Buying second hand clothing is not only a great way to reduce waste and protect the environment. It is also a great way to save on your fashion budget. After reading these tips you will know how to identify what works so you can create a stunning wardrobe and save.
- How to buy high-end fashion on a budget
- How to look well-dressed on a budget
- Don’t fall for a high end brand
- Know your brands
- A key to effortless style is fit
- Size charts changed over the decades
- Use a band measure to save time in the fitting room
- Know the value of your fav designers and brands
- Fashion on a budget
- Examples of stylish looks under $150
- Final remarks on saving with second hand fashion
- Top of the World Style linkup party
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How to buy high-end fashion on a budget
Many of us love thrifting and conseigning. It’s the hunter in us, the thrill of a great find, saving on expensive clothes, or just the need to stay on a fashion budget, while having to dress for success, who knows. Second hand stores often have perfect, barely worn clothes that we could not afford first hand. And yes, we feel good about shopping there because recycling and reducting waste is also good for the environment. We all have different reasons.
How to look well-dressed on a budget
When you have no deadline, thrifting and/or conseigning are great options to save on building an awesome functioning wardrobe. Browse shops in upscale neighborhoods. Here you typically find higher end brands or designers than those in other areas of town.
Don’t fall for a high end brand
It is important to try everything on to see how an item looks on you. Just because you love a Chanel jacket doesn’t mean that it is flattering for you body shape. Recall you don’t want a hem line at the widest part of your body. You can determine your body type with this free quiz.
Know your brands
Make a list of brands and designers that produce pieces in your personal style and look for them. If you are lucky to find a Betsy Johnson, but your style is dramatic or classic, this Bohemian Style find will just take up real estate in your closet and you will never wear these beautiful clothes. Recall wearing designer does not equal to effortlessly stylish.If you don't look great in the clothes, it doesn't matter that it is a high-end brand. You look just expensive, not effortlessly stylish. #dress4success Click To Tweet
A key to effortless style is fit
Never buy something that doesn’t fit. Therefore, try everything on. Be aware that the pieces can be from brands that you never had your hands on before (but are on your wish list), or even from other countries, each of which might have their own system of sizing. Do I have to mention that the previous owner may have had the piece altered? And yes, even high-end fashion can shrink when the owner failed to follow the care instructions.
Size charts changed over the decades
When you are interested in fashion history, you may already know that even sizing systems in the United States have shifted over time! Also handmade items don’t have size tags. And you never know, whether the piece of your choice had been tailored to fit a tinier women than the size tag pretends. Thus, avoid looking at the size tag as the plague.
Use a band measure to save time in the fitting room
In thriftstores, the merchandise often is ordered by price rather than size. Thus, it is easier to find your size in consignment stores because their staff sort clothes by broad sizes – typically S, M, L, and XL. Recall size is just a number.
Thus, to save time and avoid frustrations caused by too large or too small items, come prepared. A measure band is a great aid. Lay the item flat and take the measures for shoulder width, breast, waist, upper and lower hip as well as length. Multiply the measures with 2 and you have the circumfence. Compare these numbers with your body measures plus 1-2 inch for ease. If the values of the clothing agree with those of your body try the piece on. If not, there is no point in going thru the hassle of undressing, trying on, undressing and dressing again even when you had dressed for clothes shopping.
BCBGMAX pumps, eShakti lace skirt (all own) and cape c/o Tricia Tanaka
Know the value of your fav designers and brands
In my tips on scoring high on eBay, I point out to watch the bidding market prior to start buying or bidding to find out whether your wish wardrobe addition is worth its price. Of course, you can’t do this when shopping in a second hand store. However, you should know what your fav designers and brands cost first hand. With this price tag in mind add the upper most price you are willing to pay for a pre-owned jacket, dress, pair of pants, etc. that looks like new. Stick to it with respect to the upper limit. However, always judge the wear and make up your mind whether the wear and tag are in sync. Even $20 for a Gucci scarf, for instance, are too expensive when the scarf has holes or is ribbed.
Examples of stylish looks under $150
Below are example outfits for inspiration. The clothes I wear in each of these looks are below $150 per outfit.
Ruby Belle plaid sheath dress (thrifted for $12) with cashmere sweater (bought on eBay for $20), and Harley Davidson booties (auctioned on eBay for $70), GNW tight, Hermes enamel bangles, Seiko watch, pearl necklace (all own)
Outfit for dancing/date night with thrifted sequin tunic ($12) with London Jean boyfriend jeans (bought on sale), and Tucker for Target bomber jacket (all own)
This low budget work look is made of a GNW cardigan bought on sale, L.K. Bennett pumps auctioned on eBay for $50. The Jones New York jacket and Ralph Lauren pleated skirt were consignment finds of which I do not remember the exact price. Etnic belt (all own)
The GNW Luxe sweater was 50% off, the Oscar de la Renta scarf was a thrift find for $5 (!) and the pants were auctioned off-season on eBay new for less than a fourth of the retail price. Clark booties (all own)
The G-III skirt and Ann Taylor blazer are consignment finds, the pink mock turtleneck cashmere sweater and Harley Davidson booties were auctioned on eBay. Tissot watch (all own). White jade and onyx necklace c/o Almo Jewellery
This tea-length evening-gown was $10 at my neighbor’s yard sale. Since I am a ballroom dancer, it is now at less than $1.50 per wear
If you liked these tips share with your friendsI found these awesome tips how to stay on a budget and buy great clothes. #budgetfashion Click To Tweet
Then they owe you! 😉
Final remarks on saving with second hand fashion
Finally, to really save and stay on your budget
When thrifting or consigning buy only name brand items that you have on your wish-list. #saving Click To Tweet
Get a list of brands to look for as a cheat sheet to put into your purse or store on your phone to have it handy next time you are thrifting. You also may like to read this general guide on how you can save when shopping.
Don’t let the right outfit be a random thing. Wear the right look in every situation by looking up what to wear when in How to Dress for Success in Midlife. Buy my book now.
When you like this summer work outfit, please feel free to pin the photos to your Pinterest board.
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Stylist’s tip: pants and shirt are a great twist on the wearing white in summer American tradition.
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