Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Discount clothes shopping - Does it really save you money??

Joanne is a Personal Stylist and consultant Brand Manager for small business, based in Sydney with over 20 years experience in the fashion industry, Contact Joanne for more info on

With the global financial situation still very precarious, our position in Australia is at the least nervous, as a result. Retail is taking a huge hit in response to this belt tightening, and most particularly Apparel. Not surprisingly children’s clothes are still selling well. With our children often being the only ones in the family really having any money spent on them when things get tough. This together with the fact that our kids never stop growing, so this elevates buying their clothes from the level of want to need!

The retail industry is now all about discounting incase you haven’t noticed? Every shopping center and mall is awash with discount offers, most notably the Department Stores. Some large retailers have changed their entire Brand proposition to be about price and being the lowest in the market. Clearly this is a smart business move and it allows customers to side step all the smoke and mirrors of confusing offers, and know that if they are shopping based on getting the lowest price alone, then that would certainly be the place to go. For things like children’s clothes that are grown out of this is perfect, but is this really the way to save money in the long run for you personally??

I am a firm believer in buying quality investment pieces, particularly for work. Over time these quality basics can be added to and expanded on with some on trend pieces thrown in to feel current and fashionable. These type of pieces don’t need to last and can be purchased from chain stores where it is all about disposable fashion. Your working wardrobe needs to work for you, it needs to breath and not crush and not shine after too many wears. This is only achieved when good quality natural fibres are used and garments are cut and made beautifully. In my opinion the temptation to skimp and buy cheaper clothes is a false economy as they won’t last nearly as well and will simply need to be replaced.

The smartest way to take advantage of the retail situation at the moment is to find a couple of stores where you really love their clothes and sign up to their email lists. I know it can be annoying to get lot’s correspondence but remember you can unsubscribe anytime. You will be the first to know about their direct VIP activity such as a category promotion ( i.e 30% off pants ) or even a total store event such as 20% off all stock for 2 days. These events are happening more and more at the moment and you can pick and choose what works for you. If you simply wait for the end of season sales you will not have your choice of sizes and the stock will be very picked over.

So there are some important things to think about when you hit the shops; Do I want to be wearing this for while or am I happy to replace it next season? Do I feel comfortable and great in this? Am I portraying the right message for myself in the work place wearing this? I know that things are tough at the moment for most of us particularly once you have recently added a child to the mix. I’m not suggesting sending yourself bankrupt on clothes outside your budget, however sometimes we can waste money by buying more of the wrong things and less of the best options.

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