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A Guide to Shopping for High End Clothing on a Budget


A Guide to Shopping for High End Clothing on a Budget

Nothing feels better than finding a beautiful piece of  high quality clothing that is drastically discounted. It is what I refer to as a Fabulous Find. I have champagne taste on a craft beer budget so I am always on the lookout for great deals.  The main criteria I look for in a fabulous find is the following:

  • it is made from higher-end natural fabric, like silk , wool and cotton;
  • the construction, external and internal, is of high quality;
  • the discounted price is much lower than the retail price.

Style, appearance and price matter but do not forget about the fabric.  Make sure to check out the composition of the garment to see what it is made out of.  Higher-end clothing should be made out of natural fabrics.  There are several reasons why investing in clothing made out of natural fabrics—such as cotton, silk ,linen, wool and cashmere — is worth the investment. Natural fabrics are made of animal or plant-based fibres while synthetics are man-made and produced entirely from chemicals to create fabrics like polyester, rayon, acrylic, and many others. Synthetic fabrics are more commonly used because they are considered more durable and much cheaper to manufacture. Most clothing you will find today is made out of synthetic fabric. However natural fabrics, aside from being less toxic, are longer lasting, feel better on your skin and look much more expensive than synthetic fabric. While you may have to look harder for clothing made out of natural fabric, it is worth the time and effort knowing that each piece will be an investment and not just something you will throw away in a year or two.

Garment construction is also very important. The first thing I look at is the inside seam finishes and hem finishes. I really dislike serged seams and I try to avoid them at all costs. It is a cheap, fast way of constructing garments and they do not look very nice. I rarely ever sew with serged seams unless I am sewing pants or knitwear. You will often see expensive clothing with serged seams which is why I always warn people that expensive does not always mean better. Serged seams  reduce the value of the garment.

Instead I look for French seams or bound seams.  The beauty and elegance of these seam finishes elevate the quality of the garment. When you see a clothing brand that will invest extra time and effort into the seam finishes, I think you can have faith in the overall construction of the garment. 

Lastly, the price. When you find a beautiful piece of clothing for a fraction of the  original cost it is a great feeling. 

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