Frugal Fashion

I love retail therapy as much as the next person! The difference is I like to spend as little as possible whilst still getting clothes, shoes and accessories that I like. Here are a few ways I save money on fashion!

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Sales

It’s an obvious one really but sale shopping is an easy way to save. I find hitting the sales at the change of season can be the best as it means you can pick up basic pieces for the following year at low prices.

Now is the time to buy a couple of cheap maxi dresses, sandals and sunglasses ready for next summer. It might seem bizarre now but when there is a random heat wave in May next year you’ll be glad you already have a few pieces to wear. There’s nothing worse than having to go and buy summer clothes at full price during a heat wave.

The same goes for winter wear. I picked up a scarf and pair of gloves at 70% off in the Debenhams January sale that came in very handy during the blizzard of March 2018! I also got the shoes and boots pictured about in the 70% off sale just a few weeks ago. The shoes were £5.85 (and they’re still available online in selected sizes) and the boots were £16.50 reduced from £55! As long as you have the space to stash a few bits and pieces it can be well worth doing. You can sometimes maximise your savings by getting further discount with promo codes, student discount or gift cards.

If you don’t like the idea of rummaging through sale rails then head to the online sales! lots of retailers now offer free click and collect and I find it’s easier to get extra discounts online using various discount codes. A brilliant site for finding sales is lovethesales.com. You can find sale items from 850 high street retailers in the same place. This means you don’t have to spend time looking through each individual website saving you both time and money.

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Seconds Websites

I absolutely love seconds websites! These are retailers that sell leftover stock from other companies. Two of my favourites are everything5pounds.com and SinglePrice.com both websites sell clothing and accessories for £5 each.

A lot of the items are from well-known high street retailers and are sold at cheap prices as it tends to be leftover stock.  I’ve had plenty of items that have come from Miss Selfridge, H&M, Primark, New Look and more. The website doesn’t advertise which retailer the items come from but if you’ve got a good eye you can often spot some items from the likes of River Island and even Lipsy.

All of the items tend to have the brand label cut out so it’s not always possible to tell where they have come from. There are some items that are unbranded so they still have their labels. It is often possible to find out which retailer the item originally came from by checking the washing instructions labels as they don’t tend to cut these out. When it comes to shoes it’s obvious where they’re from as its written in the shoe and on the box.

I find buying from these sites can be a bit of a gamble as some of the items are nowhere near as nice as they appeared on the website. You can return items and at £5 a piece, it’s definitely worth the gamble. I enjoy receiving my parcel and seeing what labels I’ve got, it’s great when you get an item from a top quality brand for a fraction of the original price.

I also find these sites brilliant for work-wear. I work in a school and cover all sorts of lesson, I need to dress smart but often end up in an art rooms or tech workshop so my clothes can end up stained and tatty. Stocking up on a few items from e5p and singleprice allows me to look smart whilst not having to worry about ruining what I’m wearing. I often get compliments on my work-wear and colleagues are often shocked when I reveal the price.

Screenshot 2018-09-08 at 14.04.47You can often get discount codes and special offers from both of these retailers. Singleprice offers 10% to new customers using code: SAVE10 and e5p often has a free item or a code to get an item free when buying 5 or more things.  I have placed an order from each site today for a few items for work and the rainy autumn weather. I’ve spent a grand total of £52.22 which includes delivery and I have ordered 9 items (8 of those are for work) so that works out at £5.80 an item delivered!

I also received a delivery from Mallzee this morning (read more about this below) which included 3 basic tops that will go with the items I’ve ordered today. The three tops cost me just £3.36 as I had free referral credit on my account. That means I’ve stocked up my work wardrobe with 3 tops, a jacket, a pair of trousers, 3 dresses, a cardigan and 2 skirts for just £49.76! I know people who spend £50 on one item to wear to work whereas I’ve got a full capsule wardrobe of items that will mix and match and easily last me through autumn/winter.

Apps

There are some brilliant apps that I use to buy clothes or get extra discounts.

I absolutely love the vouchercodes app because not only do they have brilliant discount codes, they offer bonus deals. My favourite is Windfall Wednesday, between 11am and 2pm they have a limited offer with a retailer of their choice, if you spend a certain amount at this retailer you get a bonus reward.

A few weeks ago there was a windfall Wednesday offer that gave a £15 giftcard for New Look with orders over £30 at New Look. I bought a few items I wanted and needed from New Look (some of which were sale items) and I chose click and collect; six days after placing my order I received my bonus £15. I already had a £5 New Look giftcard that I got from a Superdrug Windfall Wednesday offer; I got it when spending £15 or more at Superdrug, I used this when I ordered some aftershave for my boyfriend (that was also on an amazing deal). In total I had another £20 to spend at New Look just from buying things I was buying anyway.

I also use Zeek app to save on high street giftcards. The app offers a range of giftcards at discounted prices and they sometimes offer extra bonuses such as prepaid credit and extra money off. If you use my referral code: 2MWH61 you’ll get £5 off your first purchase. The good thing about using already discounted giftcards means you can get extra savings on sales or promotions. For example, a £10 Footlocker giftcard on Zeek costs £8, you can then use them in store on sale items! If you get the extra referral discount, you can make even more savings!

Zeek also has discounted giftcards for pubs, restaurants and other stores like Argos, Iceland and Build-a-Bear. Discounts range from 1%-25% off at a range or retailers. Once you have an account, you can refer your own friends to earn £10 credit when they sign up using your referral code. You can also sell your own unwanted giftcards on Zeek which is perfect if you get a card as a gift that you’re not likely to use.

My final app I’ve recently started using is Mallzee,  it works a bit like Tinder for fashion, you can swipe on items to decide if you do or don’t like them. The liked items are saved for you to view and buy later meaning you can select items from a range of retailers all in one place. Mallzee also offers a referral scheme that you can benefit from, this is how I got my work tops so cheap. What’s even better is one top was originally £15.99 and the other two were £14.99, all three were reduced to £2.99 then I got them for less than the cost of delivery!

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If you use my code: CLAIRHCN you’ll get £5 credit to use on your first purchase and once your order is dispatched I get £5 of credit too. You can then refer your friends and family to earn your own credit. You can use the £5 credit as long as your order total (including postage) comes to more than £5, then the credit is deducted and the order processed. If the value is below £5 it will still go through but will get cancelled a few days later. Mallzee has retailers like River Island, BooHoo, Dressed in Lucy, H&M, Zara and many more so it’s definitely worth a look.

I hope this has inspired you to save the next time you want to update your wardrobe. There are lots of other things you can do as well like shopping at charity shops, going to clothing swap events, going to sample sales or buying items with defects that you can easily and cheaply repair. Let me know what you do to save on clothes in the comments!

Happy Shopping,

 

Thrifty Clair x

 

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