Fashion: How to dress for less

Plymouth College of Art Fashion, Media and Marketing student Rhian Davis gives us her top tips on getting the most for your money!

• Get a job in retail: I know some people dread the thought of working but f you have a few spare hours a week and you don’t already have a job, try and get part time work in a retail store. Most retailers do zero hours or low hours contracts, meaning that it wouldn’t compromise your studies but also allows you to get amazing discounts, and in some cases uniform allowance. This gives you the opportunity to pick up some of the latest on trend garments on the high street for a fraction of the price! Also, if you are lucky enough to get a job within Drake Circus, they offer a discount card to receive discounts in certain stores within the mall. Win.

• Apply for an NUS card and UNiDAYS ID: Most people are already aware that a massive percentage of retail stores in the city offer student discount. However, what some people don’t know is that in some cases you can get more discount with UNiDAYS than NUS and vice versa. This is because at the end of the day, they are rival companies. Some times one will offer 10% off whilst the other is offering 20% or even more! Sign up to their emails too, I know they’re annoying and clutter up your inbox, but it’s worth it in the end.

• Compliment/complain: Now, this wont be one for everyone and I only mean complain within reason, not because you fancy a freebie. However, I once had a bedding set bought from a local store, the colour ran whilst I was asleep (weird isn’t it) it ruined my clothes and even dyed my hair blue! So, I wrote a strongly worded letter to their customer service team along with some images and they quickly sent me a hand written apology letter with a £20 gift card for their store and a cheque to get the colour out of my blonde locks! I was never expecting anything like that; I just wanted a bedding set. But a lot of companies value your feedback. A friend of mine once bought some makeup from a well known brand and wrote a really lovely review on the product because she loved the way it made her feel, so now they send her samples for her to review! Don’t be afraid to complain but don’t be rude, often in retail stores some clothes are marked or missing a button, so do ask if there is anything they can do for you but don’t be rude.

• Be sale savvy: Most retailers have four big sales a year; Summer and Christmas are by far the biggest along with two mid season sales which tend to be Spring and Autumn time. I always find the best time to stock up on fashion staples that you will always need. For example, I find the best time to get black leather boots or coats, is the Christmas sales. You might not get that much wear of them then, although we do live in England and it is bound to rain, but I always tend to get them for less than 75% off. I did this last year; I bought a pair that cost me £15 and now the same pair is in store again for £65! Also if you wouldn’t consider buying it at full price DO NOT BUY IT just because it’s cheap. BIG no no. It’ll be one of those impulse things that will sit in your drawer and you’ll never end up wearing, forever guilty of that one.

• EBay and Depop: If used properly, these two little apps could be your best friend. One mans trash is another mans treasure, as Macklemore says. It’s an absolute treasure trove and because most of them don’t have to pay for a store, they sell their products a lot cheaper and many stores like Boohoo, Motel Rocks and more have outlets on here so you can bag a bargain. It also gives you the opportunity to make a few pounds but watch out for scammers.



All words by Rhian Davis


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