i’ve always been that kind of person who lived by the motto, “free is always better,” and most days i still do. i enter competitions to win stuff, particularly for those which i probably wouldn’t have paid for anyway; free food always tastes better (even if it’s just your parents paying); free tickets = funner events, and so it goes. but unfortunately, that rule of thumb doesn’t apply to fashion, because in fashion, there’s another rule i live by: “is it quality or trendy?”, which leads me to the title of this post – splurge or save? sometimes we all get caught up in the bright lights of fancy, foreign brands, but when is the price tag really worth it? and for what items?
quality items are the staples in your wardrobe that you can wear for years – that good pair of jeans, a denim jacket, a leather jacket, a winter coat, leather boots. these items are seemingly innocuous but ultimately lifesaving – you wear them often and they don’t tarnish after three washes; they’re easy wear for school/work/going out/shopping, etc; they fit you well and they’re good quality garments. you don’t need to replace them often but you can always buy more of them.
trendy items are the items that you buy because they’re in this season – the holographic prints, the crop top, fringe garments, prints – remember when galaxy print and crosses were really in? these are the pieces that you buy, but you just know wont be in season in three years time. some of these clothes you cant wear too often because they’re so striking, you’ll look like that guy who just wears the same clothes every time you go out. these are the clothes you buy because you imagine you’ll look really good at coachella in them.
so which items do you splurge on, and which do you save?
you definitely splurge on the quality items, because these are the things you keep and you intend for them to last. by a splurge, i mean that it would be completely justified to pay north of R500 for any of these things – my mom jeans were bought from topshop with a price tag of about R650, but i’ve had them for about a year and i wear them really often and they’re still doing well for me. it was a justified expense because a good pair of jeans will definitely last you a few years.
trendy items are the items you save on, because in a few years, you might not even be able to justify the cost to yourself, because you’re sitting in 2016, when ’90s grunge is out of fashion, with 14 crop tops that cost R250 a pop, american flag adorned high waisted shorts that cost you R550, a tartan shirt that cost you R400 and an R850 pair of 3 inch flatforms. now what? don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing wrong with buying these items, but these are the type of items that you don’t want to tie down too much of your cash on. you could’ve easily bought a crop top for R50 at mr price instead of for R250 at topshop, if you catch my drift? for items that are trendy, rather wait for sales or buy the less expensive version (note that i didn’t say cheap, because you obviously don’t want that piece of clothing to rip in a month’s time – you just don’t have to spend so much money on it in the first place.)
take for example, my shopping habits: i went shopping last week and a few things caught my eye: namely, this dungaree dress from topshop. it’s original price was abut R470-R500, and normally, i wouldn’t pay that much for something like that, because stores like cotton on have a cheaper alternative, but it was on sale for R150 and that was a really good deal because denim is always a good investment, and it was a trendy garment that i didn’t have to break the bank for. also, for example, midi skirts and printed flow-y midi skirts are a trend very reminiscent of the ’50s and i saw in mr price they had one (i wore it on sunday here) for R120. this is where you have to choose if its really worth it, because i saw another skirt (this one) which i had really liked because i saw another blogger wear it, but when i saw it in store, i wasn’t a huge fan of the quality. it wasn’t expensive, so i could’ve bought it anyway, but in that case, it was better to buy the other skirt instead of both. i also (finally) bought a plain crop top, which was R50, so it was very easy buy for me. when i went to cotton on, i tried on a pair of jeans that they fit me really well, which is heaven sent because i’m a tall girl with long legs, and i can never usually buy jeans in this country because we don’t really have adequate tall sections. the jeans i found were R400 and i thought that was a great deal, because they were soft, black and good quality.
when you go shopping, it’s obviously very important to stick to your personal style and to live within your means – that’s why it’s better to save up and splurge on a good quality real leather jacket than to buy a cheap one for fashion’s sake, for example.
let me know your personal feelings on the topic, and how do you feel about splurging and saving?
wishing you all a good weekend!