Ask the Readers: How Do You Save on Winter Clothes?

by Ashley Jacobs on 29 November 2011 154 comments
Photo: Janna Wages

Winter is upon us and the cold weather has set in. It’s time to break out the coats and other warm clothes. For many people, that means pulling winter clothes out of storage. For others, it means heading to the mall to update their winter wardrobe.

How do you save on winter clothes? Do you shop in the off-season? Instead of hitting the mall, do you shop at thrift stores?

Tell us how you save on winter clothes and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards

We're doing three giveaways — one for random comments, one for random Facebook "Likes", and another one for random tweets.

Mandatory Entry: 

  • Post your answer in the comments below 

For extra entries (1 per action):

  • Go to our Facebook page, "Like" us, and leave a comment telling us you did, or
  • Tweet your answer. You have to be a follower of our @wisebread account. Include both "@wisebread" and "#WBAsk" in your tweet so we'll see it and count it. Leave a link to your tweet (click the timestamp for the individual URL) in a separate comment.

If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.

Giveaway Rules:

  • Contest ends Monday, December 5th at 11:59 pm Pacific. Winners will be announced after December 5th on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.
  • You can enter all three drawings — once by leaving a comment, once by liking our Facebook update, and once by tweeting.
  • This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook.
  • You must be 18 and US resident to enter. Void where prohibited.

Note: Due to recent changes in Facebook's promotions guidelines, we have restructured the entry format of our giveaways.

Good Luck!

0
No votes yet
Your rating: None
ShareThis

comments

154 discussions

Add New Comment

CAPTCHA
This test helps prevent automated spam submissions.
Guest's picture
Cathy

Layering up with a nice and cozy sweater or two, and a waterproof jacket on top.

Guest's picture
Guest

Just bought a pair of nice Timberland boots and Timberland parka, so I've paid about €400 for that! Winter clothing is so expensive...

Guest's picture
electrogeek77

It's pretty simple for me - a mix of shopping at thrift stores and scanning the clearance racks at stores year-round for items. I particularly like to purchase things that I can layer.

Guest's picture
Therese

I don't buy much heavy clothing; I layer more of my fall weather items. I also shop at thrift stores for seldom needed items, such as snow pants.

Guest's picture
Roxy

I always shop the Thrift Stores. I have gotten some AMAZING deals and some really nice clothes that way. For example, I paid $5 for a lined London Fog coat that had hardly been worn. Winter scarves usually run $1. Thrift stores are definitely the way to go.

Ashley Jacobs's picture

Wow, that's a good deal!

Guest's picture
Lissa F

Good Will for coats. My kids grow out of winter coats before they wear them out and so do lots of other kids. My kids also wear t-shirts all year long. They just add a hoodie, no sweaters to be bought.

Guest's picture
Heather Speaks

I shop and save on winter clothes for the family by using 2 methods. I catch end of season sales and I shop in thrift stores and consignment shops.

Guest's picture
JanuaryGirl88

My 'tweens are very "status conscious" and really want "name" winter coats. To strike a balance, I try to buy in the off-season.....got my oldest a Spyder coat online for 75% off in early July! The hardest part is planning how much they'll grow.....err on the cautious side and big the bigger size. :-)

Guest's picture

I saver money on winter clothes by shopping sales during the holiday season, combining coupons and always buying at the outlets. I never buy anything full price - ever!

Ashley Jacobs's picture

Love that! Always avoid paying full price! :)

Guest's picture

I like you on Facebook!

Guest's picture
Lani C

We live in Texas so we don't really need too much as far as cold weather gear, but I do try to buy a season ahead when possible.

Guest's picture
Keith

I try to buy everything on sale. Keep in mind what you will need and browse sales throughout the year. Be sure to do your research!

Guest's picture
Megan

Easy, I shop sales in the spring and thrift stores in the fall.

Guest's picture
Nicholas

Well luckily I don't have to spend a lot on winter clothes because I live in Southern California. However, if I do need something I usually wait for a really good deal or pick it up as we go into spring.

