Making Bank? Or Breaking the Bank?

I love luxury fashion. I admit it.

In my ideal world where money is no object, I would have a spacious walk-in closet (who am I kidding? I want a suite!) filled top to bottom with Hermes, Celine, Louis Vuitton, and Victoria Beckham.

Scream Queens closet

But in my real world, I have a tiny closet and my funds are not unlimited. Technically it's a walk-in because I can fit my body inside it, but I also share it with my husband 50/50, so essentially I have half a closet. And while I do have some treasured luxury pieces from all of the brands I mentioned above, it's also filled with more affordable options from Zara, J Crew, Target, and Tory Burch. I started a recurring feature on this site called Forward Finds with items at a variety of price points so we can share some closet inspiration.

As my personal style evolves, my realistic philosophy on fashion has become a two tier approach:

  1. Invest in quality.

  2. Save on basics and trends.

Can I see myself carrying that Birkin 15 years from now? Absolutely. Invest.

Can I see myself wearing faux pearl encrusted Gucci slippers 15 years from now? Um, no. They're adorable, but no.

So that's where "high street", as the Brits call it, comes into play. I love a great bargain and I love to be able to stay on trend without spending a fortune on items that may go out of style after a season or two. This allows me to reserve my limited closet space and funds for special investment-worthy purchases, and have a revolving door of affordable high street / fast fashion to keep things fun and trendy and not worry about overstuffing my limited closet capacity.

I recently wrote a blog piece on my obsession with the KonMari Method, a process for constantly editing what you own to cut down on clutter and keep the items that spark joy in your life. I'm finding that this method really goes hand in hand with my style philosophy and will help me keep a tight leash on impulse buys.

So if I want those faux pearl slippers for a season or two, I give myself three choices:

  1. Ask myself, "Do I really need this?". If the answer is no, enjoy it vicariously through seeing it on others. Hey, that's the beauty of Instagram!

  2. Buy the real thing. Be sure it's a brand with resale value. Wear it a few seasons and then consign it to recoup some of my investment.

  3. Find a high street alternative with a similar style impact but on a budget. Enjoy it and then donate to charity.

I'd love to hear from you in the comments. What's your style philosophy? Does my method work for you? Any other ideas, tips, or tricks you'd like to share?