Monthly Archives: November 2016

Steps To Shopping Thrift Stores

I’m cheap. I like bargains. Although I’ve never had the fortitude or willpower to extreme coupon, the idea is intriguing. In the meantime however I save money elsewhere.

Clothes.

Being fashionable is expensive. Good, quality clothing usually comes with sticker shock large enough to knock the wind out of a person. And the trouble with fashion is, once you collect your wardrobe (provided you get past the whooping price tags) and spent your life savings doing so, the damned style changes.

Growing up, we didn’t have much money. Hell, we didn’t have any money. I was the youngest of three daughters (a decade younger to be exact) of a single mom. Nurse’s aides don’t get paid well. They barely get paid enough to eat, for all their back-breaking work. My mom was no different. The pay check simply didn’t stretch far enough to include new, fashionable clothes. I wore decades-removed, hand-me-downs and the primary “department stores” on our clothing agenda was Goodwill, St. Vincent DePaul, and the spring time yard sales. As a kid I was mortified where my clothes came from. I went to great lengths to conceal the fact. But all those red-faced moments of embarrassment as a kid taught me a thing or two about getting good clothes for next to nothing. So for every time I was a butt at the local thrift store, I want to say, “Sorry, Mom, and thanks.”

Shopping thrift stores is vastly different from shopping regular department stores. You have to go into it with the right mindset. It’s not a single mantra to keep in mind; it’s a set of rules to apply. I’m often asked where I find my outfits, or how did I come up with the idea for the outfit I’m wearing. For me, it’s as easy as a few rules to keep in mind.

Patience. ~ The old adage that ‘patience is a virtue’ is wholly applicable when shopping thrift stores. Unlike a regular department store, where you can dash in and out and get what you need in as quick as it takes to get in and out of the dressing room, shopping a thrift store takes a fair amount of time dedicated to it. You will need to set aside a block of time to go shopping for a good deal. I usually stick with two hours. I plan on my thrift store shopping taking two hours of my day. (Keep in mind that is two hours per store. If you’re going to multiple stores, which may be necessary, you could spend several hours shopping.)

Game Plan. ~ There is nothing wrong with browsing at a thrift store. I do it all the time. Exploring the merchandise to see what’s “new”. Also I encourage you to browse your local

thrift store several times before you intend to buy anything there. Doing so will give you the opportunity to get a feel for the store, the assistance factor of the employees, and the merchandise quality and turn over rate. As for the game plan, know what you’re going for before you get to the store.

Self-restraint. ~ If it’s not in your game plan, don’t buy it. Simple. I’m not saying you should ignore an exceptional bargain (read: the Vera Wang with tags still attached, or the phenomenal party dress when you’re there to buy office clothes), but you should show a little willpower. If it isn’t an absolutely blow your socks off kind of find, you should leave it on the rack.

Know Your Limitations. ~ Clothes that come into most thrift stores end up there for three reasons: a) They no longer fit the owner; b) They’re “out of style”; c) They’re defective. The first two should barely register as blips on your shopping radar. Your body is unique, so the clothing may fit you; and fashion is cyclical. What is “in style” now is irrelevant (except don’t buy those bell bottoms there; they will always be out of style). C however is important; vital even. 1) Never buy stained merchandise. That item has been laundered, probably multiple times since it was stained. You are not getting that out. 2) Don’t buy merchandise that needs extensive alterations. If you suck with a needle and thread and yarn, don’t buy the jeans that need hemmed, the blouse that needs a hole the size of your thumb sewn up in the front hem, or the sweater with a gaping hole in the breast area. Be realistic; if you have never taken an article of clothing to a tailor previously, you probably aren’t going to take that $4 shirt or pair of pants.

Try Everything On. ~ This should be a no-brainer. But, once upon a time when I was still young and impatient (and deluded into believing I was two sizes smaller than I am), I was as

guilty of this as any of you. Clothes vary in size from manufacturer to manufacturer. Also clothing that has been worn and laundered dozens of times stretches and warps. You may think you know your size. Trust me, you don’t when it comes to thrift store shopping.

Compare. ~ I’m not talking about prices. It’s negligible at a thrift store really. I’m talking holding each item up to the other items you’re buying to see if they work together. Know what’s in your closet at home and mentally picture if the item you’re buying will go with your existing wardrobe. Actually it’s no shame to take an item or two into the thrift store and compare them to what you’re getting. I do it all the time. Take all your combinations into the fitting room and mix and match to see what is interchangeable and what isn’t. It’s better than getting a surprise when you get home.

Add Quality. ~ Sometimes you just have to break down and spend the money to buy a few good, quality items for your wardrobe. a) Jeans: I never buy jeans at a thrift store unless I need something to paint the house in or work on the car in. b) Jewelery: you can find nice jewelery at thrift stores, but it is the rarity rather than the norm. c) Underwear: um, just gross. You might be able to get nice, quality bras or something at a thrift store. But make sure they have all their original tags.

