Hey everyone! We have another inspiring guest poster here today to share her ideas on how you can be totally trendy without breaking the bank! If you missed the first posts of the series here's where you can find them:
If someone were to glance in my closet they would automatically assume that I belonged to a high-class family with a six digit income. Never would they imagine that it belonged to a lower middle-class, one-income, frugal woman who has never set foot in any high fashion store that wasn't part of an outlet mall. No, I don't consider myself "poor" in the least bit, but by the time the bills are paid each month I have little leftover to spend on money and shoes. In fact, the actual money that I'm able to spend on these luxuries is around $40, usually less. So how did I build up such a fanciful closet? By doing what I do best: SHOPPING!!
In my opinion, shopping is a talent. Just like any other activity, anyone can do it, and most of them do, but to be good at it takes hard work and practice. You have to find the deals. You have to search through racks of clothing. You have to pull out the needle and thread every once in a while. You have to take advantage of sales, and shop the right places at the right time. For a stay at home mother and student, it's easy for me to shop whenever I want. (Which is probably how I got so good at it!) Most importantly, you have to have an IMAGINATION!
This is how I shop like it's what I was born to do:
1. I don't shop at name brand stores.
I shop at Goodwill. I shop at Salvation Army. I shop at any thrift stores or yard sales that I can drag my nine month old to. And I am NOT ashamed! (Just a side note-If you are ashamed of where you shop, you won't have fun, and isn't that what makes shopping so enjoyable?) A few weeks ago at Goodwill I found a brand new (with tags!) Michael Kors sweater! It was only 53 cents. About two months ago I found an authentic Coach purse at a local thrift store for $12. The only thing I had to do was look. I also shop at stores like TJ Maxx, Burlington Coat Factory, Marshalls, and Ross, although these are my "splurge" stores. If I'm really feeling rich, I might go to Forever 21, although you can't find any name brand clothing there.
2. I use my imagination.
You have to be able to see the Potential in a piece of clothing. What you see as an old man's button down, I see as a sexy, vintage woman's shirt. (See picture below). It's all about being creative and having fun with clothes. You can easily transform something "ugly" to the hottest new thing. Most of the time you can do this by how you choose to wear it, but sometimes scissors, sequins, and sewing helps! I love to get on Pinterest to find clothing ideas, you would be amazed at some of the ways people transform an old t-shirt to a fabulous dress!
3. I stay informed.
Who, what, when, and where! I sign up for Groupon and Living Social e-mails. I sign up for Goodwill e-mails! I received an e-mail from Goodwill a few weeks ago saying that everything with a blue tag was 85% off, which is how I ended up with my fancy MK sweater, an almost new Patagonia shirt, a columbia athletic shirt, and much more! (All in perfect condition and less than 75 cents!) Read the ads in your local newspaper, find out what's on sale and when! Combine these sales with coupons and other discounts, and you can find a real bargain! (Coupons aren't just limited to grocery stores-register your e-mail and many stores will send you a coupon for your birthday!) Oh, and don't forget the clearance aisles!
Don't forget to give back! Other people donate so we can shop, so why not donate so other's can shop your clothes? What's ugly to us might be cute to them, everyone has different taste! Also, if you do hit the lottery, or something in the likes, YOU could be the one donating those MK sweaters for those of us on a stricter budget!
See this shirt below? I bought it at Goodwill for 53 cents. At first glance, it is just an ugly mens button down. But I knew that it had potential!
With some white shorts (TJ Maxx: $9) and gold accessories, this turned into a classy and cute outfit! I got several compliments from my friends, even a stranger said to me "cute style."
Here are a few other outfits I put together for under $10:
Shirt: Goodwill, 53 cents
Pants: Ross Dress for Less: $7.99
(My mom gave me the shoes!)
Alone this shirt was ugly. Paired with my favorite white shorts it looks great! Potential! Potential! Potential!
Shirt: Salvation Army: $1.50
Shorts: TJ Maxx: $7.99
You don't have to spend a lot to look great! It's all about putting some effort into it and searching for those deals! It might take some practice but it's definitely worth all of the money you can save! It is possible to own name brand, stylish clothing on a tight budget! Good luck!
A little bit about me: I am a mother to the sweetest baby boy and the wife to the most handsome husband! I am a student at the University of Arkansas majoring in Criminal Justice and Writing with a minor in Psychology. I am a retired cheerleader, current tennis player (I attempt to play), and a proud member of Chi Omega Women's Fraternity. I just recently decided to start my own blog, which is still in the beginner stage but I am slowly figuring it out! There are a few good recipes on there, and a post about how I lost 40 lbs! You can find it at www.craziestpersonever.
blogspot.com. Feel free to check it out and if you enjoy it, share! -Jalynn M.