Tips on Stretching Your Fashion Dollar

We can all agree that times are tough right now. Your dollar doesn’t go as far as it used it, and a new Fall fashion season just around the corner. It's always tempting to overextend yourself and spend more than you should on a few new outfits, but if your budget doesn't allow for it, then you need to make some adjustments. There are some really simple things that you can do to help make those adjustments and stretch your dollar, so here are some really simple tips to help you look and feel great without breaking the bank.

Closet Audit

A new season is the perfect time to audit your closet. You will always find pieces you still love and a few pieces that you just don’t wear anymore.  An audit is a great way to really see what you've got, and to see if there are any holes in your wardrobe that need filling. This will help make shopping for new clothes easier, and prevent against impulse buying something you don't need or already have.  It takes a little time and effort, but will pay dividends later on as you start dressing for the Fall season.

Back to Basics

It is important to go back to basics now. I bought a trench coat a few of months ago and have already gotten so much use out it. Trench coats aren’t particularly flashy, but they are a necessary part of the Fall wardrobe simply because you are going to need it at some point. I consider the trench coat a ‘basic’ wardrobe necessity, and have come to appreciate the beauty in its simplicity.  It has become the most versatile piece that I own. I can wear it over just about everything, and it just gives my outfit that extra something. It also keeps me warm, covers me up it keeps the wind out the rain out. It's practical, it's versatile and it makes my outfits look a little more polished and pulled together. So those key pieces in your wardrobe really become staple pieces, so if you don't own them, maybe borrowing one or doing a swap with your friends. Whatever it is, just make sure you've got some of those key pieces in your closet. It has made a huge difference for me, and I think it will for you too.

Accessories

The next tip to not spending too much money is the use of accessories. I always think of accessories as that little extra something to make your outfit come together. They're the final piece of the fashion puzzle that really does elevate some of the most basic clothes that you own. They're also a really cost effective way to add a modern look to some of those pieces that you may have owned for years. Those trending pieces are always going to elevate your style whether it's a bold headband or a beautiful lightweight scarf just wrapped around your neck or your shoulders or your purse. Whether it's a new watch or sunglasses or just a snappy piece of statement jewelry, these are pieces that you probable already have in your closet. So don’t go out and spend if you don’t have to, use what you have in new and fun ways.

 Monochrome Outfits

Keeping it simple and one of the easiest things you can do to wear monochrome outfits. Not only do these top to toe, same color outfits, always look chic and stylish, but they're really easy to pull together and create simple, elegant outfits. It's a really simple way to look stylish and if you just want to add a little bit of extra flair or just a little extra something to your outfits, use texture to do that, especially if you're wearing top to toe to break up an outfit and just add a little bit more personality.

Sale Alerts

Not all stores offer this but more and more are offering this so if you have identified key pieces that you would like to add to your lineup, put them on your wish list, set them up as a sale notification so that you will be notified when that piece is reduced. Now obviously this isn't always foolproof because you do run the risk of missing out on some of your favorite pieces. But it does mean that you won't pay full price and you will always get the best price possible for a piece that you really need. Sometimes it's avoidable with a new season that there are new pieces that you really need as opposed to want in your wardrobe. Try  looking at some of the online outlet stores like Saks off 5th or Nordstrom Rack. Now these pieces may have been hot for last season last fall and they've been in storage and they're being brought out and that's why they're on outlet stores or outlet sales. But a lot of these pieces will still work for this season, especially if they're a piece that you need. So think about shopping online but online at outlet stores now just a word of warning with choice outlet stores is make sure that you go into it with a plan. Don't just go scanning the site. The temptation to impulse buy is real, so go in with a plan and you can save yourself a lot of money.

Thrift Shop with a Plan

When thrift shopping, it is always wise to have a plan. I find thrift shops incredibly overwhelming there are generally so many options and often some of my favorite thrift stores are not very well stocked. So you do have to go looking through racks and racks of clothing. If you have a plan of a few pieces that you're particularly looking for when you're thrift shopping. This definitely helps. But I have seen some of favorite thrift shops are well picked over lately, so some of those gems you are looking for are getting harder to find. I had some success finding a few lately, but it isn’t easy. So set some time aside and go in with a plan to increase the the chances of finding what you're looking for.