Ashley Jacobs's picture

We are really quite fortunate with our weather here in Southern California, aren't we? :)

Guest's picture
Tim

Craigslist and eBay for used Patagonia clothing!

Guest's picture
Louise

I try to buy winter wear in spring, when it is all on sale. But TBH I haven't bought so much as a scarf in years -- my old stuff is still serviceable enough!

Guest's picture
Louise

I already "like" y'all on FB!

Guest's picture
Monica

I shop in the off season, but it also helps to live in Arizona where you only need a sweatshirt.

Guest's picture
Staycee

My boys wear each other's hand me down snow pants, boots and gloves. I shop the off season (looking for next year's winter coat in February) and I have no problems shopping thrift and consignment stores for winter coats, boots and "dress" clothes for my children (winter is when they need them the most for concerts, recitals, church programs) and I always find gently used items for a fraction of the cost of buying new!

Guest's picture
wong

LAYER
layer
LAYER

Guest's picture
Carson M.

Winter in NJ is long and harsh, but not long nor harsh enough to break the bank for warm clothes in the winter. If I shop during the spring and summer, I can usually discover a nice, warm coat and even a handful of sweaters (for layering, hint hint) at a consignment or thrift store without spending more than $50-75/yr. Obviously, exiting the mindset that Columbia, Timberland, or other major name brands are the ONLY options for staying warm has saved me hundreds of dollars.

Guest's picture
NJJ

I shop at thrift stores clearance racks and in the off season to save on winter clothes. If I have to have a certain winter item I'll also shop through a rebate site to save more money on my purchase!

Guest's picture
Sarah

Live in San Diego, when it gets cold I put on long pants... maybe a sweatshirt :)

Guest's picture
Maddy Han

I buy clothing lots on eBay in a size larger than what my kids need. Lots of stuff - especially if it carries the "name brand" - can be layered and won't look bad if it's too big. My kids get the brands they want, I get two years out of the same item at thrift store discount prices.

Guest's picture
Tiffany

I work with what I already have and fill in the holes (literally). A few of my older sweaters had holes in them when I pulled them out, so I hit up some deals on Black Friday to replace them and then made the old sweaters into sweater pillows. I just need to make some felt flowers to hide the holes and they'll be ready to throw on my bed for some extra warmth this winter.

Guest's picture
Guest

I save on winter clothes by living in Texas and by searching for "new with tags" on ebay. I recently bought a new with tags North Face jacket for 85$ it retails for 186$.

Guest's picture

We tend to get clothes that could be worn in any season. For instance, my button-down, long sleeve shirts may be a little warm for a summer in the South, but they aren't too bad once you get used to them. Since we try to buy as many clothes than can be worn year-round as possible, we try to obtain them from places like Land's End. They are a little more expensive but they last.

Also, these types of places are constantly running specials, such as 30-40% off + free shipping. And credit card rewards tend to issue gift card for these sites for $40 in rewards -> $50 gift card or at worst $45 -> $50. So using this approach all the winter coats for our kids this year were paid via rewards benefits usage when one of these online retailers ran one of their huge discount weekends, meaning we didn't drop an additional dime on them.

Guest's picture
Lisa

Easy...I live in Florida!

Guest's picture
Anne Mostella

I shop online after the season...I think things tend to be marked down more, so even if there is a shipping fee involved, I am still coming out cheaper than buying at say, the mall.

Guest's picture
Anne Mostella

I like Wise Bread on Facebook

Guest's picture
Tara

I buy reliable basics that can be worn season after season - simple colors and nothing too trendy - and pieces that can be layered! Once the sales on winter clothes start to hit just before and after the holidays, I might pick up a couple new items, at a discount of course!

Guest's picture
Chris

I moved to Cardiff by the Sea, CA. We don't need winter clothes. My shorts and jeans and a light sweatshirt work all year round.

