This is my 3rd year of doing a daily countdown to Christmas on my Facebook page - it begins on Oct 1rst (85 days till Christmas) and has a new Christmas picture everyday. Because of my budget I have to start buying this month to spread the money out a little but I love Christmas so I don't mind. When do you start your serious Christmas shopping?
Really I start towards the end of Summer passively. That's to say if I see something someone will like and it will have usefulness at Christmas, I'll go ahead and pick it up. I dont start actively looking until November maybe?
I start Christmas Day for the Next Year (if my family will let me slip away to get on the computer that is.) ;) As I catch deals that I know will be needed or wanted I shop all year - and then the Final BIG Gifts normally on or around Black Friday.
I shop at the last minute because I simply hate shopping. Oh, I keep a running list of ideas in my head but then I wait until I see something good and grab it. I'm a horrible gift giver ... but I also don't like Christmas.