Imitate Others

Copy someone else’s style. People wear clothes to attract the attention of others, so why not flatter them with imitation? Whether you have been inspired by someone that you've seen on Pinterest or on Instagram, or someone at work or at a restaurant, steal her style. Finding inspiration in others is perfectly acceptable and can be quite time efficient as well. If you love what someone is wearing, look at that outfit closely and take mental notes. Maybe you create a Pinterest board and look at some styles you love. I am sure you will have similar pieces maybe not exactly the same but similar pieces in your own wardrobe that you can use that image as a way of inspiring some different outfit combinations from within your own wardrobe. So find someone and steal their style!

Sell / Swap Your Stuff

I do this regularly with my girlfriends, and it is a great way to purge and/or to sell the pieces that you're no longer wearing. I regularly use the money from reselling to update my new season wardrobe. It's also great because it means that you are constantly churning or turning over your wardrobe by removing the pieces that you aren’t going to wear anymore. Plus, but selling them sooner rather than later, you avoid them getting worn out or fall out of fashion and no market for them. And you're investing in your wardrobe by adding to it.  So have a look in your wardrobe when you're doing that wardrobe edit I mentioned earlier. Have a little look for some pieces that you know you will not wear, and then list them list them on eBay on Facebook marketplace, the Real Real or wherever you like to list secondhand recycled clothes. It's a great way to find extra cash so that you can splurge on some new pieces. It takes time, be patient and diligent and it will pay off. And I'm sure you've heard about it before, but think about a clothing swap whether it's with friends, family or coworkers. It's a fun way to socialize and if you swap one piece of clothing for another, it is worth it. There's nothing wrong with most of the clothing in your friends’ closets, and what's old to someone else is new to you. Plus I love the idea of recycling clothes and giving them a whole new life. The clothes swap thing is not as hard as you think, you just need to organize and execute. I do this with a couple of my friends, and sometimes we only swap one or two pieces, but it is a fun way to get together.

 

Repurpose the Clothes you Have

Repurposing the clothes that you already own is hard, but worth spending some extra energy on. What I mean by that is just wearing them in different more creative ways. And it's as simple as wearing a button down shirt tied at the waist with your favorite pair of jeans one day, and  under your favorite sweater the next. It's about looking at those pieces and being inspired to wear them differently. I find Tik Tok to be a great resource for these kinds of ideas. There are hundreds if not thousands of videos dedicated to this notion. They inspire me to wear some of the pieces that I already own, just differently. Instagram is another good source for styling hacks and different ways to where simple pieces but it is about just getting a little bit creative. And if you're not a creative type of person, find someone creative to help out.

Okay, there you have it. Some great, fun ways to stretch your fashion dollar and be ready for the Fall season. Happy Shopping!

 

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Your Mom Used to Be Cooler Than You

Sorry to break your millennial heart, but back in your mom’s day, clothes were way cooler than what’s hanging on the racks now. Ever wonder why vintage shopping and style does so well these days? Well, when our mothers were at their hippest, the times were a-changing for women (see: The Feminine Mystique, Title IV, Equal Pay Act and Gloria Steinem). Fashion reflected a breakaway from the housewife mold ascribed to their mothers (aka our grandmothers). In other words, our mothers were style pioneers who brought the spirit of revolution, counterculture and women’s rights into their closets, changing fashion for decades to come. Thanks, moms!

While we may not be as cool as our moms were, we can definitely find some inspiration from their closets. In fact, many of the things they used to wear are trendy this spring and summer. So this Mother’s Day, thank your mom for being a great fashion role model and keep your mom-jean jokes to yourself! Here’s a look at what your mom’s generation has got to offer.

Jean … Everything

OK, moms may not have the best reputation when it comes to jeans, but these ladies made jeans cool. No, but really, we wouldn’t be wearing jeans today if our moms didn’t popularize the pants (and shorts, and jackets, and all things denim). They also were the first to get creative with their jeans -- embroidering, destructing, bleaching, painting, cutting and cuffing their denim before you could buy those looks in stores.

 

My aunt added a flower, ripped and frayed these shorts back in the day. These would probably run you $60 at Urban Outfitters today.

