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Let's talk School Uniform - Matalan would love to know what you think - £300 to be won NOW CLOSED

(373 Posts)
AnnMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 24-Mar-17 15:53:31

Following winning a Mumsnet Rated badge for their range of Teflon coated school uniform, the team at Matalan would love to explore further with Mumsnetters their general views on School Uniform.

Matalan say "we all know uniform can be expensive and time consuming to keep clean/ keep on top of - at Matalan you can kit your kids out for less with our school uniform range, it's packed full of new features and benefits that will mean less ironing and washing for parents - better still, shop the full range online and collect in store for free! We'd love to know your tips and views on uniform in general and how you help your child feel confident at school"

Please share on this thread your views on all or some of the below:

Your general thoughts on school uniform items - what do you want to see in a uniform? What's important to you when picking school uniform for your children? What features do you look for? What styles do your children like/ hate?

Do you think a school uniform helps your child feel confident during the school year? How?

How do you encourage your children to go back to school after school holidays with confidence? What concerns do you have - if any - about sending your children to school for the first time/back to school after the holidays?
What tips do you have for helping your child get the most out of school all year round?

At what age do your children start getting dressed themselves for school: what tips can you share for encouraging this?

And for those who do a school run - how much - if at all, do you care or think about what you wear to drop off or pick up from school?

Add your comments to this thread and you will be entered into a prize draw where one winner will win a £300 voucher to spend in Matalan (a Love2Shop voucher)

Thanks and good luck
MNHQ

Standard Insight T and Cs apply

FirstSeemItThenBeIt Fri 24-Mar-17 16:21:58

I'm sick of school uniforms! It makes me feel grim to see hordes of five year olds dressed in black and grey. If our school abolished it tomorrow if he thrilled.

Oh, I'd also love it if Matalan in Scotland didn't ram the shelves full of age 3-4 uniforms. Kids mostly start at 5 here so they don't get sold, and you have to wade through tons of tiny uniforms to find anything left in the right size.

AllllGooone Fri 24-Mar-17 16:31:34

Love uniforms. Makes mornings easier and eliminates bullying over clothes.

I look for comfort and long-lasting stuff that can be tumble dried.

I prefer to buy from a super market or similar than a school uniform ship where they insist on logos as the super market is much cheaper.

LordTrash Fri 24-Mar-17 16:37:58

If you can point me in the direction of a straight, black, knee-length skirt that will fit a 5'6" long-legged UK size 6 girl, please do. It's like the quest for the holy bloody grail.

This is why I'm not much in favour of school uniform just now.

foxessocks Fri 24-Mar-17 16:40:20

So far I like uniforms but I only have to deal with one preschool uniform at the moment which is a lovely simple polo shirt! It's easy to wash and dry so it's great.

ButterflyOfFreedom Fri 24-Mar-17 16:49:00

I love a school uniform! I think they look smart, make children feel part of the school, and takes away the decision around what to wear in a morning!

Essential features include comfort, easy to wash & iron, long lasting and good value for money.

And please remember that children (especially teens) come in all different shapes & sizes- and change / grow rapidly & regularly!!

ActuallyThatsSUPREMECommander Fri 24-Mar-17 16:53:45

I love my DS's polyester trousers shirts and blazer. Shove them in the washing machine then the tumble dryer and they're dry in minutes. And he loves the pockets, including zip up inside pockets for phone and cash. Less impressed with the fact that the trousers are only available in a very specific shade of grey only available from one particular retailer and I can't order them online. Saturday is going to be spent slogging four miles away on the bus to replace the ones he's grown out of.

The ultimate luxury is the uniform supplier I used once who sells you the kit with the name labels already sewn in. Feels so decadent.

OhHolyFuck Fri 24-Mar-17 16:55:47

I bought some matalan school shoes as a 'tide over' until I got paid and could afford dearer ones, as I assumed at around a tenner, they'd barely last a fortnight
Not only have they lasted far longer than expected, and other, more expensive brands looking at you Clarks, they still look in great condition

EwanWhosearmy Fri 24-Mar-17 16:57:58

I like school uniform; it saves the daily battles of what to wear.

I generally buy ours from a supermarket. I would rather have 5 sets of cheap uniform so there is enough for the week than have 2 sets of more expensive clothes.

I look for easy washed, non-iron and tumble dryable items. Shirts and cardis with a high cotton content, but I'm less bothered about skirts.

I go to work immediately after school drop off so I wear work clothes. I hate seeing people in PJs at the school gate (we have a few) but otherwise I don't care what I or others wear. It isn't a fashion parade.

Salumeria Fri 24-Mar-17 17:22:21

Your general thoughts on school uniform items - what do you want to see in a uniform? What's important to you when picking school uniform for your children? What features do you look for? What styles do your children like/ hate?

My children are primary age, so my answers are based round that.

