Work Clothes on a Budget

Banana Republic "Stylish Work"

I’m doing a lot of searching for a work wardrobe so I’m all set and fabulously dressed when I land my permanent job (i have a temporary contract until then though…and have to look fabulous in the mean time too!!).

Currently living in Bowling Green doesn’t allow me many opportunities to shop where I would really want to shop.  Career clothes mean quality and classics…neither of which are easy to find in good ol’ BG.  Therefore I’ve resorted to shopping online.  Or at least looking online. I’ve got a day of shopping in Indianapolis with my mom coming up and I’m saving most of my shopping for then but I wanted to get a hold on things that I would need and really use that were stylish but smart.  I want them to last a long time, be really functional, interchangeable with lots of outfits, and young and hip at the same time.

I love J Crew and Banana Republic because they’re a perfect mix of youthful details mixed into the basic classics.  They’re also appropriate for several different work environments and will be fashionable years to come. Their websites and catalogs pair really unique yet wearable garments together for several different looks. That makes it easier to visualize how you’d wear it with new AND old things!

But I’m still a recent (in 2 days) graduate with not a whole lotta budget. So how do I build a solid wardrobe of quality pieces with those brands? I’ll tell you…

First of all,  I was given some money to spend on a career wardobeso I’m not scraping the bottom of the barrel to fill my closet (thanks Mom and Dad!).  But I want to make the most of that money by being smart with what I purchase.

I’m a sale shopper.  I rarely shop any other way.  I’m a also brand loyal customer.  Once I find a quality brand I like I try to stick with it.  So I’ve been searching the sale racks of online stores like J.Crew, Banana Republic, GAP, and other brands  I’m familiar with. It’s helpful to know how you generally fit in the brand.  I don’t want to spend too much time and money on things that may not fit and then have to mess with returns, so I’ve been going for dresses that aren’t sized in numbers (it’s easier to know if you’ll take a small, medium, or large than a 4, 6, or 8) and tops which are the same deal.  Bottoms are a little trickier for obvious reasons.

Another important thing to remember about being sale shopper is to not buy it “just because it’s on sale.”  It’s easy to get caught up in a HUGE STEAL but if it doesn’t quite fit, you don’t really want or need it, it’s a waste.  There are better ways to spend money then on “great steals” that will get stuck in the back of your closet.

Now, go shop sales!


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