Crop Tops

Before you blame American Apparel for the overabundance of midriff, our mothers were the first to dare wear tops above their beltlines (despite giving us grief about our midriff). Though our generation clearly owns the crop top with low-rise jeans look (hence the grief), our mothers’ higher, more appropriate waistlines are what fashion runways have called upon for crop-top pairing this spring and summer.

 

Menswear

If you even think our gen’s “boyfriend” jeans and button-ups stand a chance against our mother’s menswear-inspired closet, kindly search “Diane Keaton” in the browser of your choice. Ties, masculine-looking suits, oversized button-ups and shoulder pads were worn by our mothers without the implication that they borrowed from their boyfriends’ closet. So, channel your inner Keaton to emulate the runway-inspired looks for suits, button-ups and pants.

 

Diane Keaton

Hair Accessories

The retro bows, scarves and headband looks that fuel Pinterest boards today have our mothers to thank. And, basically everything Coachella hair wishes it could be came from our moms. Yes, all the feathered and flowery hair accessories music festivals are teeming with today were brought about by our mothers expressing their Native American sympathies and peace-loving, anti-war sentiments.

Bridget Bardot

Elizabeth Taylor

Pale Pink

While we may attribute pastel in abundance to ’90s pop stars, it was Mamie Eisenhower (34th First Lady), not Britney Spears, who brought pale pink hues into style (the color was actually dubbed “Mamie” pink). Subtle pinks were all over the latest fashion runways, as were pastels, but if you ask your mom, she’s likely to say, oh yeah, that’s what we’d wear to look preppy and cute.

Diana Ross

Oversized Glasses

Mamie was followed by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (aka Jackie O). She took fashion by storm and is responsible for popularizing the oversized glasses look in the ’60s. So while we may associate oversized glasses with celebs trying to hide their famous faces, once again, our mom’s generation did it first. And all those super circular or square frames models donned on the runways were also looks Jackie O brought about. 

Jackie O

All the Skirt Trends

Maxis, minis, tulle, tea length, printed -- you name it! The skirts that are going to be trending this spring and summer were worn by mama dearest and her friends. Our mothers also wore skirts in ways we don’t, such as with slips (can’t knock ’em till you try ’em). Sometimes they even had tubes sewn into the hems that they could inflate for added fullness (yep, their skirt technology was way cooler).

via SerendipityCircus

Wide-Leg Trousers

I personally greatly questioned my ability to wear these when I saw them sashaying down the runway, but hey, if our moms could rock wide-leg trousers and make them cool (and they did), we can put aside our skintight jeans and leggings-as-pants for at least a day and give them a chance ... right?

Joni Mitchelle

Platform Heels

Do you think that cork wedge heels were a ’90s thing? Think again. Cork wedge and other platform heels are retro. So we can add them to our growing list of trends millennials think we started but didn’t.

Image via 1989Vintage

Embroidery

According to fashion mags and many a runway, you should wear embroidered anything this spring and summer. It doesn’t take a fashion historian to tell you our moms already wore embroidered everything. They even did the embroidery themselves.

Mia Farrow

Now that you have some insight into why our moms were so much cooler than we are, let us know which vintage style you’ll be rocking this spring and summer @TheStyleGlossy.

Spring Footwear That Will Knock Your Socks Off

After months spent undercover in boots and wool socks, your feet are ready to step out into the sunshine. And if you need a holiday as an excuse to show off your smashing new pedicure, you’ve got one. May 8 is National No Socks Day. No kidding. For inspiration on spring and summer footwear, take a look at how some of your favorite celebrities have been putting their best sock-free foot forward on the red carpet.

Stiletto

At the Divergent premiere, Bella Thorne strutted the red carpet in a crop top and skirt combo. Her sky-high sandals were the perfect accessory to keep the look polished and ladylike.

Out and about in New York, Karolina Kurkova pounded the pavement in a gorgeous ankle-strap stiletto.

Nude

Paint your pout and toes in pink, but opt for nude shoes, as Leighton Meester did with a strappy sandal at The Tribeca Film Festival.

Katie Holmes paired her navy zippered dress with nude pumps. A smart choice for any woman who wants her legs to look longer, and that includes almost every woman.

