If a look through Vogue leaves you green with envy and Fashion Week has you turning out your pockets in despair, then read on. We’re gonna show you how to get your designer fix — for a whole lot less!
Shop A Designer’s Whole Collection. You can get your favorite designer labels for less by learning to shop all forms of the collection. Most designer’s offer a range of brands and collections at lower prices if you know what to shop. This means you can fill your closet on a budget – exciting news for the serious fashionista.
Capsule collections should be your first call with designer’s offering staple pieces such as jackets, pants and dresses straight from the catwalk
but made more affordable. They can do this because the collection is designed to be small and mass manufactured and therefore prices can be kept low. If you’re looking to fill your closet with designer labels for less this is a really good option.
Bridge Line are collections made in collaboration between high-end fashion labels and cheaper retail brands, like the ones from Target and H&M, to bring the same design and look but made to more affordable standards. This means you get the designer tag for high street prices. But be forewarned, you won’t necessarily get the same quality.
Low-cost brand alternatives. Fashion designers will often have cut-price labels that sit within their own fashion house. These brands normally resemble the main brand, such as Marc by Marc Jacobs, but demand a much lower price. Although these lower end brands are part of your favorite designer’s collections they don’t necessarily offer the same look or quality. However, if you just want to rock something by your favorite brands this is certainly a cost-effective way.
Shop Off-Season. When a season comes to an end you will usually see designer brands offering last season’s clothes at discount prices. This means you can get bona fide designer labels for less — as long as you’re willing to buy items from the fall collection as spring/summer rolls in. But hey, it means you will rock the look next winter!
Don’t wait for the sales to be announced. If you are fashion forward you will know when a season is about to end, even before the sale signs go up! Ask your favorite stores if they are willing to offer price adjustments on garments that are about to go on sale. As you know when a sale starts all of the popular sizes disappear quickly – if you’re ahead of the game you can be first to shop the sale items and pick up your size across the looks. As well as price adjustments it’s handy to know what the returns policy is on sale items – not that you ever plan on returning your beautiful new designer outfit – but just in case it doesn’t quite fit it is good to know whether you can get store credit or a full refund.
Flash Sales. Flash sales benefit both designer and customer – the flash sale site buys certain items in bulk from a popular designer and any price discount is passed onto the consumer (minus commission taken by the flash sale site) – it’s a win-win all round. Flash sale sites are selective in what they sell, the designers they offer and the sizes they can stock so you won’t get your pick of a whole collection, in fact it is likely to only be one or two items. If you just want your favorite designer label nestling in your closet and you’re not fussy if this is a hat or a dress then the flash sale is good news for you.
Other ways of shopping sales online is through sites that offer discounts and coupons against your favorite online retailers. It’s worth checking out sites like dontpayfull.com before you check out on your favorite fashion items to see if they can offer you deals like free delivery or a percentage discount at the till.
Buy Second Hand. Second-hand designer clothes are a really good way of filling your designer closet. Auction sites such as eBay are packed full of designer labels for the highest bidder, and there are some boutiques that make their living from offering secondhand and preloved designer gear.
The value of second hand though is becoming more established, so don’t expect to knock off 50 percent just because the piece is not brand new. The resale value of designers is one of the reasons fashion labels are such an investment piece – the quality of the materials and manufacture means they simply look good for longer, so they can easily be sold on once you have moved on with your look.
Buying second hand can be hit or miss, particularly if you are a larger size as it tends to be the most popular sizes and mass manufactured styles that end up on the second-hand racks. If you’re handy with a sewing machine however you can turn designer brands into custom made, beautiful clothing, a talent a few of a DivaGals have. Lots of fashion savvy people are choosing to do just this and some are even making money from selling on their custom made, designer-inspired collections.
Share Designer Clothes. This one requires you to be a very good friend! If you can’t wait for the sales to pick up your favorite look, why not rope in one of your gal pals. As long as they are about the same size you could pool your resources and buy a classic piece between you! That way you get this season’s designer look at half-price. Of course, you can’t both wear it at the same time so you will need to work out a fair schedule to make sure you both benefit from this investment – but if you’re willing to share you could gain access to a designer wardrobe for a less than you think.