Know When to Say ‘No’. ~ If everything about an item doesn’t meet the above criteria, no matter how badly I want it/need retail therapy/need an item to fill a spot for something, I. Don’t. Buy. It.

I’m not a fashion expert. I’m not a shopping expert. I do make fashion blunders from time to time. (More often than I’d like to admit actually.) But more often than not, I am complimented on my clothes. People freak out when they find out 75% of my wardrobe comes from thrift stores. I hear “Oh, I never find anything like that at [insert name of thrift store here] when I go!” This is my answer to how everybody can find the cool things I do.

How to Find the Best Online Fashion

You don’t need to subscribe to the latest magazines to keep up to date with the latest trends in fashion. Today’s women are turning from expensive magazines to online fashion sites and blogs to update them on everything they need to know. With internet access, it won’t be hard to find a plethora of websites solely dedicated to style and fashion.

But how do you separate the good from the bad? Well, first, get your PC connected and use it to browse through a variety of online fashion websites. Type in a general sentence or a specific word you’re looking for. For example, you might be interested in looking up the latest trends for this year, so type in the word ‘latest trends for 2010’ or something to that ilk. You are sure to get a few million websites concerning that topic alone, but the ones that come out in the first few web pages are the ones you want to pay attention to, as these are the ones that have received the most hits.

If you know a certain designer brand of fashion blog you might want to visit, type in the names or addresses in the search engine. A list of blogs and other online fashion sites that have mentioned the designers name will appear as well, so have fun browsing through them and decide which ones are relevant to what you’re looking for.

Once you’ve found a blog or fashion site you like, look for the links they have to other like minded sites. They are often found in the “Categories” section or simply titled “Other online fashion sites to visit” These include links relevant to what you are interested in, and who knows, you just might stumble upon your next favorite blog!

Another way to sieve the good from the bad is to check out online fashion and style boards. These places are mediums of discussion where people with the same interests come to share their views and basically discuss the latest trends and fashion sites they love. It’s a great way to get tips right from the horse’s mouth. You can also ask your own questions and air your views, as long as you are signed in as a member.

There are also a number of companies that do yearly surveys to suss the top 50 blogs and online fashion sites that receive the most hits. Some of these are voted on by the public, while others are chosen only by the industry’s experts. Whichever way, be sure to check them out for more inspiration.

Last but not least, once you’ve found the ultimate online fashion sites or blogs you want to follow, be sure to bookmark them so you can receive instant email alerts any time there are updates. It’s a great way to keep you on your toes for the latest in trends.

Of course one lady’s favourite online fashion site may be the worst for another. You should not limit your taste or choice of site according to the opinion of others. Choose the sites that you really connect with and want to follow, and the rest will work its way out.

Some Popular Fashion

Accessories are considered one of the greatest assets of a woman. Women look beautiful and complete when she wears fashionable clothes and accessories. Today, market is full of fashion accessories. You can easily find designer wears and accessories from a local store. Also, you can do shopping from an online fashion store. At one store, you can find accessories which are matched well with your personality. There are many stores which have branded outfits and accessories at a very good range, you do not need to compromise on quality and durability of the accessory. You have many options if you are not satisfied with one store you can easily move to the other.

Popular Fashion Accessories

Jewelry

It is all-time favorite accessory of fashionable women. There are several varieties of gold, silver, platinum and other types of metals present in the online and local fashion jewelry house. But if you are shopping for gold and platinum jewelries then make sure that the shopping store has good reputation in the market and has better quality jewelry. To know the purity of gold it is good to know the karat of gold. Some gold jewelry houses are selling 10 karat gold jewelry which is considered very low in quality. The 14 karat gold jewelries are good. Do not buy 24 karat jewelries as these jewelry items are easily bent. If you are planning to buy a ring then try to buy platinum or white gold ring which is studded with diamonds. It will bring smile on the face of your fiance.

Handbags

Handbags are very popular accessory of women and teenage girls. Women love to carry designer handbags but are very expensive. That is why numbers of women like to buy replica handbags. These handbags are very cheap and are copycat of designer handbags. It is very hard to make difference between the real and the fake one.

Shoes or Boots

Look of a woman is never complete without a pair of good sandals. It is very necessary to make combination between clothes and shoes in order to find remarkable look. To get good combination you can do shopping from an online fashion store. From an online store you can find perfect combination that is well matched to your persona.

