Unique Children’s Clothing: The Trends of Today

There is a difference between fashion trends among adults and among children. For adults, fashion trends are sometimes a short-lived craze over an item such as designer jeans or something of the same sort but for the kids, a fashion trend usually means finding unique children’s clothing that follows a more general trend. Now let us look at some of the recent trends for unique children’s clothing.

Personalized clothes and accessories

What best way to represent unique children’s clothing than personalized items such as clothes and accessories. In the past, monogrammed shirts and sweaters were a big hit but as of today, a bold initial is the trend. Fashion people call it the “letter sweater”, and it has become the ultimate in unique children’s clothing. Some clothing shops manufacture on an order basis while some stock them in variety of initials. For accessories on the other hand, you have winter hats, scarves, and mittens with their initials as well.

You can still go for monogram as well, while considering the item you want it on and its use. Monogramming produces a classic look so it may be more appropriate on a dress shirt or blouse rather than a backpack or some other accessories. You can also have iron-appliqués to have that unique children’s clothing. Just remember not to overdo the initials and monograms on every item your child has, moderation is still the key. Use one trendy and unique children’s clothing at a time.

Outer wear

Lasting trends for outer wear are the “lumberjack” look, which is a two-tone buffalo plaid, the “snowboarder” look which is of nylon jackets with a longer tail in back and the classic “pea coat”.

For warmer climates, it is best to go for shirt-jackets made out of cotton flannel and when winter comes, wool or polyester fleece jacket would do. All these have become part of the unique children’s clothing collection that you might want to have your little one to have in his or her closet. Word of advice: Look for unique children’s clothing in classic combinations of colors like red and black, navy and black, and orange and dark brown, because you can never go wrong in them.

The snowboarding-inspired jackets may cost a bit much but they have properties such as its breathability and water-repellency. These items you can find in outdoors outfitter to prepare for the winter season. The pea coats on the other hand have been a favorite for many years. They may not seem as though they are unique children’s clothing but they come in a dazzling variety of fabrics and colors so you can easily mix and match. You can use wool pea coats when you dress your kids up for fancier occasions as well.

Footwear

An outfit isn’t complete without the footwear. UGGs has been an all-time favorite because of its distinctive look that comes in a wide array of shades and styles that you can match with even the most unique children’s clothing. They are comfortable, durable and very easy to pull on and off that is why parents love them for the kids. They can survive being handed down a lot of times so you are sure to get your money’s worth. For gender specific footwear, you have “mary janes” for girls and “hiking boots” as a great addition to the boys’ wardrobe.

Mens Designer Clothing And The Colourful Changes

Every time I think of mens clothing I get images of browns, blacks and greys. No matter how fashion may change and what the latest fad may be it is clear that mens fashion has yet to witness any drastic moves and although many have tried, the power that lies with those monotone shades still remains.

In today’s modern-day society, in which men everywhere are more open to experimenting with what they wear; the standard greys, blacks and browns are considered the ‘safe’ and often boring options but that wasn’t always the case. For our great grandfathers, grandfathers and fathers; sharply cut suits in greys, blacks and browns were the epitome of class and were symbols of style for real men’s men, so why isn’t that still the case now?

Admittedly many of us might not pull out the black suit unless there is a funeral or wedding but should we be made to feel like we’re the paupers of the fashion world if we take out the greys and blacks? Many of the leading mens fashion designers have attempted to shake things up by adding great dashes of bold colours into their ranges. Designers including Valentino, Hugo Boss and Vivienne Westwood have thrown greens, blues and yellows into the world of mens designer clothing but I can’t help but wonder, does wearing a bright yellow suit really make me fashion forward?

Call me a bore if you must but I am a stickler for the good, classic styles of clean-cut suits in the colours that have been worn for years. Don’t get me wrong; I have nothing against a polka dot pattern or a bright dash of colour and after-all if the clothes we wear represent who we are then finding the perfect style, whatever that may be is essential.

There have been a range of new additions to mens fashion but my personal favourite has to be the sailor style that consists of navy boat shoes, navy fitted jackets and maybe a striped pocket sleeve for that perfect added touch. For me a style like this is fantastic as, although it is fresh and exciting it still embodies the simplicity and class so associated with classic mens fashion.

