“The Dia Diaries” How To Look Stylish On A Budget

Nowadays because of social media, we no longer need to wait for the latest fashion editorial to see what the latest trends are or to see what our favorite celebrities are wearing. Although that instant access can be a good thing, it can also be a trap to splurge on items outside of our budget. Although Balmain blazers, Louboutin shoes and Fendi pon pon charms have captured our attention, there are affordable options within our tax bracket.

Thankfully style is not about the label you wear but instead about the way you put together an outfit. We’ve rounded up 5 ways you can dress on a budget but still look stylish.

Know Where To Shop

Budget-1Fast fashion stores like Zara, H & M, Mango should always be on your radar! Brands like these take the time to look at fashion shows, select the trends and basically offer their clientele expensive versions of what was seen on the runway. When you walk into a Zara store you can immediately tell what will be the trend of the season whether it’s fringe or hunter green. They have new arrivals at least 2 to 3 times a month so you can always stay “on trend” whenever you can afford it.

In addition to these three brands, department stores such as Macy’s are always a great place to find quality clothes at a bargain price. Make sure you subscribe to their online store so you can receive emails on special sales. Online shopping is also a great option, you can always find sales and not to mention that sometimes their favorite items come back, so let’s say you really like a jumpsuit but can’t afford it the first time you see it, what you should do is save it on your “wish list”, subscribe to their mailing list and when it comes back, you can purchase it! Check out the following websites: nastygal.com, bluefly.com, asos.com

Before You Buy Anything, Get Essentials

Budget-2Essentials are the easiest things to find and always the least expensive things in store, whether you go to Banana Republic or Kohl’s. There are things you should always have in your closet no matter the season, since you can dress them up or down.

  • Invest in a good pair of jeans, skinny or boyfriend depending on your style.
  • A white tee, and we would even recommend buying a v-neck or round neck in different neutral colors,
  • A little black dress that fits perfectly and that you can wear anytime of the day during a brunch or a cocktail dinner.
  • A good tailored blazer is always a good idea when you want to look polished.
  • Most importantly during fall and winter season, get a neutral coat (preferably not a white one because it gets dirty easily) that you can wear for both day and night.

Invest In statement Pieces


From left to right: Mary Katrantzou skrit, Stella Jean jewelry, Brian Atwood shoes, Charlotte Olympia clutch

People often wonder if it’s smarter to buy classic pieces that you can wear over and over again or statements pieces that are trendy this season but could be out the next. Our advice would be to invest in a few good statement pieces, they might not be timeless but they’re the pieces that will make your outfit stand out.

  • Get yourself a printed skirt
  • A clutch that you know will guarantee you a “wow” moment.
  • A pair of shoes that you can only wear on special occasions.


Beware Of TheType Of Jewelry You Buy


When it comes to jewelry, we think it’s a good idea to save up and buy something that will last you a long time. Go for classic pieces, stay away from what looks like plastics, instead go for stones necklaces and bracelets. It’s always better to buy silver jewelry instead of something that looks like gold.

Become A Bargain Shopper

If you want to look stylish while being on a budget, this is the best advice we can give you. Become a bargain shopper, wait for sales! There’s always a few times a year when you can be sure that shops or malls will have sales; hit stores when you know the weather is transiting from one season to another, they always have markdowns because they have to start putting clothes that are appropriate for the new season. And of course, every holiday such as Labor day or black Friday is always the best time to go shopping and spend less.

By: The Dia Diaries Paris Contributor, Anne- Isabelle Saint Pierre

chandia featureChandia Brennen is a Certified Image Consultant and CEO of ItsGood2bME Fashion Consulting and Image Management based in Los Angeles CA, Chandia has been in the Fashion industry for over four years. She has worked for dozens of publications and holds the title of Senior Fashion Editor in both LA and NY. Chandia is a fashion scout for a Design Agency in NY and Brand Ambassador for HairEverywhere Luxury.


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