’s “Recessionista Fashion Tips” Featured on Yahoo Shine!

imageCheck out my Yahoo! Shine “Holly Days” blog post to learn How To Score A Holiday Wardrobe… Without Spending A Dime! Read the article after the Jump!

3 Foolproof Ways For Scoring A Holiday Wardrobe… Without Spending A Dime!image

Blame it on the current economic crisis or Suze Orman on-the-brain, but I’ve finally decided to smarten-up and tighten the purse strings. That’s right. Aside from no longer blowing my hard-earned cash on impulse clothing purchases at (read: $475 sequin-encrusted Pedro Garcia pumps), I’ve also put the kibosh on weekly manicures and Sally Hershberger designer haircuts (well, at least as of yesterday). I’ve also found a a few sure-fire ways to score a red-haute holiday wardrobe… without putting pressure on your pocketbook! Here are some insider tips for sprucing up your holiday look on a recessionista’s budget.

Recessionista Rule #1: Start Shopping In Your Closet!

imageDon’t ditch your clothing castoffs just yet! You can get more mileage out of your existing wardrobe with just a few simple tweaks:

Raid your boyfriend’s closet! Over-sized items like a black vest, boxy blazer and the classic white button down shirt look beyond stylish when paired with skinny jeans and even short skirts.

• Add life to any lackluster coat by throwing it on with a cinched patent leather belt.

• Transform a dull jacket into dazzling by sewing on some of granny’s glitzy antique buttons. Plastic is so passé.

Befriend your tailor! Simple alterations such as shortening a skirt hem will make a world of difference.

• Modernize any dated ensemble by throwing on vintage accessories such as chunky jewelry or a print neck scarf.

• Punch up a faded frock in a flash by tie-dying it. Believe it or not, acid-washed denim is back!

• Instantly update your look by layering unexpected fabrics. For example, pair a chiffon floral dress with opaque tights and a fitted ¾ length belted cardigan. Add a pair of chunky cowboy boots and you’re good to go!

Recessionista Rule #2: Host A Swap Shop

imageIs your wardrobe in need of a minor modification or a major makeover? Either way, a “swap shop” may be just the ticket. This ingenious girls-only shopping soirée allows you to acquire coveted clothes while leaving your wallet at home. Plus, it’s a great way to meet other clotheshorses and swap war stories from the women’s front. Ready to say good riddance to your garb? Read these top tips for hosting a successful swap:

Swapping 101:

• First, send out an e-vite, the easiest way to get a gaggle of girls together. Just make sure you give people enough time to clean out their closets and pack up the goods.

• When guests arrive, dump all the clothing into a central pile, making it easy to rummage through. Trade treasures for items of equal value. To avoid catfights, have each guest pick a number out of a hat (like a holiday party grab bag) giving first dibs to the person with the lowest number.

• Clothing and accessories should be gently used. Any garments with holes or stains are taboo. Launder or dry clean items before bringing them to the swap.

• Donate unwanted items to charity. Many organizations such as Housing Works and The Salvation Army offer free pickup services. will gladly accept gently worn shoes.

Recessionista Rule #3: Frequent Clothing Exchange Stores

imageAre you a frugal fashionista who can’t live without the latest “it” brands? Then don’t discredit clothing and accessory resale stores such as Buffalo Exchange, which boasts 33 locations across the US. 

Looking to trade in your closet castoffs for something cooler? If you donate clothing, Buffalo Exchange will offer you 30% of the total – they add up the total amount of all the items you bring in and you get 30% of that price. OR… you can accept 50% of that total in store credit. Brace yourself for an ever-changing roster of luxe designer labels, including the all-mighty Prada, Marc Jacobs (haute handbags for $100!), Betsey Johnson (party dresses for only $40!) and Dolce & Gabbana (killer pumps for $50!). They also stock a well-edited assortment of vintage, denim and other to-die-for threads. Sounds too good to be true? Visit to see for yourself!

I’m curious… how has the current economy made you rethink your holiday shopping strategy? Don’t be shy… share your stories with the Fashion Junkie community!

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