We all know how tempting those Target and H&M clearance racks can be. A trendy $3 piece sounds good at the time in the forgiving store lighting, but once you get home you notice the loose ends and cheapy fixtures. Yes they are inexpensive but enough of these pieces add up, so it is important when shopping low end stores that you take the time to review the piece and avoid certain mistakes in order to ensure this item will look like you spend 100x more than what you did!
Target Who What Where Polka Dot Wrap Dress [new, $12] Chanel Ballet Cap Toe Flats [secondhand, $190] Gucci Club Master Sunglasses [new, $140] Kate Spade Oversized Stud Earrings [new, $9]
1. Inspect the Material Tag
With any clothing I buy, I always try to stick with natural materials like 100% cotton or linen. I feel they hold up much better over time with wash and wear. If you aren't going with natural materials, try to stick with items that have 100% same material. The rayon/polyester/nylon/spandex pieces rarely hold their shape, and are subject to pilling.
2. Avoid Cheap Fixtures
With tassels + sequins + flower embroidery, the more materials you are dealing with the more likely it will be to notice that the piece is cheap. Another detail that is a total no go for me is when a top or dress has a belt/wrap detail and there are tiny thread loops to hold them in place! Higher end pieces are better made and will typically have loops of actual material, so this is a total give away your item is cheap-y.
3. Stick with Classic, SImple Pieces
Similar to my previous point, when shopping lower end stores I tend to stick with low key, simple pieces that don't scream trendy. H&M, Target, and Zara (for example) tend to regularly update their lines with what is most popular and trendy in fashion at that time. I think the more trendy and detailed the item the more likely it is to come off as cheap. Stick with simple pieces that can be dressed up!
4. Pair with higher end items
When I'm rocking a Target or H&M dress, I like to also mix in some higher end pieces out of my closet to pull the outfit more together to look more high end. I've invested (and been gifted) a few pairs of neutral, high end flats that
5. Try On To Ensure Fit
This goes for low and high end pieces! An ill fitting piece will never look as nice and expensive as a great fitting item. When you are already shopping cheap, make sure the item fits you well and works with your body type, otherwise it is very hard to make frumpy look expensive. Also, you are so less likely to return an item within the allowed time frame once you get it home. Waste of money!
Thanks for stopping by! Feel free to leave any questions or your own advice below!
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- Marie Claire, September 2016