Sale Shopping – are you really saving yourself money?!
This has to be one of my biggest love hate relationships. There is no denying it… we all love a bargain! The feeling we get knowing that we’ve just bought something we simply couldn’t live without for a fraction of the cost it should have been, is quite simply, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!
On the other hand you could be a little more like me and detest sale shopping, the cues, screaming kids, bored husbands… I could run a mile. Although when I see something I have bought only a few weeks before, that is now half the price of what I paid for it, I can’t help thinking… “Why on earth Cleo can you not have more patience and just wait!”
There are certain times of the year I shop with clients and there are certain times of the year I generally steer clear. January is one of them! Although, last year I had requests from clients who specifically wanted to go shopping in the sales as due to the poor economic climate their budget was restricted. So what did I do? I warned them I would need several tea and cake breaks and said yes!
Apart from the reason I never seem to be lucky enough to find a true bargain, the reason I have become to hate sale shopping so much, is probably due to what I find during wardrobe consultations after consultations. Ill-fitting garments and unworn items still with tags attached bought purely because they were in the sale. Wasting money makes me mad! If you are reading this thinking ‘if Cleo saw my wardrobe, I’d get a right telling off’ then you need to keep reading!
You need to make sure that the discounts really are bargains and don’t get carried away just because it’s in the sale. A cheaper mistake that you never wear is still very costly and adds up.
Sale shopping should be viewed in exactly the same way as non-sale shopping. No impulse purchasing and a well thought-out shopping list. Making sure you know what you need and what it will need to go with it. If there is nothing else in your wardrobe the item will go with, PUT IT DOWN! You will only have to fork out more money to complete the whole outfit which defeats the whole purpose of shopping in the sales.
You need to be aware of sale ‘bargains’ that don’t fit properly. Many shops put ill-fitting mistakes in the sale. You need to ask yourself what the reason is it’s in the sale and didn’t sell in the first place. If there is not a tailor in the shop who can rectify any problems, ensure you have a good seamstress in your phone.
Take advantage of the sales to buy quality pieces you couldn’t afford at full price. A sale is great for when you’ve had your nose against a shop window for the past few months looking at the piece you love but just simply cannot afford. Walk into the shop and ask them to put you on the mailing list. More often than not there’s a preview day for mailing-list customers so you get first shot at their sale.
We do seem to be going into an era where quality and value matter more. The dramatic changes in fashion that drive big brand sales are slowing down as people realise that what’s important is that their clothes look and feel great on them, rather than where they are from. I believe one of the reasons my clients use me is because I save them so much money in the long run, no more costly mistakes as I search for quality and design of clothes that look and feel fantastic, regardless of the name on the label. I work for them, not a store.
My approach to sale shopping is to look out for investment pieces rather than clothes which will look dated the following season. It provides an excellent opportunity for people who believe in investing in the best quality clothes they can afford, to make some very astute purchases in the sales.
My top sale buys include:
- Tailoring – good quality classical blazers, jackets, trousers and skirts.
- Leather jacket – black or brown, go for the cut and style which suits your body shape and personality.
- Jeans – not the latest look denim but more classical styles. Again go with what suits your shape: bootleg, flare, skinny or straight in black, blue or grey.
- White shirt – a staple that will go with so much in your wardrobe. Make sure its fit you well.
- Knitwear – plain and simple pieces that will go with smart pieces to your jeans, think quality not quantity.
- Shoes – particularly good thing to buy in the sales, especially in neutral colours as they can last for many seasons.
Generally what you pay for the above is what you get. My advice would be to invest in one very high quality item which you wouldn’t normally consider buying at full price, and feel the difference. If you need some help of where to go, you know where to find me.