Showing posts with label Uniform Dress Code. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Uniform Dress Code. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

8 Rookie Mistakes to Avoid with Back to School Shopping

The idea to start this site was hatched as a Mom of a Kindergartner trying to figure out the what, where, & when of school shopping for a kid required to wear uniforms to school.  Since then, I've learned quite a bit about the brands, the retailers, and the trends.  Here is my list of Rookie Mistakes to Avoid for Back to School Shopping so you can avoid these errors and enjoy a stress free school shopping season.

Waiting Until Last Minute

The shopping season for school uniforms at major retailers begins at the beginning of July.  While that seems early, it's not.  If you try to wait until closer to the start of the school year, you will find that the styles and sizes are picked over, or worse, out of stock.  For the best selection, shop in July. More retailers carry school uniform clothing items at this time of year, even if they don't offer them year-round, which gives you more options.  At many retailers, I've seen the best prices of the season during July. The Uniform Mom Best Bets series recommends the target price that you can realistically expect to find quality uniform clothing items. During peak Back to School shopping season, you can find items at bargain basement prices at discount retailers and even the retailers known for the highest quality are known to discount their uniform items 40% or more.

Overlooking the Uniform Exchange Program

I bet your school has a uniform exchange program or uniform locker where you can get school uniform basics secondhand for a fraction of the retail cost, or even for free.  Ask the other Moms in the neighborhood or post a question on the school message board.  As fast as kids grow, you will be surprised to find quality items like new, or even some new with tags.  Be sure to check out Uniform Mom's tips for shopping uniform consignment events.  You can also check out the online consignment stores, such as  You won't find uniform items tagged or sorted easily, but filter down by brands, color and size to find options available.  

Failing to Know the Tax Free Holiday in your State

Many states offer break from sales tax for a weekend or even for a full week on items needed for school such as clothing, shoes and school supplies. According to the 2017 National Retail Federation's Annual Back to School Survey, families with children in elementary through high school plan to spend an average $687.72 each.  Shopping during this holiday can save you an extra few percent on your Back to School haul.  Each summer, Uniform Mom publishes a list of tax free holidays in each state.

Waiting until Fall to Shop for Long Sleeve Polo Tops

When it is the middle of July, it is easy to overlook the long sleeve polo shirts hanging on the back to school display.  However, long sleeve polos are harder to find the longer you wait in the school year. (you can read about my hunt for the long sleeve polo here). By October, the retailers that don't carry uniforms year round are running out certain colors and sizes. Just save yourself the headache, and pick up at least 2 long sleeve polos during the peak Back to School shopping season.

Buying School Shoes too Early

One year, I picked up a pair of Mary Janes early in the Back to School season.  When my daughter put them on for the first day of school, she had already outgrown them.  I sent her to school wearing her PE shoes instead while I had to scramble that day to return them and find her hew ones that fit. ( I'd recommend you plan to hit the show stores about 2 weeks before school starts. You need to take the kids with you so they can get a proper measurement for sizing.

Buying the Cheap Shoes

Once.  Only once did I get my daughter a pair of school shoes at a discount retailer.  Basically, they lasted a week and I was out shopping again.  Shoes are probably the most expensive item on your back to school shopping list (okay at least while they are young), but spend the extra money to buy a pair of school shoes made with leather uppers.  Most shoe stores recommend you buy kids new shoes in a half size larger than the child's actual shoe size.  If they are over due for a growth spurt, you may be able to go up a full size with thicker socks, as long as the shoes aren't sliding around on their heels.  Once you find a quality shoe, it should last until the end of the school year or until they outgrow them.

Forgetting the Basics and the Accessories

Because of all of the Back To School clothing sales, it is a great time to stock up on basics like new underwear, undershirts, or bras.  But don't forget that your child might also need a new belt, tights, undershorts, or hair accessories.

Failing to Subscribe to the Uniform Mom Report Card

Each week, Uniform Mom lists the latest sales and coupon codes on schools clothing at major uniform retailers in the US.  If you're not already a subscriber, sign up so you always know what's on sale at each retailer and have a coupon code handy.

