Fashion blogger Miranda Dlamini is sharing her tips for women who want to look good on a tight budget…
The rising cost of living has many women thinking twice about splurging on a new pair of shoes or a stylish maxi dress for summer.
Those who do have some extra cash to spare are opting to shop at budget-friendly retailers to avoid wasting that precious coin.
The good news is you can still look stylish on a budget.
Fashion blogger Miranda Dlamini has an entire blog dedicated to showing women how to look stylish on a budget.
The Durban-based fashionista started her blog, Intro Artistry, in 2015 while she was still in college to help build her self-esteem.
“I wanted to create a platform where I could share with other women my journey of self-discovery, building my confidence, and sharing my artistry through things that interested me like fashion, beauty, and lifestyle posts. My blog is an extension of myself and it’s called ‘Intro Artistry’ because I’m sharing my fears, ambitions, growth, interests from the inside (intro) out (artistry – imagery). It’s still a journey. I’ve learnt so much about myself and I feel like I’m just getting started.”
Miranda knew all too well the struggle of trying to look good with little money to spare as a student.
She soon found a niche in blogging about affordable fashion and beauty products.
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With posts like ‘How to Slay on a Budget’ and ‘5 Best Drugstore Foundations for oily Skin’, she quickly gained a following from young women who did not have thousands to spend on expensive fashion labels.
Miranda says there are four questions smart shoppers should ask themselves before buying a new item of clothing.
Do you really need that item?
“If you currently own five pairs of black basic jeans do you really need a sixth pair?” she says.
Do you have a similar item in your wardrobe?
“If you’re buying a similar item to something you have in your wardrobe, chances of you wearing that item often are slim. Rather replace similar items by purchasing an updated version of it and giving the old away than having two of the same thing.”
How much ‘wear’ can I get out of this item?
“How many times are you going to wear that item before it starts falling apart, quality comes into play here as you don’t want to be spending your money on something that won’t last.”
Can I go without this item?
“Now this is probably the worst question to be asking a shopaholic because chances of the answer being ‘yes’ are quite high. However, rating the item in terms of it being a want or a need helps you narrow down the number of things to get. Instead of splurging and spending lots of money you instead buy what you absolutely need,” she says.
Miranda enjoys hunting for fashion bargains so much she even visits thrift shops for secondhand clothing.
One of her favourite budget-friendly fashion items is an olive-green jumpsuit she found while thrift shopping.
“It’s so easy and effortless to style, plus I don’t have to think much when it comes to creating an outfit,” she says.
Miranda says the secret to making cheap clothes look expensive is wearing them with confidence.
“If you wear something with confidence you can make a R100 outfit look like 1000 bucks. If you are confident and walk with your shoulders back and your head held high, you instantly improve your overall appearance. However, this can only happen when you know your style and what works for you. It will be much easier to style your looks in a way that you feel comfortable and a way you can wear it with confidence.”
Here’s a look at some of her top fashion tips for women who on a tight budget:
1. Not spending lots of money on certain trendy items. They don’t have a long trend lifespan and you don’t want to be stuck with an expensive out-of-trend item.
2. Making use of sales, discounts, and coupon codes – every retailer offers all if not one of these for anyone who’s looking to save a coin or two. Look out for sales, scout the internet for discounts and coupon codes, and save, it’s still the same item and quality just at a cheaper price.
3. Thrift shopping – this must be one of my favourite methods of shopping. I’ve found some of my most treasured pieces whilst thrift shopping and I can always negotiate the price with the vendor and get a good bargain.
4. Factory shops and clearance stores – This is for anyone looking for a good brand name bargain. Factory shops and clearance shops should be your friend. You’ll be getting the same brand name item at a fraction of the price, and this doesn’t only apply to brand names – most retail stores have a factory shop or a clearance store.