Zara top

Saving versus Splurging

As the high street goes into summer sale meltdown it’s tempting to stock up on bargain items; with the current love of disposable fashion, is it ever worth investing in expensive pieces? Our fashionista’s answer is yes, sometimes! We might have Prada tastes, but we are living in Primark times. So here is our guide to watching the pennies versus blowing the budget.

The safest saves…


Separate tops are the hardest working items in your wardrobe. You might wear your fave pencil skirt or jeans three days running, but you will want to change your top half to keep your look fresh. As such, I recommend quantity over quality in this area. Keep tops simple and sleek to avoid looking cheap and bulk-buy great finds in a host of colours. Zara and H&M regularly have 100 per cent silk blouses and tees at very reasonable prices.

Trend Items

Neon? Pemplum? Scarf print? If you are trying a trend then don’t spend a fortune. Some fashion fads look great today, but are gone tomorow. Go cheap and chic for the on-trend items and save hard-earned cash for the classics.


Sun, sea and SPF all take their toll on beach wear, so if you are on any sort of budget opt for M&S over Melissa Obadash. Nothing says holiday shopping like a few new bikinis, so I always buy cheaper versions which I mix and match for the beach.

Invest what you can…


With jeans you really do get what you pay for, and unless you have perfect pins you want your jeans to work hard for your shape. Invest in a classic dark blue pair from MiH or Not Your Daughters Jeans, which will give you great legs and ensure even your casual days look fabulous!


Shoddy shoes can ruin an otherwise great outfit, so when it comes to budgeting, prioritise your feet. Louboutins might still be out of your price range but aim for LK Bennet, Jones or even Massimo Dutti for shoes that look polished and well thought out. Become friends with your local cobbler to make investment pairs last for years.


Whether on bags, shoes or jackets, ‘pleather’ is just never a good look. Search the sales for pieces to invest in, and even if your handbag isn’t a designer name, opt for good quality leather. Gap, Jigsaw and Russell and Bromley all carry quality but affordable pieces.

Mixing and matching designer and high street is the key to stylish dressing. Never be afraid to mix Gucci and Gap to create the look you want and can afford.

And remember ladies… No one need ever know what it really cost!

Rowan McKinnon
Rowan is a Fulham-based personal stylist and owner of style consultancy Style Eyes.;

Rowan is offering WLL readers 10% discount on her styling service.

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