Rules of affordable fashion shopping

Rules of affordable fashion shopping

Happy Monday, all…hope everyone had a special weekend!  Today I am discussing the rules of affordable fashion shopping.

I am defining “affordable fashion” as anything deeply discounted, in clearance, consignment or thrift shopping.

Leigh Ann and I are both experiencing a style refresh and we are both autumns.

So, it has been fun to have a friend to shop affordable fashion with and look at how to refresh our wardrobes in fiscally responsible ways.

AFFORDABLE FASHION SALES

Rules of affordable fashion shopping

The overall ….RULE NUMBER ONE…DO NOT PURCHASE CLOTHING JUST BECAUSE IT IS CHEAPER!

It is best to follow your same shopping guidelines, no matter what price point you are experiencing.

When we only get it because “WHY NOT, IT IS CHEAPER!” then we end up with a closet full of items we do not wear.

On this day, we stopped by JJILL and looked over their sale rack which was an additional 30% off that day.  There were items from last fall and winter on the racks.

Leigh Ann found and purchased THE WEAREVER LIGHT & AIRY OPEN-FRONT CARDI IN MAHOGANY, because it fit her “natural” style personality, her new color palette, and she did not own a long cardigan like this one. She got it for $22!

The shade of brown is beautiful. 

She also bought THE AUTHENTIC FIT FRINGED-HEM COPPED JEANS IN LIGHT PEBBLE which she is super excited about but they were not on sale.  

Her plan is to wear the cardigan to New York in a trip she has booked this fall!

Rules of affordable fashion shopping

RULE NUMBER TWO is DO NOT PURCHASE CLOTHING JUST BECAUSE YOUR SHOPPING BUDDY SAYS TO!

I loved this PURE JILL COTTON-RICH MIXED-STITCH ELLIPTICAL SWEATER on Leigh Ann, but she did not like the fit as much and was looking for different colors…so she stood firm.

And that is what you should do!

Something I love about JJILL is they give you a code for your birthday month, and you can use it all month long for an additional 20% off! Love that it is not just one time!

I like their leggings so much and did purchase a pair with my discount in a color I needed: PIMA CAPRI LEGGINGS IN WASHED OLIVE.

AFFORDABLE FASHION CONSIGNMENT AND THRIFT

Rules of Affordable fashion shopping

RULE  NUMBER THREE…DO NOT SHOP AT THESE TYPE OF STORES IF THEY DO NOT HAVE DRESSING ROOMS.

We simply must try these pieces on and most of these stores will not take returns.

We have a newly re-done consignment shop in San Antonio…TOO GOOD TO BE THREW…and Leigh Ann & I have enjoyed occasionally stopping by.

I selected this top to try on because it had a rounded hemline and my online stylist, Annie Castano, had instructed me to add some rounded hemline tops.

However, I did not care for the neckline on this one and Annie also has instructed me to look for deep V neck tops.  So this one was a NO.

Rules of affordable fashion shopping

RULE NUMBER FOUR….DO NOT PURCHASE SOMETHING YOU THINK YOU CAN “FIX.”

Since my new style personality has added the word ROMANTIC, I am trying on more pieces with feminine touches such as lace.

This is a Ralph Lauren top and it was lovely, but as you can see….very, very sheer.

I thought for a moment…oh I can make this work!  But, immediately caught myself and verbally said NO, because I have just tossed out pieces I did the same thing with and never “fixed.”

Rules of affordable fashion shopping

RULE NUMBER FIVE….DO NOT PURCHASE A GARMENT THAT WILL LOOK BETTER WHEN YOU LOSE WEIGHT.

This Michael Kors top was fun and a strong contender, but the leopard belt sat on top of my middle tummy too much and emphasized it rather than flattering my shape.

It was also a NO!.

Rules of affordable fashion shopping

RULE NUMBER SIX…DO NOT PURCHASE AN AFFORDABLE TOP JUST BECAUSE YOU LIKE THE BRAND!

I love the quality and styles at Lafayette 148 New York, but this excellent brand is out of my budget….unless I discover it at a consignment shop!

I really liked this lovely cream top with a touch of shimmer in it…but it did not fit well! When I put down my arm, there were bunched up wrinkles in it.

Another NO!

Rules of affordable fashion shopping

RULE NUMBER 7….DO NOT PURCHASE SOMETHING IN YOUR COLOR PALETTE….JUST BECAUSE IT IS IN YOUR COLOR PALETTE!

This tunic was in a pretty red/orange color, but it did nothing for me.

When I put it on I felt frumpy.  It fell flat and made me feel older and not confident. 

So, this is the final NO!

I think all of these rules are good reminders for when we head out to hit a sale or consignment shop.  They will certainly keep spending in check when the fashions seem so affordable!  I did make a purchase on this day that I am super excited about.

You will see it here on Wednesday…so make sure you come back to see what I bought and why!  There are many times a don’t purchase becomes a do purchase!

Like Leigh Ann’s beautiful brown cardigan!

Would anyone else like to add a rule or two for consideration when we are shopping the “good deals” of affordable fashion?  Please share…then make sure that you….

KEEP SMILING!

