clothes http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/1216/all en-US Packing Light? Don't Forget These 5 Must Haves http://www.wisebread.com/packing-light-dont-forget-these-5-must-haves <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/packing-light-dont-forget-these-5-must-haves" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_packing_luggage_522545712.jpg" alt="Woman not leaving items behind when packing light" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Have you ever gone on a trip, and almost immediately regretted leaving behind that one item that would have made things easier? So have I, which is why I put together this list of the essential items to remember to pack, even when you don't have much space. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-packing-secrets-from-a-professional-traveler?ref=seealso" target="_blank">15 Packing Secrets From a Professional Traveler</a>)</p> <h2>1. Comfortable Footwear</h2> <p>Getting caught without the right shoes can really ruin a trip. This is not an excuse to bring every pair of shoes you own, but you do need a practical, comfortable pair of shoes that will work for a variety of situations.</p> <p>Best option: A solid pair of sneakers that you can dress up or down. Of course, your fashion choices will depend on your style, but neutral colors tend to pair with a wider range of outfits, for both men and women. Try colors like black, beige, or white for the most versatility.</p> <p>Comfort is even more important. You will be surprised how often the right sneakers can get you out of a fashion bind and enable you to fully explore the place you're visiting without worrying about blisters or tiring your feet too much.</p> <p>Some travelers walk 10 miles a day or more when visiting a new city. Walking is an amazing way to see a new place, while helping you keep in shape while traveling. My wife and I travel with <a href="http://www.lemsshoes.com/" target="_blank">Lems shoes</a>, which are extremely comfortable and roll up if you need to jam them in a small space. The black version can even pass in more formal situations.</p> <h2>2. Versatile Pieces</h2> <p>When you're trying to pack light while not leaving any essentials behind, a good packing strategy is to pick out pieces that are multipurpose.</p> <p>For women, a large scarf is a great piece that can be used in many situations. You can use it as a blanket on the bus when the air conditioning is too cold. You can bring it to the beach to use as a towel or just a place to sit while having a picnic. Plus, it's always good to have as a cover up.</p> <p>If you're going to a warm destination, you can often find skirts that will double as a top. Remember that dresses and rompers can be a good use of space, since you don't have to think about matching a top and a bottom.</p> <p>For men, you'll want to think about bringing classic combinations. Dark jeans transition from day to night seamlessly. Pick out clothing that is casual but that can easily be dressed up for going out in the evening.</p> <p>For both men and women, look for pieces that can layer well.</p> <h2>3. Essential Toiletries</h2> <p>Sometimes the hotel shampoo makes the cut and sometimes you really need your standby toiletries to feel like yourself. If you have certain items you can't live without, buy travel-sized versions that will save you a lot of space and weight compared to full-sized bottles.</p> <p>Alternatively, if you can't find the travel size of your favorite shampoo, you can easily buy small plastic travel bottles at your local drugstore and make your own travel versions of any of your favorite products.</p> <p>To keep bottles from leaking in your bag, put a piece of kitchen plastic wrap over the mouth and then screw the lid on over this extra layer. This will prevent you from unpacking your bag to discover a goopy mess when you reach your destination.</p> <h2>4. Chargers</h2> <p>Forgetting a phone, camera, or computer charger is really a bummer. Before you leave your home or a hotel room always double and even triple check the outlets to make sure you haven't left an important charger plugged in. Some chargers can be very difficult to replace on the road.</p> <p>On that note, also be sure to bring the appropriate plug converter. If you can find an all-in-one converter that has plugs for multiple countries, you will save yourself the headache of trying to keep track of a bunch of different adapters.</p> <h2>5. Passports and Credit/Debit Cards</h2> <p>No matter how light you pack, these items are the very most essential. If you have your travel identification and, ideally both a credit and debit card, you'll be able to figure out the rest on the fly. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/follow-these-5-credit-card-rules-when-traveling-abroad?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Follow These 5 Credit Card Rules When Traveling Abroad</a>)</p> <p>It's also an important precaution to make a couple of copies of your travel documents and credit cards. Leave one with someone at home and take an extra along with you. Keep that one in a different place from the originals. That way if anything gets stolen you will be in a much better position to get replacement documents and cards. In addition to having a paper copy, you can save a digital copy to Google Drive or a similar cloud account, or just email a version to yourself.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-your-belongings-get-stolen-abroad?ref=seealso2" target="_blank">What to Do When Your Belongings Get Stolen Abroad</a></p> <h2>Pack Smart</h2> <p>Traveling light is not only very practical, it's also liberating to realize how few belongings you really need. When you pack less you'll have less to lug around and worry about losing.</p> <p>If you still feel like you're having trouble fitting everything in, remember to roll your clothes when you pack instead of folding them. You'll save just a little more space and may be able to take a smaller bag. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/vacation-hack-7-tips-for-single-bag-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Tips for Single Bag Travel</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <h2 style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</h2> <h2 style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fpacking-light-dont-forget-these-5-must-haves&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FPacking%20Light-%20Dont%20Forget%20These%205%20Must%20Haves.jpg&amp;description=Packing%20Light%3F%20Dont%20Forget%20These%205%20Must%20Haves" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a></h2> <h2 style="text-align: center;"> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script><p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Packing%20Light-%20Dont%20Forget%20These%205%20Must%20Haves.jpg" alt="Packing Light? Don't Forget These 5 Must Haves" width="250" height="374" /></p> </h2> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/packing-light-dont-forget-these-5-must-haves">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-you-should-never-pack-for-vacation">5 Things You Should Never Pack for Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-affordable-places-to-ski">6 Affordable Places to Ski</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-all-inclusive-vacations-and-cruises-worth-the-money">Are All-Inclusive Vacations and Cruises Worth the Money?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-fun-affordable-train-trips">5 Fun, Affordable Train Trips</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel clothes footwear packing light passports suitcase toiletries travel documents vacation Wed, 01 Feb 2017 10:30:30 +0000 Nick Wharton 1871081 at http://www.wisebread.com What You Need to Start Flipping Items for Cash Online http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-start-flipping-items-for-cash-online <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/what-you-need-to-start-flipping-items-for-cash-online" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-628153006.jpg" alt="make money from home flipping your clutter" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Over the past few months, I've shared my love of flipping by sharing <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-easiest-items-to-flip-for-cash?ref=internal" target="_blank">easy items to flip for cash</a> and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-old-knick-knacks-you-can-flip-for-easy-cash?ref=internal" target="_blank">&quot;flippable&quot; knickknacks</a> that can bring in the highest profit. But knowing <em>what </em>to sell is far different from knowing <em>how </em>to sell. With that in mind, let's explore the essentials for getting started in the flipping game. Here are the only nine things you need to make money flipping your stuff.</p> <h2>1. A Smartphone</h2> <p>Even if you're equipped with decades' worth of knowledge about a wide range of items, immediate access to information is crucial. Though I've spent most of my life immersed in the world of antiques, I still rely on my smartphone nearly every time I go picking. Researching recent online sales helps me confirm hunches, learn more about obscure items, decide what's worth buying, and determine the maximum price I can pay. And I can do all of it on the go with my smartphone in hand.</p> <h2>2. A Quality Camera</h2> <p>Though written descriptions are important, great photographs sell products. Invest in a high-quality digital camera and work to develop basic photo-editing skills. Just a few minutes' worth of cropping, adjusting brightness levels, and tweaking contrast ratios can turn so-so snapshots in fabulous photos.</p> <h2>3. An Account With an Online Auction Site</h2> <p>An account or storefront on eBay, Etsy, Amazon, or similar site is the virtual front door of your flipping business &mdash; a door that millions of potential buyers can walk through 24/7. While selling locally on Craigslist is convenient for large items, many people are understandably put off by the risks associated with meeting buyers in person. Also, depending on your area, a Craigslist ad may simply not get the same level of attention as a listing on a major auction or retail site. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-9-secrets-of-highly-successful-craigslist-sellers?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 9 Secrets of Highly Successful Craigslist Sellers</a>)</p> <h2>4. A PayPal Account</h2> <p>Though there are competing payment methods, PayPal is the standard for most online transactions. As much as you may want to support the underdog or minimize your transaction fees, make your life (and your buyers' lives) easier by setting up a PayPal account and getting verified. Verified status on PayPal boosts your credibility as both a buyer and a seller, allows you to send and receive money as often as you like, and provides certain seller protections.</p> <h2>5. A Dedicated Space</h2> <p>While not a requirement, a dedicated space for inventory can help serious flippers keep track of what needs to be photographed and listed, what's listed but unsold, and what's waiting to be shipped. Find a walk-in closet or basement corner that you can devote to stock, packing supplies, and other business essentials.</p> <h2>6. Packing and Shipping Supplies</h2> <p>If you're selling primarily online, you'll need a steady supply of boxes, Bubble Wrap, and packing peanuts. To keep my overhead low, I try to source most of this material free from local retailers. Department and grocery stores usually restock shelves in the evening and are more than happy to offload empty boxes that would be destined for the dumpster or recycling bin anyway.</p> <h2>7. A Shipping Account</h2> <p>As an active flipper, you'll likely be shipping packages all week long. Avoid schlepping all those parcels to the post office by setting up a USPS account, paying for and printing your postage at home, and having packages picked up at your doorstep. FedEx Ship Manager and UPS Internet Shipping are similar services that allow you to do the same thing. Whatever option you choose, be transparent. Communicate your shipping charges clearly and make sure buyers understand their options and have accurate tracking information.</p> <h2>8. Basic Customer Service Skills</h2> <p>Just as in the brick-and-mortar world, selling successfully online takes a bit of hand-holding. Inevitably, prospective buyers will have questions, request additional details or photos, and try to get a better deal by throwing lowball offers your way. Channel your inner customer service representative and respond to inquiries quickly and respectfully. Your buyers will appreciate it and remember you when it's time to buy again.</p> <h2>9. An Eye for Trends</h2> <p>Since tastes and styles change quickly, flippers need to stay on top of trends. Particularly if you're selling clothing, antiques, or home décor items, become a student of the world around you. What items are people just beginning to appreciate and collect? What clothing trends are fading away? What parts of the resale market are oversaturated? Once you've tuned into evolving trends, you'll begin to anticipate what's next and discover whole new categories of items you can flip for easy cash.