Frugal Fall Fashion Tips

Every school year, we have the opportunity to start fresh in so many ways. The way we dress, and more importantly, the way we feel plays a huge role in this catharsis. This fall, allow your wardrobe to inspire a “new” you with the following shopping tips.

To maximize your budget and stretch out your wardrobe, it’s always best to stay simple. I don’t mean to avoid all current trends and dress exclusively in blacks and whites like a confused soccer referee…rather

1) invest in timeless, versatile wardrobe staples.

Unless you’re Lady Gaga and/or have a totally unconventional career, black straight-leg pants are an absolute must. You could literally not own a single other bottom and be fine wearing them everyday for an entire year…though appearing to be homeless is never encouraged.

The good thing about bottoms is that they’re rarely affected by fleeting trends. Items like khakis, pencil skirts and a-line dresses have never and will never go out of style. For this exact reason, I highly recommend that you find a “bargain splurge” on these items, aka good quality brands on sale.

As far as tops go, solid basics are always a great starting point (button-downs, blouses and cardigans). Think of your basic outfit as a canvas, and then layer with relevant fashion-forward items. Colorful outerwear is huge for fall, so make your outfit pop with a bright red blazer or an over-sized sweater. If most of your tops and bottoms are simple solids, you can easily mix, match and layer them, creating hundreds of swoon-worthy looks with the same 12 or so pieces.

Once you have all these adorable new additions safe and secure in your closet, it’s time to trendify. Hot items this fall are definitely jewel-tones, textured items (leather, tweed, flannel), and shiny things (though shiny is tricky and looking tacky has already been reserved by the 90’s).

Image via love Maegan on Flickr.

Because fashion is constantly evolving,

2)  make only small trend-inspired purchases to supplement your wardrobe.

You don’t want to spend $200 on jewel-toned everything and have it go out of style the next day. It’s much more affordable to test the trend waters with accessories. Grab a pair of emerald green ballet flats or a textured waist-belt if you’re looking to match runway styles this fall. That way, your looks will be easily adaptable year after year.

Quick, snag this glam emerald necklace at Forever21.com for a cool $9.80 or these must-have bangles for $6.80. Check out these Forever21 coupons to save more.

Image via such pretty things on Flickr.

3) Never ever ever pay full price.

Right now, Loehmann’s is having an unbelievable in-store sale where shoppers can take up to an additional 60% off already-marked-down items. This means that $100 designer pants are now as low as $10-15 and great blouses from brands like Free People and BCBG are in the single-digits. I’d say “I’m so there,” but I’ve already been there. Multiple times. There's 3% cash back today when you shop through BeFrugal. Check out these Leohmann's coupons to save more.

Macy’s is also a totally worthwhile shopping trip. Their store brand, Style & Co, is amazing and totally affordable with most items priced between $20-30 before discounts. I especially love that after discounts, your price is usually a surprise and those in-store scanners make it all into a really exciting guessing game. Check out these Macy's coupons to save more.

P.S. Don’t forget to check out the sale at Express (plus earn up to 7% cash back when you shop through BeFrugal) and for all your accessory needs, Forever21’s usually got you covered.

Image via Navi-Gator on Flickr.

This is a guest post by  Allison, who is a stylish smart shopper and blogs at Penny Saving Princess.

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