Store by store, where to bag a bargain
Enlarge SURVIVAL GUIDE FOR SMARTER SPENDING
Want to avoid those so-called bargains that will lurk never worn at the back of your wardrobe Here are our indispensable tips to navigating the January sales successfully.
Buy better quality clothes — rather than saving money on the usual brands you wear, splash out on the more expensive, investment pieces, which have now come into your price range.
Focus on wardrobe classics such as blazers, trench coats, black dresses, well-cut trousers and silk blouses, which you’ll wear long after the sales are over.
Don’t be lured in by Christmassy sparkles, this season’s most fashionable trends or anything that’s not your normal style — these are the pieces that will never see the light of day, come January.
Shop at the beginning of the day, when stores are less frenzied and products are still properly displayed. Wear layers, so you can try sweaters or coats on the shop floor instead of queuing for the changing rooms.
Treat yourself to luxury items that you might not normally buy such as cashmere sweaters or gorgeous lingerie — the only time you can justify it is in the sales.
Never buy anything that’s too big, too small or that you plan to have tailored-to-fit. If it doesn’t look great right now, it’s not worth the money.
Check the refund policy before you buy and leave tags on. If you get your shopping home and have regrets, return it straight away, while you still have a chance.
Look out for key items that will be on-trend for spring: coloured trousers, leather trims, graphic prints.
Focus on accessories — shoes often go on sale first, and are snapped up quickly. Belts, bags and costume jewellery are also good additions and prices are often slashed more than clothes.
Before buying, ask yourself how many things in your wardrobe you’ll be able to wear this new item with. If it’s more than three, it’s a sensible purchase, if it’s fewer, steer clear.
Operate a ‘one in, one out’ policy in your wardrobe, to stop you from overloading on sale items and ensure you only buy things you really can’t live without.
Shop the sales on the first week, when all the best stuff is still available, and right at the end, when you might spot a bargain in the final markdowns.