Maximize Your Wardrobe Budget

The thought of having a closet full of clothes you love sounds amazing, but trying to afford it can seem scary. But even on the tiniest budget, a little bit of strategy and a few simple tricks can get you a great wardrobe without taking the fun out of shopping. I will help you figure out how much to spend, what purchases will have the biggest impact, how to find quality clothes for a good price and how to get the most out of your shopping trip.

When I go shopping, I try to live by the motto, “buy less, but choose well.” I try to treat my shopping like a treasure hunt for the ultimate wardrobe. When I buy new clothes, I make a shopping list, size up my options, and stick to the 70/30 rule.  70% of your closet should be classic pieces like a great white top and awesome black handbag, and the 30% should be for trendy, fun pieces like a hot pair of fuchsia pumps. That way, your closet is always in balance.  As a result, I have been able to find better clothes for my body, personality and budget. I am building a wardrobe that I love wearing everyday, and can actually afford. You can do it too. Let me show you how to shop on a budget, but still buy nice clothes and have fun doing it.

Have you ever seen a stylist’s mood board plastered with magazine pages, fabric swatches, photos of celebrities, postcards of art, and other random stuff? Stylists use these collages to capture a specific mood or style while working on a project. You should do the same. Before you go shopping, think of yourself as your own personal stylist and improving your closet as your current project. Your goal is to build on what you have, enhancing and adding to your collection of clothes.  Here are some tips.

  • Get Inspired – Gather style inspiration images in one place. Look carefully for common threads like colors, prints, and clothing shapes.
  • Make a Wish List Based on What You Own – Make a wish list of clothes that complement the favorites you already own. See what you realistically like to wear everyday. Keeping an actual record of what you wear may reveal some surprising trends in your wardrobe. While making your wish list, think about items that might pair well with your most worn items. You will get the most wear out of new items that look great with your current favorites.
  • Avoid Repeat Purchases – Look at the clothes you still have from last season and compare them to your wish list. You may actually own similar items to those you were hoping to buy. Unless the ones you own are worn out and need replacement, you can take some of these off your wish list, freeing up room in your budget for higher-impact purchases.
  • Find the Right Place To Shop – Look for a mall, street, or shopping center that has more than one store you want to visit. This will help you avoid wasting time browsing stores that do not have the products you are looking for.

The Pencil Skirt

There are trends. And then there are timeless styles. No matter the fads in town the latter will always have my heart. Such is the case of the one skirt style that flatters every woman, that is great for office as well as parties, or more formal gatherings. THE PENCIL SKIRT. With fall almost here hems and lengths are a bit longer, and we ditch the relaxed silhouettes of summer for more polished, structured and sophisticated cuts and style.  For working women pencil skirts are the number one office style staple. They are like this sartorial uniform that is never passe and you cannot go wrong with. Not to mention how quickly it literally polishes up a look, regardless of what you pair with it.  Due to their flattering cut, they fit any body shape like a glove. They elongate. They slim yet play up the the curves. They conceal, yet are fitted enough to follow your body line in that very refined sort of way.  Styling them is a piece of cake as long as you keep in mind one majorly important tip….Always wear heels with them….stiletto sandals are so very sexy and classic pumps are timeless.  I always say stiletto heels best flatter any outfit and body. And it seems to me, in this case it is truer than ever, just because you need extra height if you are wearing a pencil skirt, yet at the same time you want to keep it light in the feet, to get that hourglass effect.  Of course we can still wear flats with them, it is not a fashion crime.

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Inspiration from Pinterest.

Summer Cotton Dresses

I am sorry I have been missing in action lately.  Summer has gotten away from me, and I have been super busy.  However, not too busy to go shopping.  I was in Old Navy a couple of weeks ago.  I purchased four cotton dresses for under $40.  I reactivated my Old Navy card to save an additional 15%. Since I reactivated my Old Navy card, I get 10% off every purchase for the next 60 days. I was in Old Navy last weekend, and they still have some available.  They are comfortable and perfect for summer.  Check them out!!

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Getting out the Door in Minutes

We are all busy these days, especially if you are a mom. Do you feel like you have no time for yourself?  Do getting the kids ready for school in the morning consume all your time?  I get it.  It can be hard when you have others that you have to look after as well as yourself, to stay stylish, but it is certainly not impossible with a touch of planning.  Maybe you do not have kids still at home, but you still struggle in looking stylish every day.  DO NOT fear, because you are not alone.  Here are some helpful tips to get you out the door in the morning, every morning, looking stylish!!

