Sunday, July 20, 2014

Back to School Part II : My favorite retailers

I'm always getting compliments on Ellies clothes. I love shopping for her and am so grateful she couldn't care less what she wears (so long as its not tight pants). She has her preferences, but for the most part I have free reign. She HATES shopping so I tend to do more online shopping or bopping into stores when she is with her dad. Here are my top five stores to shop as well as some of their pros and cons. I know this is more girl centered but all of the retailers below have a great selection of boys clothes too!

1. Gap/Old Navy
I think everyone knows that these two stores are a pretty obvious choice. More so Gap for me than Old Navy. The sales you can get away with are ridiculous and the quality is not compromised when the price goes down. When I purchase online I am able to tack on a few promo codes to save extra cash and if I go into the stores a few days after receiving my package of goodies and the prices are lower in store, they will do a price adjustment within 7 days. I tend to do that often for several reasons. First, larger quantity of sizes available online and secondly they tend to run additional 40% off sale items in store. I did this this past week. I returned one pair of pants and price adjusted three other items. The difference of the jeans plus the price adjustment allowed me to purchase another pair of jeans, three tops, and shorts for a difference of FOUR DOLLARS. Y'all... FOUR DOLLARS!? And the pair of jeans I bought were only $15. I seriously felt like  I robbed the place.

Pros: GREAT sales (additional 40% off sale items), Price adjustments, High quality denim, newsletters provide extra savings, Can leave reviews
Cons: minimum purchase of $50 to qualify for free shipping

2. J Crew
I LOVE J Crew. Like, obsessed with J Crew. HOWEVER, it is out of my price range 80% of the time. The other 20%? I stock uppppp y'all. Summer/Winter sales are the best time for J Crew and they almost always have an additional percent off sales. The J Crew outlet is also a gold mine! I bop in there when I am in the area and snatch up some goodies. I kept my student ID so I get an additional 10% off when I shop there and show my ID. They also almost always have an additional % off sale items.

Pros: Free shipping on kids and baby clothes, additional savings off sale items, student discount
Cons: Expensive most of the time, No reviews section

3. Zara
Zara is the besstttt. This retailer is like none other in the kids department. They do trends for kids so well and every collection is so cohesive I adore them so much. And the shoes!? Are you kidding me!? So. Cute. Their summer sales are even BETTER. When the summer sale at Zara starts then I know back to school shopping has officially begun. Their tops are super cheap but still good quality. My only complaint is they stopped shipping for free on all orders, they now require a $50 minimum purchase. HOWEVER, you can have them ship to store for free. When I am feeling extra cheap I will do this. Also, some of the clothing can have finicky washing instructions which is annoying when dealing with kids clothes.

Pros: Style, Shoes, $4.95 shipping, Free Ship-to-Store
Cons: Sizing is awkward at times, Washing instructions, minimum purchase to qualify for free shipping, No reviews section

4. Forever 21
I prefer shopping here in store because their sizing is also weird. A small is a 7/8 which is a medium elsewhere. Also, they do not allow returns or exchanges. Everything is final sale. I am not a fan of final sale! So, shopping here is rare but they do kids style right and I admire that. I just don't make it into the store often enough but when I do I never leave empty handed.

Pros: Style, Low prices without sales, Can leave reviews
Cons: Final Sale on all purchases, Minimum purchase to qualify for free shipping, no boys section

5. Target
DUH. Need I really say more? First off, get the debit red card, thats a given. Five percent back right there. Second, CARTWHEEL. And third? Do it all on tax free weekend. BAM. I'm kinda nervous of telling you guys what I do but I'm going to tell you anyway (it'll be our little secret). I show up to Target the Thursday before tax free weekend starts and make Ellie try on everything I want to buy. I write a list with all the prices of EVERYTHING I want then I narrow it done once I've calculated the estimated cost. I show up when the doors open at 8, greet my favorite lady at the customer service counter (her name is Sally and if you don't have a red card yet please go see her and get one cause she is the sweetest), load up my cart with the things I want, and walk right out. Best thing is? I still have time to hit up other shops before they open at 10am.

Pros: Cartwheel App, Red Card savings, Free shipping online with use of Red Card
Cons: Its Target. There are no cons, EVER.

Honorable Mentions: H&M, JC Penney (they've stepped their game up recently), Cotton On (online only)

What are some of your favorite places to shop? Any special places to find great boys clothing?

EDIT: I forgot NORDYS! Nordstrom is running their anniversary sale which is the PERFECT time to shop. LOVE their kids shoes selection! Oh, and FREE SHIPPING!

The Mexican Marta

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