Bag a bargain!

Craig Lomas

Well where do I start? At the very beginning, like Julie Andrews taught me.I graduated with a degree in Fashion Design in 2009 and have since set up my own bespoke clothing label.Currently working full time as a costume designer.My main passion is buying things I don't need... I WANT!

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Sifting through store after store, I get an overwhelming sense that the high street has been somewhat lacking in ingenuity and difference for some time now. When fashion is deemed a luxury, in such a tough climate, garments have to be accessible and stylish at the same time. Clothing is a form of expression and the power of dressing well, and the soaring confidence levels that can come as a result, is often over looked.

The high street can often work like a production line of imitation catwalk collections, all retailing at various price points. Savvier shoppers can really monopolise on a much wider spectrum of shopping, while still honing a personal style and saving money.

Follow my guide as I take you through tips on shopping to a budget:

Swishing

Swishing parties have been around for some years now and are a great way to socialise and rid yourself of unwanted pieces. Those jeans you’ve convinced yourself will fit, probably aren’t ever going to, if you’ve been saying it for 3 years. Take them to a swishing party and see what other treasure you can exchange it for.

The idea of such parties is that groups of people gather in a nominated venue to swap unwanted garments for another that you do like, free of charge. The aim is that your unwanted items are used as payment for others.

SWISHING

Depop

Apps are also a great way to connect with people and shop at the same time. Have you ever scrolled through Instagram and wished you could buy what people are photographing? Well this app basically allows you to do exactly that.

Users with accounts upload images of garments they wish to sell and the whole buying process is dummy proof. As the items are generally used, you can trust that the prices will be reasonable.

DEPOP

Ebay

The most obvious port of call for bagging a bargain is eBay and the amount of site traffic it gets warrants the amount of users keen to sell and buy items. Gone are the days of buying used items and in place are countless eBay shops where clothing is made accessible to various budgets. Careful filtering of your preferences, and the beauty of setting a price limit, will mean you can greatly tailor your search criteria.

EBAY

Kilo Sales

Until last year I hadn’t heard of a kilo sale and had very little knowledge of such events taking place. The whole premise is wholesale buyers or the general public can buy stock in bulk, which is a great way to refresh a wardrobe. The price per kilo depends on where the event is taking place and the quality of the stock.

A recent one I was directed to specialised in vintage garments and the charge was set to £15 per kilo. In laymans terms it means you can buy around 5-6 items of clothing for £15. They are held all over the UK and a quick search will pull up informative sites with dates and locations.

KILO SALE

It’s surprising how exciting shopping can be, when you know where to shop. Let’s face it who doesn’t like to feel they’ve gotten a deal? We all work hard for our salaries and with the pressure of keeping up with the cost of living, not to mention that some of us are students or on low incomes, it’s great to stretch your budget and maximize your wardrobes potential.

Fashion doesn’t have to be about buying the most expensive pieces – it’s about clever styling, a form flattering silhouette and getting creative. I myself have a variety of pieces, from designer to high street to vintage, and all have their own place in my outfit choices. It’s important to find a balance and to shop within your financial capacities.

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