Whether it is those greens, blues and yellows to polka dots, stripes and patch-works; in my personal opinion any drastic colour changes belong only on runways and in fashion magazines. When it comes to real life and a real man’s world; unless you are an intern at GQ the classic looks and colours will always suffice.

Whatever the latest new style may be, the classic shades of browns, greys and blacks will always stand tall and why shouldn’t they? If they were good enough for our grandfathers and if they’re even good enough for the ultimate British man James Bond than they’re good enough for us!

The Classic Fashion Personality

The classic dresser has a linear approach to fashion. She is one dimensional, conservative and her wardrobe is sturdy and reliable. When it comes to clothes, the classic dresser invests for the long haul. She goes for the timeless wardrobe and this includes her fashion accessories. She likes tailored clothes in classic durable fabrics such as tweed, wool blends, cashmere, silk and good quality cotton.

Neutral Palette and lots of navy
She is conservative when it comes to colours sticking to neutrals or monochromatic colours i.e. one colour in several shades. She loves navy. She dresses elegantly and so her fashion accessories reflect her fashion personality and are just as tailored and elegant as her clothes. As such she will spend money on handmade accessories like a handmade leather bag, handmade leather purse, handcrafted shoes and sandals etc.

Handcrafted jewelry
Her jewelry is as timeless as her clothes and would include pearl necklaces, antique jewelry and handcrafted jewelry. Chunky necklaces are not her style as they may be a bit too flamboyant for her style. Instead she will wear pearl necklaces, choker necklaces and handmade necklaces. Statement jewelry for her would be wearable art like art deco designs as opposed to bold coloured necklaces.

Sustainable fashion …smart investment choices
For the classicist, fashion trends come and fashion trends go. She is not perturbed as fashion trends do not dictate the way she dresses. She prefers to spend more on a single quality item of clothing than spend loads on throw away fashion accessories.. So in a sense she supports sustainable fashion by making smart investment choices in her wardrobe. She has peace of mind in knowing that she can rely on her neutral colours and dark suits for years to come.

She is comfortable in designs by Pringle of Scotland, one of the oldest luxury label in the world, and by American fashion designer Ralph Lauren whose fashion exudes grace, elegance and understatement; qualities traditionally associated with fashion icons such as Audrey Hepburn, Jackie Kennedy, Princess Diana and more recently Michelle Obama. So the classic dresser is in good company.

5 Best Women’s Clothing Options for Summer

Didn’t we just celebrate Christmas? Or have fun during spring break? Summer has arrived swiftly and it’s time to get creative with fun summer outfits! Every woman should have some essential summer items in her closet – whether it’s simple shorts or dresses, you can mix and match your most important clothing items and create memorable outfits! If you could choose 5 summer clothing items to include in your wardrobe, these are your best choices-these items are versatile, easy to wear and offer comfort during summer days when you need to not only look good but also feel good in what you’re wearing.

#1 High-waisted shorts

Shorts with a high waist have been a classic item in a woman’s wardrobe for decades. but in recent years they have been extremely trendy among young people, and for a good reason. The upper part of the shorts shapes a woman’s body beautifully, hiding her belly and accentuating curves. It is a very flattering clothing item if you need a bit of tummy coverage or if you want to create the illusion of having more curves. High-waisted shorts are a very versatile clothing item since you can style them in so many great ways- you can pair them with a simple top tucked in at the front or wear them with a crop top, which is perfect for hotter days! High-waisted shots are a truly versatile clothing item that will not be going out of style any time soon.

#2 Cargo Shorts

If you’re into a more classic, European look, you will definitely have fun wearing cargo shorts. They are chic and yet super comfortable and allow you to experiment with different styling options. Cargo shorts can be combined with a simple t-shirt and sneakers when you need to run errands or just feel very comfortable. They can also be dressed up by pairing them with a blouse and high heels. Whether you’re dressing for a casual event or for something more chic, cargo shorts are an excellent choice for looking good and feeling comfortable at the same time.

