I really love college life, but I gotta say–one thing I miss about high school and working is that I actually had accessible funds. Reality and being a grown-up comes in the form of budgets and responsibilities, which is great and all, but sometimes I just wish I could be irresponsible for a day or two ;)
I’ve had to get kind of creative with how I spend money over the last two years or so, especially when it comes to clothes. I am very proud of myself this year, though, since I have found some great ways to save money on clothing while still being able to update your closet every now and then!
So here is what you can do if you want to update your closet on a college budget!
1. Cut down your closet items
Ok, this might seem counter-intuitive. But trust me on this one–if you are able to cut down your wardrobe to just the core items, simply changing 3 shirts will completely update it! So it’s better in the long-run, and also makes life easier by having fewer items that all work together and make you feel great when you wear them. :)
Plus, cleaning our your closet helps with the next few points:
2. Make use of social media
Now that you have a giant pile of clothes that you want to get rid of, how are you going to make some money off of them? Try to sell them to other broke students! As long as you’re willing to sell old clothes for $5 a piece, you shouldn’t have a problem getting some cash back for your old t-shirts and yoga pants!
My school actually has a clothing exchange/sale group on facebook, which is super handy for both finding clothes and selling them! I sold almost $50 of clothes in one week, which isn’t that much compared to what I spent on them, realistically, but is still $50 more than they gave me sitting in my closet! That paid for my coffee and food over all of exam season!
3. When you can’t sell from your closet, exchange!
If you’re really set on getting new clothes instead of just money for your old ones, try to find a clothing exchange event!
What typically happens at these events is a bunch of people bring clothes they don’t wear enough anymore and you all get together and make some trades! So you may give Heather four sweaters for two pairs of jeans and a new blouse, for instance.
It’s a great way to get rid of old clothes and get new ones at no cost to you!
If there are no exchanges going on at your school, start one! Make an open event on Facebook, perhaps–meeting up in a central, public location, of course! (University campuses are always a good option!)
4. Get creative with your closet!
That old sundress you really don’t wear anymore (but makes your shoulders look awesome) might fit your style better as a tank top! Maybe those old flare jeans that fit you just right, but just aren’t your style, would be better as cut-off jean shorts! Look at things in new ways, and if you have a bit of a creative streak this will be the perfect challenge for you!
For a bit of inspiration, here are some great refashioning and DIY websites!
The way to start here is to look at what your closet is missing and what your closet has lots of. Then try to see if you can cross over! For instance, I really wanted a floral infinity scarf, and I had a lot of tank tops. So I cut off the top of one of my tank tops and now it works perfectly and I saved myself $15!
5. Buy second-hand, when necessary!
When you really do need something, like a good pair of winter boots, for instance, always check online before you head to the mall!
I got a pair of winter boots that were originally over $200.00 for only $15 from a girl online! Turns out another girl had bought them and they ended up being just a tad too small–they fit me perfectly, though!
(That being said, I did go through an entire Ottawa winter in just rainboots with wool socks because I was so adamant that I would not drop $200 on a pair of boots… so it paid off in the end, but my feet were pretty miserable for about 4 months there.)
So there you have it. That’s how I saved well over $300 on clothes this year alone, by buying second hand, repurposing old things, and buying from other students who will take things other than money as payment!
What are some frugal tips you have?