Guest's picture
Anne Mostella

tweeted as @anniemos :

http://twitter.com/#!/anniemos/status/141566860633178112

Guest's picture
Audrey H.

I live in a warm climate which means we dont have to have winter clothing, saving money.

Guest's picture
Anne

I've been lucky enough to have finally found a new and huge thrift store in a closeby town that is very clean, organized, and has a wonderful selection of clothing, on top of toys, books, bedding and other things. This is a Godsend! They will conduct additional savings for their customers on Mondays and Thursday at 25% off, plus on some holidays they offer 50% off. It's been a life saver for me and many others I'm sure as the economy continues to pretty much stay at a frightening level for so long. I bought three very nice coats there this Fall. I gave one to my mother who loves her new coat, which only cost $5.00 for something that had been gently worn and near perfect condition.

Guest's picture
Stefany

Living in Texas has it's benefits! I don't have an abundance of winter clothes. Most winters, I layer up on what I already have!

Guest's picture
Catherine

I wear my summer clothes year-round..but winterize them! For example, I wear my dresses with tights and layer my t-shirts.

Guest's picture
philosophotarian

I buy (used or at discount stores) high quality sweaters (100% merino wool or cashmere) and layer them over thin tanks or thermal tops. This helps to cut down on the number of times I have to wash the sweaters and that helps them to last longer. I also stick the the same basic colors so I can mix and match with everything and get by with fewer items.

Guest's picture
Judy

Thrift Stores and changing up clothes from years before with accesssories such as pins and scarves.

Guest's picture
Judy

I like you on facebook

Guest's picture
Karen

Living in Florida, I don't have to worry about winter clothes. We just add/subtract layers as needed!

Guest's picture
KelR1

My winter clothes last for many years. I've had the same winter jacket, sweatshirts, etc. for a while now. I just try to keep them in good condition so they last. I don't automatically go shopping every fall/winter unless I absolutely have to when an item needs to be replaced.

Guest's picture
Raina

I liked your post on Facebook.

Guest's picture
Raina

Ok, I admit I buy virtually all of my sweaters from VictoriasSecret.com, but I do wait until there's a sale. They're good quality and affordable.

Guest's picture
Jenn

A few years ago, I discovered that buying winter clothes while visiting my sister in Florida was a big way to save lots of money on nice quality clothing. I had my eye on a nice fall coat at the time and during my visit, stopped in to the same store and found the same coat for over half off! I bought it right away and slowly built up a nice winter wardrobe over the years. It is a great way to find high quality items without paying full price. It is also very important to take good care of your winter clothing, especially if you live in a warmer region. I always wash everything prior to storing and keep them protected in garment bags.

Guest's picture
Bristol Eastwood

Investing your money in high quality clothing that you could happily wear every winter without feeling it went out of style and that could last a lifetime. Ive got a pair of Therashoes slippers that are the warmest, comfiest slippers with a thick solid heel to walk around outside in- didn't buy them for the advertisements, its all comfort and durability!

Guest's picture
Lisa

I don't really spend any money on Winter clothes. When the temperatures drop, I pile on the layers starting with Summer t-shirts covered by long sleeved items. I scored a heavy wool coat several years ago for free at a food and clothing pantry. It's in excellent condition. I make my own caps, mittens, and house socks (better than house shoes because they keep your legs warm too.)

Guest's picture

I buy during Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales and at the end of the season in January/February. By that time spring is beckoning and retailers need to dump excess inventory. So I usually get them around 40-60% off this way which includes free shipping.

Guest's picture

I try not to buy super specific winter clothes, and just layer my existing wardrobe - knee high socks or double socks and long johns under the jeans or work pants I already wear, sweaters over my work blouses. I look for gloves at discount stores like Marshalls, and try to make our own scarves and hats.

Guest's picture
Debbi

I shop in the off-season, but I also have clothing swaps with friends where we trade seasonal clothes we're tired of. We all get new-to-us clothes for free that way!

