I featured Titi, my super fab friend and successful lifestyle & fashion blogger over at Titispassion.com a few months ago as part of the small business interview series and I'm happy to have her back as a guest blogger. This time she's sharing her tips on how to be fashionable and still save money. In addition to her lifestyle & fashion blog, Titi is a wife and mother who also owns her own baking and catering business - Enjoy!
My name is Titilola and I love bargain shopping! I used to buy any and everything as long as it was on sale, afterall I was getting a deal but I have since come to realize over the last few years how ineffective that is and most importantly that it is simply wasteful. I found myself barely wearing a lot of these items because of the intent behind the purchase.
Today, I will be sharing a few tips I have adopted over the last few years that have changed the way I shop. As a lifestyle blogger who heavily blogs on fashion I have learned a few tricks over the years too. Here are simple rules for you to follow if you want to build a killer wardrobe, long term. It will take a while, but it is well worth it.
Tip #1: Don't spend too much money on trendy pieces
Trends come and go and if that is the main reason you are buying an item then stick to a reasonable budget that you can afford. A reasonable budget might be $20 for some and $200 for others.
Keep in mind that what is "on trend" might not qualify as trendy to you. Ask yourself a simple question, "Do I see myself wearing it in 3 or 5 years? "If you see yourself wearing the item for years to come, then I won't consider that a trendy item.
Tip #2: Target Key Sales
There are so many sales year round, retailers simply use it to drive in customers, but there are two sales I target. End of summer (August-September) and end of year sales (Late December-January).
Why these two times? Its simple, the seasons are changing and retailers have to get rid of merchandise (they have no choice.) During these two times, you are guaranteed to find treasures at amazing prices. I target these two times to buy my high ticket items. Think a classic YSL bag in colors other than black or even classic high-end shoes or that Zara jacket that you wanted and is finally 75% off.
This is also a good time to justify buying some high ticket items that you have been coveting:-) Another sale to consider is the biannual Friends and Family events offered by most retail outlets.
Tip #3: Use online resources
Before I buy any item, I always do a quick google search for two reasons, discount codes and lower prices. I have saved hundreds of dollars from adopting this simple rule. Example, Black Stuart Wietzman leg wrap sandals (they were on my wish list) which cost $498, I purchased them from Amazon for $195.
I also always use Ebates.com too. It's an easy way to save money from your everyday shopping through cashback offered by thousands of stores. Sign up and start saving money here. You will be amazed at how much money you will earn.
Tip #4: Invest in key pieces
Even though I love my sales, there are items worth splurging on a.k.a Classics. Not sure what are considered classics by a particular brand that you love? Just go on their website and they almost always have a section for it. One of the reasons you should be investing in classic pieces is that their value remains the same, they appreciate in value or they barely depreciate.
One of my new year's goal for big ticket purchases is "sell an item before I buy a new one." I have racked in a lot of money on items that I have owned for years, some of which increased in value even after a lot of wear because they were Classic pieces. See it as some type of wardrobe investment, something to pass along to the next generation or sell for a gain in a few years. (Make sure you want the item though, lol.) Example of what I consider classics are the Chanel quilted leather bag, Christian Louboutin Pigalle pumps (they always sell out) and the 50/50 OTK boots by Stuart Weitzman..
Tip #5: Invest in the basics
There are a few basics items that I feel every woman should own. Basics are the foundation for a killer wardrobe. What do I consider the basics? A good quality blazer, a well fitted pencil skirt, black pumps, nude sandals, classic trench coat are some examples.
The beauty of investing in the basics is that you don't have to go high end and for the most part you can find these items on sale. You can create a lot of looks from basics. I am sharing some images of what I consider my basics. I find myself wearing them over and over again.
How to save on a big ticket item
1. Buy online and save up to 10% off by simply signing up for the website's emails
Most luxury websites such as Saks and Neiman Marcus offer this. Sign up and use the one-time use code and save!
2. Shop during their friends and Family events
Some big ticket items are part of these events. (There are limitations on some brands.)
3. Shop during their gift card events
You can get gift cards up to $500 or more when you buy your high ticket item during this time, usually no limitations. Resale the gift cards or buy another item.
4. Shop on websites that don't charge taxes and save at least 6-8% off
Net-a-porter is a good website for this.