#3 Crop Tops

Crop tops aren’t just a trend from the past- they are here to stay. Very easy to pair up with different clothing styles, sexy and flattering, crop tops come in different shapes and sizes. You don’t have to go for the skin-tight top if you don’t feel like it-crop tops can be loose-fitting or just barely cropped, the styling is only limited by your imagination! You can wear a simple crop top with all kinds of skirts, shorts or jeans and look great. Crop tops can be paired up with high waistlines, maxi and miniskirts, casual jeans or flashy, patterned pants. Dare to show a little skin, it’s summer after all!

#4 Summer Dresses

Want a truly classic summer item? Take a pick from dozens of unique patterns and colors and wear a classic summer dress to work, the beach or to a party. A Summer dress doesn’t have to be just a long dress, there are so many styles out there, flattering to different body types and complimenting different styles. Maxi dresses are feminine, flirty and they are very easy to wear. Go for a bold print and leave the rest minimal and you will have a quick outfit you don’t even have to think about-just slip on the dress and you’re ready to go! If you love to accessorize, consider a more minimalistic dress, preferably in one single color. You can style a simple dress by adding a statement necklace, contrasting bag or a headpiece. Maxi dresses are one of the easiest summer clothing items to wear and they are so so comfy!

#5 Rompers

Rompers have made a huge comeback. They are very easy to wear and style and, like maxi dresses, don’t require a lot of styling. Due to having shorts part on the bottom, rompers can be a great choice if you want to wear something short but don’t want to worry about being uncomfortable or showing a bit too much by accident. Just slip a romper on, pair it with a cool belt and you’re ready to go! Another trendy way to style your romper is to pair it with a kimono and sandals. But romper can also look very sophisticated- pairing it with a blazer and heels can look very classy and yet still have you feel comfortable throughout the whole day.

Ladies Golf Clothes – Guide to Ladies Knitwear

Think of golf clothes and a golf sweater, probably with an Argyle pattern, is most likely the first thing to spring to mind. Knitwear is synonymous with golf and as such there are a wide number of options to choose from. A great sweater is a much smarter option than a sporty fleece, it will last for years and styles are unlikely to date. They are also a great fashion item so if your golf outfit needs an instant fix why not update your look with one of this seasons on-trend colours?

Style option 1: Lined sweaters Lined sweaters fall into the practical category – generally they are designed to be worn as outerwear as they have a woven lining to help keep the wind out. If you are looking for a more elegant alternative to a fleece they are a good option as will keep you warm and snug whilst still looking smart. Often these styles have a turtle neck with a zip opening and some will have a Teflon coating to protect against drizzle too.

Style tip: Brighten up a practical lined sweater with a contrast coloured or patterned scarf. Zip neck styles work perfectly with scarves as you tuck them inside for a warm and on trend look.

Style option 2: The classic sweater You can’t beat a great mid weight sweater for versatility. This classic golfing item comes in patterned or plain versions and can be worn season after season. V-necks are more flattering if you have a larger bust and can be teamed with a polo shirt for a smarter look. A crew neck is more practical and warm and it’s a good idea to have a couple of each in your golfing wardrobe to suit all conditions and occasions. Also look out for sleeveless sweaters which are ideal for the summer months.

Patterns: The traditional Argyle pattern – made of diamonds in a diagonal checkerboard arrangement – is a golfing classic. Go for a smaller scale pattern if you are looking for a more elegant style or a bolder large scale if you like to make a statement. If the Argyle look is too bold for you then why not try a cable knit? This is a style that has a patterned stitch and adds texture to the surface of the sweater. Often these styles are one colour and are an easy way to add a subtle detail to your outfit. Stripes have a great sporty appeal. Again, horizontal stripes can make you look broader, so go for a softer tonal colourway if you want to avoid this. If you have small shoulders and want to add emphasis here then stripes are the perfect pattern for you. Spots and dots are a great choice for all body shapes and have a fun, feminine appeal, they do tend to be more trend lead though so you won’t find them every season. Style tip: Patterns that run in a vertical direction will elongate your figure, while those running horizontal or across the chest area can broaden it – so be careful that your selection will flatter your shape.

