Back to School Shopping with Teens and Tweens - you can love it too!

Lisa Lehmann

Posted on August 21 2012

Shopping. You either love it or hate it.
Shopping with your kids?
Wait, how about shopping with teens and tweens?
Now you're talking a pile of emotions, and opinions tied up with glitter and lace. Maybe less glitter, more grit.
yes, I totally made them pose in the dressing rooms.
Back to school shopping is new to us. As a homeschool family, we knew it existed, and we always got caught up in the new pens and pencils and notebooks just like everyone else. But for many years, I avoided the back to school clothing frenzy. I mean really, do you need new clothes to meet at the kitchen table?
Not this year. This year, they are ALL going to school for the very first time. And in true like mother, like daughter(s) form...they were giddy with excitement about hitting the racks.
My man-child opted out of this trip. Too many sisters. Can you blame him?
So last Tuesday I found some time on the calendar, we included my mom, and off we went on our back to school shopping trip.
Goals:
  • find age appropriate stylish clothes
  • stay in a budget
  • have fun
What kept us on track?
My girls value my opinion, and that means the world to me. They don't always like it, and they always have input, but they know if I say no to something it's because either it's inappropriate, or it just doesn't look good.
Once something is deemed "what are you thinking? Get that off your body right now". They know they have zero to no input. It's a non negotiable. I still want my girls to look like girls. Fashionable. Trendy. Beautiful. Just not too grown up. We don't do tight or short or low cut, and tank tops are our friends.
Budget-wise they have learned the thrill of finding a great deal. We love consignment shopping and clearance racks, and a 30% off at Kohl's is like finding the golden ticket. Can I get an amen?
Off we went. Starting at Nordstrom's Rack, we combed the clearance section and found a few things. Tahlia found royal blue skinny jeans which just had her giddy. Should a 10 year old be this excited about colored denim? Hey wait, my 10 year old is excited about colored denim! Brilliant!
Then for the real work. Plato's closet. My mother was shocked at the sheer amount of clothing...and jeans! Plato's closet is a consignment store that caters to teens. It's organized by color and type of clothing which makes it somewhat less overwhelming. But still, it's crazy! By the time we hit the dressing rooms my head was spinning from hearing the word "mom" from 3 different sections at once. Have mercy.
Consignment rules? It has to be a good label. There is no sense buying Forever 21 or Target clothing used. I can purchase that new at a decent price. We look for high end names. They like me to do this for them, but I'm trying to teach them. Funny how fast those young minds "catch on". When my arms could no longer hold the goods, we hit the dressing rooms. Now for the work. Needless to say, I found my mother a chair.
Sweet success was ours. Sweaters and jeans and dresses and shirts. Oh my. Plato's Closet has a punch card, mine was full so we ended up getting 20% off...SAHWEET! Two HUGE bags full of clothes for $110. Seriously. Who's the smartest mom in the world? That would be me. Hold your applause.
The girls were fired up, my mom and I were exhausted. One more store. We can do this. Kohl's, armed with my 30% off.
Here we found some awesome basics. Tahlia needed pants. For some reason this is a weird "hand-me-down-year" and there wasn't much to cover that bottom half. And she is also far more glitter-y than my other girls. She naturally looks for sparkle. Should I be concerned?
Isabel was on the hunt for cute tops that would go fall to winter. Anneke needs everything. Remember, she's a teenager *smirk*.
So how did we do? Although exhausted, everyone was still smiling and laughing after many, many hours. We had a blast and great success! Now they just need accessories, wonder where we can find them some?
Now I won't bore you with all the details, but I have to show you a bit of our fashion extravaganza. Look at our amazing collection of outfits! They look stylish. Fashionable. Fun. And in my opinion, appropriate. (Please excuse the fact that I was too lazy to use anything but my cell phone for photos. thanks, I knew you would understand!)
I will miss them this year. Terribly. But I am also so excited for the future ahead. And at least they will be stepping out in style. Go gettem girls!
Do you have teens or tweens? What's your favorite place to shop with them. Do tell!
xoxoxoxxo,
lisa

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