When you are a student, you often have to live on a pretty tight budget. After you have paid for your tuition and fees, rent, textbooks and other essentials, there is not always a lot of money left over. However, you still want to wear clothes that you love and look great. If you are having a hard time affording the clothes that you want, consider these five ideas for making fashion work on a student budget.
Set a Clothing Budget
You aren’t going to do too well sticking with a clothing budget if you never made yourself a budget, so the first step to opening up your money for clothing is setting up a realistic budget. Decide how much you can afford to spend on clothing each year, and divide that number by 12 to set your monthly budget. Make sure that if you go over or under in any given month in your spending on clothes that the amount over or underspent rolls over to the next month’s budget. This will keep you on track for your annual budget goals and free up some extra money in months when you may need more like the beginning of summer or winter.
You might be surprised what great items you can find at thrift stores and consignment stores. Many people donate clothing that is in like-new condition, including brand name clothes. It takes a little extra time to sort through the racks, but you can score some great treasures.
Sell Your Unwanted Items
One way to up money for new clothing purchases is by selling clothes that you no longer want. You can then use these profits to buy new items. If you see something that you absolutely love, consider selling the skinny jeans that never fit you quite right. You can list the items online at Craigslist or other sites for no charge. There is a surprising amount of clothing that is thrown away that still would have had great value to other people.
Host a Clothing Swap
New clothes do not have to be brand new–they can just be new to you! Hosting a clothing swap with your friends is a wonderful way to shop without paying a dime. Invite several friends to come over and bring clothing items in good shape that they no longer want. Shoes, belts and other accessories are welcome, too. During the swap event, you can all enjoy trying on the items and passing along some of your unwanted clothes. It might not work for everyone, but you’d be surprised the treasures you can find that friends would otherwise sell or throw out.
Focus on Quality Basics
Stretch your clothing budget further by focusing on timeless basics for your high quality items. A designer blazer or a fabulous pair of khaki pants can be worn in a hundred different ways with various outfits. You can purchase trendy items and accessories from cheaper merchants, and save your designer dollars for pieces that you will be able to wear for years to come.
By using your creativity, you can find clothes that make you look and feel great without blowing your budget!
Rianne Hunter is a wife, mother of three, and an independent writer. She is passionate about an array of subjects like fashion, finance, family, and education. She feels that saving money on clothes the smart way can let you have the freedom to get a great new addition to Reem clothing when you see one.