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Stay Stylish During the Credit Crunch with Shop-onomics

With the credit crunch looming, the fashionista’s dilemma is how to stay stylish when on a budget? The answer is shop-onomics! The ethos behind “shop-onomics”, a term coined by North West Image Consultant Nicola Cupples, is simply about shopping smarter to keep you looking chic and stylish even during those months when the purse strings need to be tightened.

The Key Principles of Shop-onomics

Cheap isn’t always Chic

Although the likes of cheap clothing stores have a place in every woman’s fashion wardrobe, it should not consume a woman’s entire wardrobe! Cheap clothing stores are ideal for updating your look quickly and cheaply and achieving this season’s trends on a shoestring, however in order to remain looking chic, they need to be mixed and matched with quality staples.

The materials and labour used to produce cheap clothes obviously lacks quality, which means that although the consumer feels as though they are getting a bargain, they won’t be getting something that will sustain its appearance after a few washes.

Fashion fades, style is eternal. Yves Saint Laurent

Crisp white shirts, a good pair of jeans, simple blazers, good quality plain camis and a good quality handbag are examples of wardrobe staples that will never go out of style. The idea should be to build up your wardrobe staples by spending a bit more on quality items that will last and wash well, and then updating your look each season with cheaper fashion items if you can’t afford to splash out all of the time.

Get Maximum Price per Wear

To ensure you shop efficiently, identify what you actually need and how much you have to spend before hitting the shops. Identify what you need to complete the looks you desire and write it down. Once you have your list, go through it and ensure that there are other items in your existing wardrobe that you could wear with the new items you propose to get. That way you will ensure maximum price per wear for every item you get.

Wardrobe Maintenance

Look after your clothes! Wash them according to the labels, dry clean as little as possible, hang items up properly and treat each item as if it were your most valued possession. Everything should be ready to wear that’s hanging in your wardrobe. All your clothes will remain looking new for so much longer and you’ll be less inclined to hit the shops for a fashion fix!

The credit crunch is a reason to start shopping more economically but it is something that people should consider on a regular basis. Shopping sprees are great fun and give you an instant buzz, however the principles of shop-onomics mean that the highs last much longer and you will find that you will feel satisfied with your wardrobe all year round, and not only will your wardrobe be looking healthier, but your bank balance will be too.

© nicola cupples, 10th June 2008

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