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Sisters Ava (left), 11, and Camille Cuttaia, 9, of Tupper Lake, show off some of their new duds while back-to-school shopping in Plattsburgh on Monday afternoon with their 6-year-old brother, Cooper, and mother, Danielle. Bright, fluorescent colors such as hot pink and neon green were the order of the day for the girls, who attend L.P. Quinn Elementary School in Tupper Lake. Classes start there Monday, Sept. 5. (P-R Photo/Gabe Dickens)
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Kim Lawrence, manager at DressCode in Plattsburgh, adds shirts to the consignment boutique's selection. Along with larger retailers, the downtown shop has seen more business as the new school year approaches; Lawrence says people are buying pre-worn clothing more these days through environmental consciousness, too. (P-R Photo/Rachel Moore)

Stores busy with school shopping


PLATTSBURGH — It’s that time of year again.

Among the back-to-school shoppers at Champlain Centre mall over the weekend were Shelley Davis of Keeseville and her granddaughters, Alyssa and Kathryn LaFountain.

“We did a lot of clothes shopping and got sneakers and dress shoes for school — things that might be important,” Kathryn, 9, said.

“Also, gym shoes and stuff like that,” added Alyssa, who’s 10.


Kathryn is going into fourth grade and Alyssa into fifth.

What’s big with kids in their age group when it comes to back-to-school duds? 

“Kids like stuff that’s not fancy, but bright and vibrant, Alyssa said. “No dull colors!”

Kathryn agreed. 

“We got new stuff that’s colorful!”

Pictures are also a big plus, Kathryn added. 

“I like pictures on everything,” she said. 

From folders to clothing, her back-to-school items are adorned with images. 

“That’s what makes me feel really happy — pictures of puppies and animals,” Kathryn said. 

“I love animals.”


Bridget Wilson of Saranac, who was shopping with her 14-year-old daughter, Britney Simard, noted another apparent requirement of back-to-school shopping in 2013.

“We need headphones. These kids can’t go to school without something that makes noise,” she said wryly. 

Electronic devices would be a key item on their shopping list.

Betsy Corris of Saranac Lake was shopping at Kmart with her grandson Cade, who is going into fourth grade, and her daughter Deserah Latham and her daughter, Lilly, who is starting kindergarten.

“We were looking for school uniforms,” said Cade.

He attends a private school about an hour away from his home. Uniforms — slacks and a golf shirt — are a requirement.

“The uniform is a little itchy, but it looks pretty good,” he said.


Business was also busy at DressCode, a clothing consignment boutique on Bridge Street, fueled by back-to-school shopping, said owner Julie Woodley. 

August and September are busy months for her shop.

“It grows every year, because back-to-school shoppers tell other back-to-school shoppers. And I have lot of name-brand things, so a lot of kids come in. 

“This year has been really great.”

Not only is she pleased that business is good, Woodley also addressed some broader issues, stressing the eco-friendly nature of consignment clothing. 

She believes consignment shops are becoming more popular among young people, partly for that reason.

“It’s great to see the younger generation embracing consignment and eco-living,” she said. “It’s starting to trickle down — it came from parents, and it’s hot with college students.” 

And younger teens, she said, are influenced by college students.

“It’s a really trendy thing. It’s a fraction of the cost, and it’s good for the environment.”