Style option 3: Cardigans Although cardigans are less popular than sweaters, they are still a good choice. Often golfing cardigans are zip through and have a sportier look rather than using buttons. They make a great choice in the spring and summer as you can easily layer up or down depending on the changeable weather.

Fabrics:

If you are looking for a season round option go for a wool, lambswool or wool mix style. If you are looking for luxury or a treat then cashmere or a cashmere blend can’t be beaten and can be worn all year round (perfect for chillier summer evenings). Wool has natural stretch and breathability and many performance wool items, often made from Merino wool, will move with your body for the ultimate comfort. They also help to keep you warm when it’s cold, and cool when it’s warm thanks to their thermo regulatory properties. For the spring and summer you may prefer a lighter cotton or merino wool fabrication. Many of these styles are now machine washable which is a great practical advancement.

Style tip: If you have a pear shaped figure and want to draw attention away from your hips, then team dark bottoms with an eye-catching or contrast colour sweater.

Technology Like with many sports garments seamless technology has also been incorporated into knitwear. This means that an item is produced in one entire piece rather than consisting of separate parts and then stitched together. The advantage of seamless knits is that of superior comfort. By eliminating often bulky seams at the shoulders and sides you get a much better fit and the natural elasticity of the knitwear is not interfered with.

Still can’t decide? With so much choice around it is often difficult to choose – especially if you are looking for a gift. If you are unsure then opt for a good quality plain style. If you have paler colouring then softer colours tend to be more flattering – darker skin tones can take bolder, brighter shades. This season’s top shades Golf is a sport known for its vibrant colours and bold looks, so don’t feel like you need to be a shrinking violet when making your choices. A classic palette of navy and black can easily be updated with vibrant shades to suit the season. This winter look for deep reds, strong blues, chocolate browns and light greys alongside the golf classics of pale blue and power pink.

The Historical Development of Corporate Clothing

Corporate clothing or work wear, the clothing worn by a great part of the population, is seldom written about. However, the history of it does deserve some attention, as it is inextricably bound up with social issues of the day.

Diana de Marley, produced an interesting review of corporate wear and staff uniforms for the artisans and professionals during the twentieth century. She stated that “after the First World War most professional work wear was in black, as so many people were in mourning, however during the 1920’s grey suits became more common.The battle was on between frock coats and top hats versus lounge suits and bowlers hats, as people selected their corporate clothing.

The short jacket gradually replaced the frock coat, and at the same time the lounge suit became more popular among the working class. They wanted to wear suits, even if they were shoddy. The short jacket and trousers were the modern version of the hip length jacket and knee breeches that they had been wearing since the seventeenth century. The lounge suit had none of the inconvenience of long frock coats, so the workers adopted it in great numbers to such an extent that black lounge suits were accepted as Socialist suits, worn by some into the 1950’s.

When Gordon Selfridge opened his London store in 1909, the male staff had to wear black suits and the women black dresses with high necks. After the War in the Twenties the girls were allowed white blouses, black cardigans and black skirts. The men still had black suits. This was typical of all corporate uniforms for large retailers of merchandise at the time.

A great many uniforms followed fashion. The girls working for Heinz wore long striped blue dresses with gigot sleeves, white aprons, and large white caps to cover their hair. During the Twenties staff uniforms in food factories changed to shorter skirts and lower waists, and in the Thirties the waists went up and the hems went down as part of the return to a more feminine look. It put companies to a lot of expense, but workers did not like to look dated when the cinema made them more conscious of changes in fashion.

A large part of the working population worked on the land during the early part of the twentieth century. Even by the late 1950’s one man in twenty still worked in agriculture, however by the 1980’s this had fallen to one in a hundred. The old labourers who had stuck to their traditional clothing wore heavy corduroy trousers, boots, and leather leggings called buskins in Suffolk and corduroy waistcoats with a cloth back. The old sleeved waistcoats in corduroy were so thick a jacket was not necessary for work wear.

The Great Western Railway prided itself upon its smartness and looks, which characterized just how many companies, expected their workers to represent the corporate image. The GWR rule book of 19333 stated:”when on duty be neat in appearance, and where supplied, wear uniform, number and badge.”

