Sweater Weather

It is time to get cozy! The temperature is dropping and my all time favorite item to snuggle in is a big comfy sweater.

The big cable knit sweater is a big trend for fall, every woman should have one in her wardrobe. It is a classic look and not just for grandmas anymore. We see the cable knit style in pull over’s, cardigans, and sweater dresses. This trend will be a great transitional item for winter too!

Try to go for the loose and slouchy look, which can be great because they go with everything, like jeans, maxi skirts and even velvet. It also can be paired well with scarves, chunky necklaces, and belts.

When the weather changes, I know it is tempting to run to class in sweatpants and Uggs. But, with such great sweater deals out there, why would you?

H&M has the best selection of sweaters for great prices. They sell all different types of sweaters so women of every shape can find the perfect fit. H&M offers sweaters in all the seasons hottest colors too, all for under $25.

H&M Sweater Dress $19.95

Forever 21 sells sweaters perfect for the layered look, which is easy to do with their low prices. No matter thick or thin material, the sweaters can be worn day or night.  Try the cropped sweater and pair it will your favorite dress.

Forever 21 - Crop Loop Knit Sweater $17.80

Stores like Ross, Marshalls, and T.J. Maxx are a great place to shop for the cable knit look. You want a good quality sweater that will last for a few more seasons because cozy sweaters are always in for fall and winter. These discount stores will sell designer brands for a fraction on the original price.

Be sure to snag one of these great deals and get cozy this fall!

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Fashion Going Green

Over the years, we have seen an over abundance of eco-friendly products hitting the market. It started with reusable coffee cups, shopping bags, and so on. But lately, fashion has been going green as well. What makes fashion “green” is the use of organic cotton and being made in a fair trade work environment. To better understand the new green fashion world, I talked to Account Executive of Resound Marketing, Ashley Willis (yes, my sister). She lives, sleeps, and breathes public relations, and many of her clients are these new eco-friendly companies. She gave me great insight to what green fashion we are seeing in stores and on the web. The best part is that they are all great for us frugal fashionistas!

Hear what Ashley has to say…

PR Account Executive Ashley Willis; photo credit Amanda Willis

Take Ashley’s advice and shop eco-friendly H&M and Loving Eco. Also look into H&M’s Garden Collection.


Couponing; Mall Edition

A trip to the mall is always fun, but can be expensive if you are not frugal. I am a big fan of coupons and believe it or not, there are great coupons available for your favorite clothing stores. You just have to know where to look. Coupons are not just for groceries and restaurants anymore.

Before you hit the mall, be sure to check out stores websites. Many offer printable coupons that can lower you’re total bill or a great BOGO deal.

Have you ever been asked for your email address when purchasing clothes at the mall? Yes, it may be annoying to constantly spell out your email address to the cashier, but it is totally worth it. By putting your name on the mailing list, you are saving yourself time and money. Stores will email you coupons or whenever there is a sale. Also, look on the stores website, sometimes the website offers better deals than in the store.

Clothing stores are always trying to get to you to come back. Lately, certain stores have been rewarding customers with money off their next purchase when you make a purchase up to a certain amount of money. Companies doing this are Kohl’s, Old Navy, JC Penny, and many more.

For those of you with smart phones, download The Coupons App. Everyday there is a variety of coupons and passes to your favorite stores. Some stores will accept the coupon by simply scanning your phone or using the code from the screen, which makes it super convenient. The app also offers coupons and discounts for restaurants and movie theaters.

When I shop, I like ease and convenience. ‘Shop It To Me’ is a new website that will notify you when your favorite stores are having sales and clearances. By just filling out a short survey about what brands you like and what size you are, Shop It To Me will find the sales for you. And the best part, it’s a free service!

Next time you go shopping, look out for all of these great offers available, because who doesn’t love to save money?


DIY Halloween

With Halloween around the corner, I see lots of people scrambling to get costume ideas together. They go to the nearest party store or Halloween outlet and try on costumes to no avail. And no one can leave the party store spending under $50. I find it ridiculous. Especially when you get to the party and find three other people in the same exact costume. Halloween is the prefect time to be creative, and frugal for that matter. Some of my favorite costumes from over the years were the ones I made myself. There is no reason to spend a bunch of money on a costume that will only be worn once. So here are some tips on creating your own Halloween costume for super cheap that all your friends will be jealous of.

Before even going out to spend money, look in your own closet for some basics. Key items are leggings, solid color skirts or dresses, tank tops, and boots. We all have these things, which can start your costume. Just think black leggings, a long sleeve black tee shirt, and cute shoes, and your just some face paint away from being a cat. Also, raid your friends’ closets. Every one has different style, so you may find a complete costume idea by just sharing clothes.

