Luxe For Less Shopping Tips

September 6, 2013 by  
Filed under Fashion Tips & Finds

Like most people I have a keen appreciation for designer luxe items whether it’s amazing clothing in my favorite magazines, stunning photos in personal style blogs or the trendy moms at the local mall.  But more than anything I try to find inspiration from the finer things in life.  I love scouring flea markets, Goodwill stores, clearance racks – anywhere that will allow me to get the luxe for less and I’m all over it!  For the most part it’s focused around my love of fashion but it really applies to anything or anyone I may be shopping for in my life.  The thrill of finding something for way less than it was originally priced is simply unmatched. But finding pieces for less can easily open us up to impulse shopping so over the years I’ve come up with a few rules of shopping that I swear by:

Don’t be afraid of the junior department.  These are the stores and departments that WILL carry those trendy items seen all over magazines for way less, leaving you more money for those important investment pieces.

Find out what days they do mark downs and get there early.  I take about five days out of the month (sometimes even more lol) to hit up the stores for new items and shop the mark downs.  Some stores will even honor the sale if you happen to buy within a few days of the mark down.

Consider swapping with friends and family.  What’s old to you maybe something your friend or cousin might have been dying to wear and vice versa.

Consider some easy DIY projects.  Lots and lots of designer pieces are detail focused and can easily be recreated.

Know when to invest. I know this one may be a bit counterintuitive but I do know and appreciate that there will be items that need to be investment pieces. The criteria for me is that investment pieces have to fluidly go with just about everything in my closet and need to be easily dressed up or down.  So invest in a good bag and classic must-have items like a leather jacket, trench or a good pair of boots or heels.  These items will be worn year after year and never go out of style so they’re worth saving up for.

Below are some of my favorite outfits that I bought following these rules.

1. This purple dress was only $5 and I’ve been able to wear it so many different ways. 2. This outfit is a perfect example of mixing some high low pieces.  The DVF heels go with a ton of different outfits and I knew I could wear them year after year. The beige wrap dress is a no brainer and only cost me $25 and I’ve had this denim jacket for years and wear it ALL the time. Same goes with the clutch. 3. I built this outfit around my favorite $6 chambray top and the entire look was under $50 including the shoes.


Hope you found these shopping tips useful 🙂

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Win $250 From American Express!

November 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Fashion Tips & Finds

Holiday shopping is never easy and it’s even more challenging when you’re on a budget.  I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve wandered aimlessly through the malls with no clue what to buy and so frustrated that I pick something out of my budget just so I don’t walk out empty handed. But I’ve learned from my mistakes and so can you!  Try some of my personal tips below for staying within a holiday budget and getting the most out of your dollar this season. Best of all, American Express is offering one lucky fashiongrail fan a $250 gift card by simply sharing your personal budget shopping tip!

  • Make a detailed list and start with the most difficult person to shop for first.  I know they say, “get the easy ones out of the way first,” but who wants to run around on Christmas Eve looking for that one item you can’t find?  Not me!
  • Check online sales before hitting the stores.  Tons of stores have online specials where you can pick up items in store and most places are posting deals as early as the day before Thanksgiving.
  • If you’re waiting for Black Friday then plan on getting there early!  Lots of stores are on a first come first served basis and utilize tickets.
  • Don’t be afraid to wait for Cyber Monday. Free shipping is what it’s all about!
  • Bring your phone and sign up for your favorite store’s feed to get instant deals and coupons (some stores let you utilize a barcode right from your phone).
  • If you plan on using credit cards, choose wisely.  Companies like American Express are doing a great job educating consumers about the benefits of smart shopping this holiday season to include leveraging card protection and the benefits of Membership Rewards (gotta love them points!).
  • Crunched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Small Business Saturday. Besides the convenience and traditionally great service that small, local businesses offer, American Express is offering its cardholders a one-time credit of $25 if they register an eligible card and make a purchase of at least $25 at a small business.
  • Suggest a gift swapping/ Secret Santa scenario instead of buying a gift for every single person you know. Try a holiday fun brunch with wine and appetizers during gift swap. Get creative and turn it into a yearly tradition.

How to Win the $250 Amex Gift Card:

Leave a comment below offering your personal budget shopping tip.  For an extra entry tweet the contest and tell us below that you did.  For a third entry, post on Fashiongrail’s Facebook wall your time saving tip and again let us know you did in the comments below.  For an extra entry you tweet the giveaway or ‘like’ American Express and Fashiongrail on Facebook (make sure you state that you did below). One random winner will be chosen on Novemebr 28th.  American Express will ship gift card directly to winner. U.S. residents only.


Disclosure: Compensation was provided by American Express via OPR.  The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of American Express.”


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