When To Shop The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

July 17, 2017


There’s one sale that many people, myself included, wait for all year—the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.  In fact, I haven’t come across a single US fashion blog that isn’t talking about the Anniversary Sale.

What’s all the fuss about?

A typical sale that pops up throughout the year is centered around taking merchandise in the stores and discounting it so that retailers can clear their shelves for future inventory.  The price drops, then often drops a second or even third time as merchandise moves from the front to the back of the store over time.

The Anniversary Sale does something a little different.  Nordstrom puts their newest inventory on sale to the public for 2 weeks (Nordstrom card holders technically get 3 weeks as they are able to shop the sale 1 week prior to everyone else) then raises the price for the rest of the season.  With this sale a customer is given the opportunity to own the latest trends at a discount at the start of the season.  No waiting until mid-season for your savings.

Conventional wisdom has mentioned a few suggestions for shopping the sale including:

“If you see it, and you want it, you better snatch it up.” 


“With this big of a discount, now is the time to buy!”

And my favorite

“If you don’t know which color to get, buy them all, you can figure it out later.”

All of this advice has a good point.  Because the sale is for a short time, items can (and do) go out of stock quickly.  If you don’t act fast, you run the risk of missing out on your chosen items.

But the combination of 1 sale with over 3,000 items at a super discount mixed with 1 ex-shopaholic and a dash of “I don’t want to be left out” can very quickly lead to a disaster if not handled correctly.  I don’t want to end up with a dozen of the same cardigan because I didn’t know which one to buy so I got them all.  I don’t want to end up having to run back and forth to Nordstrom doing returns every other day as I figure out what to keep.  And I certainly don’t want to end up owning items that I never wear, and never returned, all because when I bought it, the price was a good deal.

So going back to the title of this post…..when do I shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale?

Simple.  When I am ready.

Am I using the sale to stock up on basics?  To fill in a wardrobe hole? Or maybe to buy a long coveted splurge item?  In order to be ready to shop I have to put together a plan which means that I have a bit of prep work to do first.  In this short series over the next few posts I’ll walk you through how I shop this once a year sale while prepping my fall wardrobe at the same time.  If you are like me and waiting until the sale is open to the public to shop the Anniversary Sale, hopefully my example will help as you create your own shopping list.  And if you’ve already shopped but are struggling to figure out what to keep and what to return, well maybe this will help you too.

Do you plan ahead before you shop the Anniversary Sale?

Interested in reading more about the Anniversary Sale, check out these previous posts:

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