Photo Credit: For really #Big #Mistakes ...  Nadia Santoya. Licensed under Creative Commons CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0.

(CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Friday, February 3, 2017

Results from the January Readers One Question Survey

In an effort to get to know you better, I initiated a monthly survey consisting of one simple question. Each month, you'll find the survey posted on the website and on our FaceBook page.  We'll also share the link via twitter and Google +.

What Was Asked

To get things started, we asked the age range of your oldest uniform wearing kiddo.  Are they preschoolers, elementary aged kids, middle schoolers, or high schoolers?  This information helps me get a better idea which age group we should focus on in features and product reviews.  If you have multiple children, you tend to learn the ropes with the oldest and have an easier time going through things again with younger children.

What I Learned

We learned that almost 60% of you have children in elementary school, grades 2 - 5.  All of the retailers that we review here on Uniform Mom offer uniform products for this age group.  It was surprising to me that almost 30% of you have children in high school.  I'll need to focus more attention on uniform brands that are offered in adult sizes.  Almost 15% of you have children in middle school.  Again, I learned that I need to focus more attention on brands that offer juniors and young men's sizes. There is a preschool across the street from my house that requires the kids to wear uniforms. Several other preschools nearby that I toured when selecting a daycare for my daughter also have the kids wear uniforms.  I frequently see the kids out in my neighborhood walking all lined up  in their cute little uniforms.  I guess that is why I was surprised that none of you have preschoolers in uniforms.

What's Next

Thank you for taking the minute to click through and share a nugget of information with me.  I am adding a note to my to-do list to focus more on products and brands that offer school uniform options in juniors and adult sizing.

This month, we want to learn how you prefer to shop.  Do you prefer to go to the store or do you prefer to shop online?  You tell us.  The February Uniform Mom One Question Readers Survey is open now.  Once you have submitted your response, please take a minute to share the link with the your fellow Mom's from school. Thanks for supporting Uniform Mom.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Iowa Senate File 31 Allows Schools to Adopt Mandatory Uniform Policy

Senator Brad Zaun (R) introduced a bill, Iowa Senate File 31, that would allow schools to adopt a mandatory uniform policy.   The bill is simply worded as follows:

"This bill authorizes a school district to adopt, for the school district or for an individual school, a mandatory uniform policy, in addition to the dress code policy currently authorized by the Code,if the board determines that a mandatory uniform policy is necessary for the health, safety, or positive educational environment of students and staff in the school environment or for the appropriate discipline and operation of the school."
Our Capitol - Des Moines, IOWA

The bill goes on to state that it is not an infringement on students freedom of speech as long as the uniform policy is viewpoint neutral.  It also eliminates the general assembly's declarations regarding dress code policy. The bill was referred to the Education Subcommittee for consideration.

An article in the Des Moines Register quoted Sen. Thomas Greene (R) who is the chair of the Education subcommittee as saying that he believed matters involving students' dress should be decided locally. They further reported that he planned to visit with Zaun and other legislators before deciding whether to hold additional meetings on the bill.

While it seems that this bill is likely to die in committee, I'll update this post should there be further activity.

Photo Credit: Mrachina, Jason. Our Capitol - Des Moines, IOWA. January 28, 2011.

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Monday, January 16, 2017

South Carolina State Bill 3050 proposes uniforms for all Public School Students

South Carolina House chamber, Columbia, SC IMG 4755
By Billy Hathorn (Own work)
[CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

SC State Rep. Cezar McKnight (D) has sponsored a bill in South Carolina to require school uniforms for all public school students. House Bill 3050 includes exceptions for physical education classes and for extracurricular activities. The bill requires that the state Department of Education develop rules and regulations governing the establishment and enforcement of its dress code program to include three main objectives.