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-start-flipping-items-for-cash-online">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/craigslist-vs-ebay-where-to-sell-10-common-items">Craigslist vs. eBay: Where to Sell 10 Common Items</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-money-and-declutter-by-selling-these-5-unlikely-treasures">Make Money and Declutter by Selling These 5 Unlikely Treasures</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-crap-a-book-review-and-tips">How to Sell Your Crap: A Book Review and Tips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/turn-old-clothes-into-money-with-these-4-tools-and-apps">Turn Old Clothes Into Money With These 4 Tools and Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-awesome-art-of-getting-great-deals-online">The Awesome Art of Getting Great Deals Online</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Shopping Technology Amazon clothes clutter craigslist de-clutter eBay etsy flipping flipping items paypal sell your stuff Wed, 11 Jan 2017 11:00:09 +0000 Kentin Waits 1871894 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Clothing Steamers http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-clothing-steamers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-clothing-steamers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_clothing_steamer_91565391.jpg" alt="Man using the best clothing steamer" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Nobody wants to show up to an important event looking like a wrinkled mess. Fortunately, with a garment steamer, you can achieve professional-quality steaming at home, so your clothing always looks smooth and freshly pressed. It can even freshen up clothes between washings or trips to the dry cleaner.</p> <p>If you&rsquo;re tired of dragging the ironing board out every morning, then steaming offers a faster, more effective, and gentler alternative for all your fabrics. Best of all, your garments can be steamed right on the hanger. Garment steamers use only water, so you won&rsquo;t have to worry about chemicals on your fabric, which makes it safe for use around your family and pets.</p> <h2>What Is a Clothing Steamer?</h2> <p>A clothing steamer uses high-temperature steam to quickly remove wrinkles from clothing, bedding, drapes, mattresses, and upholstery. Most home steamers can handle everything from cotton and wool to satin and silk. You can choose from floor models and compact handheld models, depending on your needs.</p> <p>In less than a minute, your clothing will look pressed, professional, and like-new. A good steamer can replace your iron altogether. It can also save you time and the money that you would have normally spent at the dry cleaners.</p> <h2>Top 5 Clothing Steamers</h2> <h3>Conair ExtremeSteam C Hand Held Fabric Steamer</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2fzzGdw"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/conair_2.jpg" width="144" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2fzzGdw">Conair ExtremeSteam C Hand Held Fabric Steamer</a> can steam all types of fabrics and items, including clothing, linen, drapes, bedding, and delicates. It can even kill dust mites and bedbugs. It uses a concentrated stream of micro-particles of water, which is better for delicate items. It has a 75-second heat up feature and provides about 15 minutes of steam time on one fill. The steam gets up to 30% hotter than other steamers and covers five times as much surface area, so it can release deep wrinkles up to five times faster than other steamers. The dual heat technology features low and high settings and an option for constant steam or energy-saving steam pause. It also features a yellow power light indicator and a green ready light indicator. The high-quality handheld 1200-watt steamer is quick and easy to use, fill, and store. It&rsquo;s portable, lightweight, and ergonomically designed for more comfortable usage. It also comes with creaser, fabric brush, and soft cushion brush attachments.</p> <p>This comes in white and purple options. Conair claims that it&rsquo;s the #1 selling fabric steamer in the country and offers professional results. It is an Amazon best-seller and recommended by Consumer Reports and About.com. It also has outstanding online reviews, including nearly 700 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is also backed by a limited one-year warranty, for your added peace of mind. If you need something larger, consider the highly reviewed <a href="http://amzn.to/2eMMiiz">Conair Garment Steamer</a>.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2fzzGdw"><em>Currently $32.97 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Joy Mangano My Little Steamer</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2eMFRvS"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/joy.jpg" width="173" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>You may have seen the <a href="http://amzn.to/2eMFRvS">Joy Mangano 900-Watt My Little Steamer</a> on Home Shopping Network or QVC because the best-seller has been a favorite among viewers. This powerful little steamer has a large water tank with a boiler inside, so it can produce nonstop steam without the need for any buttons. The 900-watt steamer produces a generous amount of steam within two minutes. It has a triangle head, retractable cord, a four-inch nozzle for clothing, and an eight-inch nozzle for larger items. While it is a super-compact steamer, it has a large capacity, so you don't have to refill after every garment. It features a water-level window, so you know when it's time to refill. It&rsquo;s great for home and travel because it&rsquo;s efficient, effective, reliable, built to last, and easy to use and fill. The lightweight steamer also includes a lint brush, travel pouch, and soft and hard bristle fabric brushes.</p> <p>You can&rsquo;t choose which of the eight possible colors you&rsquo;ll get, so the colors will vary. Both Consumer Search and The Sweethome called this the best handheld clothes steamer. It also has outstanding online reviews.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2eMFRvS"><em>Currently $29.45 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Steamfast Fabric Steamer</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2eMJqlP"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/steamfast.jpg" width="54" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2eMJqlP">Steamfast Fabric Steamer</a> can release wrinkles and remove odors from clothing, drapes, upholstery, linens, and delicates. The 1500-watt fabric steamer has a 40-oz capacity removable water tank, which provides up to 45 minutes of continuous steam time and is ready to use in 45 seconds. Simply hang your clothing on a rust-free hook and steam quickly to freshen fabrics, release wrinkles, kill germs, and even reduce dust mites and bedbugs. The strong, hot steam penetrates deep into fabrics to relax fibers for better results. The effective, reliable steamer is easy to use and refill, and has rolling casters for easy maneuverability. It includes an adjustable, removable telescopic pole, attachable fabric brush, and clothes hook.</p> <p>This is an Amazon best-seller and recommended by Consumer Reports. It has outstanding online reviews, including nearly 1,200 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is also backed by a one-year warranty for your added peace of mind. The <a href="http://amzn.to/2eMGvtA">Steamfast Fabric Steamer</a> is another best-selling option.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2eMJqlP"><em>Currently $53.00 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Jiffy Garment Steamer With Plastic Steam Head</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2eV9ZTp"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/jiffy.jpg" width="92" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2eV9ZTp">Jiffy Garment Steamer with Plastic Steam Head</a> is perfect for home or light commercial use. The powerful floor-standing steamer works well to de-wrinkle clothing, drapes, bedding, linens, and other fabrics. It can even be used to remove wallpaper. It heats up in two minutes and offers 1.5-hour steam time per filling. It has color-coded high-temperature wiring and automatic shut-off for safety. The 1300-watt steamer has a plastic 3/4-gallon water reservoir with a no-drip check valve system, a flexible hose with a plastic steam head and handle, and 360-degree swivel casters for mobility. It is easy to use, performs well, and is built to last.</p> <p>This is available with a plastic or metal head, in gray or pink. Consumer Search and The Sweethome both called this the best clothing steamer. It has outstanding online reviews, including nearly 1,000 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is also backed by a three-year warranty for your peace of mind.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2eV9ZTp"><em>Currently $159.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>PurSteam Fabric Steamer</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2fEKrtM"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/pursteam.jpg" width="200" height="200" align="right" alt="" /></a>Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best-seller in travel garment steamers, the <a href="http://amzn.to/2fEKrtM">PurSteam Fabric Steamer</a> is perfect for home and travel. The fast-heat aluminum heating element works quickly and easily to steam your clothes while they&rsquo;re hanging. The new steam channeling nozzle design delivers steam more powerfully and evenly to better remove stubborn wrinkles. The durable BPA-free steamer is gentle enough to use on all your fabrics, including satin, nylon, cotton, wool, linen, upholstery, bedding, drapes, and delicates. It heats up in 90 seconds and offers up to 10 minutes of continuous steam to sterilize, dewrinkle, and refresh fabrics. The portable steamer also features an automatic shut-off function, easy fill tank, and a convenient travel bag.</p> <p>This is one of the &ldquo;most wished for&rdquo; items on Amazon and has outstanding online reviews, including more than 2,600 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is also backed by a 30-day satisfaction guarantee and a three-year warranty for your added peace of mind. If you need something larger, consider the best-selling <a href="http://amzn.to/2eMGF43">PurSteam Heavy Duty Powerful Fabric Steamer with Fabric Brush and Garment Hanger</a>.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2fEKrtM"><em>Currently $29.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best clothing steamers. As always, be sure to check <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buying-calendar">Wise Bread's Buying Calendar</a> to learn when and how to buy just about anything!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-clothing-steamers">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-in-home-dry-cleaning-kits">The 5 Best In-Home Dry Cleaning Kits</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-women-s-rain-boots">The 5 Best Women’s Rain Boots</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-men-s-running-shoes">The 5 Best Men’s Running Shoes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-backpacks">The 5 Best Backpacks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-cloth-napkins">The 5 Best Cloth Napkins</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Style 5 best clothes clothing clothing steamers product reviews shopping steamer Thu, 10 Nov 2016 09:30:20 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1830410 at http://www.wisebread.com This Simple Calculation Will Tell You If You're Getting Your Money's Worth http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-calculation-will-tell-you-if-youre-getting-your-moneys-worth <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/this-simple-calculation-will-tell-you-if-youre-getting-your-moneys-worth" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_shopping_clothes_54119236.jpg" alt="Women determining if they&#039;re getting their money&#039;s worth" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Do you ever wonder if you're really getting your money's worth out of the purchases you make? I know I do. There are times when I buy something and then wonder, &quot;Will I really use this enough?&quot;</p> <p>Luckily, personal finance blogger <a href="https://mixedupmoney.com/2016/08/23/what-if-one-dollar-was-worth-one-use/">Mixed Up Money</a> and her brilliant <a href="https://twitter.com/_rbcalee">Twitter</a> followers have come up with a way to calculate this.</p> <h2>Use Value</h2> <p>For everyday purchases, like clothing, they suggest giving items a &quot;use value&quot; of $1. If you spend $200 on boots, then, you would have to wear them 200 times to make your use value that low.</p> <p>While this is a bit arbitrary and most people don't actually count the number of times that they wear or use every single items in their homes, it can be a helpful way to think about new purchases. If you don't plan on using something <em>at least</em> to the point where the use value is $1, then maybe you don't need to buy it.</p> <h2>Use Value for Large Purchases</h2> <p>Use value is more straightforward for everyday purchases, but it can still be applied to larger ones. If, for instance, you own a home, you can calculate a daily use value. Let's say you make a mortgage payment of $1,500 every month. Divide that by the number of days in the month &mdash; say 30 &mdash; and you have a daily use value of $50.