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Research Author: Staff Editor Last Updated: Sep 7, 2017 - 10:06:33 PM

Shopping Stress

By Staff Editor
Aug 5, 2014 - 12:12:08 PM

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( - SEATTLE - While the back-to-school season signals excitement over a new classroom and a fresh wardrobe for most kids, for many parents it means stress around shopping budgets, a change in schedules and managing homework after the long summer break. zulily, a retailer focused on all things for moms and women, today announced findings from a survey showing that the cost of back-to-school shopping ranks highest on the list of stresses for parents tied to the new school year, coming in as the number one stress for more than one in two families (52%).

"Getting kids ready for a new school year is a time of transition for most families, from reestablishing a solid routine to fighting the battle over what kids want to wear each morning," said Amy E. Goodman, lifestyle editor at and an expert on everything for home and fashion. "One of my biggest pieces of advice is to make a plan and stick to it: from bedtime routines, to getting outfits ready the night before, to figuring out how to organize all those forms, being prepared will keep both parents and kids happy."

zulily surveyed more than 6,000 parents on their thoughts about the back-to-school time period and found that over one-third (34%) say they are always on the lookout and shopping for the new school year, while the remainder start their shopping in July (24%) or August (26%).

Additional findings from the study include:

Back to School Stressors
The cost to refill kids' closets and backpacks prior to the new school year was the biggest stress reported by just over one in two parents, with getting kids ready and out the door in the morning following right behind. When asked to choose their top three stresses about their kids going back to school, parents reported:

  • Cost of back to school shopping (clothing, accessories, supplies) - 52%
  • Getting kids up and ready in the morning - 51%
  • Getting a good teacher - 43%
  • Homework - 33%
  • Bedtime - 30%
  • Making lunches - 26%
  • Transportation/getting kids to school on time - 25%
  • Clothing/what to wear - 25%

School Spending: Breaking down the Budget
Further breaking down the cost to send each child into their new classroom, findings showed the vast majority of parents (70%) spend between $50 to $250 per child on clothing. More than seven in 10 (72%) plan to keep their shoe budget under $100 per child and half of parents (52%) try to keep spending on school supplies under $50.


  • Under $50 - 15%
  • $51- 150 - 41%
  • $151 - 250 - 29%
  • $251 and over - 15%


  • Under $50 - 37%
  • $51 - 100 - 35%
  • $101 or more - 27%

School Supplies

  • Less than $50 - 52%
  • $51 - $100 - 28%
  • $101 or more - 20%

Two for you, One for me
In addition, one quarter of parents (26%) said they plan to spend more on their back-to-school shopping this year than in years past, while 14% will spend less and 60% plan to spend about the same amount. More than half of parents (54%) admitted to picking up clothes to refresh their own wardrobe while shopping for new school clothes for their kids.

"While the cost of shopping can be stressful for parents, back-to-school shopping should be fun for everyone involved," continued Goodman. "From colorful camo to galaxy inspired designs, there are plenty of fun prints and patterns on trend for fall shopping."

According to zulily, five of the top trends for the new school year include:

  • Northern Exposure - From faux fur capelets and moccasins for girls to hoodies for boys emblazoned with bold animal faces, wild looks are big for back to school
  • Galaxy - Starscapes, planets and are other galaxy themed prints make their way onto clothing and accessories alike for fall Sublimation is really big and should be said in here
  • 90's Flashback - They say if you've lived through a trend once not to wear it a second time around, which is why today's school kids are the only ones cute enough to pull off 90's inspired looks, including acid washed jeans with bold bright 90's prints along with Harem pants - Can't touch this.
  • Camo Cool - From backpacks and binders to shoes and jackets, expect to see camouflage prints in a wide variety of colors in school hallways this fall
  • London Calling - Trench Coats and hooded jackets paired with textured wool and corduroy will keep kids on this side of the pond warm when fall's crisp temperatures return

To learn more about zulily and shop for the hottest back-to-school trends for moms of all ages and their kids, go to

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