BE A RECESSIONISTA
It’s a tough time for fashionistas.
Most of our pocket books are quite a bit thinner these days and [God help us]
the 80s are making a comeback on the runway and in department stores. So I
was more than a little discouraged when I started my spring shopping a few weeks
ago. Faded blue jeans, buttoned shoulder details and ruffled skirts? Bleh – If I
couldn’t pull it off at 16, it’s not going to work at 39. However, while amusing myself
with a tour de force of the local retailers in Carefree, Arizona this weekend, I found
my salvation in the least likely of places … the strip mall. That’s right. Armed with
Starbucks latté in hand, I mosied over to Target, then Sherre’s and made a final
stop at Chico’s (gasp!). Not only did I find a selection of cosmetics, lingerie and
clothing that were surprisingly fabulous, but not a single item approached the $100
mark. That’s worth a trip to the strip anytime. Trade in the title "fashionista" for
"recessionista"? Maybe not so painful after all.
Look at all my goodies!
Shots of all my fun tops.
This beaded jacket only cost me $65 – Can you believe it?!
Trying on cheap and chic glasses at Target.
And I love the cosmetics section. Target carries some fantastic brands.
Napoleon Perdis, Jemma Kidd, Boots, Sonia Kashuk and Pixi.
Hip, colorful compacts from Napoleon Perdis.
And rising star Jemma Kidd’s line is the hippest thing in the UK and now the US.
Boots – another UK import – has super skincare products.
While Target veteran Sonia Kashuk makes professional-style
brushes like these as part of her cosmetics line.
Rocking old school peds is another great way to save money without skimping on style.
and a friend picked up the sandals for me at a garage sale. Now that’s a deal!
Shopping in unexpected places usually yields me positive results. I found
these tunics at Timothy Paul – a home and bedding store – for under $50 each.
Imagine how much two Tory Burch tunics would have cost me.
And what better to pair with the items above than a vintage ring or brooch.
Need a new vintage source? Try your mother. That fabulous costume
jewelry she sported in the 70s will give your outfit just the kick it needs!
Still need some help stretching those recessionista dollars? The 8 principles below got me
through my lean graduate school years and have been my standards for shopping ever since.
1. Take stock before you shop.
Go through your closet and make a list of what you need. You’ll avoid purchasing
those items you buy again and again even though you have too many already.
Do you really need another Hermes scarf?
2. Avoid trendy looks – especially unflattering ones.
NO ONE looks good in parachute pants.
3. Cover the basics. Flattering jeans, tailored black slacks, lightweight sweaters, simple tailored
tees and good shoes. These are the items that build the foundation of your wardrobe.
4. Buy items that can work in multiple seasons or that can be layered easily.
5. Shop out of season. This is a hard one for me and something I need to work on.
Clearly, winter boots are going to cost less now than when November rolls around.
6. Accessorize with jewelry, scarves, hats, etc.
One outfit can transform into multiple looks depending on your accessories.
7. Be careful of sales. You’ll end up buying more than you want and not what you need.
8. Invest in quality. I have pieces in my closet that are 10-20 years old.
They still look good and add something unique to my wardrobe.
Consumers in crisis - this too shall pass.