</p> <p>Again, this is somewhat arbitrary, but it will help you determine whether a purchase is something you want (i.e., do you want to spend $50 a day on the particular home that you have or are considering?). It can also help you determine whether you can afford it. Do you actually have $50 per day to spend on a house, or do you need to get your spending under control before you make the purchase?</p> <h2>Other Ways of Calculating Use Value</h2> <p>For certain purchases, you will want to calculate your use value differently. If you know that the one-time cost of doing something equals a certain amount, then you can decide how often you want to do it, multiply that number by the one-time cost, and see if it makes more sense to buy.</p> <p>I did this over the summer with a paddle board. I love paddleboarding, and I knew that it was something I'd want to do over the years to come. I also know how much it costs to rent a board per hour. When I realized that over the next few years I would spend quite a bit more renting boards than I would spend if I just bought one, I went ahead and made the purchase. In this case, what mattered more was that the cost per use was less to buy than it was to rent.</p> <h2>Use Value and Other Kinds of Value</h2> <p>In general, I think that use value is a great way to think about most of the things we want to buy. It gives us a perspective that we might not otherwise have on the things we purchase, and helps us think through purchases in a different light.</p> <p>It's important to remember, though, that some things will have value to us outside of their use value. Let's go back to the paddle board I bought this summer. Buying it did make sense from a use value perspective, but I might have bought it even if it didn't.</p> <p>Here's the thing: Owning a paddle board has allowed me to develop and deepen friendships that I might not otherwise have been able to. I have met some people boarding that I wouldn't have met if I didn't have my own board. And, when you're out on the water, it's easy to sit on the boards and talk for hours. So I have gotten to know people in different ways (and probably better!) than I might have gotten to know them without the board.</p> <p>This kind of value isn't really something you can calculate. My friendships can't be assigned a numerical value. And yet, they are extremely valuable to me. Even if something unexpected happens and my paddle board is destroyed tomorrow (meaning that I won't use it enough to make the purchase make sense financially), I will feel like I got my money's worth out of it.</p> <p>Some things have worth beyond use value, and it's important to think about this, too, when you're thinking about a purchase.</p> <h2>Use Value and Budgeting</h2> <p>If you keep a detailed budget, use value can help you plan for the future. Clothing is one area where keeping a use value in mind can help you set a thoughtful, realistic budgeting number.</p> <p>For instance, fall is finally here. For many of us, that means that we will need some new clothes. It's time to take stock of the closet, discard what won't work from last year, and buy some items to fill those spots.</p> <p>Thinking about use value can help this project. When you look at your closet, consider what you paid for items you're thinking of discarding, and approximately how often you wore them. Items that have hit their use value are likely to be in worse shape, and may be things to consider throwing out. On the other hand, you may realize that certain brands and styles get worn more often, and therefore are items where you're more likely to hit that use value of $1.</p> <p>Using what you learn as you go through your closet, you can set a more realistic number when it comes to the cost of updating your wardrobe for fall, and it can help you make wiser choices about what to buy when you're out shopping.</p> <p>Use value is a helpful concept for deciding whether to make a purchase or whether a particular purchase was actually worthwhile. It's not a perfect concept, but it can help you make wiser, more informed choices about what to buy and when.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-calculation-will-tell-you-if-youre-getting-your-moneys-worth">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-pay-it-off">5-Day Debt Reduction Plan: Pay It Off</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-100s-next-month-with-these-10-grocery-shopping-tips">Save $100s Next Month With These 10 Grocery Shopping Tips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe">Thrifting the Perfect Designer Wardrobe</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-creative-ways-to-avoid-spending-money">13 Creative Ways to Avoid Spending Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/21-times-spending-more-will-save-you-money">21 Times Spending More Will Save You Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Shopping assigning value buys clothes impulse spending purchases saving money self control strategies use value Thu, 29 Sep 2016 10:00:11 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1801997 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best In-Home Dry Cleaning Kits http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-in-home-dry-cleaning-kits <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-in-home-dry-cleaning-kits" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_steaming_dress_91899769.jpg" alt="Woman using best in-home dry cleaning kits" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Dry cleaning can cost anywhere between $2-$20 per item, which can quickly add up to a dry cleaning bill of more than $100/month. Why spend all that money when you can get similar results at a fraction of the cost with affordable in-home dry cleaning kits? Even Chris Allsbrooks, a textile analyst at the Drycleaning &amp; Laundry Institute (DLI), likes these kits, saying that, &ldquo;your items emerge refreshed, with a clean scent.&rdquo;</p> <h2>What Is an In-Home Dry Cleaning Kit?</h2> <p>An in-home dry cleaning kit can clean, refresh, and deodorize your delicates and &quot;dry clean only&quot; items at home. They can also relax wrinkles, so your items are ready-to-wear or will only require a small amount of ironing. Typically, you can clean about four items per load with these convenient kits. They can be very effective and can save you a ton of money. However, oil-based and stubborn stains may still need to be addressed by a professional.</p> <h2>Top 5 In-Home Dry Cleaning Kits</h2> <h3>Dryel In-Dryer Cleaning Starter Kit</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2bUMKf2"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/dryel.jpg" width="186" height="220" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2bUMKf2">Dryel In-Dryer Cleaning Starter Kit</a> is a patented at-home dry cleaning kit that can clean your clothing, help protect color, and preserve the shape of your clothes. Dryel uses steam (and no harsh chemicals) to gently clean delicates, hand-washables, and dry clean only items, including wool, linen, and cotton. It contains advanced cleaning technologies that thoroughly clean, refresh, and renew clothes. The Breezy Clean Scent will leave your items smelling fresh and clean in no time by eliminating perspiration and odors caused by bacteria. It is convenient, safe, and easy to use, but is not able to remove heavy soil.</p> <p>The kit includes a reusable fabric protection bag, two cleaning cloths, and a cleansing spray to clean eight garments. Simply spot-treat stains with the cleaning spray, then place the clothes and a dryer cloth in the reusable, zippered bag and dry for 15-30 minutes on medium heat. Your clothes will look newer for longer, even after 50 cycles, helping to save you money over time.</p> <p>In a test of popular in-home drying kits conducted by NY Mag, Dryel emerged as the winner. It is also recommended by About.com and has outstanding reviews online. Once you purchase the kit, you can purchase <a href="http://amzn.to/2cCu6pi">affordable refills</a> going forward.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2bUMKf2"><em>Currently $15.90 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Woolite Dry Cleaner's Secret At-Home Dry Cleaning</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2cCBPDD"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woolite.jpg" width="220" height="179" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2cCBPDD">Woolite Dry Cleaner's Secret At-Home Dry Cleaning Kit</a> can effectively clean and freshen your clothing and remove spots and oil-based stains. The non-toxic formula is gentle, convenient, and can be used safely on delicates and dry clean only items, including acetate, cashmere, cotton, linen, nylon, polyester, ramie, silk, and wool. However, it is not recommended for use on fur, leather, suede, or velvet. It can also reduce fading, stretching, and shrinking, remove odors, and refresh clothes with a light scent.</p> <p>The six-count box can clean up to 24 garments. To clean, simply pre-treat stains by dabbing with the towelette, then place the towelette and clothes in the dryer for 20 minutes on medium heat.</p> <p>This kit is recommended by NY Mag and Business Insider, and has outstanding reviews online. It is also backed by a guarantee, so you&rsquo;re bound to be happy. The <a href="http://amzn.to/2ciDTV0">Woolite DCS14N Dry Cleaner's Secret</a> is another widely recommended dry cleaning solution.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2cCBPDD"><em>Currently $12.97 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Bounce 15-Minute Dry Cleaner</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2cCDgSz"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/15%20minute.jpg" width="186" height="220" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2cCDgSz">Bounce 15-Minute Dry Cleaner</a> can clean your clothes, linen, and comforters in the dryer. The environmentally safe, ultra concentrated cleaner will eliminate odors and leave your clothing smelling and feeling fresh. It works on most items, but is not recommended for leather, fur, velvet, or suede, and may not remove some stains, like deodorant residue.</p> <p>You can pretreat stains by blotting them with the cloth, then toss the cloth in with your clothing for 15 minutes on medium heat. Each kit includes eight cleaning cloths, which can clean up to 32 garments, providing a great value. It is recommended by NY Mag and Business Insider, and has outstanding reviews online.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2cCDgSz"><em>Currently $17.09 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Timberland Dry Cleaning Kit</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2bZjuFf"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/timberland.jpg" width="127" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The highly regarded <a href="http://amzn.to/2bZjuFf">Timberland Dry Cleaning Kit</a> is intended for nubuck leather, suede, and canvas items. You can even use it to clean your shoes (and Timberlands). The kit includes a nylon brush and cleaner bar to safely remove any loose or dried dirt and stains. You simply rub the cleaner bar lightly back and forth and then use the nylon brush to remove any residue. This kit is frequently recommended by professional shoe retailers and has outstanding reviews online.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2bZjuFf"><em>Currently $14.95 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>HOST Dry Carpet Cleaning Kit</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2bZjSU6"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/host.jpg" width="193" height="220" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2bZjSU6">HOST Dry Carpet Cleaning Kit</a> is an easy way to clean any rugs and carpets in your home, office, or vehicle, including wool, sisal, and Orientals. It can deep clean spots and spills, and works well in high traffic areas. It can even work on set-in pet stains. The spots won&rsquo;t reappear, so you can enjoy a lasting clean. This kit has outstanding reviews online and offers noticeable results in no time.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2bZjSU6"><em>Currently $22.59 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best in-home dry cleaning kits. As always, be sure to check <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buying-calendar">Wise Bread's Buying Calendar</a> to learn when and how to buy just about anything!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-in-home-dry-cleaning-kits">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-clothing-steamers">The 5 Best Clothing Steamers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-cloth-napkins">The 5 Best Cloth Napkins</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-pet-flea-shampoos">The 5 Best Pet Flea Shampoos</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-paper-napkins">The 5 Best Paper Napkins</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-robotic-mops">The 5 Best Robotic Mops</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Shopping Style 5 best clothes clothing dry cleaning dry cleaning kits product reviews shopping Thu, 08 Sep 2016 09:30:38 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1788323 at http://www.wisebread.com Turn Old Clothes Into Money With These 4 Tools and Apps http://www.wisebread.com/turn-old-clothes-into-money-with-these-4-tools-and-apps <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/turn-old-clothes-into-money-with-these-4-tools-and-apps" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_43524688_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="use these apps to get money for old clothes" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>A great way to make extra side cash is to clean out your closet and sell clothes you no longer wear. Not only will you make a few bucks, but you will also benefit from decluttering.