Guest's picture
Aaron Lin

Black friday clothes + the changing of seasons sale from the previous year! Between March and April I think? Dept stores should be getting rid of their winter stock

Guest's picture
Kathy Wilder

I shop at Goodwill, of course! Many people are heading to the malls to update their wardrobes, and at the same time, donating their old ones. Lots of people buy something that doesn't fit or they don't wear for some reason, and I end up buying a LIKE-NEW item for $6 or something. Once found a new w/tags teal blue lined suede Coldwater Creek jacket for $10. Awesome!

Ashley Jacobs's picture

Wow, that's a really good deal!

Guest's picture
Mary W

Liked on Facebook

Guest's picture
Bryan

Easy. Wear the same stuff from last year. But I also frequent clearance racks for items that I may need later on.

Guest's picture
Aaron Lin

https://twitter.com/#!/noman76/status/141595290644914177

Guest's picture
Linda Nguyen

I just recycle the clothes I have. Just add a pair of black tights and a jacket to make it winter clothes! :)

Guest's picture
Christie

Resale shops, hand me downs, and thrift stores! That's how we save on clothes year 'round!! We do love our local resale shops, and do most of our clothes shopping there, me included!

Guest's picture
Lily

As a person who is cold, dressing warm in the winter is VERY important. I use what I have already for as long as I can. I try to take care of it. When I need something, buying second-hand is first choice. While thrift stores are great, garage sales and rummage sales are cheaper if you happen to find something there. I got a warm pair of wool gloves at a garage sale for a quarter.
If I do need to buy new, clearance items are first choice.

Guest's picture
Ralph

Check the used sports supplies stores. I live in a relatively small town and we've got two of these places that sell used ski jackets, gloves, hats etc. The stuff is in great shape.

Guest's picture
jm

layers, especially wool from thrift stores

Guest's picture
Michael

I buy quality and buy infrequently. A good winter coat, hat, gloves and boots should last years and years.

I wore my Columbia coat for about 8 years in Michigan and Minnesota for shoveling, winter camping and any outdoor activity I was involved in. As it was showing strong signs of wear and tear, I gave it to someone in need and bought a black Caarhartt coat. I expect it will last at least 8 years, and probably longer.

Donna Freedman's picture

I like you on Facebook.

Donna Freedman's picture

As everyone else seems to do, I hit thrift shops and yard sales. Good-quality stuff from Eddie Bauer, Lands End et al. can be found for practically nothing. You have to wade through a lot, but it's like a treasure hunt. :-)
I've seen winter clothing offered on Freecycle, e.g., "Moving to Florida -- anyone want my winter gear?"
And: I compile Amazon gift cards by using the Swagbucks search engine. Right now I'm visiting Alaska and staying warm with wool socks and polypro long johns that I got for free with those gift cards. Whoever wins the Amazon gift card offered on this post would do well to shop for snuggies, too.

Guest's picture
Jennifer

I moved to southern AZ 7 years ago and now I don't need winter clothes! I think I own 2 sweaters. :)

Guest's picture
Jennifer

I like you on FB.

Guest's picture

Off-season. Shop for Winter gear in the Spring.

Guest's picture
Nancy B from Many LA

I wear old clothes(flannels, sweats, etc) around the house, buy them from Goodwill, and save the good clothes for when I go out. Layer clothes at home and turn the thermostat way down

Guest's picture
Nancy B from Many LA

I like you on FB

Guest's picture
Heather

Where I live, I can wear both winter and summer clothes year-round. I wear a lot of layers so I don't need to buy so many season-specific clothes. When I do need a new jacket, I shop the clearance racks at stores that carry quality brands, so I can get classic-style clothes that will last for years. I also clean my clothes gently so they'll last longer. Even the "fancy" consignment stores in my town have great deals on nice sweaters and coats. And I knit, so I can make high-quality accessories if I don't find anything I like in the stores. As a bonus, I recently lived in a large house with lots of roommates, and we swapped clothes and sports gear through a "free" box in the living room. People who have some sort of community center, apartment clubhouse, or just lots of friends and neighbors might be able to set up a similar clothing library or swaps.

