When it comes to buying clothing and accessories, this is the great debate. For many years, all I did was buy inexpensive clothing. A lot of it. Most of which was disposable. Wear it once? No problem, just replace it with something else in a few months. Need something to wear out on the weekends? Go to forever 21 and get 5 things for $100. While this fed my shopping addiction, it made a huge dent in my credit card over time. I was literally just throwing away money on poor purchases, and not building my closet with great investment pieces.
I have had many requests for more “budget friendly” items, and here is my philosophy on that. I love a great, inexpensive find; they are the items that I find at vintage stores, resale shops, or unique boutiques in my area (if you live in Kansas City, hit up Addie Rose, Coco Brookside, Dear Society, Lady Bye, The Kindred Shops (which are also opening in STL) or Shop Scoobie at her pop ups) in Manhattan Beach California I like Right Tribe for vintage, as well as Katwalk for budget fashion. But, I have really tried to eliminate buying inexpensive things at Old Navy, Target and H&M. If I am going to spend the money on inexpensive/or on-trend fashion, I would much rather support small businesses.. Go and shop local; help those small business owners that are hustling, and doing their thing. While it is very tempting to throw things in the cart at Target or Old Navy when you are shopping for your family, just give it a second thought. Think about this:
1. Do you really need it? 2. How many times are you going to wear this item? 3. really look at the garment up close, and see how it fits. Quality and construction do make a difference!
With that being said, we don’t all have the budget to be spending a lot of money on our clothes. For many years, Target, Old Nay and H&M was all I could afford (and there is nothing wrong with that!!!). It took until my late 30’s to get to a point where I could spend more on my clothing and accessories. Also, once I hit 40, I really embraced my personal style, and had the desire to have less in my closet and to build up a more classic wardrobe.
If you are like me, and you are at the point in your life where you want to evolve your closet into better investment pieces, and a smaller capsule wardrobe this is what I would suggest. Invest as much as you can in GREAT fit and FABULOUS fabrics. It is worth every penny; and the garments will last longer and you will find yourself gravitating towards those pieces because they just look and feel better. My friend Amy was the one who said “I would rather have one beautiful, amazing piece, than 25 just ok things in my closet”. I really resonated with that statement and have been trying to be smarter about my purchases ever since! I try to make less impulse buys, and instead save up for those items I really want. I have found many great pieces at Clique Boutique, Finefolk and Standard Style in KC, and I love Wright’s and Beehive in Manhattan Beach
Before I splurge I ALWAYS go to Ebay first (also a tip from my friend Amy). I have found so many great things; Ulla Johnson, Chanel, Valentino, etc for 50-70% the full price. Sometimes with tags on, or maybe they have been worn once. It is worth it to look there first. I also shop end of season sales for those big ticket items as well. I usually make a wish list of big items I want to invest in each season and do as much research as I can, to find the best price before pulling the trigger.
Lastly, we all sprinkle in those inexpensive purchases into our closet, especially when it comes to trends each season. Just be mindful and more aware of what you are buying. Like I said, first try and support your local businesses and shops. Become a regular so that they let you know when new pieces come in! With boutiques, you will also find unique items that you don’t see everywhere else. And you may spend a little more than at H&M or Target, but in the end you will probably enjoy the clothing more and the quality/fit will be better. I often shop Madewell sales for my basic tees and tanks and shirts and blouses for everyday. You can get great deals there, and I feel like they really have done a good job with style, fit and quality. I also love Mango and Zara for budget finds to fill in the holes in my closet each season.
If you are looking for some budget items, here are a few favorites all under $80:
And here are some of my current favorite splurge items ( I always love good shoes, handbags and accessories! Also year round tops, and classic looking clothing or outerwear)