</p> <p>Getting top dollar for your used clothing can be tricky, especially if you try to sell your clothes at a yard sale or through a Facebook selling group. Instead, try these top sites and apps to make more on your old threads.</p> <h2>1. eBay</h2> <p>Let's start with the most obvious: eBay. It can be a hit or miss for selling clothing. I have listed several higher-end brand name items, such as a rare pair of True Religion jeans, but felt like they did not sell as well as they could have. However, other brands have sold better than I expected. I listed an Old Navy peacoat last winter with the assumption that anything is better than selling it for $2 at a garage sale. The coat sold for almost $40, which was more than I originally paid.</p> <p>So check the recent selling prices for clothing like yours. You can do this by dropping your item into the search box, clicking &quot;advanced,&quot; and then check sold listing and hit &quot;search&quot; again. This will allow you to see every similar item that sold in the past 30 days and give you a better idea of how much you can make on your item.</p> <h2>2. Poshmark</h2> <p>Business Insider shared a story of one <a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/how-a-mom-earned-500000-on-poshmark-2015-11">mom who made $50,000</a> from selling clothes on <a href="https://poshmark.com/what_is_poshmark">Poshmark</a> last year. With PoshMark, you get to set your prices, and listing is as easy as listing on eBay. However, unlike eBay, shoppers prefer better quality photo listings. However, don't let your photo skills keep you from trying the app out.</p> <h2>3. Tradesy</h2> <p><a href="https://www.tradesy.com/">Tradesy</a> is another easy-to-use site that allows you to set your price points for clothes. The site also makes shipping items simple, since the company sends you free shipping boxes and prepaid labels.</p> <p>Tradesy charges a 9% commission and a 2.9% fee if you transfer your earnings to PayPal. And if a buyer decides to return an item, Tradesy will accept the return and allow you to keep your earnings.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-money-and-declutter-by-selling-these-5-unlikely-treasures?ref=seealso">Make Money and Declutter by Selling These 5 Unlikely Treasures</a></p> <h2>4. ThredUp</h2> <p>Don't feel like listing each of your clothing items for sale? No problem. <a href="https://www.thredup.com/">ThredUp</a> allows you to cash in on your clothing with as little effort as possible. All you have to do is sign up for an account and request a free bag from the site. Once your bag arrives, fill it with acceptable items and then seal it. Attached to the bag is a prepaid shipping label, so you can drop it off at the post office or request an at-home pick up.</p> <p>ThredUp is extremely convenient and fast to use, but with that convenience comes a couple minor drawbacks. For example, your items will probably not get you as much as you hoped for. You can request your unaccepted items back, but this will cost $9.99 and it must be selected before you order your bag. It also takes a few weeks for the ThredUp team to process the bags they've received, so you won't get a payout immediately. Still, it's better than having the clothes collect dust in your closet, right?</p> <p><em>Where do you sell your used clothes when you are done with them? Share with us</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/turn-old-clothes-into-money-with-these-4-tools-and-apps">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-start-flipping-items-for-cash-online">What You Need to Start Flipping Items for Cash Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-easiest-items-to-flip-for-cash">10 Easiest Items to &quot;Flip&quot; for Cash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-apps-for-the-tech-challenged-traveler">7 Apps for the Tech-Challenged Traveler</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-save-on-smartphone-costs-while-traveling">8 Ways to Save on Smartphone Costs While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/prizes-and-freebies-from-coupsmart-for-the-iphone">Prizes and Freebies from CoupSmart for the iPhone</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Technology apps clean out closet closet clutter clothes declutter sell your clothes sell your stuff technology tools Mon, 22 Aug 2016 10:30:14 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1775889 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Freshman Shopping Tips to Cut College Costs http://www.wisebread.com/9-freshman-shopping-tips-to-cut-college-costs <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-freshman-shopping-tips-to-cut-college-costs" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends_students_together_76179069.jpg" alt="College freshman using shopping tips to cut costs" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Strapped for cash as a freshman? If not now, you will be soon. That goes double for your parents, who are likely footing a portion of the bill &mdash; from tuition to room and board to all the living essentials you'll need when you move into the dorm. To make the transition from high school to college just a little easier on the wallet for both you and your obligatory benefactors, here are a few ways to cut costs as you head into the first year of university.</p> <h2>1. Don't Buy What You Already Own</h2> <p>At the beginning of every school year, students get a list of suggested (and some mandatory) supplies that they'll need for the year. The good news for you is that you've been in school for 12 years now, and you probably already have more than a few things on the freshman list. That means you don't need to spring for new items if the ones you already own are in good condition.</p> <p>&quot;The extensive list of recommended dorm room essentials will make your head spin and your wallet disappear,&quot; money-saving expert Andrea Woroch quips. &quot;While some suggested items like 'bedding to fit an extra long twin mattress' are necessities, items like towels, hangers, and pillows can likely be packed from home.&quot;</p> <p>Also, use common sense and identify items you can cross off the list indefinitely, like a drying rack for laundry (you can hang your clothes around the room) and any stand-alone device that's also in your phone: alarm clock, camera, calculator, MP3, etc.</p> <h2>2. Split Big-Ticket Costs With Your Roommate(s)</h2> <p>If you want a few conveniences of home in your dorm room &mdash; like a fridge or microwave &mdash; considering going halfsies with your roommate(s). Contact your roommates ahead of time to discuss those big-ticket purchases that will be shared among everyone, and how to effectively split the cost. Consider downloading a bill-splitting app to simplify this process. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-modern-ways-to-split-the-bill?ref=seealso">5 Modern Ways to Split the Bill</a>)</p> <h2>3. Stock Up on Penny Deals</h2> <p>&quot;When it comes to basic school supplies like pens, notebooks, folders, and sticky notes, it's best to search for penny deals offered during the back-to-school shopping rush and watch for rotating discounts every week,&quot; Woroch suggests.</p> <p>I've seen these types of deals at several popular retailers lately, including Target, Wal-Mart, and Staples, though they're not limited to these stores. Hit them at the right time and you'll walk away with much of what you'll need for classes &mdash; pens, pencils, notebooks, and more &mdash; for just few bucks. You also can access circulars online or via the&nbsp;<a href="https://flipp.com/">Flipp app</a> for quick comparison.</p> <h2>4. Treat Your Old Wardrobe Like It's Brand-new</h2> <p>Everybody loves to go back-to-school clothing shopping. Heck, I'm 35-years-old and I still use this time of year as an excuse to freshen up my wardrobe. If you're on a tight budget, however, consider that your existing wardrobe will be brand-new to everyone at college since nobody has ever seen you before. If you <em>must</em> add a few new pieces to your closet, shop end-of-season sales, clearance sections, or pop into a few secondhand shops (some of which can be found online today).</p> <h2>5. Eat Where It's Free or Discounted</h2> <p>When I was in college, my friends and I had a propensity for buying late-night pizza or bingeing on junk food in our rooms all hours of the day. The problem with this strategy (besides its quick contribution to your Freshman 15) is that it costs a lot of money.</p> <p>To trim some of this expense, eat most of your meals in your cafeteria and take small items back to your room for later, like fruit, bagels, chips, or fixings for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Or, if you're super stealthy, bring an empty food storage container and confiscate heartier meals, like chicken fingers, salads, and your other favorites to scarf down when the cafeteria is closed. If you do plan to go out to eat, identify nights that are easy on your wallet, including half-price apps at happy hour, student nights, and special dish night, like 25-cent wing night or the like.</p> <h2>6. Rent Your Textbooks Instead of Buying Them</h2> <p>Before you buy your textbooks outright, I want you to ask yourself one question: What will you do with that book when the course is over? Your answer is nothing &mdash; except sell it back for a mere fraction of the price you originally paid. And that's if you can even sell it back at all. Publishers are really great at &quot;updating&quot; textbooks and discontinuing previous editions so that the school can require you to purchase the latest version. Because what're you going to do, drop out of school? Uh huh &mdash; they've got you right where they want you.</p> <p>Alas, two can play that game. Woroch explains.</p> <p>&quot;It's no surprise that textbooks represent the biggest line item in your college budget,&quot; she says. &quot;The National Association of College Stores (NACS) estimates the average student spends $655 on these study essentials every year. To save big bucks, skip the overpriced campus store and head straight to an online textbook rental site such as&nbsp;<a href="http://www.chegg.com/textbooks">Chegg</a> and&nbsp;<a href="http://www.campusbookrentals.com/">Campus Book Rentals</a> to save over 70%. To ensure you're not slapped with any fees at the end of the semester, keep the book in pristine condition and avoiding highlighting or marking up the margins.&quot;</p> <h2>7. Go Grocery Shopping in Groups</h2> <p>Need to stock up on groceries? Get a group together &mdash; which is especially helpful for those who don't have vehicles on campus &mdash; and charge a couple bucks per person for gas. At the store, buy the things you'd like for yourself, but go in equally for items that may be shared by the group, like cereal, coffee, chips, and ramen.</p> <h2>8. Use Your Student ID Everywhere You Go</h2> <p>One of the best parts of being a student is using the student discount wherever it's available. I kept my student ID for years after college, and that granted me savings on clothing, movies, food, electronics, and more for years well past its prime. Of course, you should take advantage of it while you're in college, too. As a general rule of thumb, before you purchase anything anywhere, ask if they offer a student discount. Many establishments do, and that simple question will keep more money in your pocket.</p> <h2>9. Search for Open Box or Refurbished Electronics</h2> <p>In a recent survey, the National Retail Federation found that many colleges and universities require incoming and current students to bring their own computers, so a new laptop is likely on the top of your shopping needs. Instead of investing in the newest and most expensive model, search for open box or refurbished options. Best Buy typically has open box items set up on their salesroom floor, while online vendors such as&nbsp;<a href="http://www.newegg.com/Open-Box/Store">Newegg</a> have webpages dedicated to these lower-priced options with discounts on open box laptops ranging from 10% to 40%. Apple also offers refurbished MacBooks and iPads, so always check these options before you buy.