Ankle Straps

At a recent London press conference for Victoria’s Secret, model Candice Swanepoel kicked up her heels ... and showed that a glittery ankle strap can be every bit as sexy as lace lingerie.

Filigree

Bella Thorne has a great shoe closet! At the MTV Movie Awards her silver sandals had the delicacy of a great piece of jewelry. It’s a shoe that would fit in just as well with your favorite skinny jeans.

Knee-High

If you miss your tall boots, you’ll love the calf-climbing pumps that Jill Wagner wore to the MTV Movie Awards. Notice how they match her bracelet; we call the look “tasteful bondage.”

Peek-a-Boo

Divergent star Shailene Woodley won best-dressed raves for her outfit at the MTV Movie Awards. The Balmain dress was long-sleeved and leather with a hint of skin at the midriff. Her strappy Jimmy Choo sandals had the same edgy-feminine vibe.

Patterned

If you can only buy one pair of heels this spring, you might want to follow Jessica Alba’s example and pick a pair with a black and white pattern. They work with everything from a little black dress to pastel pieces, as Jessica shows here.

Which 'Girls' Character Raided Your Closet?

1.    It’s the weekend (at last!). What are you wearing as you lounge about?

A.   Granny panties. It’s the weekend.
B.   My fluffy purple bathrobe.
C.   Muumuu, silk robe or something I might even wear out later if I feel like it.
D.   Yoga pants, sports bra and a fitted cotton scoop neck.

2.    You’re heading to a party where you will be dancing. No excuses. What shoes do you wear?

A.   Whatever I want. Shoes can be taken off.
B.   I have like a million heels. I’m sure one will work for dancing.
C.   I don’t know … clogs?
D.   I’d pass on stilettos and wear a shoe with a sturdy heel.

3.    Dinner with the parents. (Hooray for free meals!) What do you wear to show them you’re a functioning adult on her way to great things?

A.   I’d wear a cute new outfit, but save my cutest new outfit for going out.
B.   Whatever is clean.
C.   Easy. A skirt, blouse and statement necklace that compliments the tasteful earrings my grandmother gave me.
D.   My parents taking me out for dinner. Is that supposed to be a joke?

4.    Condiments drip from your food onto your shirt (#streetfoodproblems). You:

A.   Either go home to quickly change or duck into the nearest clothing store.
B.   Reach into your bag to see if you still have that stain remover. You do.
C.   Lick it off and hope for the best.
D.   Take off your shirt and just wear your bra.

5.    If you had to choose between the four, whose style would you love to copy?

A.   Zooey Deschanel
B.   Kate Moss
C.   Victoria Beckham
D.   Silvia Plath

6.    You’re in the fitting room with these awesome pants. Except the fit isn’t perfect. Your usual reaction is:

A.   Buy them. It’s nothing $20 at a tailor can’t solve.
B.   Don’t buy them. There are hundreds of other options out there.
C.   Buy them. They’re comfortable enough.
D.   Don’t buy them. Those jeans you took from an old summer fling are way cooler.

7.    What’s your favorite thing to wear?

A.   Something fantastic and one of a kind, like a vintage turquoise ring.
B.   Something elegant, like a perfectly tailored dress with a pair of stud earrings.
C.   Something with meaning or sentiment, like a necklace made from your boyfriend’s tooth.
D.   There’s nothing better than wearing new purchases for the first time.

8.    You have a job interview. What impression do you want your clothes to give off?

A.   I belong here.
B.   I’m creative.
C.   I’m energetic.
D.   You’d be lucky to have me.

Points: 1) a. 0 b. 3 c. 1 d. 2; 2) a. 1 b. 3 c. 0 d. 2; 3) a. 3 b. 0 c. 2 d. 1; 4) a. 3 b. 2 c. 0 d. 1; 5) a. 3 b. 1 c. 2 d. 0; 6) a. 2 b. 3 c. 0 d. 1; 7) a. 1 b. 2 c. 0 d. 3; 8) a. 2 b. 0 c. 3 d. 1

0-6 Hannah -- “The Independent Anti-Try-Hard”-- You march to the beat of your own drum, and anything that gets you away from that I’m-from-the-suburbs-and-moved-to-the-city look is a plus. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but whatever, you’re trying. Adults have to wear clothes; you get it, but that doesn’t mean you have to devote your precious time (or dwindling finances) to finding clothes that fit perfectly and separates that go together. And at least your style is an honest reflection of yourself and not some construed, wannabe style you ripped from a magazine. Besides, you’ve got bigger problems (hello: rent!) than matching colors to your skin tone or getting things tailored.


