The best thing about fashion is that you don't have to spend loads of money to look fabulous. It's all about being creative, finding bargains and following these amazing tips by guest contributor Sarah.
Among the most popular and oft-repeated lines is the seemingly ageless adage that you always get what you paid for. Meaning if you want something good, you better be ready to shell out lots of cash for it. While this may hold true in some areas, it certainly does not need to be the case in fashion. Spending big does not guarantee you'll look your best, and often times, a little creativity can help you achieve haute couture on the cheap.
Below are 7 tips to upping your style while keeping to your budget.
1. Mobile Apps
Forget your favorite bag, the item that you truly never leave home without is your smartphone. Take advantage of long lines and waiting rooms by downloading a few fashion-focused apps like Fashion Eye (fashioneyegame.com) or Pose. Whether they give you a new idea, let you catch up on the latest seasonal lines or even allow you to purchase high fashion budget items directly through the app, mobile fashion can be a great way to cut down on time and keep to your budget. If time is money, this will definitely help you save.
2. Find the Experts
One of the biggest challenges of budget shopping is the vast amount of time that it consumes. Searching the sales racks is never as easy as window shopping off the mannequins and the problem is only exacerbated when you need to visit an array of different stores all over town. BudgetBabe, TheLook4Less and other blogs serve as amazing guides to finding styles that bring top dollar looks with budget friendly brands and also let you cut down on the time it takes to be identify a cheaper chic.
Whether it be identifying cheaper options for expensive items or letting you peruse the items available at a range of more cost-friendly stores, these blogs do the work so that you don't have to.
3. One Stop Shops
While they won't be considered the mecca of fashion shopping any time soon, large retailers like Target, Selfridges and Forever 21 often boast a great selection of designer offerings at far lower costs. For those who keep getting trapped into designer boutiques and high end chains, you'll be surprised to see just how good the quality is for many of the brands these outlets carry. Even if you can't pull together an entire wardrobe, avoiding name brands for items like t-shirts and tank tops can help you keep to your budget.
4. Do It Yourself
Sometimes, the only difference between the looks that make the fashion week runways and the ones you'd avoid wearing in public, are a few accessories. Often, the simple recipe of a glue gun, a handful of funky jewels and an old top or pair of jeans can be all you need for a an amazing outfit.
5. Mix & Match
DIY projects also serves as a reminder to take the time to go through your stuff. You never know what items - long relegated to the bottom of the drawer or the back corners of your closet - will suddenly find a new purpose in your wardrobe. This becomes all the more helpful if you can bribe or earn access to your moms' closet. It never ceases to amaze how certain outfits can go so horribly out-of-style before surging back decades later.
One of the biggest causes of overspending in fashion is a simple lack of perspective. We get so used to what's in our closets that we simply can't imagine that what we have is enough. Yet, many times, all that our seemingly bland or overused outfits need is a little light sprucing. A great belt or bag can make all the difference, and because you only need to pay for a few items, that difference may not be as expensive as you originally feared.
Few items can do as much for a wardrobe as a great new pair of heels. Heels add height, power and a slimming effect to most outfits. The result is a look that may seem tired with flats, but is brought to new heights – literally and figuratively – with heels. Obviously, these can come at quite a price, but because they can be utilized across your wardrobe, it's well worth the investment. I mean, you have spend on something, don't you?
How much you spend on fashion should not determine how good you look. With a little creativity, a dash of good advice and a better idea of where to look, you can build a wardrobe worthy of the runway with a budget that you can stomach.