In a previous post I mentioned the Harold's Outlet store and since then a few people have asked me about it. So, I thought it deserved its own post. If you are reading this and you're a man, you might want to just stop right here because all this talk about shopping is going to start sounding like the teacher on Charlie Brown.
First, a little background info.
If you know me really well, you know I am frugal. I can't help it – it's in my genes (which I got on sale at Old Navy). I rarely buy anything that isn't on sale. My kids know that when a new movie comes out they will get to see it as soon as it makes it to the dollar movie. If we go to Sonic to get slushes, it is always at Happy Hour. When I send Lincoln into the store to pick up milk or something, he's trained to look for what is on sale or to get generic if they have it. Unless it's Diet Coke or Downy fabric softener. (I have to draw the line somewhere.)
I'm also not much of a shopper and I don't really like to go to the mall. A trip to the mall means that we might be exposed to pornography (not only from the stores but also from the teenage girls walking around) and is also a breeding ground for discontentment. We probably only go about three times a year and it's usually when most kids are in school and I know which route to take to avoid the Victoria's Secret store.
So, given the fact that I'm frugal, I don't usually shop at Ann Taylor, J. Crew, Loft , etc. I occasionally find something at J. Jill that is really on sale but in order to get to J. Jill I have to go to the mall and I have to see the display window at the Pottery Barn Kids store, which causes me to come really close to breaking the 10th Commandment.
Which brings me to Harold's Outlet (finally). It's a place where I can shop without going to the mall and I don't have to spend a fortune. It's in Norman on Campus Corner right around the corner from the regular Harold's store. It is just like a regular store – it's not a warehouse-type outlet and it's very different from the yearly Harold's warehouse sale. It's very clean and well-organized and, except on Saturdays, it's rarely crowded. It's about the same size as Harold's, maybe a little bigger. The clothes are probably from "last year's" season but if you have ever been to Harold's you know that the clothes are traditional and not trendy. They are classic styles – the kind that are in style for a long time.
I usually make the trip to Norman about once or twice a year and I always find bargains. For example, I might find a skirt for $19.99 that is normally $158.00. (I know, the shocking part is the original price of the skirt.) Or I might find a blouse for $11.99 that was normally $88.00 or a sweater for $14.99 that was originally priced at $98.00. A few times I have come home with pants for Brandon that cost $4.99 (originally $78.00). And these clothes aren't seconds or damaged. They are just left over from previous seasons.
My kids usually go with me when I go to Harold's Outlet. The girls love it. Jack Henry tolerates it (only because they have a popcorn machine and a five-gallon jar of candy), and Lincoln, well, he's a 13-year-old boy. I'm sure you can figure that out. They do, however, like looking at my ticket when I am all done to see how much I saved. I've taught them well.
The last time I went I spent $27.64. And the actual retail price was . . . $411.04. Not too bad.
So, there you go. Your bargain tip of the day.