Monday, July 15, 2013

Monday Morning Round-up 7.15.13

This Monday I'm doing something a little different than I normally do.  Like posting this in the evening instead of the morning, because it took me all day to write it.

I love dressing up my kids, and I get a thrill in hunting for high-quality, brand-name clothing at lower (think Old Navy or Target) prices.  I keep my eye out for sales all the time, and even buy a size or two up when I find something too good to pass up.  Therefore, I have no back-to-school shopping to do right now and I'm missing out on all kinds of great sales.   So I thought I'd go through some of my favorite websites for kids clothes, and pick out some of the best deals to share.  

Of course, the best money-saving strategy is to go to garage sales, thrift stores, and consignment stores, and work out swaps with friends.  A lot of better clothing brands should last through several kids, while the $5 Circo tees from Target might be rags after a year of washing and wearing.  And sometimes you want to buy new, knowing once your kid is done with an item, you can hand it down to another or re-sell it.  

In general I wouldn't even consider new clothing over $15 and shoes over $20.  There are exceptions, like if I buy Punky a Tea Collection dress in the next size up and have her wear it two years.  And then consign it.

My other criteria for kids clothing: no ostentatious branding (a small logo is fine), limited licensed characters (this is getting hard with my video game-obsessed son), no words that characterize my child as "trouble" or "princess" or "boy-crazy" or "wild thing", and very limited sequins, studs, mesh, lace, animal prints, skulls, crosses, or anything else Madonna was photographed wearing in the 80s. Also, kids clothes have to be soft, comfortable, and WASHABLE.

Today I scoured a few websites, looking for deals, and found a ton of things on clearance.  I stayed away from the usual Old Navy, Gap, and Target, (even though I like all of them) and tried to think of a few retailers that I aren't always my first place to check for sales.  

Here are some favorites from H&M.  These aren't the highest quality, but the prices are unbeatable and I always find some cute styles I can't find anywhere else.  Unfortunately, you can't order any of the clothes online in the US, but the store keeps expanding into most metro areas.  Note that none of the prices below are even sale prices.  These are the regular prices.  Now you can see why I love this store so much.

H&M Favorite Deals
Dress 4.95//2-pack tops 9.95//Jeggings 9.95//Top 6.03
Sweatpants 9.95//Printed dress 9.95//Twill pants 9.95//3-pack boxer shorts 9.95

I found just a few things I liked on clearance at Carter's.  It's not my favorite store, but the sales can be really good. It's $6 flat-rate shipping if you buy online, but there are a lot of stores and outlets around too.
Knit skort 3.99//Pull on woven skirt (comes with bike shorts) 9.99//Plaid cargo shorts 6.99

Olive Juice is an example of gorgeous, expensive children's clothes with surprisingly affordable sale prices.  These were all found in the Outlet and Warehouse Sale sections of the site.  Shipping is a little steep at 8.95 for flat-rate, but there are sometimes coupon codes available.

Olive Juice
Striped Denise Dress 15//Charcoal Giselle Top 10//Ink/Denim Wonderland Dress 15
Parker Shift Mint/Robin Red 15//Ruby Olive Pant 15

I've never shopped at a brick and mortar Zara store, but I'm hoping we have one someday in Minneapolis.  Lucky for us, standard shipping is free!  Here are a few things I found on sale.  Some sizes are sold out.
Printed t-shirt 9.99//Dress with ruffle bib front 14.99//V-neck sweater 9.99
Short sleeved check dress 7.99//Embroidered jeans 12.99//T-shirt with gathered sleeves 3.99

Uniqlo stores are hard to come by in the US, but it looks like standard shipping is $7.  That's totally worth it when you see some of these sale prices.  Check out the Men's and Women's selections while you're at it.  There have even been some designer collaborations!

Star Wars graphic 5.90//Snoopy graphic 5.90
Light pocketable parka 12.90//Lauderee tunic 5.90//Sweat tunic 5.90

The good thing about American Apparel is that the clothes are made by American workers who get fair wages.  That means the prices are sometimes higher than I want to pay for a basic t-shirt.  But I snooped around and found a few things on sale, in limited sizes and colors.  The shipping starts at $5, but it's free for orders over $50.

American Apparel
Solid Rib Cardigan 6.00//Solid Rib Cardigan 6.00//Baby Rib Cap Sleeve 3.00
Opaque Stirrup Tight 5.00//Helvetica Alphabet Fine Jersey Short Sleeve 4.00//Shawl Cardigan 11.00

I love Boden clothes.  The bad part is that shipping is $10.  I suggest you make it worth your while by getting something special for yourself as well.
Mini Boden
Boat neck dress 12.00//Stripey boat neck 10.80//Arts and crafts t-shirt 12.00
Stripey pocket t-shirt 12.00//Explorer hoody 15.20
Is it me, or was Land's End always kind of boring?  Either I never really looked at the kids' clothes, or they've stepped up their game recently.  The clothes are classic, well-made and durable.  Shipping starts at 5.95.  The following items are all on sale; some in limited sizes.

Land's End
Knit wrap jumper 14.99//Long sleeve knit a-line dress 12.99//Knit applique skort 12.99//Pieced pattern cardigan 12.99
Fleece shawl-collar pullover 9.99//Iron knee boat pants 14.99//Girls 5-pocket pencil jeans 10.99//Raglan t-shirt 4.99
So, somebody, please buy some of these things for your kids.  Because I don't need them, and it pains me to know these deals are just sitting out there, mocking me.  Plus, it took me hours to figure out how to clip images to Polyvore and then get it formatted into my blog.  If I see just one kid I know wearing that Snoopy shirt, I'll know it was not in vain.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Scarf, Skirt, and Necklace (30 Days of Creativity)

Here are my final three projects for my 30 Days of Creativity Challenge.