At Trove, we are strong believers that money cannot buy style... conversely you do not need to break the bank to have great style! Here you will find our top five tips to look great and feel fabulous on a budget.
#1: Shop Smarter
Know what you need and keep your eye on the prize when shopping. Keeping (and sticking to) a wishlist in the notes app of your phone is a great way to avoid impulse purchases. Save money and time by putting your shopping energy towards getting good value for the pieces you need.
Routinely rotating your closet is a great way to identify what you need. Keep your wardrobe fresh by removing things you no longer wear and only replenishing when there are gaps. You can find all our closet-cleaning tips here.
#2: Know the value of the pieces you want
“Budget” shopping doesn’t have to mean raiding the sale-racks and searching for the least expensive pieces. It’s about setting a budget and sticking to it. Set a fashion budget that you are comfortable with. Would you rather buy 10 low-quality items this month, or save and have a couple high quality items next month? High-quality items will last longer and make you feel like a million bucks.
Knowing the value of the pieces you wish to purchase will help you make smart buying decisions. Certain things like white t-shirts are an item you can save on, but a well-fitting blazer is an area where spending a little more will serve you well. In the same vein, one pair of high-quality denim jeans will serve you for much longer than less expensive jeans that you have to replace every year. If a $200 pair of jeans lasts you 500 wears (or once a week for 10 years), that’s only $0.40 per wear. If a $50 pair of jeans needs to be replaced after 50 wears, then that is costing you $1.00 per wear. Some things need to be replaced more frequently than others, but keep in mind that some articles of clothing are made to last and are worth the investment.
This is also true for trends and classics. A case can be made to invest in classic pieces that are always in style such as a cashmere sweater, a trench coat, or a little black dress. On the other hand, shop sales and second-hand to save on trendier pieces because once the next trend comes along that piece will be pushed to the back of your closet.
#3: Only buy things that make you feel amazing
This is the toughest ‘tip’ on our list. We’ve all been there. We fall in love with a piece that’s almost perfect and think, ‘maybe this summer it will fit better’ or ‘maybe after washing it, it will shrink enough’ only to bring it home and never take it off the hanger. If it doesn’t look amazing off the shelf and no tailor can make it work, then leave it behind. Avoid hopeful purchases and buy clothes that fit your beautiful body the way it is now. Buy clothes that make you feel great!
#4: Be open to used clothing
We may be biased, but purchasing lightly-used or preowned clothing is the absolute best way to get great fashion on a budget. It requires a keen eye and sometimes some extra patience but the reward is stylish, quality clothing, without traditional retail prices. There is more than one way to go about this: if you are looking for a treasure hunt, shop for vintage and thrift stores. Want to make a girls-night out of it? Set up a clothing-swap with your friends! We all have great pieces hanging in our closets that might not work for us but would look fabulous on a friend. And our favourite approach, visit a consignment store like Trove. We do the heavy-lifting of sourcing great pieces and shopping in a consignment store is like visiting a boutique, without boutique prices!
Consign clothes you no longer love and use your earnings towards a piece you do love! Learn all about how to earn money consigning here.
#5: Rent Occasional Clothing
The best way to eat up your monthly budget is spending it all on a dress for an event that you will only wear once. That’s why The Fitzroy Rentals exists. Feel absolutely fabulous at the next gala, wedding, or black-tie event (or really, any time you want to feel extra) you attend without buying a new dress.