Being Stylish on a Budget

•TradeMe – The selection can be overwhelming and time consuming, so I suggest knowing what you’re looking for. There is a feature that allows you to save your favourite searches so you are first in with your most wanted styles and designers. I’ve picked up many a bargain this way, with most of the leg work already done.

•Follow the industry – Staying on top of trends will help you buy investment pieces. Styles fade between seasons but some last and often reappear in the future. Keeping up to date with the international site and New Zealand’s own FashioNZ will help you stay on top of your fashion game.

•Investment pieces – Once you’ve saved some pennies look for something that is versatile. If you can picture at least three different looks with the garment, guaranteed it’s a good buy. tkStore have some amazingly versatile and beautiful pieces that also transition seasons well.

•Same style, lower price –Be willing to shop around. That gorgeous piece you’re craving but can’t afford can still feature in your wardrobe. Popular high-end styles will often appear in chain stores, like Glassons and Forever New, later in the season. It might not be the same shade or style, but for a quarter of the price, small allowances can be made!

•Vintage – Styles are often recycled between decades so you might be surprised at the gems your mum or nana has hidden away. Op-shops are also wonderful places, and once you find a good one, visit regularly for new additions. My blog has op-shop reviews to get you started on the best of the best!

•DIY – The internet is teeming with sites and bloggers dedicated to fashion DIY projects, ranging from dead easy to seamstress difficulty. Don’t hesitate to patch up clothes with a bit of sewing either; you might be surprised how easy it is to hide little flaws! Keep an eye out here on FashioNZ for my next article. I’ll be demonstrating a DIY leather bow belt, a hot trend this winter and seen in the latest Karen Walker and Juliette Hogan collections.

Working with a budget can be limiting and at times frustrating, especially when you are passionate about personal style. But buying that amazing outfit has much more significance when you’ve diligently saved for it. Be thrifty with your dollars, but never settle for less than second best, just because it's second hand or dirt cheap. And remind yourself that looking good and being stylish does not mean always wearing designer clothing.

Article by Sarah Smith 

*Image courtesy of

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