I have a few strategies for achieving high end looks for less…
- WHITE TEES: Inexpensive white tees are a major key to my wardrobe (I like J. Crew but know a lot of women swear by Uniqlo’s U Neck style). They are like a fresh canvas. I love to use them to pair with more expensive skirts or statement skirts or shorts to keep the entire look grounded (and reduce overall cost of the look!). I am wearing my J. Crew tee above with a tiered gingham maxi skirt from Gap (last season — have worn it heartily!) but you can get the look with this Target steal (a Magpie reader find – thank you, Lizzie!) or this LSF investment.
- MATERIAL: I prioritize linen and eyelet. I find these materials do not betray their cost like others (especially blends with polyester) do — that is, linen and eyelet pieces often look more expensive than they are. This white eyelet-edged dress looks and this $25 Target top like they could be by SEA!
- COLOR: I find that black and dark (!) navy almost always look more precious than they are, as do unusual colors, like citrine, taupe, lilac, etc. I cannot believe this dress is under $250 (perfect black tie wedding option) — it looks like Zimmermann! — and this chartreuse skirt is outrageously stylish for the price.
- SHAPE: Look for pieces that have unusual, fashion-forward shapes — exaggerated dimensions, longer hems. I love this oversized envelope clutch (would think it was Hermes!),
- MONOCHROME: For a striking head-to-toe look, wear entirely one color or gradations of one color. This is especially impactful I think with wearing shades of white/taupe/linen. Some white linen shorts with an inexpensive white tee and Supergas will be the epitome of Parisian chic.
- FOR BAGS: An inexpensive but roomy straw tote makes a huge statement and can typically be found for under $100. Also consider canvas totes — unfussy, inexpensive, and eternally chic. Consider this canvas tote and this straw one!
- WHEN IN DOUBT, GO SIMPLE. An unfussy navy swimsuit, a striped tee, canvas sneaks — these are pieces that will never let you down.
Some favorite finds whose price tags you will not believe…
STRIPED TEE // SUPERGAS // SHORTS // LEATHER TRIM CANVAS POUCH // SHELL NECKLACE // BAOBAB TWIST DRESS // CANVAS TOTE // LE SPECS SUNGLASSES // NAVY SWIMSUIT // STRAW BAG // UTILITY SHIRTDRESS // LINEN PLATFORMS // EARRINGS // EYELET SKIRT // TEE // GLADIATORS
A few other fantastic finds that look more expensive than they are…
P.S. Chic sunglasses at all pricepoints.
P.P.S. Statement shoes!
P.P.P.S. Are you good at negotiating?