Goodbye….for now

Believe it or not, this is the end. The end of online journalism, the end of the fall semester, and the end to this terrific blog experience. I consider Frugal Fashion to be a journey of the transitions I have made in my life, from having a job and living at home, to becoming a college student on a budget. I have learned a lot on this journey, such as how to stretch my dollar when hitting the mall, but also how to write for the web. It was a tough 15 weeks with many challenges, but I value my professor, Nick DiUilo, for helping me through with his advice but also for everything he has taught me. I have never been more certain on my major, journalism, and cannot wait for what is ahead of me.

I believe Frugal Fashion has been a great success. I am happy with the amount of traffic I had and with my regular followers. Along the way, I met some great people who helped me further my knowledge about the subject, and it brings me great joy to be able to share it with you. As I was learning myself, I hope I was able to teach as well. My goal for this blog was to change the way girl college students think about fashion. Being on a budget in college is daunting, especially when you’re a girl and want to spice up your closet. Shopping while on a limited income is not impossible, and for those of you who are my regular readers now know that. What I want my readers to take away from this blog is to remember to shop around for the best deal, hit the sale rack first, and not be afraid to haggle at thrift stores. However, along with knowing how to stretch your dollar, I hope my readers also understand the value of money management and saving money. It would not be the end of the world to walk out of a store empty-handed or not go to the mall at all for that matter. And I cannot believe I just typed those words, but I guess that means this blog and this journey was a success. I changed myself, the biggest shopoholic I know.

Where do we go from here? As after this post I am not assigned a weekly post with specific criteria to fill, however I intend to keep updating. I plan to at least have a post once a week. I still have a lot of learning to do, and I want to share that with you, my loyal readers, as this journey continues. Please check back in a few weeks to see my progress, but as for now, I’m going to celebrate the end of the semester with a little time off.

Until next time,

Amanda

Here are, what I believe, my five best posts.

Fall Out of Summer

Colored Jeans are a Must Have for Fall

Sweater Weather

Frugal Find: Buffalo Exchange

In Depth Look at ROSS


Shine Like a Star at This Year’s Holiday Party

December is filled with get-togethers. We have everything from holiday parties with your friends to family Christmas dinners and, before you know it, it is New Year’s Eve. Make sure you have the right holiday dress to shine throughout this month.

Go red. Of course, red is always in style for the holiday season, but we are seeing new shades which are fun and alluring such as like crimson, scarlet and cranberry. These festive red colors will be sure to make you stand out at any holiday festivity.

Nicole Richie dazzles in red.

Bare your shoulders. New dresses hitting stores are one-shouldered or tube tops. My favorite type of dress is the one-shoulder because it is very flattering. Many people consider this type of dress to be a summer look, but it is a great transition into the fall. Don’t want to expose so much skin? Just add tights and a long sleeve shirt under any dress. This is also a great concept for your summer dresses, and a real money saver, too. Want an even more dramatic neckline? Try wearing your hair up with your asymmetrical dress.

Michelle Williams bares her shoulders on the red carpet.

Sparkle on. Sequins, glitter and metallics are big for any holiday party. I would go for the metallic tank with solid pants or all sequined shorts with a black blouse and tights. Glitter dresses are a great option, too. But don’t do overboard with the shine; you do not want to be confused with the Times Square New Year’s ball.

Lauren Conrad shines in an all black sequin mini.

Great Lengths. Anything from maxi skirts to full-length gowns are in this season. I think a full-length dress is the perfect piece to accessorize with. Adding chunky necklaces and bold bracelets will have you standing out. There are just so many ways to jazz up the full-length dress, and it’s flattering too. Could this goodbye to the LBD?

Beyonce rocks a full length gown while pregnant.

Classic cocktail. Ahh, the fun and flirty cocktail dress- no wonder it never went out of style.  My personal favorite is the retro look with black and white polka dots. If you’re worried about being chilly this winter in your holiday dress, try wrapping a large scarf around your shoulders or even adding a cropped jacket before hitting this year’s party.

Emma Watson pulls off the classic cocktail, not once but twice.

I hope you all shine this holiday season. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all.


