How to shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

How to shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

It’s just about that time again…the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale kicks off this week with early access for cardholders. Today I’m sharing some of my strategies for making the most of this sale (without getting overwhelmed or losing focus).

I’ve said this every year for the last few years, but while this sale can be over-hyped, I do think it’s still worth checking out. It features new styles for fall, so it’s not the same picked-over stuff we’ve all been looking at for the last few months. There are always some good pieces in the mix. (And this year, I think the selection is better than it’s been in a while!) Usually, if I come away with 2-3 “keepers,” I consider that a success. And aside from clothing and accessories, there are usually opportunities to replenish lingerie, hosiery, and beauty favorites at reduced prices.

How to shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

The sale preview is already online. If you are a Nordstrom cardholder, you’ll be able to shop the sale first, as early as July 9 depending on your Nordy Club status. (Check your account information for your status and access date.) “All Skate” access (everyone else) starts July 15.

The good news is, you still have some time to go through the preview. If you have a Nordstrom account you can save favorites to your Wish List, and easily add them to your cart when you have access to shop.

Here’s the strategy I use to get the most from this sale:

When you first open the sale Preview, it can be a little overwhelming; there’s just so much there! So I’ve developed a few strategies to help you stay focused and find what you need.

👉 Make a list. Are there items you need to replace or refresh? Gaps in your wardrobe? You can use the filters on the Nordstrom product pages to refine your search by item type.

If you’re planning to shop this sale, what types of items will you be looking for? Let me know and I’ll be on the lookout.

👉 Then, search by your favorite brands. Some of the brands I usually check for first are:

👉 Next, I’ll do a broader search by category. For example:

Finally, I may wait a day or so to clear my head, then I’ll do what I call a “stream of consciousness” lap, just scrolling through broad categories (e.g. Clothing, Shoes, Beauty, Accessories) to see what catches my eye that I might have overlooked. (I’ve actually found some of my best Anniversary Sale purchases this way.)

And I’ll also take a pass through the store early in the sale, to see if anything jumps out at me.

👉 Don’t get discouraged…inventory may be tight on some items, but if something you wanted is sold out in your size or preferred color, bookmark it or keep on your wish list, and sign up for email notification of restocks, or check back periodically. Returns and restocks happen throughout the sale period. With the shift toward shopping more online rather than in stores, there will be more tendency for people to order multiple sizes and return what doesn’t fit.

Some of my first round picks

I like to focus first on versatile basics, and these are a few pieces that stood out during my first few passes through the sale. Some of these may sell out quickly, so keep on your wish list, and sign up to be notified by email if sold-out favorites come back in stock.


Nic + Zoe boucle knit jacket black/whiteHow to shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale
Cole Haan leather wing collar jacket with zip front in Hazelnut.Cole Haan leather wing collar jacket with zip front in Hazelnut.
Caslon relaxed knit 2-button blazer in Navy.Caslon relaxed knit 2-button blazer in Navy.

Barbour quilted jacket

Another great transitional season jacket, this one is also offered in black.

(Fit note: I’ve found that Barbour quilted jackets tend to run a little small/narrow through the shoulders, so you may want to size up.)

Barbour quilted jacket tanBarbour quilted jacket tan


Madewell stripe polo sweater cream/blackMadewell stripe polo sweater cream/black

Rag & bone cotton-blend cardigan

Don’t hit the snooze button on this one, as I think it will sell quickly. While this color is best for Summers, I think it’s neutral enough that some Springs & Autumns could wear it as well, mixed with some of your other palette colors. Sizes XX-Small to X-Large.

(In my experience, Rag & bone cardigans run just a little large.)

Rag & bone nora button front cardigan.Rag & bone nora button front cardigan.
Vince short sleeve wool & cashmere sweater charcoal.Vince short sleeve wool & cashmere sweater charcoal.
Caslon pima cotton cardigan in navy stripe.Caslon pima cotton cardigan in navy stripe.


You can always find some good denim options in the Anniversary sale, though some of the most popular styles tend to go quickly.

AG Mari high waist slim jeansAG Mari high waist slim jeans

AG Mari high waist slim jeans

This style continues to be popular, for good reason. It’s a flattering slim leg (not skinny) style with a nice bit of stretch. I like this medium wash for versatility, which isn’t too distressed. Sizes 23-33.

Paige Cindy straight leg jeans medium blue wash.Paige Cindy straight leg jeans medium blue wash.
AG ex-boyfriend jeans medium washAG ex-boyfriend jeans medium wash


As always, some of the best finds are in the shoe department!

Nordstrom Ruiz loafer in leopard printNordstrom Ruiz loafer in leopard print
Ilse Jacobsen tulip slip-onsIlse Jacobsen tulip slip-ons
AGL Naomi cap toe ballet flat pewter metallicAGL Naomi cap toe ballet flat pewter metallic


Monica Vinader keshi pearl hoop earringsMonica Vinader keshi pearl hoop earrings
Coach pebbled leather bag with crossbody strap.Coach pebbled leather bag with crossbody strap.
Celine cat-eye sunglassesCeline cat-eye sunglasses
Dagne Dover large Landon carryall Sage.Dagne Dover large Landon carryall Sage.

Dagne Dover large Landon carryall

This is the same carryall I used on my last overseas trip. It holds a TON and has lots of well-thought-out organization and features.

Next up, I’ll be sharing what’s on my wish list. And I’ll be providing updates throughout the sale, so do check back!

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