Ever wonder if you might be a shopaholic, or worry that you don’t spend enough time and effort renewing your wardrobe? Hear how other Penn students approach clothes shopping as they share their tips with you!
Do you plan a budget for buying clothes?
Mia (E’19): I don’t plan a budget honestly but I do keep a list on my computer of things that I want or like and, if it’s been on the list for a long time and that I have money left over at the end of the month, I splurge and buy it. Also, I try to avoid impulsive purchases.
Camille (C’19): I’d say I do seasonal budgets for clothes as in one for the winter and another for the summer.
Bosco (C’17): No, I don’t plan a budget for buying clothes but I obviously won’t go overboard – probably no more than $400 per piece of clothing.
Olivia (C’18): When I used to have a monthly allowance I would try to spend no more than half of it on clothes but I wasn’t very strict with myself. Now that I work I have quite a bit more money than before but I try to spend the same amount than before and put the rest in savings.
Cat (C’19): I don’t really plan a budget but I do monitor whether or not the quality of the clothing is worth the marketed price or, if the item isn’t necessary at the moment, I will wait for it to go on sale at an acceptable price.
Is buying clothes your biggest expense of the month?
Mia: Not consistently, because I’ve been trying to do quality over quantity which means I could go a few months without buying anything but when I do buy an item it’s usually a big expense.
Camille: It’s for sure my biggest expense.
Bosco: No, because even though I do spend a lot on clothes, I also pay my own rent and tuition.
Olivia: For some months it is comparable to food if I don’t see any great clothes to buy but other times I can go on a buying streak and it will definitely be my biggest expense.
Cat: My biggest expenses in the fall are jackets, sweaters and boots.
Where do you shop?
Mia: I usually shop in stores in DC, New York or Paris.
Camille: I shop mainly when I go home to London and I don’t like online shopping.
Bosco: I don’t shop in Philly but usually do in London, Macau or Hong Kong. Mostly high street if I want to stock up on basics and I also get some free pieces at fashion week shows.
Olivia: I do a lot of online shopping from stores that I am familiar with so that I already know my size and that the quality will be good. Otherwise I do like to go to stores around Rittenhouse.
Cat: I usually shop at Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom and the boutiques in Old City are my favorites.
Do you feel the need to renew your clothes often because of what other Penn students might think?
Mia: I don’t feel the need to renew for what some Penn students might think but rather because I am quickly bored of my look.
Camille: I feel a certain need to get new items and to not wear the same thing often but not too much pressure.
Bosco: No I don’t really care what they think.
Olivia: I do renew most of my clothes periodically but that is when I decide to change my style and after that I don’t ever feel like wearing my old clothes again so I donate them. I don’t think it has to do with what other people think; I think it’s just me losing interest in styles that I’ve worn for too long.
Cat: I try to dress somewhat decently for all my classes but I especially make an effort when I have to attend a class or club meeting in Huntsman. I also like to renew my wardrobe with fresh pieces every now and then. I do think Penn is very label-oriented and it is ridiculous the amount of Chanel bags you see at parties and high quality handbags getting ruined, as well as boots.
When do you feel like it is worth it to go over budget for clothes?
Mia: I feel that it’s worth it when it’s a piece that you can still see yourself in ten years down the line.
Camille: I go over budget for key items like a nice coat, a bag, shoes or a dress for a special occasion.
Bosco: It’s worth going over budget if it’s for a big occasion but sometimes it also just feels right.
Olivia: I think that it’s definitely worth going over budget for things that are a good investment such as coats or jewelry. A very nice coat can last you a long time and never go out of style.
Cat: If it is a very nice item and it will last you a long time, such as a nice belt or handbag, then yes because it won’t go out of style.
Mia’s additional tip: The best thing you can do is checking the quality of the material; I’d rather have one good quality top than five average ones.
Image courtesy of Visit Philly