Most of Australia is heading into a long weekend this weekend. Sorry Western Australia – don’t worry Queensland won’t have this holiday at this time next year either.
This move does not please me as the Queen’s Birthday long weekend has typically coincided with my birthday weekend – something that very much has pleased me up until this point.
But it seems public holidays are political and a new government means a little switcheroo action on our long weekends.
What won’t change in future years is the fact that this weekend is the weekend that signifies the start of the winter sales.
Didn’t winter – the actual season – just start this week, you ask?
Glad you did. Yes, officially winter did start this week but in fashion land it’s the end of the winter season. In a few weeks, the same stores wanting us to now buy knits and coats will try and convince us that it’s time to buy a swimsuit.
Let’s not go there quite yet.
Instead, if your winter wardrobe is lacking, now is the time to stock up on key pieces while retail prices have been slashed.
But – you know me – I do have a few tips I urge you to take on board before you hit the shops or click add to cart on your phone.
How to shop the sales is all about strategy and planning. Get that right and your hard-earned dollar will go a long way.
8 tips for how to shop the sales
1. Edit your wardrobe first. I KNOW, you’re thinking when will that woman stop banging on about that? The short answer is never. EVER. Knowing exactly what is in your wardrobe is key to always having something to wear. It’s also key to knowing what you need to add to it. (Need tips on how to edit your wardrobe? Head on over to this post OR pick up a copy of my book, Unlock Your Style).
2. Make a list. I use my phone for this – either the Notes app or Wunderlist – or go old-school and use a piece of paper and pen. I don’t care how you do the list, just do it. This list helps you to not only shop for the gaps in your wardrobe, it helps you stay focussed on the task at hand and not get seduced by the types of clothes you already have – or the heavily sequinned ones (oops, maybe that’s just me?).
3. Allocate more of your shopping budget to buying winter wardrobe basics. Maybe you need a new coat? Maybe your knitwear is looking threadbare? Maybe it’s a pair of jeans that fits and flatters? Whatever those winter essentials are – spend most of them first before buying the show ponies.
4. Start your shopping day at opening time. Not only will the racks and shelves be neat and tidy, you won’t have to fight so many people for the change rooms. It will be just less stressful all round. Work it well with your list and you’ll be home or out to lunch before everyone else has even made a start.
5. Wear comfortable clothes that are easy to take on and off. You MUST try on everything you’re potentially buying. No time to try? Walk away. This outfit is the ideal type to wear in winter. For many purchases you would not need to take everything off – just the top layers.
I always opt for nude underwear as well – that way if you’re trying on a sheer garment you have a better idea of how it will look than if you’ve headed out in your black lace undies.
6. If you’re shopping the sales online, take your measurements before you start your clicking frenzy. Having your bust, waist and hip measurements on hand will help you better match up with your potential purchase. If you’re an online pro, you’ve already signed up to all your favourite stores’ email alerts. If you’re still getting the hang of this online shopping thing, these emails are key to staying in the know as to when sales or special offers are happening.
7. Stay focussed. Keep to your list. Tick off your needs first. Be conscious of what you’re buying.
8. Do not buy a new piece of clothing JUST BECAUSE it’s on SALE. That’s right, you read correctly. Just because something is a bargain, doesn’t mean it should come home with you. Justify the purchase because it fits with your current wardrobe, your lifestyle and your wardrobe personality. If it ticks all those boxes and you save a few dollars, then that, my friends, is what we call WINNING.
Good luck. May the shopping gods be with you.
Tell me … will you be shopping the winter sales? What are you looking for? Got any tips to add?