Hey Lovely! Do you love Burberry? Christian Louboutin? What Lovely Girl wouldn’t want designer items in her closet? Today I’m sharing 6 ways to get FREE or cheap designer clothes and shoes! I have been using these tricks for YEARS and honestly, these are my biggest shopping secrets.
After college when I was SO BROKE, I couldn’t even afford to buy new shoes or clothing, like at all. I don’t really enjoy shopping at TJ Maxx type stores (no patience!), so I had to get creative. I started using all of these tricks so that I could still shop at my favorite stores and keep my wardrobe current. The best part is that ANY lovely girl can start using these tricks today!
1. Sign up for a credit card with rewards
If there is just one nugget of information that you takeaway from this post, this needs to be it. This is the #1 way that I get free or cheap designer clothes and shoes.
I have an American Express rewards credit card that I charge ALL of my regular monthly expenses to and then pay in full each month. I rack up points just for paying the cell phone bill or the utilities with this card. You can redeem your points for retail gift cards to places like Zappos, Saks, Nieman Marcus, J.Crew, Coach, Pottery Barn, Tiffany’s… the list goes on and on. You can also cash in points for travel, dining and entertainment packages; it’s crazy. But make sure you get the most bang for your buck and only redeem points that have at least a 100 point to $1 ratio.
I will let my points rack up for a year or participate in Amex offers to earn double or triple points on my purchases. You can sign up for the Everyday card, which is free, or the Gold card which has an annual fee. If you are a business owner or a blogger, then getting a separate credit card is a GREAT way to keep track of your expenses AND earn points that you can cash in once a year for some free goodies to your favorite stores.
This is how I got a pair of Louboutins for $95. I cashed in 60,000 of my business card points for a $600 Neiman Marcus gift card and the rest is history! I also recently cashed in points for a $100 Zappos gift card and got these Ivanka Trump pumps for $35.
2. Sign up for a retail store credit card (or loyalty program)
So Amex is accepted at about 95% of places that I shop, but for that 5% that only takes Visa, I have a Banana Republc credit card because, you guessed it, they also have a fabulous rewards program and I LOVE their brands. I earn “banana bucks” throughout the year that I can go spend at any of their stores: Old Navy, Gap, Banana or Athelta.
I have a girlfriend who puts all of her work expenses on this card (and then gets reimbursed through expense reports) and she racks up hundreds of dollars of banana bucks. She will text me and be like “I have $250 of banana bucks to spend now! Let’s go shopping!!” and I am like OMG GIRL. She actually just texted me that she got a brand new dress for $2.99. She is the queen.
The combination of a 40% off weekend sale + Banana Bucks got me the above Banana Republic teal blazer that was $198 for $50. Read the post: Should you wear leggings as pants? Yes! Here’s how!
3. Sell your stuff on Poshmark
I love selling old stuff on Poshmark because $10 here and there really adds up! Since signing up for the app in 2013, I have made back $1300 from 78 items that I would have otherwise just donated or sold to consignment for MUCH, MUCH less. I got my girlfriend Amber hooked on Poshmark and in one year she sold over $2000 worth of items from her closet!
When I first signed up for this app, I patiently waited to sell enough items and then bought a gently used cashmere Burberry scarf. I have always wanted one, but couldn’t justify spending $450, so I found an authentic one on the app for $175. I’ve had this scarf for over 2 years and just adore it.
4. Host “Girls Night Out” at a local boutique
This is also a really good one. Is there a local boutique that you LOVE, but maybe it’s a little pricey? I have a tip that is going to blow your mind.
Go to the store and ask to speak with the owner. Ask if you can host a Girls Night Out event with a 20% shopping discount for that night.
Don’t be afraid to ask, trust me. The shop owner will be THRILLED because this is a low cost marketing initiative that will generate sales and create brand loyalty. You and your girlfriends will be ready to shop til you drop that night AND you’ll most likely be back to shop full price items a few weeks later.
Grab some bubbly, a cheese plate, your rewards credit card and get ready to have some fun!
If you are blogger, you can also ask the boutique owner for an employee discount in exchange for sharing your outfit photos with them. I did that this past Fall with a local boutique and got some amazing designer pieces that are my favorite and I wear all the time.
Checkout her online boutique or click the image to view the post!
5. Wait for the sales!!
This one is obvious, but it’s a REALLY good one!! Make a wish list of your must-have classic designer items and just be patient. Wait for the sales (that you know will happen) and then buy the item at a discount. Saks has great programs for 15% off your purchase or get a $100 gift card when you spend a certain amount. Shop Bop has a friends and family sale a few times a year for 25% off (!!!) and Kate Spade sporadically does 25% off their entire site! I always wait for these sales so I can get full priced items for a discount.
Combine this strategy with your retail gift cards you got from redeeming points on your credit card and that’s when you will REALLY score big! I did this when I bought my Burberry Rain Coat last Spring. Saks was having 15% off AND I cashed in my rewards points for a Saks gift card. An $800 coat was then purchased for $475. Still a splurge, but I gave up shopping for Lent, so after 40 days of no shopping, I had a big enough budget to be able to purchase it!
Read the post: 8 reasons you need a stylish rain coat
6. Search Google for discounts on specific items
Sometimes current season items are sold on department store discount sites for much less! Do your research and Google the exact item you are looking for – you’ll be surprised!
For example, this Ivanka Trump jacket is full price on Nordstrom for $129, but is being sold at a discount on Saks Off 5th for $64.99. It’s the exact same item, so why would I buy it full price? #duh
I’ll be styling this beauty next week for our Spring Style Challenge!
Bonus Tip: shop your friend’s closet
If your sister, mother, mother-in-law or girlfriend has an awesome closet, don’t be afraid to ask to borrow something! They will honestly feel flattered that their stylish friend wants to borrow something from their closet! I’ve done this many times and it’s a really fun way to mix it up or try something out before you buy it for yourself.
The secret really lies in finding classic, timeless pieces that you are willing to WAIT to purchase. Shopping the sales racks and buying tons of trendy items isn’t the best use of your shopping dollars. Using these tips and tricks, you can buy classics that are always in stock and always in style for much, much less. It just takes some patience, but who wouldn’t want to wait a few months to save up for a pair of discounted Louboutins? It was worth the wait for me! I’ve wanted a pair for at LEAST 6 years now.
What did you think of these tips? Is there anything that you will start using yourself? Share this with your friends! They deserve to know how to get free or cheap designer clothes and shoes!
xo Annie[share title=”Share this Post” facebook=”true” twitter=”true” google_plus=”true” linkedin=”true” pinterest=”true” reddit=”true” email=”true”]