</p> <p><em>Are you heading into your freshman year of college, or have a kid who's starting their freshman year? How are you saving on supplies and other essentials? I'd love to hear from you in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-freshman-shopping-tips-to-cut-college-costs">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-money-saving-hacks-every-college-student-should-try">8 Money-Saving Hacks Every College Student Should Try</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-college-students-can-save-money-before-class-starts">8 Ways College Students Can Save Money Before Class Starts</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/upromise-world-mastercard-credit-card-review">Upromise World MasterCard Credit Card Review</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-financial-aid-might-not-cover">6 Things Financial Aid Might Not Cover</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-ways-to-save-money-on-clothes">101 Ways to Save Money on Clothes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Education & Training Shopping back-to-school classes clothes college discounts dorms freshmen roommates students supplies textbooks Thu, 18 Aug 2016 10:30:07 +0000 Mikey Rox 1773246 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways to Reuse Clothes That No Longer Fit http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-reuse-clothes-that-no-longer-fit <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-to-reuse-clothes-that-no-longer-fit" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_30762826_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="repurposing clothes that no longer fit" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>A recent Marie Kondo-inspired purge of my closet revealed the awful truth that I hadn't wanted to admit to myself: I own a lot of clothes that do not fit me.</p> <p>These ill-fitting clothes found their way into my closet and dresser through a variety of paths. There are the wishful thinking clothes that I'm sure I'll be able to fit back into once I get down to my pre-pregnancy weight (even though the &quot;babies&quot; are currently five and two years old). There are the gifts I received that never quite fit, but I felt guilty disposing of. And then there are the &quot;insurance&quot; clothes that are too big but I hold onto just in case.</p> <p>It's time to get rid of these clothes that are doing nothing more than making my closet look like it's about to pop. Rather than trash or donate my old duds, though, I'm going to reuse them. Here are seven clever ways you can reuse old clothes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-high-cost-of-cheap-clothes?ref=seealso">The High Cost of Cheap Clothes</a>)</p> <h2>1. The T-Shirt Quilt</h2> <p>If you have a vast collection of concert, vacation, or superhero T-shirts, making a T-shirt quilt can be a great way to keep the shirts you no longer wear but can't bear to part with.</p> <p>Creating the quilt top is simple. Determine the size you want each T-shirt square to be, and cut out a cardboard template in the correct size. Once you have a pile of T-shirt squares, lay them out to figure out what order you want them in, and start sewing them together. If you have access to a sewing machine and can sew a straight line, you will have no trouble putting together the quilt top. You can finish the edges as is (turn under the edges of the quilt and sew them to prevent fraying), or you can add batting and backing to make it a true &quot;quilt.&quot;</p> <p>If all of this sounds like too much DIY sewing to you, there are several inexpensive <a href="http://www.projectrepat.com">T-shirt quilt companies</a> that will take your ill-fitting shirts and make you a beautiful quilt for a reasonable price.</p> <h2>2. No-Sew Braided Rag Rug</h2> <p>Braided rugs used to be an old-fashioned way of adding decoration to a home without spending any money. They are still a fun way to repurpose old clothes into something new and beautiful.</p> <p>For this craft, you will need a variety of jersey cotton shirts or tanks and scissors. You'll cut the clothes into 1.5 inch-long strips along the width of the shirt, making sure to cut one end so you have a pile of strips rather than loops of fabric.</p> <p>Start with three strips, tie a knot, and begin braiding the strips together. Once you have braided about four inches, start coiling the braid into a circle, and loop the closest strand through the already-braided section. This is what will keep your braided rug together.</p> <p>You continue braiding (adding new strands using the no-sew method outlined <a href="http://www.thewonderforest.com/2015/01/how-to-make-no-sew-round-braided-rug.html?m=1">here</a>) until the rug is as big as you'd like it. You can finish your rug with iron-on fusible interfacing, polycrylic spray, or spray-on starch.</p> <h2>3. Make a T-Shirt Pillowcase or Pillow</h2> <p>Using a T-shirt as a pillowcase is an old trick I learned back when I was in college with a long-distance boyfriend, but it's still a great way to reuse an old T-shirt. You could do what I did as a lovesick young freshman and just throw your pillow in the tee as is &mdash; or you could actually cut off the sleeves and sew them and the collar closed in order to make a more traditional looking pillow case.</p> <p>You can also take the T-shirt pillow idea one step further and make a pillow from the old shirt. Cut off the sleeves, fill the tee with pillow stuffing and sew up the bottom, collar, and sleeves for an instant pillow.</p> <h2>4. Turn a Tank Top Into a Shopping Bag</h2> <p>Tank tops are already shopping-bag shaped &mdash; they just need to have the bottom sewn shut. It's a reusable shopping tote that looks far more stylish than any shopping bag you can buy.</p> <h2>5. Use Old Jeans to Patch Up Your Favorite Pairs</h2> <p>It is a truth universally acknowledged that your favorite pair of jeans will eventually wear out and holes will form. That's when you whip out the jeans that don't fit and cannibalize some denim as a patch for your favorite pair.</p> <p>Patching denim might be beyond the skill set of the average DIY crafter &mdash; as denim is thick and tough to work with. However, hiring a tailor to patch your favorites should not be expensive, and it will keep your jeans looking great.</p> <h2>6. Make Mittens Out of an Old Sweater</h2> <p>Old wool sweaters are the perfect material for creating a new pair of mittens. The simple method for making repurposed mittens is to widely trace your hands on the bottom of the sweater so that your wrists hang off the bottom edge of the original shirt. When you cut out the traced shapes, you will have four mitten shaped pieces which you'll sew together to make a pair.</p> <p>If you'd like your repurposed mittens to be a little heartier (with a little more range of thumb movement), <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5714457/turn-your-ugly-christmas-sweaters-into-warm-winter-mittens">this tutorial</a> will show you how to make fleece-lined, cuffed, and perfectly shaped mittens out of some old sweaters.</p> <h2>7. Cover a Corkboard With an Old Blouse</h2> <p>Fabric-covered corkboards are all the rage, but you don't need to buy one pre-made. With some cork squares, an old item of clothing with a fun pattern, and a hot-glue gun, you can <a href="http://sewmuchsunshine.blogspot.com/2011/10/ikea-hack-fabric-covered-cork-board.html">create one of your own</a> on the cheap.</p> <p>All you need to do is trace the cork square on your fabric, leaving about an inch of room all the way around. Once you've cut your fabric, you'll spread a strip of hot glue all along the edge of the cork and start pulling up the fabric and pushing it into the glue until it sets. Attach your beautiful new corkboard to your wall, and enjoy the envy of all your office mates.</p> <p><em>How do you salvage clothes that no longer fit? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-reuse-clothes-that-no-longer-fit">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-in-your-closet-you-can-throw-out-today">15 Things in Your Closet You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-denim-expert-reveals-why-you-only-need-3-pairs-of-jeans">A Denim Expert Reveals Why You Only Need 3 Pairs of Jeans</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-ways-to-organize-a-messy-closet">14 Ways to Organize a Messy Closet</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-start-flipping-items-for-cash-online">What You Need to Start Flipping Items for Cash Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-declutter-and-keep-your-stuff-too">This Is How You Declutter and Keep Your Stuff, Too</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization Style closet clothes clothes that don't fit clutter de-clutter DIY organization recycling reuse reuse clothes upcycle Fri, 29 Jul 2016 10:00:17 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1761378 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Sell Your Kid's Stuff at a Consignment Sale http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/hanging_baby_clothes_61959774.jpg" alt="Learning to sell your kid&#039;s stuff at a consignment sale" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you have kids, clothing and toys seem to multiply by the minute. One way I like to stay on top of decluttering is to sell my kids' outgrown items at consignment sales. Here are my top tips to cash in on your kid items through local sales.</p> <h2>How to Find a Local Consignment Sale</h2> <p>I have sold my kid items at an actual consignment shop and a semiannual consignment sale. The latter is better. With a consignment shop, you are limited and do not tend to make as much as you'd hoped. However, with a semiannual consignment sale, you are able to set your own prices, drop off your items, and then pick up what does not sell at the end of the week.</p> <p>Find a local consignment sale by doing a web search of &quot;(your city) + consignment sale&quot; to see if there are any in your area. You can also go to the&nbsp;<a href="https://www.jbfsale.com/home.jsp">Just Between Friends</a> website and search local consignment sales. It will cost $10&ndash;$20 to sign up to be a <em>consignor</em>, and most sales happen at the beginning of spring and fall.</p> <h2>Make Your Items Shine</h2> <p>There are several volunteers who will look over your items for sale, and they can be picky. Make sure your items are in the best shape possible. Spot treat and wash clothing and shoes. Wipe down toys and books. The better your items look, the quicker they will sell.</p> <p>Try using a <a href="http://amzn.to/2ad1S3m">Magic Eraser</a> for spots or scribbles on dolls or plastic toys. I also like to use fabric softener and a laundry brightener when washing the kid clothing to make it look even better. All battery-operated toys will also need to include batteries, so be sure to stock up on packs from the .99 Cent Store or Dollar Tree.</p> <h2>The Brand Name Sweet Spot</h2> <p>More common brand names like Cherokee, Circo, or Carters will sell, but at lower prices. For example, a cute outfit from Target might have cost you $20 and would sell for $3&ndash;$5. Higher end brand names like Gap and Gymboree will sell for more, especially if it is a recent style. Specialty brands such as Naartjie, TEA, or Isobella &amp; Chloe might be better sold online, since many shoppers are not familiar with these brands.</p> <h2>Group Like Items Together</h2> <p>Grouping similar items together for one price helps you to sell more of your stuff and earn more money. I try to group same-sized outfits or pieces together to increase my chance of selling. At these consignment events, there are generally a lot of baby clothes, and there is a good chance no one wants to buy a single onesie for $2. However, if you put together five onesies and five pairs of baby pants for $10, there is a better chance that a shopper will buy it.</p> <p>I also like to group together books to make a better profit. I have found that the books should be related to make the most money. For example, putting an early reader book with some baby books will probably not sell. However, if I put several of the Magic Treehouse series together or several board books together in a bag, then its salability increases dramatically.</p> <h2>Discover What the Best and Worst Sellers Are</h2> <p>If you know of individuals who have consigned in the past, ask them what sells and what doesn't sell well for that particular sale. In my experience, maternity clothes and generic baby items do not sell well. Usually my local consignment sale is full of baby equipment and baby clothes, making it hard to compete.</p> <p>However, for the sale that happens right before Christmas, toys are hot sellers. Shoppers seem more inclined to splurge with the holiday season in mind. I have also found that attractive, brand name clothing in sizes 4-7 sell better than the smaller sizes. I also have good luck with my book lots.</p> <h2>Don't Be Afraid to Discount</h2> <p>Many consignment sales will offer a 50% off day at the end of the sale. Take advantage of this and mark your items for discount, unless you believe you can get a better price on eBay or Craigslist. For most of my items, I price them to sell. Usually my best items are gone before the discount day. The discount day then allows me to sell the rest of my stuff rather than having to take it home.</p> <h2>Get a Bigger Cut</h2> <p>If you volunteer to work the sale, you might get some benefits. For my local sale, volunteers get into the pre-sale early and receive an additional 5% back on their sold items. I will only volunteer if the 5% would equal a nice amount of money and if I want to get into the pre-sale.</p> <p><em>Have you ever sold in a consignment sale? How was your experience? </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-bad-money-habits-youre-teaching-your-kids">4 Bad Money Habits You&#039;re Teaching Your Kids</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/downsizing-with-kids">Downsizing With Kids</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-should-your-kids-know-about-your-finances">How Much Should Your Kids Know About Your Finances?