1.  Plan your outfit the night before – pull it out of the closet, and check to make sure it is clean and pressed.  Then find the accessories you need to go with it and add them on the hanger.  This way do not have anything to think about when you are getting up and dressed and other people want your attention.

2.  Make sure you accessorize – remember that accessories can make an ordinary outfit stand out.

3.  Update  your wardrobe seasonally – many women who have busy lives end up putting themselves and their wardrobes last.  The kids get new clothes but you hardly ever do because you just do not have time to shop for yourself.  Make sure at least once each new season you take some time out for yourself to update a few items in your wardrobe to keep you looking fresh and stylish. If you have been wearing the same jeans from five years ago, then it is time to invest in some new ones.

4.  Get a hairstyle you can do fast and easily – a stylish hairdo makes a huge difference to your whole look.  Let your hairdresser know your limits – how much time you have each day to spend grooming your hair, that way they can cut it with that knowledge, plus ask them to show you the best way to style your hair yourself.   Then do your hair, every day, spend that three minutes each morning making it look stylish.

5. Wear makeup – you do not have to do a full makeup routine, but even a little mascara or some lipstick can make you look more put together and finished.

6. Buy easy care clothing – if it needs dry cleaning or special attention you are less likely to wear it.  Check care labels before you buy, so you know you can throw it into the machine with all your other clothes.

7. Make sure your shoes are not looking scruffy – polish shoes to keep them looking good.  In general I would advise wearing leather shoes, they can be fixed easily and improved upon.  Many synthetic shoes once they are scuffed cannot be fixed.

8. Cover up – if your kids are still young and often have messy hands, then wear something over your clothes until you are about to leave the house, that way any breakfast foods do not make it onto your clean clothes before you get out of the house!

9. Have a ‘go-to’ uniform – Plan a handful of outfits you know you look good on you, and know the accessories you wear with them. This way when you are rushed you can reach for your stylish ‘go-to’ outfits and feel good. Even adding a jacket over a tee and jeans, throwing on a scarf and some boots or ballet flats will make you look stylish rather than frumpy.  A little structure in your clothes can go a long way!  A dress is a great item to wear as it makes you look stylish and means you only have to decide on one item.

10. Size matters  – yes you may be losing the baby weight and not back into your pre-pregnancy size, but if you are wearing oversized clothes, you will never look stylish.  You may need to invest in some “in-between sizes” clothes. Some new well-fitting jeans and tops can make you feel so much better than slobbing around in old-tracksuit pants.  Do not get stuck in your maternity clothes or in sizes that are no longer relevant to the body you have today. Dress the body you have TODAY.

Top Ten Color Trends for Spring ~ Summer 2015

Pantone has released the top hues for spring ~ summer 2015.  With colors like Aquamarine, Scuba Blue, Classic Blue, and Lucite Green, expect a lot of cool and calming colors come spring. The top color trends have an eclectic mix of understated brights, pale pastels, and nature-like neutrals. According to Pantone, designers are stepping toward a minimalistic theme drawing from daydreams of simpler times as we head into the warmer months.  I love the cooler and softer side of this color spectrum I cannot wait to update my spring wardrobe!

Aquamarine ~ A cool and calming blue with a wet and watery feel. This light and airy shade also acts as a stress reducer.

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Scuba Blue ~ An invigorating turquoise that’s reminiscent of a tropical ocean.

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Lucite Green ~ A soothing green shade with a minty glow.

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Classic Blue ~ A classic shade that works well with just about every shade on this top ten list.

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Toasted Almond ~ A sun-tanned hue that offers warmth and comfort.

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Strawberry Ice ~ A shade that evokes a feeling of being “in the pink” and gives women a healthy glow.

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Tangerine ~ A juicy orange shade that is energizing and adds vitality to a printed pattern.

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Custard ~ A soft and cheerful hue that brings thought of relaxation.

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Marsala ~ A warm wine color with a brown undertone.

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Glacier Gray ~ A lighter, softer gray and nature’s most perfect neutral. It is a great color for combinations.

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Inspiration from Pinterest.

The Classic Camel Coat

Camel coats are a must have in this transitional weather, when your jackets leave you a bit chilly and thick knitwear still sees you sweltering. A camel coat is probably the one item of clothing in a woman’s wardrobe that is as iconic as a Chanel bag. This warm, butter soft and deliciously caramel hued piece of outerwear is something every girl should have.
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