The Benefits of Online Shopping

For most women, multi-tasking has become a must. The constant demands of work, childcare, running a home and many other commitments on both our time and energy can leave us feeling like there just aren’t enough hours in the day. It is perhaps for this reason that online shopping is becoming an increasingly popular choice for women of all ages as they seek to find a better balance in their lives, and perhaps even have a little time left over for themselves! There are many reasons why shopping online should be an attractive proposition for women, here are just a few of them…

Spoilt for choice…

One of the best things about shopping online is the astonishing variety of items available. From hair accessories to household appliances, you’ll find whatever you’re searching for online at the click of a mouse. Whether you’re looking for a new bag to complement your favourite shoes or a whole new outfit, shopping online can offer you more choice and variety than any store you can find on the High Street. You’ll find items in every colour, style and size imaginable, and all from the comfort of your own home.

Give your feet a break…

One of the less enjoyable aspects of shopping is marching round dozens of shops for hours on end trying to find what you’re looking for. Picture the scene: you’ve walked for miles (probably in the rain), possibly carrying heavy bags, going from store to store and eventually exhaustion, hunger or fatigue has got the better of you and you’ve returned home empty handed. Sound familiar? Or even worse, the seemingly never-ending trek has eventually led you to an item you love, only for you to discover that it’s out of stock in the size or colour you want. The good news is that there’s really no need to put yourself through that torture! Shopping online means no more sore feet or frustrating, fruitless journeys. Now that’s got to be a relief…

Be kind to your purse…

Another benefit to shopping online is the potential to save yourself money. Not only is it quick and easy to compare prices on the internet, you’ll also find that many stores offer special “internet only” deals that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to take advantage of. You’ll save yourself money on fuel and parking costs, and as many online retailers now offer free UK delivery it’s easy to see how shopping online can be a very cost-effective option.

Speed is of the essence…

Shopping online for gifts is fast becoming the preferred option for both men and women alike. In addition to the huge selection of items available and the potential to grab a bargain, the option to buy a gift for a friend or family member and have it delivered directly to them, gift wrapped of course, is one now being offered by many online retailers. At last, remembering an important birthday or anniversary at the last minute doesn’t have to be a disaster! And with many retailers now offering express (or even next day) delivery, the online shopping option seems like the obvious choice. So whether you’re in the market for women’s fashion accessories or the latest high-tech gadget, you’ll find it fast online.

Shop in your pyjamas!

There’s no such thing as opening hours when it comes to internet shopping and no dress code either! So if you decide that you really need those new hair straighteners at 2.30am, that’s not a problem!

Jingle bells…

The crowds, the queues, the inclement weather, the stress: just a few of the reasons why shopping online at Christmas is by far the most sensible option. Why not stay warm and dry in the comfort of your own home? While those less savvy shoppers trudge through the snow laden down with bags, sit by the fire with your hot chocolate. Bask in the glow of your fairy lights and cross off those items on your Christmas shopping list with a click of your mouse.

No worries…

Internet shoppers are now more aware of the protection that comes with shopping online. Many retailers now accommodate PayPal payments for maximum convenience and security and of course all online purchases are covered by distance selling regulations meaning that you have peace of mind as you shop.

Online Shopping Factors That Affect Fashion

Online shopping is becoming more popular nowadays alongside with the seemingly endless innovations in technology. The success of online shopping business is rooted to several factors, although there’s no single recipe to become a successful online retailer. Online shopping has a significant contribution to the highly diversified and fast changing fashion trends. If checking a diamond has 4 C’s (clarity, carat, color and cut), online shopping has 5 C’s, as listed below.

Convenient shopping- Convenience is the most prominent keyword when discussing the benefits of online shopping. No hassle of going in and out of an actual store just to find out that you’re most dreaded pair of jeans is still out of stock. No wasted time for falling in line just to pay for a single piece of accessory that you have been waiting to arrive at store. If you were from the other side of the globe, you can still enjoy the same fashion trends that people from the other side are enjoying because you can simply order online, and have the latest designer bag delivered to your doorstep.

Comparing products and brands – Various products of competing brands can be easily compared with each other while you’re just sitting before your monitor, your laptop or your tablet. Everything is posted online and virtual shoppers could easily check the similarities and differences between products and brands they are choosing from.

Cost-effective and affordable products available – Since there are many products competing for one customer, prices tend to go lower by following the law of supply and demand. If there are more supplies than what is being demanded, prices go down, making products become more affordable and cost-effective for online buyers.

Customer service and after-sales assistance- It may be surprising but more of the online shoppers nowadays are affected by the reliability of the after-sales service of online stores. This is highly observed among online stores that sell gadgets and other products that may need technical assistance in the future. Customer service reliability is also measured in terms of providing a good ‘return policy’ should the purchased product arrives in defective condition.

Courier factor or the lead time delivery – Going online means going global as you target a wider market. To become an effective online store or retailer, the courier factor or lead time to deliver is quite a big factor. No consumer would ever want to receive their Christmas decors on New Year’s Eve already. Lead time to deliver is also critical factor for fashion industry, as fashion trends easily move through time.