Fashion Tips
7 Smart Fashion Tips for the Woman on a Shoestring Budget

It’s funny how the fashion industry works. Something that is chic and trendy today can go out of fashion tomorrow and probably get resurrected again after a few years.

Keeping up with these changes can cost you a fortune. But just because your wardrobe doesn’t have enough Yves Saint Laurent and Louis Vuitton pieces, doesn’t mean that it can’t look expensive and fashionable.

Follow these smart and savvy tips to look high on style while keeping your costs low.

  • Love It or Leave It

Stop buying clothes that you are never going to wear. Just because something is available at a hefty discount doesn’t mean you have to buy it. Ask yourself the following questions before you make a purchase:

  • Do I need this?
  • Do I already own something like this?
  • Does it fit me well?
  • Will it go with my existing collection?

If the answer to all of these is a NO, put the item back. Don’t fool yourself into buying something that you may wear after losing 5 kilos or something that you cannot pair with the existing items in your wardrobe. You don’t need lots of clothes for a fabulous wardrobe. What you need are clothes that can be easily mixed-and-matched to push your final outfit to the next level.

  • Follow Style, Not Trends

Don’t get carried away by fashion trends or you will have a closet full of outdated stuff in a few months. It is recommended to know and create your signature style rather than blindly splurge on trends.

To create your own personal style, first find out the colours, patterns, and silhouettes that look good on you. Ideally you should follow the 70/30 rule, i.e. 70% of your wardrobe should comprise the classic, timeless pieces that never go out of vogue, and the remaining 30% should include the latest trends that you won’t mind parting with once they’re out of fashion. This ensures that you spend most of your money on styles that can be worn forever.

  • Shop Smart If You Don’t Want to Pay Full Price

Pay attention to stores’ sales and you can build a stylish wardrobe at a fraction of the cost that you would otherwise incur. Here are a few tips to make the most of sales:

  • Keep track of your favourite store’s sales. Visit their website and sign-up for their emails. This way, you can get a notification during sale season. Follow their reward programs, which let members buy items at discounted prices. Another good idea is to use a discount app, you can get great deals and cashback on Macy’s and other brands
  • Follow your favourite brands on social media if you want to stay on top of their latest news. Most brands keep customers updated on upcoming sales and deals through their social media pages.
  • Shop at end-of-season sales as that’s the best place to look for staples and classic pieces at reduced prices. Remember, you don’t need to walk past a pair of leather boots because it is summer already. If the items are available at reasonable prices, there is no harm in buying them now for wearing later.

Apart from sales, you can also consider buying clothes from thrift and vintage stores. These stores are gold mines for anyone looking for bargains on pre-owned and well-cared-for garments. You will get everything, from designer handbags and ball gowns to those leopard-print mules you drooled over last season. You can find fantastic quality and vintage treasures, particularly at the vintage stores. Their collection of excellent fabrics and hand-sewn embellishments make these stores one-of-a-kind.

  • Fit Is Everything

Even a Prada dress can look sloppy if it doesn’t fit you well. A piece that fits your body perfectly will always look more expensive. Alterations can help, particularly when you don’t want to splurge on custom-made designer pieces. Those on a budget can ask a tailor to customize their clothes according to their size and make even inexpensive pieces look a lot better. Minor, but well-done alterations can change the complete look of ill-fitting clothes.

  • Use Accessories to Spice up Your Wardrobe

If your shoestring budget doesn’t allow you to revamp your wardrobe, consider buying a few accessories that complement your style and spice up your wardrobe. Add new bags, statement jewellery from the perfect collection of beautiful rings and necklaces, and sunglasses to your ensemble. You can mix and match them with your existing clothes to wear a new look every day.

Another way to upgrade your look without spending too much on new clothes is by replacing cheap buttons and belts from your current garments with new expensive looking ones. The replacement will make your old clothes look new and upscale.

  • Choose Dark Colours

Style experts believe that dark colours, mainly black, hide the signs of a budget dress. There’s a reason why everyone likes the little black dress. It never goes out of style and the dark hue hides the imperfect details of the dress if it is a budget outfit. This also applies to other dark colours like purple, burgundy, and navy blue. Pair your dark-coloured clothes with bold accessories like a statement necklace and a couple of beautiful rings, and you are ready to go.

  • Wardrobe Audit and Swap Party

Clean your wardrobe and weed out everything that looks unflattering or out-dated and hasn’t been worn in the last six months. A small closet full of quality clothes that fit you perfectly is so much better than a huge closet full of ordinary clothes.

For a wardrobe audit, start with writing down the basics that you need for a dream wardrobe. For example, a pair of high-quality boyfriend jeans is a classic that you can wear to work, for a date night or an outing with friends.

Once you have cleaned your wardrobe, you will realize that you have plenty of clothes that you don’t want anymore. Organize a clothes swap party with your friends! Invite them over to your place and ask them to bring the clothes and accessories that are in good condition but they don’t want anymore. You can exchange each other’s clothes and upgrade your wardrobe for free.

It is hard to stay fashionable on a shoestring budget. However, with these best-kept secrets on budget shopping from the fashion industry, you can look super-stylish without breaking the bank. Upgrade your wardrobe with the above tips for achieving affordable styles that are nothing short of fab and uber-chic.

September 6, 2018
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