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-free-or-cheap-toys-that-will-make-your-kid-smarter">14 Free or Cheap Toys That Will Make Your Kid Smarter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-earn-extra-cash-from-thrift-stores">11 Ways to Earn Extra Cash From Thrift Stores</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Family Lifestyle clothes consignment sales kids selling thrift stores toys used Mon, 25 Jul 2016 09:30:34 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1753336 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Smart Ways to Keep Your Clothes Looking New http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-ways-to-keep-your-clothes-looking-new <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-smart-ways-to-keep-your-clothes-looking-new" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_72765933_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="keeping clothes looking brand new" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There have been approximately 2,700,000 articles written about the virtues of curating a capsule wardrobe filled with clothes that you love. Next to none of them mention the one huge downside of capsule wardrobes everywhere: If your tiny wardrobe is full of clothes that you love to wear, those clothes you love will wear out quickly.</p> <p>Bummer.</p> <p>Luckily there are many ways to keep your clothes looking new, even if you only have 10 garments to your name.</p> <h2>1. Buy Quality Clothing</h2> <p>Well-made clothes will hold up to decades of wear. My favorite jacket originally belonged to my grandmother. It's part of my regular professional work wardrobe. It's 70 years old and still looks great. Compare this to the last T-shirt I bought from a fast fashion store. That shirt sprouted holes the second time it went through the wash. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-qualities-to-look-for-in-well-made-clothing?ref=seealso">9 Qualities to Look for in Well-Made Clothing</a>)</p> <h2>2. Give Your Clothes a Break</h2> <p>Although you may want to wear your favorite items day after day, it's important to give the fabric time to recover its shape between wearings. This is especially important for elasticized garments such as bras and workout wear. Shoes will last much longer if they are allowed to fully dry between wearings. (They will also be less stinky.)</p> <h2>3. Rotate Your Clothes</h2> <p>Speaking of rotating, if you follow a simple clothing rotation routine, you can save a ton of money on clothes and always look tidy for work. For example, I own three pairs of jeans: this year's jeans, last year's jeans, and the year before last year's jeans. <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-denim-expert-reveals-why-you-only-need-3-pairs-of-jeans">By rotating my jeans</a> on a three-year schedule, I have denim for every occasion and I only have to buy one pair of jeans every 12 months.</p> <h2>4. Catch and Release</h2> <p>My friend Liz lives in a 200-square-foot apartment in New York City. To save on clothing storage space and keep current with fashion, Liz replaces her entire 20-piece capsule wardrobe twice a year. Instead of buying garments throughout the year, Liz only shops two days out of the year: on President's Day and on Labor Day. Although she buys most of her clothes secondhand, she chose those shopping days because department stores tend to put the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/for-the-best-deals-of-the-year-shop-labor-day-and-skip-black-friday">most items on clearance</a> during those sales periods. If she can't find what she wants used, she will resort to buying new.</p> <p>Liz thinks her system is the best of all worlds. She never gets bored with her clothes, and because she only wears the clothes for six months, the garments are usually in good enough condition that she can resell them. When Liz has a special event to attend, she'll rent a dress or she will buy an outfit at a consignment store and immediately sell it back after the event.</p> <h2>5. Don't Play in Your Work Clothes</h2> <p>To keep work clothes looking fresh, wear them as little as possible. The second you come home from work, change into your play clothes. Obviously, the less you wear your work clothes, the less wear you will put on them.</p> <h2>6. Brush Out Your Woolens</h2> <p>Clothing moths and carpet beetles just love leftovers. And by leftovers, I not only mean food, but the dandruff and hair from you and your pets. Shake out your sweaters and brush your wool clothes with a clothes brush to mechanically remove potential moth snacks and bug larvae from the fibers between wearings.</p> <h2>7. Show Your Clothes Gratitude</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Lpc5_1896ro" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Organizing wizard Mari Kondo advises people to <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lpc5_1896ro">fold their socks</a>, because balling them puts stress on the elastic, even when they are resting in a drawer. To maintain their shape, sweaters and other stretchy fabrics should be folded in a drawer and never hung. According to Kondo, folding knit clothes neatly shows gratitude to the clothes that work hard to support you every day. Even if you don't subscribe to this idea, proper attention to folding will increase the lifespan of all your clothes.</p> <h2>8. Use the Right Tools</h2> <p>After years of smelling like mothballs, I finally bought airtight plastic storage bags from my local knitting store. These do a great job keeping the bugs out without stinky chemicals. Why did I wait to buy these bags?</p> <h2>9. No Wire Hangers. Ever!</h2> <p>I am totally on team <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUkE9qaVgmo">Joan Crawford</a> when it comes to hanging clothes. Wire hangers put a lot of stress on the shoulders of garments, and can rip through thin silks and cottons with ease. For the cost of replacing one ruined silk shirt, you can buy 40 wood or professional quality plastic hangers.</p> <h2>10. Minimize Your Laundry</h2> <p>You only have to look in your lint trap to see that your washer and dryer are eating your clothes. Washing and drying put tremendous wear and tear on your clothes. According to Treehugger.com, over 75% of our clothing's impact on the environment comes from washing and drying. Here are some basic laundry tips to keep your wardrobe (and the planet) looking top-notch.</p> <h3>Wash Sparingly</h3> <p>Wash your clothes only when they look or smell dirty.</p> <h3>Experiment With Cold Water</h3> <p>When my Japanese pen pal came to visit, All-Temperature Cheer detergent mystified her, as back home in Japan they washed everything in cold water. &quot;Americans are so&hellip; how do you say? Persnickety? Persnickety about laundry,&quot; she said. From that point on, my family started washing all but our kitchen towels and underwear in cold water, a habit that I have continued as an adult.</p> <h3>Air-Dry Your Clothes</h3> <p>Just like washing in hot water, it's the heat of the dryer that breaks down textiles. Sunlight is also an excellent biocide. It kills stinky bacteria and bug larvae.</p> <h3>Go Inside Out</h3> <p>Turn clothes inside-out before you wash and dry. This will keep the dyes from fading from friction in the wash or from sun exposure on the clothesline.</p> <h3>Read the Care Instructions</h3> <p>Following the instructions on care labels can save a lot of time and money. While there are some garments that can be successfully hand washed instead of dry cleaned, there are a lot of textiles that will be ruined even by the most gentle swish through water. Look at each garment's <a href="http://www.textileaffairs.com/lguide.htm">cheat sheet</a> before you wash.</p> <h3>Take Immediate Action With Stains</h3> <p>Before throwing clothes in the hamper or returning garments to your closet, carefully examine them for stains. You will have a much harder time removing stains if you let them sit. Often immediate spot cleaning will allow you to skip a trip to the drycleaners.</p> <p><em>Do you have a capsule wardrobe? What do you do to keep your clothes looking new?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-ways-to-keep-your-clothes-looking-new">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-qualities-to-look-for-in-well-made-clothing">9 Qualities to Look for in Well-Made Clothing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-in-home-dry-cleaning-kits">The 5 Best In-Home Dry Cleaning Kits</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-buy-discounted-designer-clothing-online">Where to Buy Discounted Designer Clothing Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-clothing-steamers">The 5 Best Clothing Steamers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-essential-pieces-for-your-capsule-wardrobe">8 Essential Pieces for Your Capsule Wardrobe</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Style capsule wardrobe clothes DIY clothes new clothes quality clothing sewing style Mon, 27 Jun 2016 10:30:05 +0000 Max Wong 1738699 at http://www.wisebread.com Make Money and Declutter by Selling These 5 Unlikely Treasures http://www.wisebread.com/make-money-and-declutter-by-selling-these-5-unlikely-treasures <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/make-money-and-declutter-by-selling-these-5-unlikely-treasures" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/three_coffee_mugs_75581393.jpg" alt="Making money and decluttering by selling unlikely treasures" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You may want to take one last peek through those boxes sitting in the garage before donating the contents to your local Goodwill. Turns out there are some surprising items in your home that others are willing to take off your hands for significant cash. Your junk being another person's treasure has never been truer. Here are the items worth knowing about.</p> <h2>1. Coffee Mugs</h2> <p>A couple years ago, I accidentally stumbled upon the underground world of coffee mug collectors. I was doing my annual eBay roundup of all the items in my home that I didn't use, and on a whim, I threw in two coffee mugs that I had no need for. I snapped some pictures, wrote a brief description, put up the eBay listings, and lo and behold, a bidding war erupted on the last day of both auctions. I ended up selling a House of Blues mug for $23 and a Starbucks mug for close to $28.</p> <p>I was so blown away with the success of my coffee mug auctions that I decided to do some research. I discovered that there are many eBay sellers who fervently search local thrift stores for coffee mugs that they can turn a quick profit on. Coffee mugs that sell really well include anything Disney, vintage restaurant mugs, Starbucks, vintage Pyrex, and mugs with famous people, places, and TV shows on them. Always search eBay &quot;completed listings&quot; to determine the value of coffee mugs. The <a href="http://anywhere.ebay.com/">eBay app</a> allows you to do this while you're in the thrift store to determine if you may have just found a hidden gem.</p> <h2>2. Name Brand Clothing</h2> <p>If you have a closet full of clothing you don't wear anymore, considering selling it rather than donating it. If it's a brand-name label, you have a much better chance of cashing in as buyers are more familiar with sizing and styles. Brands that sell well include American Eagle, Gap, Banana Republic, Land's End, Calvin Klein, Express, and Abercrombie &amp; Fitch. Consider sites like&nbsp;<a href="https://poshmark.com/">Poshmark</a>, which allow you to create a listing within 60 seconds and quickly have your unwanted clothing in front of a million prospective shoppers. Many Poshmark users have actually created a full-time income for themselves by selling thrift store finds.</p> <p>Perhaps the best way to sell clothing online is to utilize the power of eBay. Not only can you take advantage of their huge reach, but they make the transaction easy via their interface. Be sure to take good pictures of the item and write an honest description. I like to package the item and weigh it before creating the listing so I can charge accurate shipping fees.</p> <p>Also, because eBay users are searching for the exact item and size you're selling, be careful when creating auction lots with multiple clothing items. For example, if you're selling men's jeans and you have two pair size 34x34, and one pair in size 33x34, you'll have a tough time selling all three together in a lot, even if they all basically fit the same. You'll have much better success selling the 34x34 pairs together and the 33x34 separately.</p> <p>Also, don't forget about more traditional ways of selling clothing via a yard sale or at a community or church sale. While you might not get top dollar like you can online, you'll be able to unload a lot of inventory quickly.</p> <h2>3. Baby Gear and Clothing</h2> <p>Don't put your unused stroller, crib, or playpen in the attic. The same can be said for gently used baby clothing and gear. Because baby items are typically outgrown before they wear out, they make for terrific items to sell both online and at local baby shops. Brands that typically sell well include Baby Bjorn, Gymboree, Baby Gap, Hanna Andersson, Graco, Peg Perego, and Children's Place. For best results, sell clothing online via eBay and bundle items together to make complete outfits. They tend to sell really well this way, especially when you take good pictures and write a detailed description.