The objectives address common concerns for parents and administrators.  First is to provide a standard that includes a variety of seasonal options, as well as a color scheme that permits flexibility for the school principle to make modifications for school colors.  Secondly, it requires that the required uniform be available at an affordable price for the average family.  Third, it includes a provision to assist students eligible for free or reduced lunch to obtain five sets of school uniforms for each season.

The bill has been referred to House Committee on Education and Public Works. I'll update this post should this bill pass out of committee to the next stage of the state legislative process.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Additional Picks from the 2014 Lands' End School Uniform Collection

Disclosure - I'm working with Lands' End as a Brand Ambassador during the 2014 Back to School season. 

I just reviewed the 2014 Lands' End Back to School catalog.  They have many new items this year.

New for Girls:

  • Cotton broadcloth and stretch woven blouses that are easy care, easy wear – starting at $20.
  • Ponte knit jumpers, skirts and skorts that are comfortable, resist wrinkles and retain color.
  • A stylish, school-spirited double-knit blazer for dress up, $60.
  • Improved pant fit: slimmed legs, better rises and superior fitting chinos.

New for Boys and Girls:

  • Colorblock active polos and performance tees in the Phys-Ed Collection with smart features such as moisture wicking, UPF 50 and antimicrobial properties.
  • Year-round washable dress pants that look great, wash after wash.
  • A below-the-knee, active short for boys that take him from gym class to afterschool play.

Below are some of my the 2014 featured school uniform items for girls and boys at schools with a standard or uniform dress code.  These items are new to the 2014 Lands' End School Uniform Collection or they have been recently updated. A few of these items will be reviewed here at Uniform Mom in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

My Favorite School Uniform items from Lands' End

Disclosure - I'm working with Lands' End as a Brand Ambassador during the 2014 Back to School season. 

Below are some of my favorite school uniform items for girls and boys at schools with a standard or uniform dress code. These are classic wardrobe items that always make a popular choice for Back to School.  A few of these items will be reviewed here at Uniform Mom in the next few weeks.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Best Bets in School Uniform Accessories

When it comes to accessories for complement school uniforms, I found that it is hard to find the right colors at local stores.  I was happy to find that French Toast and Cookies Kids carry a great selection of appropriate accessories in colors and styles that complement school uniform dress code.

Disclosure – Affiliate Links in Use 
Thanks for supporting Uniform Mom

Updated: This post was reviewed and updated in July 2017 to update links and ensure pricing is still accurate for the 2017 Back to School Season.


Black/Brown or Black/Navy. 20"-34" length.
Man Made Materials. Imported.

Boys Neck Ties

CookiesKids Branded Tie
French Toast Solid Adjustable Boys Tie - $5.98
Colors: Black, Burgundy, Green, Heather Gray, Khaki, Navy Red.
Boys Sizes 4-20.
Adjustable with Velcro closure. Polyester. Imported. Machine wash.
Also available in Plaid (all sizes) and Full Make Ties (solids and plaids) in sizes 14-20.

CookiesKids Branded Tie - $6.99
Colors: Green, Red, Burgundy, Navy, and Black.
Boys sizes: 12" - 18". Clip-on style.

Girls Cross Ties

French Toast Adjustable Solid Color Cross Tie - $6.98
Colors: Black, Burgundy, Green, Heather Gray, Khaki, Navy Red.
Also available in Plaids. 100% Polyester. Imported. Machine wash.

Cookie's Brand Crisscross Neck Tie - $4.99
Adjustable in back, snap in front.
Solid colors and many plaids available.

Cookie's Brand Tab Tie - $5.99
Colors: Red, Navy and Red/White/Navy.

Girls Tights

French Toast Cable Knit 3 pack Tights - $10.98 Colors: Black, Navy and White. Sizes 1 - 18.
85% Acrylic, 10% Spandex, 5% Nylon. Hand wash separately. Imported.

Cookie’s Brand Cable Knit Tights - $3.99
Colors: Black, Hunter Green, White, Off-White, Burgundy, and Navy.
Sizes 1 – 18. 75% Polyester, 15% Nylon, 10% Spandex.
Hand Wash. Made in China.

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