It’s no secret that us fashion bloggers like to shop. We got into the business because of our passion for clothes, accessories and of course, shoes. However, the bigger our blogs get the more pressure we can feel to have the latest fashion gadget (read: hottest bag), and the more our readers look to us as style guides.
Luckily, the more popular a blogger gets the more gifts we also receive from our favorite brands. However, while we may get the newest denim or jewelry, for most of us, Chanel and Celine are not sending us gifts daily. For me the balance between shopping smart and investing in key and classic pieces rather than on-trend fashion is paramount to my business and bank account.
I’m a bag gal. Always have been, probably always will be. The bulk of my disposable income is put towards nice purses (think Proenza Schouler PS1, Celine Luggage Tote, Prada, etc.) a bit towards shoes and my favorite indulgence: blazers. Some women, like my mother, are all about shoes, which while cheaper, tend to add up quickly if you like a wide variety, or collect them as art. Other women favor straight and simple clothes.
While I would love the rush, thrill and luxury of popping by Barneys NY every month for a new designer purse, it’s just not a reality. However, a smart bag, can take you places. From Coach to Business class, from class to your first important job and from low-key to notice-me-now. It’s the ultimate piece, and a smart investment item if you’re looking to build your wardrobe. While I do advocate buying a real-leather purse from a mid to high level designer, this item doesn’t have to break your bank; and I also always advocate only using your debit card (never credit) for big purchases. From Rebecca Minkoff who offers a great variety of leather totes starting at $300 to Prada who offers sensible bags that will last a lifetime, if you’re going to make one investment in your closet and fashion this year, make it a good purse.
Next up in looking polished are shoes. Remember in the movie Silence of the Lambs when Hannibal Lecter taunts Jodie Foster’s character about her cheap shoes? Even a sadistic serial murderer knows that accessories, and more specifically, shoes and bags, can make or break a woman. A few good options will take you far though, and again these don’t have to break the bank. One mid-height heel in a patent black leather and one or two classic ballet flats in a nude or black hue are really all you need. And if you’re having a particularly good year, go ahead and treat yourself to one colorful pump. If you work in a corporate or even creative field these shoes can be your savior. Ditch splurging on the laced up and fussy shoes, really how many times will you them? Invest in classic pairs, and you’ll always look polished and be prepared for any situation.
Lastly, the clothes and jewelry. Clothes are tricky. Yes, you can see and feel the difference between a Gucci suit and something from our fashion fashion favorites like ZARA. However, many of these less expensive retail stores are so mainstream now that they really do invest in the overall quality of their pieces. If you’re going to splurge on one or two items make it a classic suit for interviews and a straight pencil dress for events, preferably in black. It’ll always be in style, and you’ll feel good knowing that you’re wearing a quality piece. For the rest stick to the high-street ladies. ZARA, Topshop, H&M and even Forever21 have great basics and on-trend pieces that will keep you stylish and your bank account sane.
So those are my tips for shopping smart, staying fashionable and still having enough left over to start contributing to your 401k.
What are your tips? How do you save? Would love to hear your tips!
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