Building a Designer Wardrobe on a Budget

| August 5, 2013 | 0 Comments

by Miranda Likeman

If you covet designer fashion but can’t quite fit it into your budget, the Designer Garage Sale at New Zealand Fashion Week is a great way to score your favourite couture at bargain prices. Read up on how to make your wallet work harder and still have a wardrobe full of designer threads…


Building a Designer Wardrobe on a Budget

Take a look at your wardrobe

In order to get a cupboard full of designer threads without having to skip the rent payments, you first have to assess what you already have.

  1. Take a look at what items you have in your wardrobe. Remove anything that doesn’t fit, that you haven’t worn in the past 12 months (taking seasonal wear into account) and anything that you purchased on impulse but have never put on. If you can sell them, do so – if not, donate to friends, family, or the local op shop.
  2. Take a look at what you have in your closet that you have owned for more than five years but still wear, year in, year out; your tried and true key pieces and classics that will never go out of style. You don’t need to own oodles of clothes to express yourself, you want a wardrobe that works for you as an individual. These are your staples.
  3. Assess where the gaps are in making your collection a cohesive whole – do you need another blazer, skirt, white shirt? Make a list, bearing in mind considering its place in our wardrobe means you can spend more on single items.
shoppers Take your time

It is hard not to be seduced by all the little buys we spy throughout the year. But you have to remain determined to stick to your list, as this is the only way you’re going to maintain a budget strong enough to splash out on designer items. This will be a positive process in which you will learn to harness your personal style as well as your finances. At present the Designer Garage Sale is twice a year, covering both summer and winter items, so save for the event and stop buying on a whim and regretting it. You’re bound to appreciate any item all the more if attaining it pushed you beyond a mindless swipe of your credit card. Every item in your wardrobe deserves this amount of appreciation.

Rethink your idea of what a designer is

When someone has put creative energy into fabricating a garment that deserves to be cherished and is a work of art in its own right – that is a designer item. And you don’t necessarily have to stick to the big names, there are the emerging designers of tomorrow who are probably putting more creative energy into their pieces now than they ever will again – it’s your job to suss them out, assess the quality and consider the spend. Then you will end up with a wardrobe that has your own stamp on it, that will be the envy of all who see you in it.

Before you spend, ask yourself

Something at the sale catches your eye. Before you break out the wallet, ask yourself: is it on your list? Where will you wear it? How many times will you wear it (cost to wear ratio?). Does it suit you and your style? Will the quality and style stand the test of time?

Take care

In order to remain a long lasting part of your wardrobe, you should care for your clothing properly. Give them the respect they deserve, cleaning them properly and according to instructions, maintaining them and hanging them properly. Then you will have a closet of high-end clothing items without the high credit card interest.


Image Source.

This season the New Zealand Fashion Week Designer Garage Sale will be on the weekend of the 7th and 8th of September at the Viaduct Event Centre.

The Designer Garage Sale will be held over two days:

  • Saturday 10am – 5.30pm
  • Sunday 10am – 5pm

Tickets are now on sale for the New Zealand Fashion Weekend! Buy yours now here!

Miranda Likeman has been every kind of journalist you could name. At present she writes mostly about fashion and beauty, subjects on which she has much experience, but not in a stuffy inaccessible way. She loves a bargain and making the affordable look expensive.

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Category: Fashion

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