In the mill towns “the first sound in the morning was the clumping of the mill girls clogs down the cobbled street” wrote Orwell in 1937.Clogs continued into the war, along with the tartan shawl , calf length skirt and dark stockings. In the cotton factory their now traditional pinafores continued as the principal form of protection for work wear.”

With the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, and the shift of labour towards the towns, the gradual development of occupational dress suited to the job in hand occurred.

In recent times, we now see more emphasis in corporate clothing and work wear related to the service sector, where the corporate image and brand awareness plays a more important role, and the perception of the business to its customers is ever more important, reinforcing the need for classic corporate wear.

Women’s Classic Wear – For All The Timeless Beauties

There are certain fashion trends and clothes that prevail for a long period of time. They are basically regarded as classic or timeless fashion trends. A number of clothes come under this category. We all know that you can easily develop a trendy style that would replicate your overall personality. By doing this, you can definitely make a style statement. It is of utmost importance to note that you need to have a timeless appeal. This article is going to deal with some information regarding women classic wear and trends.

You can easily fill in your wardrobe by purchasing some really cool timeless dresses. They can also be regarded as versatile clothing line. Classic accessories should also be taken in to consideration. We know that girls are really choosy about the kind of clothes they wear. So, we are here to help you out. Instead of spending money on new styles you need to invest your hard earned money in maintaining your timeless look.
Now, let us go through some key tips in regard to women classic wear.

• One of the most important things to consider in this regard is that you need to stay away from printed clothes. The main reason behind doing this is that prints keep on changing from time to time. So, you might end up wasting your time and money.

• Black and grey are classic colors that have timeless appeal.

• The dresses with neat and simple lines should be purchased. Short skirts are always in fashion. Blazer and jackets are also very essential to have. They can definitely enhance your look in winter season. You can easily surf the net and look for your prospective options. The skirt that you buy should look classy and traditional.

• You need to purchase a minimum amount of accessories when choosing hats, necklaces and bracelets to keep it simple. They can have a negative impact on your look and appearance if too outrageous. Accessories go in and out of fashion. So, it is better to buy inexpensive pieces if they are the latest trend, and only spend big money on classic pieces.

• Blue denims, a black wrap dress and a pencil skirt are some of the essential items to have in your wardrobe. These would certainly give your wardrobe a classic look.

These are some of the interesting things to note regarding women’s classic wear. Some other key things to have in your wardrobe include body fitting tea length and a medium length skirts which are really essential. Jackets and trench coats are also really popular amongst the girls from all over the world. You can surf the net and look for other prospective options. The Internet really offers you a large number of offers and seasonal discounts.

Have a lot of fun and enjoy yourself.

Classic Women’s Summer Fashions Are Nautical, Seersucker, Country Checks, and Tropical Prints

Four flattering and classic looks in women’s summer fashion are

  • the nautical look
  • crisp seersucker suits and dresses
  • country cotton red-and-white checks
  • and tropical print fabric.

How flattering any style is depends on how it looks on you. Buy clothing that fits or spend money to have it fitted. Check the finishing for hanging threads and loose buttons. Choose fabrics that feel nice against your skin and drape well.

The nautical look can be achieved by pairing sparkling, crisp white with darker shades of blue. A horizontally-striped cotton knit T-shirt is a good start. Add earrings with a nautical motif such as an anchor, dolphins, seahorses, or a ship’s wheel. A hemp braid belt and comfortable rubber-soled deck shoes complete this fashion style.

We no longer see many blouses with the traditional large, square sailor’s collar. MIddy blouses, as they were called (for midshipman, a rank in the Navy) were popular in years past and may come into style again.

Red is a dramatic accent color. Try red shoes, bag, and belt to spark your white-and-blue nautical ensemble. Red lipstick is appropriate, if you can find a shade that complements your skin tone.

Red-and-white cotton checks are another summer fashion classic. County checks have an easy-going, cheerful look, especially in carefree cotton. Stick to a smaller check so you don’t end up looking like a picnic tablecloth.

Country red checks are ideal for a pretty blouse or a summer sun dress. Pair the blouse with bright yellow shorts or yellow accent sandals and handbag, for a combination that is fresh. Fred Perry has two styles and a handbag in red-and-white checks for summer 2009. This is an innovative way to add this classic women’s summer fashion to update clothing you already own.

