How to Update Your Wardrobe Without Breaking the Bank


Shopping for a modern wardrobe can definitely get spendy, especially with trends changing seasonally. If you want to save some money and still look great, here are a few tips to update without breaking the bank.

Don’t Buy the Same Pieces

If you’re working with a tight budget, prioritizing your wardrobe needs is a must. If you have dozens of basic tees and black pants, you clearly have a go-to style, but this doesn’t mean you can afford to go doe-eyed over another basic tee and pair of black pants.

If you want to update your wardrobe, start by making a list of the items you already have, especially those that you have multiples of. This can help you figure out which gaps you need to fill and stop you from wasting your budget on unneeded items.

Where to Skimp and Splurge

There is just no reason to spend an exorbitant amount of money on a white tee when you can get virtually the same thing for just a few bucks. If you can find deals on basics like jeans and tees, you’ll have a little extra dough to splurge on that special sweater, blazer, or pair of pumps that will amp up your foundational pieces.

Get Thrifty

There’s nothing wrong with purchasing gently used clothing to fill out your wardrobe. It can be a great way to find steals on pieces you don’t have, and in some cases, high-end items you might not otherwise be able to afford. Can’t find the perfect size? When you get a pair of jeans for $10 you can afford to take them to your local alterations store for nips and tucks to fit you perfectly.

Wear Old Pieces in New Ways

There are always going to be garments that have sentimental value that you don’t want to give up, so think about using them in new ways. Instead of doing away with that V-neck you’ve worn to a soft patina, put it on backward to make it a crewneck with an open back and add a long necklace.

Instead of resigning your dad’s old, oversized “world’s greatest farter I mean father shirt” to sleepwear, upcycle by transforming it into a cool, new skirt. Crop your jeans and add fringe to the bottom. Sew some modern patches on your old bomber jacket or on handbags. These updates can make old pieces new again.

Swap with Friends

Chances are you’re not alone in wanting to get a snappy new wardrobe without spending a ton of dough in the process. If you can get a group of friends together for a clothing swap, you can all show up with gently used items to trade. Everyone can pick a few pieces they want to add to their own wardrobe and whatever is left can be donated to charity.

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