Back to school – Tested and recommended: School Uniforms & other school essentials

Here is a list of school essentials tested and recommended by London Mums.


School uniforms

Most supermarket stock school uniform items with no logos which all school accept provided the school uniform’s colours are maintained. We found some of the best items (good value for money) at Sainsbury’s.

The stockist number is 0800 63 62 62 and their customers can find their nearest Sainsbury’s that stocks schoolwear.

Image credits: The children shown in the above image are wearing Sainsbury’s BACK TU SCHOOL clothing range.

The cheapest uniforms in town

Cash-strapped parents wanting to kit their kids out for the new school year for less can head to Aldi. From 2nd August 2012, the discounter is offering a complete school uniform set for only £4, and is guaranteeing to be the lowest price out there.

The £4 uniform which consists of a round neck sweater (£1.25) a pack of two plain polo shirts (£1.25) and pleated skirt or trousers (£1.50) costs mum and dad just 2p for each school day.

Aldi recently completed an Omnibus survey of 1034 parents from across the UK which found that:

40% of parents admit they would cut back on family days out this summer so they can pay for back to school items.

On average 1 in 3 parents are willing to give up meals out to pay for back to school products.

A quarter will give up trips to the cinema this summer to compensate, followed by new clothes (22%).

54% of those surveyed agree the main pressure for buying new school uniforms comes from the school which dictate the uniforms to buy.

But it is those parents in London who want to keep up with the ‘The Jones’ with 1 in 7 admitting the pressure to buy new school uniforms comes from wanting to keep up with their children’s friends parents.

The average back to school cost per child is £182.85 – this includes:

Stationery – £15.08

Uniform – £57

Coat – £33.86

Shoes – £36.32

Bag – £14.36

PE Kit – £19.07

Lunchbox – £7.16

School and sport shoes

Clarks is London Mums’ first choice for school shoes for their durability, comfort and cool look. This year we have opted for a smarter look by selecting the Ashcroft model pictured here, although the 2011 is still a great choice of shoes as you can check in our previous review.

For sporty activities our favourite choice is New Balance Navy Velcro Running Shoes: they are as comfy as slippers, and also very stylish to please the trendiest kids in town. They are available from                      



If you want to make the school run really a daily fun experience, you must get the latest scooters accessories from Microscooters: your child will be impressed and will be able to impress his/her school fellows plus you can use the covers as puppets too. Brilliant!


If your child goes to swimming lessons these products are essential:


Good quality goggles are important when learning to swim. The Speedo goggles are good value for money. The Cyclone Goggles feature an ergonomic rear clasp fastening that helps to reduce the risk of hair tear. They also come with interchangeable nose bridges that allow for a perfect fit. And most importantly these goggles benefits from anti-fog coated lenses with UV protection allowing for greater clarity whilst swimming. RRP £15.00

FootwearJUNIOR ATAMI CORE SLIDE from Speedo – We love Speedo as it’s a guarantee in terms of value for money. We love these shoes to use when going to the swimming pool.


Asda sells incredibly good-value-for-money school stationary for £1 or so for each item. Here are some products we tested.

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