A third summer fashion classic is crisp, cool seersucker suits and dresses. This timeless cotton fabric traditionally is a subtle stripe of white and an alternative color, with little puckers in the white stripes. Ironing is mostly unnecessary because of these natural wrinkles in seersucker natural cotton. Today’s stretch blends make it easier than ever to wash and air-dry seersucker suits, dresses, and blouses. Seersucker is perfect for robes and sleepwear, too.

Once upon a time, the only seersucker color was pinstripe navy blue and white. Now, stripe widths vary and occasionally we see a seersucker check. Gray and white, green and white, red and white are among the expanding range of colors for seersucker clothing.

A fourth summer fashion classic is tropical print fabric. Hawaiian print dresses, blouses, and shirts evoke umbrella drinks and white beaches.

Tropical print fabric became popular in the wake of World War II, chiefly as patterns for draperies and furniture in the warmer United States. These big, bold tropical print fabric designs have been scaled down for the colorful shirts and dresses we wear today. Florals and travel themes are among choices you will find available for women’s summer clothing.

To wrap it all up, four summer fashion wardrobe investments that will pay off for years to come are the blue-and-white nautical look, red-and-white country cotton checks, crisp seersucker, and tropical print fabric in shirts, dresses, and skirts.

Classic T-Shirts Re-Live the Past

Classic T-shirts, be it retro or contemporary has always been a message board for many youngsters to share their thoughts, aguish, style, or slogan to the world at large. From Brando to Dean, tie-dye to silkscreen, the T-shirt was never just a tee: it has always been a banner for self-expression, with or without actual text. Brought home from Europe by U.S. soldiers after World War I, the “T-shirt” entered Merriam-Webster’s dictionary in 1949 and gradually evolved from under- to outerwear, making it ideal for rolling out of bed, off the plane, and around the world. T-shirts are those, which have classic or retro messages, look, designs, feel, slogans etc. The most popular among the classic t-shirts are the retro designs of rock bands, punk designs etc.

Though the music sales are ever coming down, the sales of these funky t-shirts with designs used by rock bands like Mettalica, Pink Floyd sell like hot cakes. They have the feel of a retro period, which create nostalgia and yet very much liked by the people of twentieth century. The eighties and seventies were the hot bed for these punk movements apart from the famous ‘Hare Ram hare Krishna’ cult. The t-shirts with the messages of such movements are a bit hit even today and are sold by many T-shirt companies.

The big classic rock bands of the past- Rolling Stones t-shirts still sell steadily; new designs and old. Lynyrd Skynyrd classic t-shirt merchandise continues to feature the popular steer bones character on all of their clothing, the mega hit Beatles clothing, and merchandise is selling stronger than ever. This shows an apparent liking for all things classy especially T-shirts.

Older music fans also steadily continue to support their favorite classic rock artists of the past. While some people think classic shirts and music merchandise is somewhat juvenile, wearing a band t-shirt or band hooded top help people relive their youth. Music is something that stirs memories of a past time or place. Representing the bands that a person is into through classic rock clothing and band merchandise makes a statement about who a person is and what they represent. They find it to be cool and coordinated with their image of themselves.

Major portions of consumers are teenage classic rock music fans. Teenagers make a statement with the bands that they like and the classic t-shirts that they wear. High school has become a major fashion show. Showing up to school in a new The Who, The Doors, or Allman Brothers shirt makes a statement to the rest of their school. It almost tells everyone what kind of personality he or she has. It lets peers know whom they can be cool with.

The t-shirts will always be in fashion and they seem to be in spite of 20-30 years after the time of these rock bands, and there are many takers as you can see in a school, college, university or any other young people’s hangouts.

Fashion Theory – How To Calculate Your Clothing Budget

I suggested to Aisha, a recent client, that she invest in a durable leather handbag. Aisha argued that she simply couldn’t afford to spend upwards of $300. The remarkable thing about this was that once we analyzed her recent clothing purchases we realized that she was spending about $300 monthly on clothing! Aisha was actually suffering from sticker shock and had kind of become accustomed to buying quantity instead of quality. The end result was that her closet was essentially bursting at the seams with discount and poorly constructed clothing. In the end, Aisha was in effect spending $3,600 annually (nearly 10% of her $37,000 salary) on a wardrobe that lacked both function and style.

