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How much do you spend on new clothes each season and do you go for quality or quantity?

(5 Posts)
maggiethemagpie Sun 10-Apr-16 17:12:14

I've lost and gained a lot of weight through two pregnancies over the past few years, so I've ended up having to buy a lot of new clothes each year as I've always been a different size...

I've gone for quantity over quality in the past or tried to buy in the sales but still spent a small fortune on clothes prob at least £500 per season.

Now my weight is more stable I am trying to buy clothes without breaking the bank but to buy anything decent seems really expensive. Even the less decent brands are expensive at full price. Is it me or are full price clothes much more expensive than a few years ago, and the shops try and do all these 20% off deals all the time to convince you you're getting a bargain?

How much do you spend on clothes, and how much roughly per item? I used to balk at paying more than £30 for anything (with the exception of coats and boots and then still no more than £80). Is it worth paying £50, £60 for a top or a skirt or a dress and if so, from which brands? Or should I stick with cheap and cheerful? I'm at my goal weight now and not having any more kids, so fingers crossed won't be gaining and losing any more

RhombusRiley Sun 10-Apr-16 17:28:10

As I get older I move more towards the quality over quantity. I have quite specific and quirky taste so if I see something I just love, it's worth spending on as I'll keep it a long time (I'm not really ruled by fashion). That could mean up to £200 for an item like shoes, a coat or a dress. However much more often I'll try it on, think about it for a while and try to nab it in the sales, or look out for it on ebay. I've often hankered after an expensive dress from Toast, Orla Kiely etc but bided my time then snapped it up on ebay a year or two later for a fraction of the price.

But, I will also hit the high street and stock up on basics from Gap, Uniqlo or H&M which could be £10 for a top or leggings, £20-40 for knitwear or a dress. They tend to have deals like 30% off days or 3 for 2s so it's worth keeping trac=k of those - sign up to email alerts from their websites and they send you all the offers.

Generally I think some brands are well made and last, and some aren't - and it isn't necessarily price-related (apart from the very cheap end). I sometimes like a bit of Boden but it's not worth paying full price for as it's not very long-lasting (except the kids stuff). Hobbs OTOH I think is worth the price - I have a coat and a dress from there that have never even started to look old, have worn them for years.

Ebay is your friend as you can try out some of these pricier brands without breaking the bank.

botemp Sun 10-Apr-16 18:01:20

If you're buying fundamentals, then yes it's worth having fewer items of high quality than a lot of cheaper pieces. If you want to get in on a certain trend then buy those at H&M, Zara, etc. knowing you'll toss that out when the trend no longer appeals or it breaks down from wear.

For me buying higher priced items isn't so much dictated by certain brands but the information on the care label. Things that can go in the tumble dryer tend not to last as long while remaining in optimal condition, same for things that can be washed at high temperatures, material (I look for natural fibres mostly, allowing synthetic in small % only) and the weight of it make a huge difference, and finally where it's made. China is now considered an 'expensive' and higher skilled country for fabrication so I'm less hard on it than I used to be but still prefer buying something that has been made in Europe. Turkey can be hit or miss, but I avoid S.E.A. countries since those items are made for the lowest price possible which means questionable labour practices and a general lack of concern for long term quality and consistency. You'll still find these cheaply produced items in pricier stores with giant labels too (I avoid the larger American designer brands like the plague, not worth it imo). By no means is this method fail-safe (there are factories in Italy that simply stitch on 'Made in Italy' to garments fabricated elsewhere) but looking at the quality of stitching, the care label, fit, and the feel of a fabric offer me the best guide in spending my money sensibly.

Jeans are never worth spending a fortune on imo, avoid the cheapest lots but don't spend hundreds on them either. Shoes, coats, and bags, is where I spend the bulk of my money, the wear per use calculation works out best with those. Per season I only buy a few pieces and only if it's something I'm currently missing or a replacement of something else with the odd cheaper trend item thrown in.

I'd agree that a lot of middling brands are more expensive than they used to be and the general quality between those and budget ranges often are very little, then it's a huge step up to the next level but if you shop sensibly there's plenty of value for money to be found there. I'll happily pay full prices for quality items but often wait out sales in places like Zara and H&M, I have more issues justifying asking prices there than I do elsewhere.

YaySirNaySir Sun 10-Apr-16 23:08:14

I would rather buy a few things per year that are good quality and I absolutely love. I avoid Primary and supermarket clothes.
I hardly ever shop for summer clothes as they seem to last a few seasons.
Boots and Jackets are my thing but I tend to buy them in the January sales. Other than that I buy a few things in Spring and Autumn and odd bits here and there.
The cost per wear thing is more indicative of if you bought well than the actual price.

Floisme Mon 11-Apr-16 07:50:11

I try and go for quality if it's something I know I'll wear a lot. For example, last year I bit the bullet and bought a couple of cotton, L/sleeve T shirts from Toast. I nearly passed out at the price but they were well worth it and I'll do it again.

But if I only bought at the top of my price range, I'd never take any risks and for me, experimenting is what fashion is all about. So if I'm trying something for the first time and I think it might turn out to be a dreadful mistake, I go for cheap and cheerful.

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