 

7-12 Jessa -- “The Effortlessly ‘It’ Girl” -- Some may call you a Bohemian babe, but since when have you cared about what others think? Um, never. Your fashion motto: Boring is a stupid waste of your time. The last thing you’re afraid of is texture and you don’t shy away from the big, the bold, the oversized or exotic. And since people can be so disappointing, most of your joie de vivre can be found in your closet. Your clothes express your confidence, “old-soul” wisdom and travels. Chances are you’ve never bought anything trendy or new in your life, and you’ll never have to worry about another person wearing the same feathered cape to a party.


 

13-18 Marnie -- “The Polished Perfectionist” -- No matter if your heart’s broken or your career compromised, your outfits always provide a put-together look even on a Saturday morning in bed. Paying attention to detail comes naturally to you, and you are well-versed in the use of accessories. While your tastes may get called conservative -- or maybe even boring -- you’re smart enough to know that sophisticated and classic basics are great investments for the future. And just because you don’t dress like a trust fund-depraved millennial doesn’t mean you aren’t hip (see: translucent plastic dress with gold, crocodile under-layer). Plus, you’re sexy (albeit sensible).


 

19-24 Shoshanna -- “The Girly Girly-Girl” -- I mean, can a girl own too many bows? Not unless fashion has become, like, fash-ism. I mean, you know there are rules and you’re totes on top of the trends, but you’re just too flirty and fun not to push them a little now and then. Sequins and sparkles are staples in your closet and you probably own more accessories than all of your friends combined. Your outfits are cheery and even childish at times, but always come with a touch of maturity and fashion know-how. But most of all, your style is a reminder to those around you of your vibrant and effervescent personality.

 

Get ’em Now: Fierce Fashion Finds for Freezing Temps

Think covering up isn’t cute? Think again! We’ve rounded up five fierce fashion finds that will keep you wildly warm this winter without cramping your style. Because, after all, showing a ton of skin when it’s freezing cold outside isn’t exactly hot, is it?

1. Sequin Sleeve Twill Jacket

$118 at Nordstrom.com


 

Army jackets are back and better than ever for winter. Do yourself a solid and buy yours with a bit of bling. We’re currently obsessing over this fab Faubourg du Temple olive green twill jacket featuring gold sequin sleeves that scream sexy in a chic, subtle way. It’s the perfect piece to dress up a basic T-shirt and jeans. Simply add some military boots, and you’re ready to march on.

2. Vegan Leather Skinny Pants 

$98 at Shopbop.com


 

You can never go wrong with a little leather, real or faux! These sizzling skin-tight black pants are bound to bring all the boys to the yard -- not to mention have all the ladies in the room begging to know where you bought them. Style ’em with an oversized sweater for day or a beautiful blouse and blazer for night. 

3. Faux Fur Moto Jacket 

$198 at NastyGal.com 


 

What do you get when you combine faux fur with a moto jacket? One seriously sick coat if you ask us! Take a walk on the wild side this winter and let your true colors shine in this loud and proud, dip-dyed ombre jacket from Chaser. You’re sure to stand out in a crowd when you sport it, while staying toasty at the same time.

4. Velvet in Versailles Dress

$80 at ModCloth.com


 

Velvet is one of the hautest trends of the winter, which is precisely why we’re crushing so hard on this gorgeous purple velvet maxi. Paired with a cool black leather jacket and pumps, it’s a dress that can be worn both day and night. 

5. Asymmetric Knee Boots

 $270 at Nordstrom.com


 

When in doubt, break some sexy leather knee-high boots out! These are a must in every girl’s winter wardrobe. Not only are they practical weather-wise, but they look super hot when worn with tights, a mini dress (or skirt) and a pretty peacoat.

SEE ALSO: Give New Life to Winter Hair