Establishing a budget is a very difficult question to answer from a general perspective because everyone’s financial and clothing situation is different. If you have a job that allows you to work in a casual environment where some of your everyday clothing can be incorporated into you daily work outfits, I would estimate the overall clothing allowance to be somewhere around 7%. For those that work in a more professional office environment where you are expected to dress the part and dressing the part may overall affect your promotion-ability factor; I would estimate around 10% of your salary. Keep in mind, this budget should include the costs of alterations and professional cleaning services. It is also important to note that if you are maintaining a household on this salary, i.e. you have children or a spouse you must allocate a portion of this amount to their clothing allowance as well.

Example 1: Aisha works in a business casual environment. Her salary is $37,000. Her clothing allowance is: $2,590.

Example 2: Elaine works in a professional business environment. Her salary is $85,000. Her clothing allowance is: $8,500.

1. Invest in Investment Pieces: Investment pieces are just that – “investment” pieces! So, don’t be afraid to spend a little more money on the classics which are required to create a functional wardrobe. Discount stores such as Marshalls, Century 21, and DSW could produce some very valuable finds, however it is important that you don’t become distracted and divert from the standard classics when shopping at these stores. For classics, I recommend shopping at a formula store. A formula store is typically a specialty retail store that stocks key basics. Some great formula stores are Gap, Ann Taylor LOFT and The Limited. The great thing about a formula store is that once you find the sizes and styles that suit you best, you can shop there season to season with little difficulty. These are great stores for purchasing a classic a-line skirt, trousers, jeans, button-ups, and tees, tanks and camis of variety.

2. Don’t Be a Label Whore: When it comes to beautiful dresses, handbags, shoes and scarves there are some designers that are simply ahead of the par, however to simply focus all of your efforts into collecting clothing that has a designer label tag regardless of how flattering or well-fitting the item is – is simply not a good option.

3. Do Apply The Cost-Per-Wear Concept: To get back to the example I gave previously of Aisha spending $300 on a leather handbag. The leather handbag is an investment piece which can be carried for months or possibly years to come. If Aisha carried this handbag for just six months her cost per wear would be $50. I discuss the Cost per Wear Concept in more detail in a recent post.

4. Don’t Charge: I know to some people this may seem unthinkable; however I think whenever you shop with credit cards you are always tempted to get caught up in the emotional buzz of said item and go well over your budget. If you’re carrying a lot of debt (particularly from past shopping activities) you really need to think long and hard about plunking 7-10% of your income towards clothing. A simple rule of thumb I often use is “Don’t buy it unless you can afford to buy two.” No, I’m not saying that you should buy two of everything; rather what I am suggesting is that every time you buy something, you take that same dollar amount and apply it towards paying off debt or towards savings. So in effect, that $300 handbag will now cost you $600; $300 to purchase and another $300 in savings or debt payment. The amount of your clothing budget should match or exceed the amount you are saving or applying towards debt repayment.

5. Make It Automatic: Now that you have established your clothing budget, the only sure fire way to stick to it is to make it automatic. Here are two great ideas for actually staying on budget.
Low Tech Option: If your budget allows for $200 to be spent a month on clothing. Place this amount of cash in an envelope. When shopping for clothing only spend what is in the envelope. Once this amount is gone you have exhausted your clothing budget for the month.
High Tech Option: Set up a separate checking account (I suggest an ING Orange account) and have a specific amount deposited into your account periodically; for example $50 a week. When shopping for clothing only use the debit card associated with this checking account. The nice thing about this option is that if you are not someone who shops on a weekly or monthly basis the money continues to grow towards your much anticipated shopping spree.

6. Maximize Your Budget: A pair of Jimmy Choo shoes is no longer $500. It’s $500 minus the $165 you will get for selling them on EBay the following year. EBay and consignment stores are a great source for stretching your clothing allowance. If you don’t have a lot of designer clothing in your closet you can still receive some financial benefit from making a tax-deductible donation to your local goodwill or charity.