K & G - The Budgetnista Post

The Steve Harvey Collection for K & G came out last week.  "Rez" (aka Kiah from Rez to the City) and I ventured over to K & G to check out the Steve Harvey Collection for Women.  There were some really cute pieces in the collection and most everything was under $50.  We took the opportunity to try on some pieces a search the rather large plus size section that the store has.  The prices are very inexpensive.  The majority of the Steve Harvey Collection had relatively good fabric for the prices.  Everything was some type of polyester blend, but again for the prices you really can't complain.  I actually ended up getting the bow blouse.  The fabric of that blouse was probably the worst fabric used in the entire collection, but the blouse was cute.  I spent $26 knowing that if I ever try to wash this blouse that will be the end of it.  Note that K & G prices for women's clothing are on the low end.  Clearance racks hover around $10 - $15.  

I've been getting asked a lot lately on how to still be stylish, but still stay on a budget.  Well for starters for most of us regular folks, we are all on some kind of budget.  My assumption  is that when people ask me this, it probably means that they want to spend somewhere in between $10 and $50 on a piece of clothing.   As stated before, I am cheaper than I look.   But I took the time to really think about what I do to save a dollar or two.     Here's what I came up with:
  • I use www.retailmenot.com for coupon codes.  You can find a coupon or free shipping for most retailers here.  
  • I take advantage of bad marketing.  A lot of online site that sell plus size clothes sell them in a lack luster sort of way.  It's rare that we get the fabulous campaigns that occupy the pages of Vogue.   It's not the garment is bad, it's just that photo doesn't sell the piece.  I think one of my gifts with plus size fashion is the ability to see the potential in a garment, even if it's photographed/styled in an non-marketable or unattractive way.  So in a sense, I am a good predictor of potential clearance items.  This allows me to buy higher end items at a super cheap price.  I have twice bought $300 tops for less than $20.  So before you completely dismiss an item, take a look at it  and ask yourself, how could I make this work for me.  
  • I buy staples on clearance.  Clearance is a place where those trendy items of the season didn't sell, but it's also a place where those non-flair pieces, like the white button down  blouse, end up at hugely discounted prices.  When buying your staples, I always say buy the best that you can afford because you are going to be wearing them a lot.  This doesn't necessarily mean you have to spend the price on the original sticker, but it does mean that you should note the original cost.  Don't buy the $20 cardigan that originally costs $20, buy the $300 cashmere sweater that you got on clearance for $40.  
  • So right now you should be floating around the clearance racks to buy for next spring/summer.   
  • Shop for those designer items on Black Friday.  Save your money and get the stuff you really have been lusting after on Black Friday.  Just about every place imaginable is having an awesome sale.  
  • Don't go hedge hog crazy when you find a $10 rack.  You can end up spending $100 on crap that you won't ever wear. When you get it home you are going to ask yourself, why did I buy this?  At some places things are put on final clearance, where they can't be returned so you just basically gave your money away.  
  • Nicer jewelry is better bought in a second hand store or consignment shop. 
  • Don't buy a whole outfit at one store.  Think about how to incorporate the new piece in with what you already have.  When I work with clients, I forbid them to buy more than two items at one store.  Shop and then edit out the things you don't have to have. 
  • Everybody wants to look expensive, right?  Mix in your cheaper items with your more quality ones.  That one quality garment can take over the whole look and make you look like you spent the big bucks on every piece of the outfit.  
  • Finally, if you want to shop cheap you have to watch what's going on online all the time.  Watch the items that you love and want to acquire.  Be ready to snag coupons or super deals.  

 Dress $50Skirt $35/Dress $50
Top:  $26/Jacket ($25) was straight size up to an XL (not on website)

Check out the K & G sales clerk.  She says that she only shops the clearance rack at her job.  Her skirt and top totaled $20.  I thought she was totally cute.   

Outfit Logistics:  Skirt - K & G $20, Top - Kenley Colllins $25 originally $178 (sold out), Kitten heels - Target $25, Necklace - Target $10, Bracelet - Charming Charlie $2

My entire outfit cost me $77 (including jewelry).  I picked up this skirt from K & G for $20.  It's actually serving the feel of Burberry for a fraction of the price.  I am already thinking of all the fancy tights and cashmere turtlenecks I can wear it with during the cooler months.  Note:  The K & G website doesn't have everything that they have in the store.  It's better to make the trip.