I have a subscription to Elle Québec, Clin d'oeil, Coup de Pouce, Châtelaine and Loulou (RIP)… I religiously have in my book-case every books from Loulou, Jean Airoldi, La Reine du Shopping, Louise Labrecque and In Style. These publications tell us what and not to buy according to trends, our silhouette, prices and our needs. At one point one loses itself in the process. Here's a small guide to shop smart.
First and foremost, you need to define your needs. Do you truly need something or simply drawn to it because it says SALE right above? Even if this item is on sale, if the latter stays hidden in your closet, well this wasn't worth your time nor money.
Mix and match
Then, ask yourself if this item can be worn with other pieces for a well put-together outfit which you already have sitting at home. If you're buying a killer pants and yet have nothing to wear it with… not worth the buy. In the end, it's all about making an investment. I call the latter the Mix and Match rule: a bottom for 3 tops. That say, if you're buying a floral skirt of pants, ensure you have at least 2 tops at home that can be paired with your new acquired spring inspired garment.
Choose quality over quantity
I mean anything from fast fashion products that cost a mere 20$ already tells you it won't last… However, they might come in handy for a season but not to build a wardrobe that will last a decade. These pieces bought in any fast fashion retail store are more for trendy pieces that will probably only last 3 straight seasons. But even, it's money thrown in the end so ensure that the seam is straight, buttons are holding up. You also have to take a particular attention to the pattern if ever the latter has cuts in the fabric. Often, patterns aren't quite coordinated and we then obtain an asymmetrical shape that is almost unrecognizable to say the least.
I'm the type of client who'll shop in a hurry during her lunch break. I top that's really OUT THERE paired with a wide leg jeans, I mean, that's a killer outfit right here. Everything fits me like a glove. The first time I try everything at home, and after I washed it once, I realized how easily it wrinkles. I sit down, get up instantly and oh god, my top look like a war zone. Long live viscose eh.
The true art of not being fooled by an item and its price tag. Even then, everything resides in its fabric and confection. An item made in China is to be avoid at all cost and unfortunately will be cheaper than anything made in Quebec. Silk is more expensive than polyester but the resemble is striking. Buying a 200$ dress made of polyester… I mean come on, that's overpriced. For a dress made of silk… that's another story. Deal of the year!
If you're someone who puts EVERYTHING in the washing machine, forget about buying clothes where you have to hand wash them. If you tend to forget your blazer for two whole months at the dry clean well, perhaps buying clothes that need to be dry cleaned isn't for you.
As for drying, if you have pieces made of wool, silk, acetate and rayon.
If you can stand ironing, forget about viscose, silk, cotton, linen. A small tip when you're shopping, simply take the item in your hand and do a ball with the latter, it'll give you an indication if it tends to wrinkle.
Make the changing room your domain
The first tip here is to wear clothes that will be easy to take off and put back on again… not the time or place to arrive with a buttoned up skirt with nylons. Wear a neutral colored pair of trousers that can be paired with potential pieces you're bringing inside the fitting room. Not the time to shop while wearing burgundy skinny jeans. A good Ol' pair of jeans of black trousers are ideal. Same goes for the top. Leave the crazy print home and wear a simple white or black top. As for underwear, opt for a skin tone. If you're shopping for a cocktail dress, try to think of bringing a strapless bras even more if you're trying one with no sleeves. Also, bring a pair of heels in your bag but don't wear them during the entire day or else your back will be killing you.
Try to think in advance of the shoes you're thinking of wearing to that particular occasion, this might help the process of choosing a dress. Same goes for the bag, a clutch version or a cross-body is more practical than having it readjust every two seconds on your shoulde.r
Shop in stores instead of online
I personally love both options. Shopping directly in stores allow you to be able to touch the fabric, trying the item on since sizes may vary from store to store. It's also a great feeling to be able to support local business as well.
Online shopping is also practical for those who always shop in a hurry, those who HATE going shopping and trying pieces on. What I love about this option is being subscribed to newsletter. It's impressive to see the amount of emails I receive and their killer rebates they offer to their clientele. Worth the look.
Mixing Sheer and Leather