Some of you may be aware of the fact that I shop. A lot. I know I do. Apart from having the money for it (finally), I also tend to seek out deals, go to cheaper stores and buy most of my stuff on sale. I used to be a student who had to make every penny count. That is why I have plenty of tips for people who also wanna shop till they drop, yet not go bankrupt after a shopping spree. So here are my 10 tips for when you want to shop till you drop. On a budget.
1.) Take your time.
Go to stores from time to time, also the more expensive ones, especially right before sale season starts. Look for what you would like, and then wait until the sale. Go back regularly to see if the item is still there. I mostly do this for shoes and brand clothing.
2.) Go to outlets and discount stores.
Most bigger cities will have areas where you’ll find cheaper stores, or they have some other kind of outlet that you can visit. Outlets usually carry brand clothing from a few seasons ago that are sold cheaper. Depending on the outlet or the country you live, outlets may or may not give you larger discounts. I usually go to these places to buy jeans. And when I was a student: books.
3.) Shop online.
The biggest bargains I usually find online. Especially Ebay is great to find stuff you can’t find anywhere else for a steal. I bought tons of CDs on there. Also online stores can help your orientation when buying more expensive items. I researched, found and bought the very laptop I use to write this blog last summer. Two months before the laptop was made available to regular stores. So it’s definitely worth a shot.
4.) Shop sale & discounts.
Apart from seeking out items until they go on sale, or traveling miles to the nearest outlet store, you can also just wait for the sale season and buy your stuff there or buy things on offer. It’s usually then that I find t-shirts, jackets, dresses, CDs and DVDs and like I mentioned before: shoes. Most of my shoes, and I have many, haven’t been bought at full price.
5.) H&M is your best friend.
No kidding. For clothing H&M usually has something for most people, which is why so many people wear it. That is however the only catch there is about H&M. Current trends are affordable and it also has decent priced basics. You can always spice up your wardrobe by buying unique items from other places. How? Read on to find out!
6.) Go vintage.
To spice up those generic H&M outfits, you can always opt to go vintage. Everybody does it these days, even the celebs do, so why don’t you? Again, bigger cities have plenty of second hand stores. Some of the finds I got from a second hand store: a faux leather jacket by Diesel and a baby pink corduroy skirt.
7.) Invest in accessories.
Another great way to add a little more oomph to your outfits is by investing in a good range of necklaces, bracelets, earrings, pantyhose, fun socks, bags, hair clips/ties, hair bands, etc. Of course if you feel you can’t afford such an investment you can always make them yourself!
8.) Be aware of your needs.
Let’s be honest. Plenty of us don’t exactly need the things we buy. We THINK we need them, but do we actually? I know I certainly don’t. We buy stuff because we can. That is why it is essential that you ask yourself the question what it is that you need: make a shopping list. Not just to go to the grocery store, but also if you go shopping for clothes or other stuff. In other words: make a plan, stick to it and you will spend less money.
9.) Buy items on vacation.
This only works if you’re going to go to a place anyway and you know things you want are cheaper over there. Just a quick example: I knew All Star Converse were cheaper in the USA, so all my pairs of All Starts come from there. I knew I wanted them and waited until I went to the US to buy them. Just to do the math: a basic pair of All Stars costs €70 in Holland. The same pair costs $45 incl. tax in New York. In euros that’s around €35 (depending on the exchange rate). That’s half of what I would pay for it in Holland.
10.) Be organized.
Use your brain and are aware of what you need, and make lists, divide up your wishes so you can stick to your budget. Go over your closet from time to time and try out new outfits. It usually works to try out some outfits before the season changes. Since it’s time for winter clothes again: go through the stack, try stuff on, throw away the stuff that’s broken, ill-fitting or just plain old. It can also give you a different look on things and you may come up with new combinations. Make lists of items like books, CDs and DVDs (depending on how many you have) so you can more easily keep track of what you have.
Anything I missed?