Guest's picture
Chloe

Lots of layers!
Only the top layer shows, so economize on the ones underneath.
Scarves add a lot of warmth too.

Guest's picture
Kim

We've got a great consignment shop in town. I get a lot of clothes there for the whole family.

Guest's picture
Robby

I collect cool looking jackets, coats, scarves, and mostly sweaters from thrift stores, so I am already frugally prepared for the Boston winter!

Guest's picture
cupid

stay inside in he nude until spring

Guest's picture
Jennifer

I wait for the rich women to update their wardrobes and clean out their closets.....then I buy their cast-offs at Goodwill!

Guest's picture
Robby

So I already liked you on fb, and commented on WB's status, but I can't figure out what I need to do for the tweeting. I already tweeted my answer to you with the hashtag, so do I still need to comment here that I've tweeted you? It's my first time entering this contest, so I'm a bit confused.

Thanks!

Ashley Jacobs's picture

Leave 2 more comments: 1 for your Facebook entry and then another one with the link to your tweet! :)

Guest's picture
Betty

For starters, I take care of the ones I have. Clothes last a long time with proper care. Also, for work, I can wear a sleeveless or short sleeved blouse with a jacket. My snow boots are about 25 years old and still look new.

Guest's picture
Betty

Responded on Twitter. https://twitter.com/#!/1bets1/status/141641611162558464

Guest's picture
Betty

Liked you and your post on Facebook.

Guest's picture
Miranda

Thrift shop

Guest's picture
Verl

Hmm, I mostly buy as soon as clearance sales on winter clothes start up in the spring.

Guest's picture
Carol

I buy winter clothes all year round - at Goodwill and estate/garage sales. Never full price or even half price for me.
Also, wear layers - that way lighter clothing can be worn together and keep you warmer.

Guest's picture
Rusty

I use my christmas giftcards and wait for sales or free shipping.

Guest's picture
Rusty

I like you on facebook.

Guest's picture
Nancy B from Many LA

Tweeted
http://twitter.com/#!/goonyburd/status/141684541558497280

Guest's picture
Lynda

i shop on sale or on off season. i am also not afraid to keep clothes from the previous years!

Guest's picture
Lynda

tweeted https://twitter.com/#!/oshkoshbgosh123/status/141693467507163137

Guest's picture
Lynda

i like wisebread on fb

Guest's picture
GM

For winter coats I wait for a sale. Quality is important. My current coat has lasted me about 4-5 years and is just now showing signs of wear, well worth the $50 it cost. I also buy boots the same way. I WISH those lasted as long but I'm hard on my winter shoes. Gloves, mittens, scarves and such are thing I make. Every year my daughter gets a nice coat from Once Upon A Child.

Guest's picture
Susan

I knit myself a scarf, throw on my Sorel boots, and keep a heavy rotation wool sweaters.

Guest's picture
Susan

I liked on Facebook

Guest's picture
Jessica

Here are the ways I save on Winter clothes,
First I actually buy winter clothes when the go on sale after the season is over and I shop at thrift stores.

Guest's picture
Grace

I am fortunate to live in Portland OR, home to many consignment and thrift shops. I own three vintage leather jackets and coats, none of which cost more than $50.00. In fact, my daily go-to jacket cost $12.00. Leather is great for Portand's weather. It is waterproof and warm enough most days. On colder days, I layer a heavier sweater or a hoodie and call it good!

Guest's picture
Grace

And I just "Liked" Wise Bread on Facebook!

Guest's picture
Crystal C

I buy my woolen socks in bulk and most other things second-hand!

Guest's picture
Diane

First, it's not extremely cold in Louisiana, so I don't require too many heavy winter items. Layering works fine most of the time. I use a combination of methods, including shopping sales & clearance and buying classic items that will last, such as my black down jacket & black lightweight jacket that doubles as a rain jacket. These 2 items suffice for most of my needs, including winter travel, with the proper layers.