Is your wardrobe feeling a little stale? Do you want to bring in new trend pieces, swap things out for the new season, or just change up your style a little? Refreshing your wardrobe can be an expensive task, but there are ways to do it on a budget. Try some of these money-saving tips to get a feels-like-new wardrobe without emptying your bank account during this difficult time.
Shop your closet
Get everything out of your wardrobe and take a look at what you have already. You might have some hidden gems that you’ve forgotten about, lurking in the depths of your wardrobe. When you know what you have, you can also identify what you’re missing. When you’re done, don’t just shove everything back in. Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit, or that you won’t wear. You’ll have fewer clothes, but will be better able to see things you can actually wear. Put things back in an organised way.
Write a list
What gaps did you identidy in your wardrobe? Do you need a black blazer to smarten things up for work? Do you need a dress for your friend’s wedding? Do you need some shoes to go with that skirt? Go to a store with a list in mind. This keeps you focussed and helps stop impulse buys and you bringing home more pieces that don’t go with anything, or that you already own in four other colours.
Shop somewhere other than the high street and online department stores
If you’re on a tight budget, try somewhere other than your usual shops. Check out a lower cost fashion outlet online, or a supermarket’s fashion range in person to find some bargains. If you like to trawl charity shops for finds, do it in a wealthy area and shop in the charity shops there. You’re more likely to find high quality pieces in charity shops in more affluent towns and you might even find some bargain designer pieces.
Shop at quieter times
If you’re hitting the high street, avoid the weekends. If you can, go on a weeknight. If you have to shop on a weekend, get there early. Quieter stores mean you can take more time to find what you’re looking for and there’ll be better availability of sales items that haven’t been picked through already by hundreds of other shoppers.Think about options
Before you buy anything, think about how you can wear it. If you’ve had your eye caught by a beautiful skirt, imagine it in your wardrobe. Do you already own three to five items that would go with it? If you’d need to buy something new to make it work, leave it in the store. If it won’t work with what you already own, it’s not worth it.
Search for coupons
If you’re shopping online, load up your basket, but before you head to the checkout, look around for a coupon or voucher code. You can just Google it, or you can sign up to one of the many voucher sites out there. No voucher? Sign up for a cashback site and check that too, so you can earn a little back on your shopping.
If spending a lot of money on one item scares you, calculate the cost-per-wear. How often will you wear the item? Divide the price by that number and you have the cost-per-wear. This shows that dropping a small fortune on a dress to wear to one formal event is probably not worth it, but it would be worth spending more on a winter coat that you’ll wear every day for months and can wear for several years.
Make your own
Are you crafty? If you’re handy with a sewing machine, you could try making your own clothes. Patterns and fabric are often cheaper than clothes. You can make something that’s good quality, a perfect fit for you and unique to you. If you don’t feel confident enough to make clothes, but you can sew, you could try altering your exisiting wardrobe. Take things in, cuff trousers, add more interesting buttons, or other embellishments. Small changes can all make a big difference to your clothes and the way that they look.Host a clothing swap
If you know your friends are also clearing out their clothes and looking for new pieces, host a swap. Everyone brings the pieces they don’t want anymore, and swaps with everyone else. You can clear some space in your wardrobe and might find something great to put in its place. After all, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.
Shop outside your section
Women’s clothes are often much more expensive, as they’re usually more trend-led. Venture into the men’s section for perfect oversized jumpers and t-shirts. Shop men’s accessories. If you’re petite, check out the kid’s section. You can find some great pieces for much lower prices. If you have small feet, always check the kids’ shoe section. Kids’ shoes sections often carry designs that are almost the same as the adult section, but at much lower prices, as there’s no VAT on children’s shoes.
Buy just one
If you find something you really love, it’s often tempting to buy it in several colours. This seems smart, but you’ll inevitably wear one much more than the others, while the others just clutter up your wardrobe. Choose just one and enjoy wearing it.
Wear things again
Lots of women buy whole new outfits for every special occasion. This can get expensive, especially if you’re at the age when all your friends are getting married. In reality, it’s likely that nobody but you remembers what you wore to that wedding in April, so you can repeat outfits. Buy a few pieces for special occasions and just refresh them with different accessories. Nobody will care, even if they do notice you’re wearing a dress you wore before.
If you’re debating over an item, you probably don’t really want it. Walk away. If you’re still thinking about it in a few days, you can go back and get it, and feel more confident that you aren’t spending your money on an impulse purchase.
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