Updating your wardrobe this spring could cost more than you had expected. Clothing prices are expected to rise about 10 percent in coming months, with the biggest increases in the second half of the year, said Burt Flickinger III, president of Strategic Resource Group.
The reason for the increase is that the price of cotton has more than doubled in the past year, reaching all-time highs. Bad weather cut harvests in major producing countries, including China, the United States, Pakistan and Australia. Another culprit is restrictions on exports from India, the world's second-largest cotton exporter.
Even with the increases in cotton, as well as other textiles, shoppers still can find ways to save money.
Shop only when sales are running.
Shop off season for the following year's wardrobe updates. Scour clearance racks for everything from jeans to canvas tennis shoes.
Mix and match colors and clothing; that way you can use them more often and for more than one purpose.
Take advantage of bundle offers like buy-one, get-one or half-off deals.
Look for deals when buying packages of socks, underwear and T-shirts at wholesale clubs.
Shop off-price stores like Marshalls, TJ Maxx, Filene's Basement, Burlington Coat Factory and Stein Mart. Not only to they have great deals, but they also have awesome clearance racks.
The price of jeans will be affected, from Wrangler, Lee, and Levi to the designer brands. A really good time to find deals on jeans is during the months of July and August. Retailers offer great deals to pull shoppers in for the back-to-school rush.
To save even more, look for clothing items that are cotton blend rather than 100 percent cotton.
Shop consignment shops for fabulous deals on gently worn clothing and shoes and outerwear.
Sign up for your favorite stores’ deals alerts and coupons to be delivered to your inbox or home. I post several retail manufacturers' printable coupons on www.thebag.com, under the printable retail-coupons forum daily.
For now happy shopping!
Laurie Dixon, TheBAG Lady