Us women know only too well how difficult it can be to keep up with the latest fashion trends without forking out an obscene amount of money each month, just to look good without wearing the same go-to outfit multiple times. For many ladies, there is even an unwritten rule which says that when it comes to special occasion dresses, it is poor form to be seen in the same outfit twice.
Whilst I can’t say I agree with this declaration by any means, I do find that wearing a new dress for a significant event does make the whole thing seem more special. But what happens when your bank balance just won’t stretch that far that month? My friends and I have a couple of trusted techniques that keeps us looking and feeling fabulous without the need to splash the cash on the latest looks.
My closest friends have wardrobes that are treasure troves of clothes untouched by me, just as mine are to them. Generally, my friends and I have a similar fashion sense so, chances are, there will definitely be at least one dress that I have already had my eye on. And don’t your friend’s clothes always seem more interesting than your own, anyway?
To make the most of our cross-coveting of each other’s clothes, whenever we’ve got an occasion approaching and don’t want to break the bank buying new dresses, we’ll assign a certain person’s house as the meeting point and each bring a bag of clothes that we’re comfortable to lend out (no sentimental pieces or particularly delicate fabrics). Then, we switch, swap and try on to our heart’s content, usually over a bottle of wine or two! It all ends up as a great laugh, and we come away sorted with at least one garment to wear to that next special occasion that we haven’t been previously spotted in. It’s a fantastic way to save money and, not that we usually need one, a brilliant excuse to get together with the girls. But what if you’ve already got your heart set on buying a new item that would be particularly perfect for your special occasion?
When I went to a wedding last year, the costs of travelling, gifts and hotels began to mount up before I even considered what I was going to wear on the day. I had all my fashion savvy girlfriends on the hunt for a suitably glamorous dress that wouldn’t break the bank. Then one of my best friends came up with the most ingenious idea.
After emailing me an image of a gorgeous plunging dress with a ruched twist at the waist (perfect for my body shape), she said she’d thought of me instantly when she’d seen it. “Wow. It’s stunning. But I definitely can’t afford it this month, it doesn’t look in my price range,” I promptly replied. She then informed me, to my astonishment, that this drop-dead gorgeous dress was priced at just- wait for it- five pounds, fifty pence. That’s right, just £5.50!
The dress appeared to be great quality, so what was the catch? My friend told me that she also loved the dress, and so did our other friends (who’d all been cc’d in her email to me).
If we all pitched in just over a fiver, we could buy the dress in bulk from a wholesale clothing website that sold them in packs of 5 or 6, and each own a bargain dress that we could wear at different times of the year (and never to the same event!). That was good enough for me! Getting together to split a pack of dresses that we all love for bargain wholesale prices has become one of the best ways that me and my girlfriends save cash on clothes ever since.
Here’s hoping that these sharing, swapping and splitting clothes tips will help you and your friends to find that perfect party dress without having to spend a fortune. Why break the bank, when the age old problem of ‘a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear’ can be solved by simply rifling through your friend’s closet instead?