"Back to school" shopping with Waterloo Premium Outlets

My shopping picks from the Waterloo Premium Outlets

I'm still nostalgic for the days that shopping in late August meant back to school shopping. For me, it was the only sweet part to offset the otherwise bitter, bitter end to summer. And whether it was getting new sneakers or new pens and composition notebooks, I always looked forward to it with anticipation that drove me to make little lists of everything I hoped to find. I'm still the same way, even though I'm no longer headed back to school. I still love to make lists (that are rarely actually fulfilled) that get me excited about the season to come, as opposed to filled with dread over the days turning shorter and temperatures getting cooler. Plus, I now use it as a great excuse to start some fall shopping when so many stores are having great sales.

My shopping picks from the Waterloo Premium Outlets

And speaking of sales, the Waterloo Premium Outlets might take the cake for having the very best. And this is nothing new—it was also my family's go-to spot for years to score great, name brand finds at more affordable prices.

But to be honest, I had sort of gotten away from brick and mortar stores in the past few years, as I don't love going to crowded, sprawling malls and perusing like I did when I was young. However, after revisiting the Waterloo Outlets last spring, I remembered how much more pleasant it is to shop in that sort of outdoor format where you can go directly to whichever stores you want to hit, without feeling like you're fighting crowds and walking in a thousand different directions. And here's the other realization I had: for as much as I love shopping online, there is absolutely no way of beating in-store sales and clearance racks. I was instantly reminded of that great feeling of finding something I had my eyes on months ago for less than half the price (or with an additional 50% off because it's final sale—something I'd never feel comfortable committing to online without trying it on first).

Suffice it to say, I am truly thrilled to be partnering with the Waterloo Premium Outlets for back to school shopping, or if you're me, simply a great time to get ahead on shopping for the season to come. Their back to school sales last throughout this weekend, so if I were you, I'd be sure to squeeze in a quick trip (follow along here for more details). If you're not local, I hope you have an alternative outlet mall to get your fall shopping fix :)

I went shopping last weekend, and I thought I'd share with you the nine items I brought home with me. 

My shopping picks from the Waterloo Premium Outlets


My first pair of Oxfords (a fall wish list item for me) - Gap


My first leotard top in light gray that I can't wait to wear with everything - $4.99 from J.Crew


The softest short sleeved, retro-inspired button down - $9.99 from J.Crew


An understated gold tassel pendant - J.Crew


A bell-sleeved, cropped blouse in a very new-to-me shade of red - American Eagle


Beautiful beige leather loafers (another fall wish list item - yes!) - J.Crew


A straw tote because, sometimes, back to school shopping means scooping up the last great summer steals - $11.99 from Gap


The undeniably least versatile purchase I made: a flannel gingham midi skirt that I hope to wear this fall with sweaters and loafers (or as a St. Patrick's Day bar maiden, according to Jon) - J.Crew


A slightly sheer, ruffled peplum cotton blouse in my favorite shade: white - Gap

My shopping picks from the Waterloo Premium Outlets
My shopping picks from the Waterloo Premium Outlets

Thank you so much, Waterloo Premium Outlets, for sponsoring this post.