In Depth Look at ROSS

As I am always looking for a great deal while I’m shopping, I never have to look too far when I go to ROSS. When I walk up and down the isles at a store like this, I see all the great designer brands and the price tag. I can’t help but think, how is this possible? There are rumors that stores like this sell out of date or even damaged clothes, but that is not the case. In order to gain more knowledge on one of my favorite stores and to dispute the rumors, I had the privilege of speaking with Assistant Buyer of ROSS, Kate Lapotosky.

Kate Lapotosky

Kate grew up in Burlington, Vermont, and attended Marist College of Poughkeepsie, New York where she attained a Bachelor’s degree in fashion merchandising. While in college, Kate led the 25th Annual Marist Silver Needle Fashion Show in her senior year. After graduation, Kate landed the job at ROSS and now is currently living in California. See what Kate has to say…

 

Q. What made you major in fashion merchandising in college?

A. I’ve always had this desire to know what was happening in the fashion industry such as, trends and the latest upcoming designers. In high school I was reading Nylon and Paper magazine on my own time as well as trying to find sample sale websites. I adapted the trends to my style since I’m from Burlington, Vermont, where most popular and trendy stores aren’t located. I took what I knew and intermixed it with my lifestyle. By senior year I knew I wanted to be apart of the fashion industry in my future career path, but focus on the business side, which is the merchandising aspect.

Q. As assistant buyer at ROSS, what are some of your responsibilities?

A. My responsibilities as Assistant Buyer are as follows:

* Perform the administrative and operational functions supporting my buyer.

* Handle purchase order management and administration as well as processing markdowns. This includes writing orders, changes, cancellations and necessary follow-up, both internally and externally, to ensure key shipments are delivered and processed.

* Analyze and interpret key business issues as directed by my buyer and DMM including the monitoring of regional merchandise reports, Open-to-Buy monitoring, and stock analysis.

* Develop effective relationships with vendors. This includes appropriate level of interaction with vendors in terms of both problem resolution and follow-up.

* Demonstrate the ability to effectively utilize the merchandising systems and understand warehouse processes. Includes utilizing systems and preparation of reporting to allow for interpretation of the business.

* Demonstrate product knowledge through sharing information with my buyer as a result of competitive shopping, shopping at Ross Stores, and other markets.

Q. What type of brands does ROSS sell?

A. Ross sells a wide range of brands, everything from national brands to designer and budget brands. Here are just a few brands that you can find in ROSS stores,

-Nike

-Adidas

-Avia

-Vox

-Vans

-Converse

-DC shoes

-Quiksilver, ROXY

-Nine West

-Calvin Klein

-Free People

-7 for all man kind

-Adio shoes

-Lucky

-Emerica

-Heritage 1981

-Sketchers

-Steve Madden

-Juicy Couture

-Coach

The list goes on forever…

Q.  Being that you were once a college student on a budget, do you feel that ROSS is somewhere college students can shop while still saving money, compared to going to the mall or department stores?

A. Shopping at ROSS or TJMAXX has always been my favorite. I think shopping at ROSS is such a good way to save money and shop trendy. They offer great prices that are affordable and on the trend forecast. Most of the goods that we receive are still in that current season. Example, we may receive a pair of Nike running shoes and these exact pairs could be on the floor at Macys or Dillard’s or Kohl’s. Nike ships us their closeout merchandise because maybe they produced too many units or are forecasting their plan sales in that specific category and project that they will not be able to sell all of those Nike running shoes. They will call ROSS and we buy their closeout goods. We also do special makeup’s or SMU’s, where we can create our own shoe through Nike and they make us a production sample and if we give the “okay”, then they make this shoe for us. I rarely shop at big dept stores anymore because I know their IMU% is high, so I’d rather spend my money more efficiently.

Q. What do you think the future is for stores such as ROSS, TJ Maxx, and Marshalls?

A. Off-price retailers are one of the biggest GM retailers in our economy as of now. They are always growing and there is tremendous amount of future growth opportunities with these off-price retailers. They need to find the goods at the right time, at the right price with the right quantity. The target market for these stores will never fade because we will always have our class bracket, for example, the high, middle and low income families. So, the future for off-price retailers is only going in the right direction. Positive growth and positive feedback are two factors they are always receiving from the Stock market and consumer reports.