</p> <p>When selling bulkier baby gear, you have two solid options. You can sell it on <a href="http://craigslist.org">Craigslist</a> if you're comfortable with the process, or you can opt for local retail shops like <a href="http://www.childrensorchard.com/">Children's Orchard</a>, <a href="http://www.onceuponachild.com/locations#us">Once Upon a Child</a>, or <a href="http://kidtokid.com/stores/">Kid to Kid</a>. Name brands in good to excellent condition have a premium and you can typically get a great deal if you're willing to accept store credit as payment. You can then use the proceeds to buy the sizes that your kids are currently wearing.</p> <h2>4. Past Amazon Purchases</h2> <p>Are you aware of a service from Amazon called <a href="http://amzn.to/1TYF2Ar">Amazon Trade-In</a>, which buys back your past purchases that you have no need for anymore? Once you're signed-in, Amazon will go back through your order history and tell you what they'll buy back, and for how much. I recently tested out the service and was happily surprised when I discovered they would buy back a rarely played Xbox game that we gave our son for Christmas. We bought it for $25 over six months ago, and they'll buy it back for $14. This buyback amount was 25% better that what our local GameStop would pay for it. The best part is Amazon uses prepaid shipping labels which allow you to ship the item back free of charge.</p> <p>Also, it's worth noting that items don't have to be purchased from Amazon to be eligible for a buyback. From the Amazon Trade-In homepage, click on &quot;Find More Items&quot; and simply enter the item you want to sell, and they'll give you a price quote. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-make-amazon-pay-you?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Ways to Make Amazon Pay YOU!</a>)</p> <h2>5. Old Smartphones</h2> <p>Depending on the age, condition, and demand for your old smartphone, you can make a pretty penny by selling it online. Rather than throwing your old smartphone in the desk drawer, sites like <a href="https://swappa.com/">Swappa</a> and <a href="https://www.gazelle.com/">Gazelle</a> are great options to consider. Both will happily take your phone, pay the shipping, and give you cold hard cash for your device. You can quickly get a free quote from them by answering a few questions about your smartphone. Do you have an old iPhone 5 (16GB) collecting dust? Swappa will buy it for $112. While devices can show normal signs of wear and tear, they must be fully functional and ready to activate to get top dollar. They'll take broken devices too, just don't expect a big payday.</p> <p>If you're the type of smartphone user who always needs the newest and greatest, consider selling your old smartphone to one of these sites before the new model is released. By doing so, you'll get top dollar as prices for last season's model plummet once the new model is released. Once you get word of the impending new model, start strategizing your sale and have a cheap smartphone at the ready as a backup during the transition period.</p> <p><em>What stuff laying around your home have you been able to sell for some extra money?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-money-and-declutter-by-selling-these-5-unlikely-treasures">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-16-favorite-ways-to-get-rid-of-clutter">My 16 Favorite Ways to Get Rid of Clutter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-start-flipping-items-for-cash-online">What You Need to Start Flipping Items for Cash Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-objects-to-pawn">The 7 Best Objects to Pawn</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-rid-of-all-your-crap">How to Get Rid of All Your Crap</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-crap-a-book-review-and-tips">How to Sell Your Crap: A Book Review and Tips</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Amazon baby gear cleaning clothes collectibles craigslist donating eBay goodwill selling Wed, 22 Jun 2016 10:00:10 +0000 Kyle James 1733678 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Qualities to Look for in Well-Made Clothing http://www.wisebread.com/9-qualities-to-look-for-in-well-made-clothing <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-qualities-to-look-for-in-well-made-clothing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_68921695_LARGE.jpg" alt="how to find top-quality clothing" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Well-made clothing is not only a personal hallmark of fashion icons like Audrey Hepburn, Jackie O., Pharrell, and Steve McQueen, but also the backbone of frugal wardrobes everywhere. Good quality clothing is always a fashion must.</p> <p>It used to be easier to separate good clothes from the bad. Certain brands meant quality workmanship. But in the age of designer brand outlet clothing and other sneaky marketing tricks to fool customers into spending more for lesser quality goods, how can you know that a piece of clothing, whether new or second-hand, is a garment that will last? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-high-cost-of-cheap-clothes?ref=seealso">The High Cost of Cheap Clothes</a>)</p> <h2>1. Study Men's Suits</h2> <p>Because so many clothes these days are poorly made, go on an expedition at the nicest men's store in your area to get a personal understanding of how quality clothes are constructed. Once you have seen what goes into a well-made garment, it will be easier to spot good tailoring in the wilds of your local thrift store or sale rack. By the way, ladies, this advice is for you, too. One of the not-so-hidden extra costs of being a woman is the price of clothing. Men's clothing is typically better made than women's, even though <a href="http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/women-paying-more-than-men-for-everyday-product-thanks-to-unacceptable-gender-price-gap-a6820816.html">women pay higher price points</a> for the same or lower quality. Boo.</p> <h2>2. Check the Hand</h2> <p>The hand of the fabric is not a minor character in <em>Game of Thrones </em>&mdash; it's the fancy term that fashion people use to describe how fabric feels. Is the fabric stiff like a starched bonnet? Does it feel scratchy like a cat's tongue? Is it supple and flowy like a vintage slip? The difference between high-end designer clothes and low priced knock-offs is often the fabric. For example, J. Crew will make a sweater in pure cashmere for its collection line, a similar sweater in cotton and cashmere blend for its main line, and a cotton version for J. Crew Outlet stores. Better quality fabrics hold their shape better and last longer than their cheaper counterparts, so look for good fabric first. You can make a gorgeous garment out of cheap fabric, but it won't hold up to repeated wears.</p> <p><strong>Pro tip</strong>: Rub every garment you intend to buy against your cheek. If the fabric feels scratchy on your face, it will be scratchy on the rest of you.</p> <h2>3. Double-Check Fabric Content</h2> <p>Just because it's advertised as a cashmere sweater doesn't mean it's 100% cashmere. Many companies are now putting tiny amounts &mdash; like 7% &mdash; of cashmere fiber into clothes just so they can advertise it as a &quot;cashmere blend.&quot; Don't be fooled into paying extra for cheap textiles!</p> <p>Even for <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-denim-expert-reveals-why-you-only-need-3-pairs-of-jeans">basics like jeans</a>, fabric content is important. Lycra is added to a lot of jeans at every price point because it adds stretch to denim and gives the fabric a smoother fit. Most people want a <em>little </em>stretch to their denim for comfort. However, fabric should fit your lifestyle. I am one of those people who rarely washes her jeans, so I can maintain the fade of the denim. Because of this personal quirk, I can only wear jeans that are 98%-100% cotton. I've found that anything more than 2% Lycra content means that the jeans have to be washed between wearings to maintain their shape. Since I rarely wash my jeans, lycra for me means baggy knees and a saggy butt.</p> <p><strong>Pro tip</strong>: Do the scrunch test. Squeeze the fabric in your hand. Once you release your grip, do the wrinkles stay in the fabric? Regardless of how nice the fabric is, consider how much time and money will go into maintaining the look of a garment. If you hate to iron, don't buy linen.</p> <h2>4. A Stitch in Time Saves Money</h2> <p>Once you decide that you like the fabric, closely examine the seams. Very gently pull on the side seams of a dress shirt, and hold it up to the light. If you can see a lot of light between the stitches, that is not a good sign. Similar to thread count in bed sheets, well-made clothes boast more stitches per inch than poorly made pieces. Seams should lie flat and even like little sausage links. There should be no loose threads or looped stitches, as those are a sure sign of poor quality. Also, unless it is decorative top-stitching (which should be perfectly even and flat-laying), the thread of the garment should be the same color as the fabric.</p> <p>While you are looking at the seams, check the <a href="http://thecuttingclass.com/post/3406252899/pattern-making-seam-allowance">seam allowance</a>, which is the amount of extra fabric on each side of a seam. The more extra fabric, the easier it will be to tailor that item of clothing to your body. The reason why Chanel jackets are so popular with pregnant celebrities is that Chanel has famously wide seam allowances that allow the jackets to be let out by <em>two entire sizes</em>. It's one item of couture that women can fit into their entire pregnancy. If a garment is a little tight, check to see if you can gain wiggle room by adjusting the seams.</p> <p>Also, check the hem allowance on sleeves, pants, and skirts. Since the hemlines on skirts go up and down, it's sometimes possible to refresh an old skirt and make it look completely on trend just by shortening or lengthening the hemline.</p> <h2>5. Avoid Uneven Seams and Hems</h2> <p>Most off-the-rack clothes are sewn together with a serger, or an overlock machine. While a serged seam is perfect for stretchy knit fabrics like t-shirts, better quality garments made of non-stretchy, woven fabrics will have finished seams and hems. High quality garments will have the raw edge of hems turned under or covered with hem tape. A good hem improves the drape of the garment. An uneven hem is one of the most obvious tells that the garment isn't well made.</p> <h2>6. Look for Patterns</h2> <p>Do you own a striped shirt that looks, just... off? Chances are that you are noticing that the pattern is uneven, without realizing it. One of the reasons good quality clothes cost more is that it takes a lot more fabric to match patterns at seams, across pockets, etc. Look at <a href="http://www.brooksbrothers.com/Fitzgerald-Fit-Tartan-Sport-Coat/MM00405_____RED__42___LG__,default,pd.html?cmp=ppc_us_GG_pla_Men%27sSportCoatVests&amp;gclid=CjwKEAjw1Iq6BRDY_tK-9OjdmBESJABlzoY7vxgNAsFIxbHKpcOVO4J_n6fY3wN0I3thYGWWRaFlOBoCtPDw_wcB">this jacket</a>. The plaid matches perfectly across the body, even at the shoulder seams that connect the front of the jacket to the sleeves. The pockets are barely visible because the plaid is so carefully matched. This is the gold standard of pattern matching you should be looking for.</p> <p>Matched patterns are particularly important because bold designs like stripes, plaids, or even florals are a double-edged sword. A large scale print can make the wearer look taller or thinner. But poorly matched patterns can make the wearer look dumpy and awkward.</p> <h2>7. Find Facings</h2> <p>Well-made clothes have facings and/or interfacings. Facings and interfacings are internal support structures for clothing and are sewn to the inside of garments to reinforce areas that get a lot of wear and tear. They help a garment maintain its shape and add to its longevity.</p> <p>Facing is a kind of mini lining that hides the raw edge of fabric. The grosgrain ribbon sewn to the backside of the button band on cardigan sweaters is example of facing. The ribbon keeps the sweater button band from drooping from the weight of the buttons, and keeps the buttonholes from stretching out over time.</p> <p>Interfacing is that extra piece of material sandwiched between the fabric of the garment and the fabric of the lining that gives a garment its structure. For example, interfacing is what gives shirt neckbands the stiffness to hold up the collar. Interfacing is commonly used to strengthen cuffs, collars, and waistbands.</p> <h2>8. Inspect the Lining</h2> <p>Linings are often used to hide shoddy tailoring, so the existence of a lining doesn't necessarily mean that a piece of clothing is well-made. Also, not every garment needs a lining. Because linings add an extra layer of fabric, they also add warmth to garments, so they are great for cold weather clothes like wool skirts, but not so great for linen summer suits. However, with heavier pieces like jackets or wool pants, a good lining (like facing), will help a garment keep its shape.