With fashion trends constantly changing, it can be difficult to keep your wardrobe up to date without spending all of your money on clothes.
For Marii Herlinger, a frequent buyer at the second-hand store, Buffalo Exchange, building a fashionable wardrobe on a budget is all about putting in the time.
“I think most people get frustrated going shopping, because they have to find something that looks good on them and they lose patience,” Herlinger said. “Be willing to spend some time looking.”
Her biggest piece of advice is not to stick to one section of the store.
While searching for the perfect T-shirt, don’t limit yourself to one section. You could be missing out on something else that’s equally great, just a few racks over.
“I think most people get frustrated going shopping, because they have to find something that looks good on them and they lose patience. Be willing to spend some time looking.”
Herlinger also suggests buying clothes for the next season before stores start to make the change. That allows you to clear out your closet from the previous season and make way for new items for the next season. She likes to buy swimsuits in February, so that once summer does come around, choices aren’t gone.
“If you pick up an item and make sure it still looks like it’s new, but you got it from a thrift store, it’s kind of like cheating the system,” Herlinger said.
Freshman Clay Eggleston also suggested utilizing thrift stores. He said they have provided him with some of his favorite articles of clothing, but not in the section one may think.
“A lot of guys can actually find really cool clothes in the women’s section. There are a lot of unisex clothes that get put in the women’s section that can be worn by anybody,” Eggleston said.
Eggleston said if you are planning on buying an expensive item, make sure it is the one you want. By ‘the one,’ he means an article of clothing you know you want, without any second thoughts.
Junior Jake Thomson said another way to save money is to borrow from your friends and family.
“A lot of old trends are coming back, so dig through your dad or grandpa’s closet and you can find some cool finds,” Thomson said. “If your roommates have cool style you can always share stuff with them, too. It will spice up your wardrobe.”
Junior Yuriy Vinnik likes to modify the clothing he already owns so that they represent his own identity.
“I really wanted a piece of Western clothing, but I’m not trying to spend $20 to $30,” Vinnik said. “I got a free tote bag during a university tour, so I cut that up and my mom helped me out sewing it [onto a sweater].”
Vinnik said one of his tips to stay on budget is to take the clothing that you wear now and modify it once you start to get tired of it. Add a patch like he does or even mix and match different pieces of clothing.
“It’s [all] the same quality clothes,” said Vinnik, “It’s just been worn.”
Sophomore Namgyal Nepali is the owner of State of Bliss, a design company he started his junior year of high school.
Nepali said to participate in clothing swaps, events held by Western’s Prevention of Wellness and Services.
“You’re able to bring some of your old clothes and leave that event with some new clothes. Who knows what you’ll find there,” Nepali said.
With these tips, college students can keep more cash in the pockets of their fancy pants.