I like lots of cotton in school uniform items. My children have to wear traditional shirts (rather than polo shirts) and it is quite hard to find 100% cotton ones - they are all non-iron polyester.
I also like knitted cotton jumpers rather than sweatshirts.
I tend to shop in M&S as they have a long and extra long range, which most other places don't. I would look out for "slim fit" ranges too.

I like things that are easy to put on and take off, so I look for chunkier buttons on school shirts and cardigans, and summer dresses.
I'm not that bothered about stain resistant coatings and teflon. But I do like things that don't bobble or fade.

I like thicker cotton - I don't want see-through shirts or summer dresses.

My children don't like wearing trousers for school, that's the only thing they hate. They like full-skirted summer dresses that are a bit more "twirly". They hate things that have itchy seams and big labels in that irritate their skin.

I only buy school socks that have the size printed on them somewhere - too annoying trying to match them up otherwise.

Do you think a school uniform helps your child feel confident during the school year? How?
I don't think it makes much difference to be honest. My children have attended uniform and non-uniform schools - no discernible difference in the confidence levels of students in either as far as I could see.

How do you encourage your children to go back to school after school holidays with confidence? What concerns do you have - if any - about sending your children to school for the first time/back to school after the holidays?
This has never really been an issue for us, they have always been sorry the holidays were over, but excited to get back and see their friends.

What tips do you have for helping your child get the most out of school all year round? Always try your best.

At what age do your children start getting dressed themselves for school: what tips can you share for encouraging this?
They have always got themselves dressed for school. I do lay their clothes out for them though.

And for those who do a school run - how much - if at all, do you care or think about what you wear to drop off or pick up from school?
I'm always wearing my work clothes, so I don't have to think about it at all!

CMOTDibbler Fri 24-Mar-17 17:30:00

My ds likes school uniform as it's so easy. I'd like long length trousers please- poor child has the elastic pulled in so much on his trousers he has a lump on each side.

WowOoo Fri 24-Mar-17 17:34:08

I like uniform. Today was Red Nose day at school and the palaver over choosing what to wear was ridiculous!

Both of mine have got themselves dressed from reception - with a lot of help at first easing off as they do it themselves. They don't really have any opinion on uniforms. I think they'd probably like a polo shirt rather than a normal shirt. I would too as it's less to iron!

I like trousers to be tough - too many rip far too easily. I've found that the most expensive aren't the best.
I like easy care, easy iron. My main wish was that my kids wouldn't grow so fast - impossible.

I don't dress for the school run. I just wear my work clothes. When I worked later I'd just chuck on jeans or whatever.

Gwencooper81 Fri 24-Mar-17 17:54:05

I love school uniform. Eldest DD is year 7 and she's bloody fussy. Skinny, tall, no pockets, no embellishments etc. Driving me dotty.

I buy from supermarkets and Debs. I look for easy iron, Teflon and thick material trouser. All bottoms must have an adjustable waist.

Uniform helps mine fit in and feel confident. They've never has any probs about going back after the hols. They love to see their friends.

I wear work clothes to school drop off.

UnicornMadeOfPinkGlitter Fri 24-Mar-17 17:55:09

I hate school uniform and so do my dc. It's always awful manmade fabrics. No allowance for individuality or even dressing for comfort.

I'm not sure why a teen needs to wear a blazer, shirt and tie for lessons. Lots of fidgeting is due to uncomfortable collars and seams.

As they have to wear uniform I'd love to see more natural fabrics a lot more cotton in shirts and blouses. Skirts that are actually long enough. My daughter isn't particularly tall for her age and even going up a size or two they are still mid thigh and most school regulations say for a skirt to be on or below the knee.

My dc are pretty lazy and we're probably 7/8 when they finally got dressed for school completely on their own. They were capable before but soooo slow.

We've not had an issue with them not wanting to go to school and the only part of the uniform that the teens have said they would/wouldn't wear have been shoes.

On the school run I'm going to work so have to be smart and office like usually dresses with a short cardigan or jacket if I have meetings.

pinkunicornsarefluffy Fri 24-Mar-17 18:19:46

Uniform is fine as long as you are allowed to buy it anywhere. It gets expensive here once they go secondary school and have to have blazers and ties from a specialist outfitter. Much easier while DC still in primary and can get it all from supermarkets.

I wear work clothes on the school run, most people do.

ShatnersBassoon Fri 24-Mar-17 18:27:23

I like school uniform. It's not an option, so no arguments. It's usually easy to care for. I suppose it helps with confidence because there's very little scope to get it wrong ie you're always going to look roughly right (I prefer to buy items from the school's supplier for this reason).

theresamustgo Fri 24-Mar-17 18:37:32

My DC have only been to primary and secondary schools that have no uniform. They don't like uniforms,, except sometimes DD wonders what it would be like. I am so glad, as I don't like uniform either and think it is good that they can just be themselves.
Not that many countries have uniform, do they?