By Pamela Lutrell

20 Comments

  1. These are all such excellent tips for bargain shopping. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of buying “just because.” I tried that mahogany cardigan that Leigh Ann bought and even in petite, it came just about to my ankle. I was so disappointed because I love the color. Since you are doing a whole wardrobe refresh, checking out some sales and consignment shops is a great idea, as long as you stick to the tips you mentioned here. Shopping with a list always works if you’re willing to keep looking and be patient, but I’ve found that you rarely find specific items in consignment shops. And often the sizing is way off in those shops too, which might explain how items ended up there. I’m looking forward to what you found for Wednesday’s post. It seems that shopping the sales at our favorite stores turns up more keepers than consignment, at least in my case that’s been true. I often keep catalog pages of things I’m hoping go on sale. Many times it doesn’t work out because of availability of sizes or colors, but sometimes it does. Also, have you noticed that many times the sale items aren’t shown in the same attractive way they originally were in the catalog? It helps me to hang on to the original pictures! I just got some Wearever refined trousers for $20 in a color I wanted, so it was well worth the wait. I’ll be keeping your tips in mind!

    1. Hi Karen, every now and then consignment and thrift give me a real treasure…designer/high end pieces I would not be able to afford even on sale! And I love a great treasure hunt! But like you the majority of my shopping is in sale items from current collections!

  2. Re the sheer top. The fix is only a camisole/tank/slip worn under it. So not really a fix, just what you wear it with. Unless that is too warm in Texas.

    1. I have the tanks and camisoles, but I don’t think I would like that look with this top. It would not be a WOW!

      1. Great reminders, especially the last one about confidence and feeling older, even when it is your palette. Thanks for the refresher on shopping , especially at this time when the stores are trying to clear out their merchandise. I love Leigh Anne’s mahogany topper. I put one aside for fall but will put it back in rotation with my off white jeans and top. Can’t wait for Wednesday.

  3. Such excellent advice you’ve given us today! When I go shopping, I usually have something specific in mind to find, so if I cannot find it, I do not buy anything. My shopping situation is very limited as I live in a small town so I order most items online. Then if they do not fit, I tend to keep them rather than go through the problem of returning and getting a refund. Aggravating, to say the least. I have ordered several long sweaters from JJill as Leigh Ann found and wear them constantly in the cooler months. And I have to admit that when I found some on a big discount at a Chico’s outlet, I bought more than I need because the price was so good. I now have to talk myself out of buying items online because I do not need them. You are fortunate to have so many possible shopping places nearby where you can try on items. Good, good advice today! Enjoyed seeing you and Leigh Ann modeling, and explanations as to why different items were a “No”.

    1. Thanks for this thoroughly clear and kind reasoning of why we shouldn’t necessarily buy something when discounted! So often this happens to me— I see something pretty (don’t even try it on) in my size range- I get it home and don’t wear it! Ever! Why do I do this?
      Your explanations make the most sense!
      And I too love the posts of you and Leigh Ann shopping together! (I see I’m not the only one.).

      1. Hi Paulette, you are not alone…we all do it! I hope this will help…one of my goals with my new style is to be more “purposeful” with what I purchase and add to the wardrobe.

  4. These are all such great lessons, and it is good to see you with an example for each lesson. I must remember to ask myself all the time as I can get caught up in a dilema when just a couple of the criteria are met. I must say, another opinion can get in the way at times and almost end up with an item better suited for her. By the way, I did like that green animal print on you, and that is why I am not shopping with you, even if it is not my style. Another fantastic post.

    1. Thanks Diane….I am working on that middle section, so maybe someday a top like the Michael Kors one will work better!

  5. Thank you for the tips and the additional tips. I’ve had too many purchases that end in my donate pile because I wasn’t purposeful in my purchases. I’m back to looking for quality pieces on sale. My sister will say don’t buy it unless you “love it” as soon as you put it on.

  6. I can’t tell you how many times I have purchased something because it was inexpensive & never worn it. Such a waste of money! I like Judy’s idea of asking if I would pay full price for it. That would make me pause & take a good look. One tip I would add is check the garment carefully for workmanship & stains or other flaws. Sometimes, even at the best of stores, items are items are on the clearance rack for a reason, & a cheap item is just that cheap.

  7. I liked the first top on you as the neckline mimicked the curve of your necklace and still brought your eye down. I also think rounded is more Bohemian and Romantic than a V. In my opinion after 5 days of wearing V necklines you would have put it on and thought, ” This is a nice change. ” I guess it was a good think I wasn’t your shopping buddy that day.

    1. I would love to shop with readers! I don’t think you would have talked me into it. I am really listening to Annie and taking her guidance into consideration until I feel confident with my new direction on my own!

  8. These are all rules that I’ve learned to follow faithfully! For thrift store shopping, I’d also add:
    1. Examine the item carefully. Second-hand stores seldom take returns. Before you head for the till, check cuffs and collars for wear. Look for holes, stains, missing buttons, loose seams, and zippers that don’t work.
    2. Go often. Inventory is constantly changing.
    3. Learn when new inventory hits the racks. Larger stores like Value Village and Goodwill tend to restock their shelves all day, every day, but smaller stores may not.

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