We all need to wear clothes but you don’t need to spend a fortune to look fabulous. There are some easy hacks to look stylish and professional without spending crazy amounts of money on clothes and accessories. Here are our best tips on how to spend less and save money on clothes.
Do a wardrobe audit
First do a wardrobe audit and figure out exactly what you have and what you need. It’s only when you pull everything out, that you’ll see that you have five pairs of black pants and 6 white t-shirts. Figure out what you have and what you need.
Take care of your clothes
To save money on clothes, look after the ones you currently have. This will save you having to buy more clothes. Hang your clothes up. Wash them according to the washing label. Hang dry – avoid the dryer.
Have a capsule wardrobe
Simplify your wardrobe and choose a limited number of versatile clothes that you can mix and match to create different looks.
Sell your clothes
Do you have clothes that you no longer wear like a work wardrobe or have you changed sizes? Sell them on consignment, or on eBay or at local clothing markets. This gives you money to pay for more clothes.
Shop out of season
Buy clothing at the end of season. Retailers mark clothes down in preparation for the upcoming seasons and you can get some great bargains.
Sign up for emails
If you can’t resist some retail therapy, sign up for email from your favourite shop. Often you’ll get reminders of upcoming sales, VIP customer discounts or even special shopping nights with customer bonuses.
Make the most of your clothes by using accessories to update your look. Think about how your current collections earrings, necklace and scarves can change your look.
Buy generic for your core wardrobe
You don’t need to spend lots of money on basics like t-shirts, singlets and leggings. You can pick these up at more inexpensive spots like Target, Big W or Best&Less.
Buy gently used clothes
Visit charity op shops, consignment stores and local community markets or shop online on Ebay or Gumtree to find clothes. There are also specific markets in which you can buy and sell quality preloved clothing like Suitcase Rummage in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane and Raid My Wardrobe market in Newcastle. You can get some great clothes for a fraction of the cost. Jump on to the Depop app and buy preloved designer, vintage and streetwear clothing.
Do a clothes swap
Swap your clothes – get your girlfriends together and bring some clothes and accessories to swap. As well as a fun social event, it means you get some new wardrobe pieces for free.
Participate in an official clothing swap
The Clothing Exchange is an offical clothing swap. In these events, you bring up to six items of clothing you value but no longer wear and exchange for those you’ll love to wear! When you check your clothes in you will receive buttons to use as currency once the swap opens. You can then take one item for each button you receive. Events are held throughout Australia.
Get a friend to look at your wardrobe
Got a stylish friend who loves clothes? Get them over to your house to review your clothes. A fashionista can put together different looks that you’ve probably never thought about with your existing wardrobe.
Borrow an outfit
Share your clothes with your friends. If you have an occasion to go to like a wedding or party, don’t rush out shopping. First ask your friends if they have a dress or outfit you can borrow.
Shop the boys or mens department
For some unknown reason, women’s clothes seem to have a higher price than the similar offerings found in the boy’s or men’s department. Avoid the “pink tax” and purchase some clothes marketed to the male gender. Things you can buy? Button-down shirts, sweatshirts, flannel shirts, t-shirts and if you like a pair of jeans that sit lower, men’s jeans. If you’re a petite woman, shop in the boys department. Sometimes you can find size 16 boys clothes which will fit.
Buy factory seconds or other merchandise at the outlets
Do you have a favourite retail shop? Buy their discounted clothes at their outlets or online. Some of the clothes might be factory seconds. These clothes are retail items which, through minor fault of manufacture, are sold to the public for a cheaper retail price rather than being discarded. Also at the outlets are things that are out of season.
Hire an outfit for a special occasion
Save money on buying outfits for special occasions like a wedding or formal event. Hire an outfit from Glam Corner for a fraction of the retail cost. It’s a great way to save on clothes if you only like wearing an outfit once.
Save money on clothes by buying good quality clothes that will last and won’t go out of style. Choose classic pieces that won’t date and opt for better quality fabric. We’ve all spent money on cheaper clothes only to have it fall apart after a few washes.
Repair your clothes
Button fallen off your shirt? Got a stain on your shirt? Before you chuck out those clothes, see if you can repair them. It’s easy to sew a button back on. (A tip to prevent buttons from unravelling is to apply a coat of clear nail polish on it). You can also try to remove a stain from clothing so that you can wear it again. But make sure that you’re using the appropriate removal for the specific stain. Check the Clothing Stain Removal Guide on the American Cleaning Institute website.
Alter your clothes
If you’ve worn out your jeans, cut off the legs and make them into jean shorts. Ditto with a long-sleeved shirt. Consult Pinterest to see how many varieties of cool t-shirts you can make or upcycle from a plain white T-shirt.
Repair your shoes
Have your shoes worn out? Replace the sole or heels at a local cobbler. It’s often much cheaper to repair shoes or boots than to go out and purchase a new pair. After a zipper broke on one of my favourite boots, I got the zipper replaced. $20 was much cheaper than buying a new pair of boots especially as the leather was in great condition.