Affordably Stylish. The How-To
“How can I be stylish and fashionable without spending a ton of cash?“
It's no surprise that I get thrown this question on the regular, because of course we all want to know how to save the pennies; and most every day women can't justify spending thousands of dollars on fashion and beauty - I can, but that's a whole other story. 😉
So here's my two cents worth.
One of the biggest misconceptions about style and good fashion – and there are many – is that it requires deep pockets.
First and foremost, and I know I've said it before, but for the love of pete, go rummage in your very own stash.
There are always items in your possession that you've forgotten about. That skirt you bought on holiday three years ago, that t-shirt that's wedged between two drawers, those pretty scarves stuck under the dresser.
Spend a lazy Sunday taking everything out. Go through it all and reacquaint yourself with your stash. Then take all the stuff you don't like or don't want to the charity shop or pass on to a grateful friend.
And even if you don't find anything - which is highly unlikely, because even an old belt can be incorporated to brighten up a tired outfit - at least you've cleaned out your wardrobe, which is both productive and gloriously satisfying.
Furthermore, since I mentioned it, visit charity stores, seconds warehouses and sample sales.
And I'm not referring to just any old run-down Salvos - though all deserve a quick nosey - visit good ones in affluent areas.
I have claimed a plethora of keepers from consignment stores in my travels, including a dream of a Alexander McQueen leather jacket in Manhattan, a full length fur coat in London and a pair of Calvin Klein boots right here in NZ.
Next, find out when sales and sample sales occur. Check local papers, ask sale assistants and visit websites of your fave stores; then be quick on sale day.
Learn how to sew or find a good tailor / seamstress. Might seem like a weird one, but those talented in the sewing department invariably have a lovely, eclectic collection and have spent about 2% of what I spend on clothes.
If you can sew, you have the advantage of creating your own fashion for pennies. Even if you can't make a whole dress, little jazzy touches, such as funky buttons, quirky pockets and collars, new hemlines etc can elevate the blandest of items.
Plus you'll never have to stoop to buying cheap clothes from companies who manufacture their goods unethically. Thumbs up to that, right?
But my best tip?
The reason people find enjoyment and satisfaction from purchasing fashionable things is because, quite simply, it makes them feel good about themselves.
And so much about good fashion comes down to attitude. The way you hold yourself, your walk, your stance, your body language, your confidence.
So walk tall and own your look - you may not be draped in Chanel (although you could be if you follow my thrifty advice), but enjoy fashion and flaunt your style with pride.