If you are looking to purchase items for your costume, thrift stores are your best bet. You can find hippie dresses, sailor uniforms, and pink lady outfits for super cheap. Your costume would be vintage and original compared to the tacky outfits the Halloween store sells. American Apparel is great for DIY Halloween costumes too. They sell all the essentials that can also be used in your day-to-day wardrobe.

I must admit, the party stores are good for something, and that is accessories. Cat ears, fake blood, nerd glasses, and Lady Gaga jewelry can spice up your home made Halloween costume for under 10 bucks.

Before you spend a fortune on a poorly made costume from the Halloween outlet, take my advice. Not only will you have a one of a kind costume at the party but you will save money too!


All about the boots

The leaves are changing and we are seeing some great fall outfits emerge. I recently went around Rowan’s campus to see some of the great trendy outfits of students. With no surprise, boots of all styles are more popular than ever, which are a great addition to any fall wardrobe.

Latrice Rose, working on labs in her dorm, in matching camel boots and jacket.

Brooke Soper, laughing with friends at her apartment, in taupe ruffled heel booties.

Emma Wolthuizen, relaxing between classes, in black suede heel boots.

Dara Mudachi, grabbing lunch at the student center, in brown leather lace-up boots.


Urban Outfitters under fire

I am a huge Urban Outfitters fan. I love the style, the designers, and the accessories. UO takes the newest styles from the runway and transforms them into their own. They are original and creative. But I love the way Urban Outfitters is not only about the fashion, but also music, travel and even have a great blog.

A big trend for the past few years has been the Indian print. The patterns, the colors, and the shapes are inspired from the Native American style. Urban Outfitters has embraced this trend, like many other companies and designers, which brings me to the reason of this post.

While reading the news this morning, I came across an article where a woman from Minnesota is attacking Urban Outfitters, calling the “Navajo” line culturally offensive.

I was surprised to read this mostly because Urban Outfitters is not the only company to embracing the Indian style. Top designers like Ralph Lauren have been putting out fashion lines for years with a Native American feel. For those Oprah fans, like me, we got an inside look at the designers ranch and lifestyle. Forever 21’s sister company Heritage 1981 is another company with hints of Indian style.

I feel that Urban Outfitters should not be attacked this issue. Yes, UO has embraced the native American fashion, but I feel like I has been done with class and is not “cheap looking.” Why is UO the only one being blamed when any store you walk into at the mall is displaying the same style and trends?

I am interested in hearing another opinion on this issue. Please feel free to leave comments expressing your outlook.

-Amanda


Glassboro Thrift Village: A Frugal Find

“One persons trash is another persons treasure.” This saying couldn’t be more true about the concept of thrift stores. There is something exhilarating about going to a thrift store and rummaging through the racks and going home with cheap thrills. Here in Glassboro, we are lucky enough to have the largest thrift store in New Jersey.

Glassboro Thrift Village is run by Chris Rowand and has been family owned and operated for the last 20 years. The store is 20,000 square feet of resale merchandise. GTV sells everything from clothing and accessories to furniture and electronics. Portions from each sale help local charities in need. I was able to sit down with Rowand and discuss his successful thrift business.

Glassboro Thrift Village Owner, Chris Rowand - photo credit Amanda Willis

Q: How did the thrift store come about?

A: It came about because my mother was a dispatcher and she left dispatching to start a nonprofit organization. In the beginning we were collecting funds and also donations for the organization she had running. One thing lead to another, we were getting tons of donations, and we started actually selling out of a warehouse that we had donated to us, we started selling on the weekends the products just to try to raise money. From there we opened a small little shop to try to put the clothing in the shop and the household items so the clients could go there and buy items all week. Once we raised money, we keep building and building until we settled here.

Q: What are the charities the thrift store supports?

A: There are three main charities we donate a portion of our proceeds to, Parents Anonymous, Kids Alley, and Glassboro Child Development Center.

Q: Who is your clientele?

A: It’s mixed. There’s a percentage of people who come out of necessity, but there is also a percentage of people who have a desire to find vintage, or collectables, or hard to find items. Any one could go to the mall and pick up a new t-shirt, but they come to a store like this to the find one of a kind items. Once we get it, it is a one of kind item.

Q: What is your current special sale on clothing?

A: Our clothes are usually about $2 or $3, but we always run a special where you can fill up a five gallon barrel for $15, and the clothes end up being 75 cents per items.

Q: What happens to the clothing that does not sell, or the clothing that is not fit enough to be put on the floor?

A: Nothing goes to waste. If the clothing is too old and not desirable we will sell the clothes to a rag guy. Who might turn the clothing into rags or could be bailed up and get sent over seas. But it is rare that we don’t sell the clothing. If the items are like 1970s Marsha Brady style, we like to keep that, but if it is the old 1950s or 1960s style, it is hit or miss.

Collection of high fashion shoes - photo credit Amanda Willis

Be sure to check out the Glassboro Thrift Village located at 169 Delsea Drive South. You won’t be disappointed!