at a great price!
So the first step is to determine what the holes in your wardrobe are. Ask yourself what kinds of events you have trouble dressing for. A wedding? A funeral? Date night? Girls Night? Baby/Wedding Shower? Think through all the scenarios that have given you trouble this Spring/Summer (or last year) and make a list of what you would like to have for those occasions. Now you have your first sale-shopping goals.
Case in point, last spring I bought a dark green dress on winter clearance for $6. I don't wear dresses often, but I thought this one would be good to have on hand just in case. Last November, when my grandmother passed away, I wasn't left scrambling for something to wear...I just packed my perfect $6 dress and went on my way. Much easier than shopping last minute!
The next step in scoring great sale deals is to look at your closet and see what will need to be replaced next year. Shorts getting ratty? Tees showing signs of wear? You know you'll want to start next summer in good-looking basics, so why not stock up now? Skip the super trendy colors--unless they look good on you, in which case they'll never go out of style, and focus on basics. Tan shorts and white tees are a staple every year; you might as well buy them at bargain prices!
Sidenote--lots of people tell me they don't want to buy ahead because they're not planning on being the same size next year. This is when you need to give yourself a reality check. Ask yourself these 2 questions--have you been the same size for the last 3-5 years (or more)? What are you doing now to change your size? If the answers are "Yes" to question 1 and "Nothing" to question 2, go ahead and buy the shorts. If your answers are "No, I just had a baby" and "Working out everyday and eating healthfully", then hold off.
Next, to make the most of your sale shopping spree, ask yourself this--What would you like your wardrobe to be more of, or have more of? I ask my clients this question, and the answers range from "More feminine" to "more color" to "trendier" to "more skirts". Would you like more prints in your wardrobe? Get them on sale. Do you wish your closet had more dresses? Save on them. The only thing you should hold off on are trendy pieces, as they might look dated next year. Do you know someone whose style you really like? Take a look at what she wears, and pick up a few of those looks on sale. Discounted pieces are a great way to try a new look out.
Finally, its not only clothes that go on sale now--you can get great deals on accessories as well. Shop for accessories with wild abandon. Scarves, shoes, jewelry, hats (try one at the pool or beach--instant glamour!), handbags--there are deals to be found everywhere, and accessories are the easiest way to pull together your wardrobe. And that necklace you bought will fit next year, I promise!