August 28, 2014

The Best Stores for Fashion On a Budget



photo credit: Takashi(aes256) via photopin cc

Shopping for new clothes not only makes you feel like a million bucks, it can also be a great way to spend time with friends and family and relax on your time off from work. However, we all know how expensive it can be. I love shopping, but I hate breaking the bank, so I wanted to let you guys know about some of my favorite stores and websites for finding fashionable, quality pieces on a budget.

Websites for Clothes and Accessories

Hautelook (www.hautelook.com)

Hautelook hosts limited-time "events" for designer brands, and they have tons of new ones added everyday! Some of the brands they frequently feature are Steve Madden, Seven7, Romeo & Juliet, Chinese Laundry, Lorac, theBalm, True Religion, and Dr. Brandt (I could probably go on all day but I'm gonna stop there). Membership is free, the savings are fantastic, and new sales start daily at 1PM PST- popular items usually go fast, so make sure you don't wait too long to check on the day's items!

Gilt (www.gilt.com)

Gilt is similar to Hautelook in that they feature merchandise from single brands or small groups of brands and the sales last a few days. Comparing the two, I would say that Gilt has a larger selection of items at a given time, but Hautelook usually features brands that are slightly more budget-friendly.

Threadflip (www.threadflip.com)

At Threadflip, you can buy, sell and discover new, unique and pre-owned styles from other people! You can upload images of pieces from your closet and sell what you no longer wear. They also have a service where you can send in all of your old clothes and they'll take care of the entire selling process. You can really find some awesome bargains on this site (especially if you don't mind pre-owned items), and the designer selection ranges anywhere from Victoria's Secret to Versace.

Dresslink (www.dresslink.com)

DressLink is a Korean fashion marketplace, and it's actually one of the cheapest spots on the list. Sure, the shipping is a little slow, but you can get it free and the bargains are too great to pass up. I'm currently surfing the site to give you guys some examples of their pricing, and they've got $3 skirts, $1 thigh high stockings, $8 blazers, $4 blouses and dresses- I mean, how many places can you find super cute (unused) clothes at prices like that! If you haven't visited the site yet, it would be one of my highest recommendations on this list.

GoJane (www.gojane.com)

GoJane is actually an entire fashion website- they have lookbooks, DIY tutorials, trend articles, and of course, their online store! They market their styles towards women with "impeccable style radars and uncanny abilities to find the best fashion deals no matter where they go", and the store speaks for itself! There's a huge selection of clothes, shoes, beauty items and accessories, all at very reasonable prices!

Mod Deals (www.moddeals.com)

Have you ever shopped at Love Culture? The styles on this site really remind of that store, but the prices are even better! It's pricing is similar to (but slightly lower than) that of Forever21, as is the size of their selection. Their clothes are young, fresh and very trendy, and you'll very rarely see items over 20 bucks.

Stores for Clothes and Accessories

TJ Maxx/Marshall's  (www.tjmaxx.com)

Alright, if you haven't been to TJMaxx or Marshall's yet, what are you doing?! I love these places so much because of the huge selection of items they have (clothes, shoes, home decor, beauty, accessories, miscellaneous) and the designers they feature! I don't particularly dislike Ross, but while I enjoy their prices, their brand selection is lacking (in my opinion). TJMaxx/Marshall's (which are owned by the same company) have more well-known, higher-end designers and I never walk out of there without something I love.

Nordstrom BP (www.nordstrom.com)

Sure Nordstrom is one of the more expensive department stores, but their BP section is actually pretty reasonable (especially if you shop the sale racks). They sell clothes, bags, accessories and beauty items for much lower prices than the rest of the store. The selection in this department is targeted towards junior's, but I find that the pieces I buy here are high quality and that I get a lot of wear out of them.

Plato's Closet (www.platoscloset.com) & Buffalo Exchange (www.buffaloexchange.com)

Plato's Closet and Buffalo Exchange sell fashionable pre-owned apparel at a steep discount. Plato's Closet has many locations all over the country, while Buffalo Exchange is a bit more few and scarce, but I included Buffalo Exchange because they always have the cutest things there. Last year I bought an absolutely beautiful embellished dress for only $5 (originally $129) and wore it to several holiday parties- you can bet I was bragging about that find to friends and family every time I wore it! Plato's Closet is also popular destination selling clothes, but you should definitely look around next time you're in one! Their denim selection is usually pretty good, as are the blouses and jackets.

Charlotte Russe (www.charlotterusse.com)

Charlotte Russe is a retail chain aimed at women in their teens and twenties, with styles and pricing similar to Forever 21, Wet Seal, Love Culture, etc. They have a particularly fun selection of statement jewelry and handbags, and if you like super-high heels you'll definitely find some that you love on their shoe wall (along with tons of cute boots during the fall and winter seasons)!

JCPenney (www.jcp.com)

Unlike Nordstrom, JCPenney is a less-expensive department store, and before you think "ew, JCPenney" (because I know I used to think that), they've actually really upped their game in the past few years! Their junior's department includes Olsenboye (designed by Mary-Kate & Ashley) and My Michelle, and the women's department now sells Joe Fresh, J Jeans by Buffalo, and MNG by Mango, which are great for women in their twenties and early thirties (when you still want to dress young but need to look a bit more polished as you enter the professional world).

Forever 21 (www.forever21.com) & H&M (www.hm.com)

Oh, you didn't think I'd forget these! These stores are very similar to one another in that they offer tons of styles (both have fun, trendy pieces along with more "conservative" collections) at prices far lower than most stores at the mall. For me, the downside to these stores is that they're usually super-crowded and their selections are so big that it makes it difficult to find a style you like (let alone in your size) when shopping in-store. That said, if you are shopping online, be careful about what you order, because it can be hard to figure out what the item will really look like (in terms of color, lengths, material, and proportions) until you actually get it in the mail.

Target (www.target.com)

Last but not least, Target! I remember a few years back when I was talking to a couple of my cousins and they said "I never shop at Target for clothes, I didn't even know they had anything worth looking at!". It seems like more and more people have caught onto the secret of Target's clothing lines these days, as they offer a great selection of both trendy and classic styles for just about anyone (kids, women, men, juniors). Their designer collaborations are wildly popular, and usually sell out online within a couple hours of going live (by the way, Altuzarra for Target hits stores September 14 this year!).

So those are some of my favorite stores and websites for shopping on a budget. There are plenty more out there, but these ones offer awesome pieces at (in my opinion) fantastic prices. I hope you guys enjoyed this, and feel free to leave a comment if you have any favorite shopping destinations that weren't mentioned on the list!