I do think a bit about what I am wearing on the school run or at PTA meetings. Usually on my way to or from work though, which is fairly dress down professional, but never too messy.

whirliegig Fri 24-Mar-17 18:43:17

Non-iron shirts please Matalan.

Not easy-iron. Non-iron.

Won't buy anything else.

Thanks in advance.

MERLYPUSSEDOFF Fri 24-Mar-17 18:50:31

My DS's are in primary and polos and shorts/trousers. They have yellow school shop only sweatshirts but I can get away with un-logoed polos. I have trouble finding reasonable priced 100% cotton in yellow. Also slim in the body but long trousers. DT2 can still fit his bum in an age 6 even though he's 9.

Sillysausage123 Fri 24-Mar-17 20:09:39

I like uniform but don't like how some schools insist on logo things.
Fortunately our school doesn't.

The only problem I have is finding slim fitting trousers for my son. In supermarkets you can pick up cheap uniform but not if your child is slim.

I look for Teflon and non iron as it wears longer and my son prefers a clip fastening on the trousers rather than a button as it's easier.

I do think uniform does give children confidence that everyone looks the same. A tip is to buy enough tops for each day of the week so no rushing to wash for tomorrow's day. I lay his clothes out at bedtime ready for the morning to encourage him to dress himself.

NennyNooNoo Fri 24-Mar-17 20:19:44

Your general thoughts on school uniform items - what do you want to see in a uniform? What's important to you when picking school uniform for your children? What features do you look for? What styles do your children like/ hate?
I'm ambivalent about uniforms in general, having started school in Germany where school uniform is non existent. If they have to wear them, I don't mind as long as they're practical, hardwearing and inexpensive. I hate blazers / ties / formal shirts etc or anything where you have to buy it from a certain (usually expensive) shop. I like the clothes to be reasonably flattering too eg not too baggy or shapeless.
Features I look for: adjustable waists on trousers for all ages. Easy to pull up trousers for under 7s. Zips rather than buttons on dresses. Cotton summer dresses would be nice instead of the ubiquitous synthetic ones. Socks with sizes written inside - much easier to sort into pairs. Velcro fastening shoes, not laces. Girls shoes which aren't too flimsy. Would also like to be able to buy closed toe school sandals for boys. Plimsolls with thicker soles.
Daughter hates anything unisex. She likes the Tshirts to be fitted, not loose cut.

Do you think a school uniform helps your child feel confident during the school year? How? No, in fact the opposite. I remember transferring to school in the UK and feeling very frumpy in my school uniform which was a grey A- line skirt with blouse tucked in.

How do you encourage your children to go back to school after school holidays with confidence? What concerns do you have - if any - about sending your children to school for the first time/back to school after the holidays? None particularly, other than that we'll sleep through the alarm!
What tips do you have for helping your child get the most out of school all year round? Regular routines - homework, mealtimes, bedtimes. Limit screen times during the week.

At what age do your children start getting dressed themselves for school: what tips can you share for encouraging this? Depends on child - have 2 with SN. Lay the clothes out on the floor / bed in the order in which they have to be put on. And don't forget to take pyjamas off first!

And for those who do a school run - how much - if at all, do you care or think about what you wear to drop off or pick up from school? Very little. We park in a field near the school and walk across a grassed playing field so footwear is practical and often muddy. Usually throw on the same coat or chunky cardigan over whatever I'm wearing.

purplepandas Fri 24-Mar-17 20:26:01

Supermarket school uniform here too. Easy to wash and better if I can avoid ironing (so no pleats). I work FT and turn things around quickly with washing, no time for ironing!

PenguinRoar Fri 24-Mar-17 20:28:11

I want school uniform to be smart and to wear well. I never, ever want to iron uniform! So many scuffed, faded or ripped knees on trousers... within only a few wears.

My son has dressed himself for school from day one, but always struggles with trouser fastenings. Surely some clever designer could make some with a smart version of a joggers waistband?

DS has fine motor skills issues, so anything to help with easy fastening clothes would be fab.

Better and more reflective patches on school coats would also be very helpful, especially for walking home in the dark.

Whyisitsodifficult Fri 24-Mar-17 20:53:51

I'm a fan of school uniform except for the bloody £12 polo shirts my school likes to get parents to buy just because it has a school emblem on it, seriously how much can an emblem cost considering a polo shirt costs about £3!
Adjustable inner belts are essential, also reinforced knees!!

GoodyGoodyGumdrops Fri 24-Mar-17 21:02:00

So far, for us uniform has usually been cheaper than other clothes, which has been a huge bonus.

I do not like being obliged to buy specific shirts etc from one source: boys' generic smart shirts, a pack of 3 for £10; girls' uniform blouse, £14 for one blouse!

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