24 Aug

Written by Kristin on August 24, 2017

With August almost at its end (nooo!) it’s time to get into the back-to-school mindset. And that means assessing whether you need to buy new school uniform, do school bags need replacing, and all of that fun stuff! And if your little one is heading off to school for the first time this September, that means buying everything at once.

Yes, new shoes, stationery, and school uniform costs definitely add up,  but before you start to panic about how much all of this will cost, remember: A) There are loads of sales and offers on everything your kids need for school at this time of year, and B) You can probably re-use many of the things from last term or even get hand-me-down items from a neighbour or schoolmate. Many schools have a secondhand uniform shop where you can find some great gently used jumpers or trousers, so be sure to ask if you’re new to the school.

First, pull everything out of your childrens’ wardrobes and have them try on their school uniform. You’re sure to get some moaning out of this exercise, but it’s a must. Don’t forget their PE kit! Then make a list of everything that is worn, too small, etc. This is also when you should make an honest assessment of how often you’ll be washing this school year. Although buying fewer uniform will mean spending less money, it also will require you to do more laundry. Even if you were on the ball with doing the laundry two or three times a week in the past, maybe family or life circumstances have changed since last term.  If you’re a frequent washer, three shirts or two pairs of trousers might work just fine. But if you know you won’t be able to put the washing machine on that frequently, buy your uniform accordingly.

If you’d rather not deal with buying new trousers and shirts every other month because your kid has made holes in them or spilled jam on them, look for details like reinforced knees and stain-proof fabric such as Teflon. Hanging the clothing to dry rather than putting them in the dryer also will help uniform looking new longer.

Some of our top picks for savvy school shoppers:

A great place to start: the John Lewis uniform by school site. Here you can search for your specific school uniform requirements and shop straight from there. And if you’ve waited until the last second, if you place your online order before 8pm it will be delivered to your chosen John Lewis or Waitrose shop, ready for you to collect after 2pm the next day.

If your school doesn’t require specific logo items and you can buy generic polos, trousers and other pieces from the high street, you can save even more. Over at M&S, they’ve got a huge selection in their school uniform shop, and with trousers from £5.50 and polos, shirts and blouses from just £3, you won’t spend a tonne. It’s also a good idea to take a look at their multipacks to save some extra £££ – you could get a two pack of girls skirts from £10, for example.

Save up to 25% in the spectacular event at Debenhams, including school uniform! You can find v-neck jumpers from £4.50, or unisex school plimsols from only £5.25. Like M&S, they’ve got a variety of multipacks for extra savings, too. Many of their school bags are in the £15 range or even £10, like this Peppa Pig backpack.

Clarks have £5 off sports shoes when you buy one pair of kids shoes at £20 or more, or take a look at Sports Direct for loads of discounted school shoes, many for under £20.

What’s your favourite tip for saving on school uniform?

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