- The purpose of this study was to obtain information about clothing acquisition practices of low-income mothers. An interview questionnaire was designed to obtain information about the clothing sources perceived as available to these women, the sources of clothing used, the sources of information used, the preplanning practices used, and demographic information including the respondent's age, educational level, place of residence (farm or nonfarm), household size, income level (above or below a predetermined poverty level), and county of residence. The interview was administered to 55 women at a free clothing distribution center in Corvallis, Oregon. Descriptive statistics were used in the analysis. Chi-square was used in analyzing the preplanning practices used in relation to age, educational level, household size, and income level of the mother. Clothing sources perceived as available by over half of the respondents included: Department stores, Thrift shops, and a free clothing distribution center. Clothing sources used by over half of the respondents included: Handed-down,Thrift shops, Department stores, Gifts (new clothes), Discount stores, Secondhand stores, Homemade, Rummage sales, Garage sales, Organizations, and Exchange. Friends or Relatives and the Newspaper were information sources used most frequently and considered the most important. Women with incomes below a predetermined poverty threshold level were more often accompanied by friends or relatives when acquiring clothing. The women responded by answering Always, Sometimes, or Never to
questions about 13 preplanning practices. Preplanning practices used
Always or Sometimes by at least 90 percent of the respondents included:
a) taking the children along when shopping, b) leaving the house
knowing how they would pay for the clothes, c) repairing or remodeling
clothes on hand, d) deciding before leaving the house whether
fabric to make clothes or store-bought clothes would be acquired, e)
considering obtaining clothing from sources other than a free clothing
distribution center or buying new clothes, and f) looking for
Age was significantly related to four preplanning practices as
determined by Chi-square. These practices included: 1) measuring
the children in order to obtain clothes that fit, 2) saving money for
the acquisition of clothing, 3) deciding before leaving the house if
store-bought clothes or fabric to make clothes would be obtained, and
4) considering obtaining clothes from sources other than the free
clothes distribution center or buying new clothes.
Education was significantly related to two preplanning practices.
They included: 1) leaving the house knowing exactly how to pay for
the clothes obtained, and 2) leaving the house knowing at which store
looking for clothes would take place.
Household size was significantly related to these two preplanning
practices: 1) leaving the house knowing exactly what kind of
clothes will be obtained, and 2) measuring the children in order to
obtain clothes that fit.
Income level was significantly related to this preplanning practice:
looking at two or more places before obtaining clothes.