You are young, beautiful, casual and broke, jeans are the mainstay of your wardrobe, but you have just landed your first professional job and you need “grown-up clothes”, what do you buy and how can you possibly afford it?!
Dressing for a professional job doesn’t have to be difficult and it doesn’t have to be expensive! The first thing you need to think about is the amount of money you have to spend. For this purpose let us just say that you have fifty dollars…that you borrowed from Dad…to spend on a new wardrobe and you won’t be paid for two weeks.
The second thing is color. What are you favorite colors? Choose two colors, that you like the best. It is always best if you choose two colors that compliment each other, that way you can mix and match the items you buy. Now you are going to add black, gray or brown. Just choose one of those three.
Now, keep in mind that you only have fifty dollars to spend right now and you will be working for two weeks before you get paid. So you will have fourteen days to dress professionally on only fifty bucks. How are you going to do it? Mix and Match….Read on!
My favorite colors are dark green and purple and I have chosen to add black as my third color. I need to buy at least two pairs of pants or skirts and four tops. Oh, and don’t forget a pair of dress shoes, those chunky “club” shoes in the closet are not going to cut it!
The first thing to remember is don’t go rushing to your favorite super expensive store at the mall, you just can not afford to! You have a few choices, you can go to a discount retailer like, Marshall’s or T.J. Maxx and probably come close to your budget, if not go over your budget slightly or you can go to Goodwill or the Salvation Army or any local thrift store. You will be so surprised at what you find there!
I have chosen to go to Goodwill for this example. One of the great things about choosing Goodwill is they color coordinate their clothes! When you walk into the store, it’s like a rainbow of aisles, where you can choose the exact color you want!
So, I walk over to the purple aisle and start my search for professional blouses and sweaters. I manage to find two shirts BRAND NEW with the tags still on them, and they only want four dollars a piece for each of them! One of them is a tank top in a light lavender and the other is a cardigan sweater in a darker purple. What a steal! So, I move over to the green aisle and start my search there for shirts that will coordinate with what I just found in the purple aisle. This time I found a corded dark green sweater with a deep v-neck (the lavender tank top will look great under this!) for just three dollars and a mint green tank top with lace edging for a dollar! Neither of these shirts are brand new, but they look perfect and have no stains!
Now, that I have found my shirts, I move on to the dress pants! These are all color coordinated too, so it’s easy to find the black pants that I want and guess what! They are only seven dollars each!!
Moving on to the dress shoes! Again, I have chosen black. I found one pair that are BRAND NEW in the original box for just ten dollars and another pair that are slightly used, but look new for just five dollars!
I’m done! I have finished my shopping and checked out of Good will. I only spent forty one dollars! Now I can mix and match the shirts and pants four different ways and switch the shoes back and forth!
In this example we just bought two pairs of pants, four shirts and two pairs of shoes for just forty one dollars and several of the items were brand new! Don’t be petty, don’t waste your money on expensive name brand items when you can buy them slightly used (or even brand new) at your local thrift store! The money you spend there goes for a great cause and there is no since in purchasing expensive clothing for hundreds of dollars when you can save so much while helping so much!