Everyone know the story of the three bears, right? Goldilocks goes a-thievin' from a poor little bear family and is for some reason super bitchy about which porridge she steals. One's too hot, one's too cold, but she takes a hankering for the baby bear's porridge and deems it 'just right'. Putting aside the completely narcissistic slant of this weird fable, I think it has lessons to teach us about fashion.
Take this cute girl at a festival. We could track down a similar outfit at stores like Forever 21, H&M, and Target....
But let's be real. Those leggings would snag after one wear, and the sweater would pill in the wash immediately. Too Cheap.
And this is lovely, but really. Is it necessary to spend over double the cost of the whole first outfit on one pair of leggings? I think no. Too Over-priced.
Therefore, let's channel our inner Goldilocks and decide where to spend and where to splurge in order to achieve our 'Just Right' combination of items:
While I loooooove the Dolce Vita dress above, I personally can't justify the cost of that dress when there is an equally pretty option for a sixth of the cost.
Although I would never ever ever pay $450 for a pair of leggings, experience has taught me that I shouldn't pay $6 either. I wear and wash my leggings enough that I now buy high enough quality that they last a while, but not so much money that I'm pissed when they eventually develop a hole in the crotch.
Admittedly the fabric and cut of the designer-label cardigan is much nicer, but grey cardigans are enough of a staple item that you should always be able to find a decent-quality one, usually on sale if you dig hard enough. This BR cardigan is 25% off and will do the job well.
I am admittedly not a 'purse person,' so take this advice with a grain of salt. My trick is to find a bag with good-quality leather, but it doesn't necessarily have to be expensive. I've had bags from Shopko (or JCPenney, or Herberger's, or...) last a long long time, and they're alllllways on sale!
Leather boots are one of a few items that I feel are a justified splurge. If you get good boots, the cost per wear is ridiculously tiny because you will wear them a lot, for a long, long time and be able to resole them as needed (versus cheaper boots that aren't worth that resole cost and must be replaced quicker). I also think that a quality pair of boots can elevate an otherwise very cost-efficient outfit.
As for jewelry, I don't think there's a hard and fast cost rule, as long as you check out the hinges, clasps, and chains to be sure that they won't fall apart soon after purchase!
What about you? Where do you splurge, and where do you save?