It is safe to say that I have eyes bigger than my wallet.
Like many, I LOVE shopping. Fashion has always been something that interests me, whether I’m adopting new trends or experimenting with different styles of clothing on my own. Seeing that I am a 24-year-old living in NYC on a budget, I have been on a mission to figure out all of the tips and tricks on following my personal style, while being able to embrace new trends on a budget.
Here are some of the questions I ask myself before buying something…
- Is it versatile? How can I wear this in the fall and also the summer?
- Do I own anything like this?
- Can I style this with multiple other pieces of clothing I already own?
- Will I wear this multiple times? Is it trendy or timeless?
- If it feels like a splurge… Can I find a more affordable version of it?
Here are some of the rules I set for myself…
- Do research. Do not impulse buy. There very well may be a more affordable version of what you are looking for.
- Don’t shop trendy unless it is something I stay awake at night thinking about. Sleep on it.
For example: I lay awake at night dreaming of Arielle’s boots from The Row. These are out of my budget, so I waited MONTHS until finding the perfect pair that felt right and excited me… The winning pair- *drumroll please…* ZARA!
- Am I seeing everyone in it? Has it lost its sparkle? If it already feels overdone… skip it.
- Do not shop more than once a month, and set a strict budget for yourself depending on the other expenses you have during the time period.
Side note: When I “shop” I never do a big haul at once. The most I’ve done while living on my own is maybe 4 or 5 pieces maximum… most often from ASOS or H&M. Otherwise 2 or 3 pieces from Zara.
- There is no need for me to purchase any investment pieces right now. Any investment piece I have is a hand me down or a gift from an adult in my life. Mix your highs and lows! I wear the same purse basically every day. Just learn how to style differently and mix and match with affordable pieces you already own OR become a Rent The Runway member and swap designer pieces you have been eyeing in and out.
- Be flexible with spending on shoes. A good pair of shoes can last you such a long time if you take care of them, and you can re-wear them constantly.
P.S- Use our code RTRSOMETHINGNAVY for $100 off your 60-day trial with Rent The Runway!
A few tips I love while shopping…
- Neutral colors feel more elevated, expensive and chic.
- ZARA and ASOS are the best places to shop not only for basics but when wanting some trendier pieces that won’t break the bank.
- There is nothing cooler than a hand me down. I layer my mom’s vintage gold jewelry like it’s my job. Not only does vintage give your outfit a “cool girl” edge, but it adds meaning and something unique to your personal style.
- Sneakers are your best friend and can go with everything. I consider a good white sneaker a basic. Honestly, I would wear a cool pair of sneakers on my wedding day… jk but not really.
- Layer, layer, layer! Adding dimension to your outfit can make the most simple pieces look chic and cool. I’m loving the oversized button-down under the sweater trend (ASOS and Storets are mastering this).
- Transition this to spring or summer with a pair of denim cutoffs and a cute ballet flat or mule.
Here is a break down of 5 days of fashion with me… SNHQ Edition!
Head to toe Zara! I love pairing something feminine with something edgy, which is why I paired this dress with a chunky black lug sole boot. I would 100% re-wear this outfit in the spring without the tights!
Dress: Zara ~$45.00
Tights: Zara ~$15.00
Boots: Zara $149.00
A pair of Converses have been a staple in my wardrobe literally since elementary school. I seriously think I had at least 5 different colors as a child. The brown velvet with pink lining/laces is forever ingrained in my brain, ha. Now, I styled them with an all-black outfit and a navy coat. The jeans have a slight flared raw hem and I threw a beanie on to complete the look. This was a very “me” outfit.
Beanie: Brandy Melville ~$20.00
Jacket: Vince via Rent The Runway
Sweater: H&M ~$30.00
Jeans: Just Black Denim ~$60.00
Sneakers- Converse $55.00
Bag: AREA via Rent The Runway
Total: ~$165.00 + a Rent The Runway membership, which is SO WORTH IT!
More Zara, of course. It is an ongoing joke at SN that all I wear is black… which is not entirely false! Black makes up the majority of my wardrobe. I just like the way I feel in it! For some reason it always makes me feel the most put together and myself. Two things I love… leather and a puff sleeve!
Dress: Zara ~$60.00
Tights: Zara ~$15.00
Boots: Frye $298.00
I love pairing a blazer with a hoodie if you couldn’t tell from my OOTDs lately, ha! H&M makes the comfiest sweatshirts in the best variety of colors. I literally bought this sweatshirt in 6 colors and they are my uniform both on and off duty!
Hoodie: H&M $24.99
Blazer: Derek Lam 10 Crosby via Rent The Runway
Pants: Zara $39.90
Boots: Doc Marten $139.00
Side note: I have seriously had the same pair since my senior year of high school… Pro tip: if you have the patent material, wipe them with Windex regularly and they look good as new and you don’t have to go through breaking in a new pair!
Total: ~$204.00 + a Rent The Runway membership
This styling was definitely influenced by what I have been seeing on the runway and the incredible street style during this past NYFW. I kept seeing a knit sweater tied around the neck and shoulder area, whether that be tied in the front or crossbody and I fell in love and found it so chic. Here is my take on it!
Sweater: H&M ~$30.00
Shirt: ASOS $32.00
Pants: Topshop ~$60.00
Sneakers: Stuart Weitzman $295.00
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PS: *These are editorially selected, but if you purchase, Something Navy may get something in return. Thanks