Style Counsel

your style questions answered

A few classic pieces are always a good buy. Outfit available at New Look.

A few classic pieces are always a good buy. Outfit available at New Look.

Q: I love clothes shopping but I’m a lot more conscious of my spending since the economic downturn. Have you any tips for looking good on a tighter budget?

A: A complete wardrobe should be a case of less is more. A few well chosen outfits with accessories to update your look will last through the seasons.

It is better to buy one great piece in the most flattering shade and shape than to buy few so-so pieces. I would recommend to invest in high quality items such as jackets, a coat, dresses, and shoes to built up a great wardrobe over time.

You should start by analysing and reorganising your wardrobe. It will help you to identify where the gap is. To do this, start to put the clothes together and try to create looks with what you have. Then write down on a piece of paper what to need to get to complete each look. For example you may have a brown skirt but nothing to wear with it. So perhaps you need a new shirt, or sweater, or jacket.

Having a well streamlined wardrobe will enable you to get more out of what you already have and therefore save money.

While you analyse your wardrobe try to see what you haven't worn for a long time and decide whether or not it still suits you. If you’re not going to wear it again, there is no point in keeping it.

If you have an item that you don’t like, such as a

jacket, you might be able to revamp it by changing the look of it. You could add brooches or flowers, or maybe change the buttons.

Once you have made you list (keep it reasonable to avoid putting you under pressure ), you can hit the shops. While shopping make sure to stay focused on what you need. I recommend you shop in the morning while it is quieter, and stick to three shops for a start. Also you should always try the clothes on.

Remember to only buy a piece of clothing if it will go with at least two items in your wardrobe.

Accessories are the best way to change the look of an outfit and update your favourites from last year. Ensure that you have enough accessories to create a range of looks using the same clothes.

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