</p> <p>Additionally, linings prolong the life of clothes by working as a slip. They make jackets and form fitting skirts and pants easier to &quot;slip&quot; on and off the body without stretching the exterior fabric of the garment. Linings also protect garment fabric from sweat and body oil.</p> <p>A properly sewn lining should lay flat against the interior of the garment, but still have enough give to allow you to move around normally without the lining feeling tight against your body. As with seam stitches and top stitching, the stitches of the lining should also be uniform and neat.</p> <p>A lot of designers are cutting costs by skipping the lining on women's clothing. However, women can get some of the benefits of lined clothing by wearing a slip under their unlined dresses and skirts.</p> <p><strong>Pro tip</strong>: Before buying lined pants or skirts, be sure to do a squat test in the dressing room to make sure the lining was cut large enough that you can sit and bend over without splitting the lining.</p> <h2>9. Details Are Everything</h2> <p>While every season of <em>Project Runway</em> proves that zippers can be cleverly used as a design element, an exposed zipper is often a sign of cost-cutting. Well-made clothes generally have zippers that are hidden by a placket to keep the zipper teeth from snagging on the garment's fabric or other things. Although this can feel like a fussy extra, quality clothing will include an extra closure at the top of a zipper; a snap, a button, or a hook and eye. The extra closure takes the stress off the zipper teeth and helps keep the zipper zipped.</p> <p>Buttons are like jewelry for your clothes. Unfortunately, cheap, plastic buttons are becoming common, replacing more expensive leather, glass, or leather fasteners, even on designer clothes.</p> <p>Loose buttons are an easy way to accidentally overspend on clothes. If you lose one fancy button, you'll end up replacing the whole set or living with mismatched closures. My sister regularly saves 10%-50% on clothes by demanding a discount for loose or missing buttons.</p> <p>Properly installed buttons have a shank. A shank allows a garment to be buttoned smoothly, without puckering or pulling on the fabric by creating a little space between the back of the button and the garment.</p> <p>Well-made clothes have proper button placement. Everyone has that annoying shirt in his or her closet. You know, the one that makes you look like a religious missionary when buttoned to the top, but like a swashbuckling pirate when just one button is undone? That shirt that shows cleavage&hellip; sideways through the gap between the buttons? That shirt is not well-made.</p> <p>Just like loose seams, uneven or loosely stitched buttonholes are a sign of poor craftsmanship. Although this seems obvious, buttonholes should be cut to fit the buttons and not be so tight that it's a struggle to push the button through, or so loose that the buttons fall out of the buttonholes on their own.</p> <p><strong>Pro tip</strong>: To make cheap garments look more expensive, swap out the buttons. Sewing on a button is a basic skill that almost everyone can do to immediately improve the appearance of clothes. (I have been reusing favorite buttons since childhood.)</p> <p><em>How do you judge the quality of clothes? Share with us in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-qualities-to-look-for-in-well-made-clothing">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-ways-to-keep-your-clothes-looking-new">10 Smart Ways to Keep Your Clothes Looking New</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-in-home-dry-cleaning-kits">The 5 Best In-Home Dry Cleaning Kits</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-clothing-steamers">The 5 Best Clothing Steamers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-women-s-rain-boots">The 5 Best Women’s Rain Boots</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-buy-discounted-designer-clothing-online">Where to Buy Discounted Designer Clothing Online</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Style clothes fabric new clothes quality clothing shopping smart shopper tailored clothing Wed, 08 Jun 2016 10:00:11 +0000 Max Wong 1726475 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Retailers With the Absolute Best Customer Service http://www.wisebread.com/7-retailers-with-the-absolute-best-customer-service <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-retailers-with-the-absolute-best-customer-service" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/grocery_store_employee_000018778379.jpg" alt="Man discovering retailers with the best customer service" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The idea of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/21-times-spending-more-will-save-you-money">spending more on quality items</a> that will stand the test of time is a very smart aspect of frugal living. After all, nobody likes replacement or repair costs that can easily be avoided. This idea carries over to retailers as well. Here are seven such retailers that offer such great customer service, that a possible higher upfront cost will easily pay for itself over the lifetime of the product.</p> <h2>1. Zappos</h2> <p>For years, the customer service team at Zappos.com has been leading the way in terms of putting the customer first. If you're not familiar with their website, they sell popular shoes, handbags, and apparel. While their prices may not always be the cheapest, their amazing customer service is what keeps shoppers coming back time and time again.</p> <p>Let's start with their 365-day return policy. If you order something from them, not only will you get free shipping, but you can return items for free for an entire year. Items must usually be in new condition, so feel free to order several sizes or colors, try them on at home, and mail back the ones you don't want at no charge. Also, if you have a problem with your shoes after you've worn them for a while, they've even been known to overnight a replacement pair and refund the entire cost to the customer as well.</p> <h2>2. Nordstrom</h2> <p>Similar to Zappos, Nordstrom also offers free shipping and returns on all orders via their website. The free returns aspect essentially makes shopping on their site risk-free as you can order whatever size and color you want and simply return the items you don't need at no cost to you. But what makes their return policy truly amazing is there's no time limit and returned items can typically be worn. When pressed on this issue, a Nordstrom live-chat operator told me, &quot;From time to time we cannot accommodate a return but we definitely do our best to take care of you and stand behind what we sell, so we completely understand.&quot; So it's safe to assume that as long as the item doesn't show excessive wear, they'll typically take it back with no questions asked.</p> <h2>3. Amazon</h2> <p>In recent years, Amazon has clearly stepped up their customer service game and created many loyal shoppers in the process. Whether it's their seven-day price protection policy on purchases fulfilled by Amazon directly, or a $5 credit to your Prime account if items don't get delivered in two business days, they always strive to put the customer first. Also, many Amazon shoppers aren't aware that they'll overnight a replacement item if yours gets delivered in non-working or damaged condition. In many cases, typically when the items has a value less than $30, they won't even ask you to send back the damaged item as they realize it's an inconvenience.</p> <h2>4. Apple Store</h2> <p>In the tech industry, Apple has taken customer service to a whole new level. What other company has a specific part of their retail location set up to do nothing but help customers with problems they might be having with their products? This is exactly what the Apple &quot;Genius Bar&quot; does and it has created millions of loyal users over the past 15 years.</p> <p>Whether it's with help operating a new device, or help troubleshooting a major problem with your Apple product, the Genius Bar is a great (and free) place to start. They also have the reputation of replacing products on the spot if they can't fix a problem, even if it's beyond the warranty period. Also, by having so many retail locations across the country, it's fairly easy to walk into one today and walk out with your problem solved.</p> <h2>5. Kroger Grocery</h2> <p>Kroger understands that there role in the community goes way beyond selling grocery items. This was best exemplified recently when&nbsp;<a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/why-people-love-kroger-2015-3">after a devastating hurricane</a>, when they were the only grocery store to open their doors the following day, even while mopping standing water out of the aisles. It also doesn't hurt that they pay their employees $14 per hour, on average, well above the industry standard. With that hourly wage, they're able to find and retain employees who are willing to go the extra mile for their customers.</p> <h2>6. L.L. Bean</h2> <p>Do you own an old pair of L.L.Bean boots or clothing item? If you do, you're probably keenly aware of just how much effort they put into creating quality items that stand the test of time. So much effort that they actually stand behind their items with a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.llbean.com/customerService/aboutLLBean/guarantee.html">Lifetime Guarantee</a>. Amazingly, they don't even require a receipt to get a refund or store credit. This level of customer service stems from their founder, Leon Leonwood Bean, who once said that he didn't consider a sale complete &quot;until goods are worn out and the customer still satisfied.&quot;</p> <h2>7. Whole Foods</h2> <p>Whole Foods does a nice job of empowering their employees to make a customer's experience excellent. In the process, they create loyal customers for life. For example, a Forbes columnist recently&nbsp;<a href="https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/20140317191929-8019905-whole-hearted-approach-to-customer-service-at-whole-foods">documented her experience</a> with a broken cash register at Whole Foods, and subsequent delay in checking out. Not only did the supervisor on shift apologize profusely for the delay, but ended up giving her $50 worth of groceries for free.</p> <p>While some would say that such a gift hurts the bottom-line, it can be argued instead that such a gift has a value way beyond the $50. She now hollers from the mountaintops about the amazing customer service she received &mdash; word-of-mouth advertising that is incredibly powerful and very difficult to put a price tag on. None of that would have happened if Whole Foods didn't empower their employees to exceed customer's expectations.</p> <p><em>Would you be willing to pay more upfront in exchange for strong customer service?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-retailers-with-the-absolute-best-customer-service">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-secrets-of-amazons-pricing-strategy-will-help-you-find-the-best-buys">These Secrets of Amazon&#039;s Pricing Strategy Will Help You Find the Best Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-awesome-art-of-getting-great-deals-online">The Awesome Art of Getting Great Deals Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-stores-with-the-best-price-matching">10 Stores With the Best Price Matching</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-avoid-sneaky-online-price-changes">6 Ways to Avoid Sneaky Online Price Changes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-strange-ways-online-shopping-has-changed-the-world">6 Strange Ways Online Shopping Has Changed the World</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Shopping Amazon clothes customer service groceries retail return policies Tue, 05 Apr 2016 09:30:32 +0000 Kyle James 1682550 at http://www.wisebread.com Thrifting the Perfect Designer Wardrobe http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_thrift_store_000079170807.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to thrift the perfect designer wardrobe" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Recently, I purged my closet of clothes I don't wear and pared down my wardrobe to just 30ish pieces. As I delved deeper into the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/can-a-capsule-wardrobe-actually-save-you-money">capsule wardrobe phenomenon</a>, I discovered that many people were building their carefully-considered wardrobes using second hand or thrifted pieces.</p> <p>On my first trip to my local thrift store, I scored an Anthropologie blouse, a J. Crew shirt, and a Madewell skirt, all for $12. I was hooked. On my second visit, I left with a pair of Joe's Jeans and an Adrienne Vittadini cardigan. A few thrifting trips later, I had beefed up my capsule wardrobe to the point that I had to stop myself from buying more, otherwise my wardrobe really wouldn't be a &quot;capsule&quot; anymore.</p> <p>To be honest, I have gotten more compliments on my thrifted clothing than I ever did on my full-price clothing. I can now dress the way I've always wanted to, but could never afford before. In addition, my higher-end thrifted clothes are often made with better materials (like linen, pima cotton, silk) and will last longer. All in all, building a secondhand designer wardrobe is a great economical choice that will save you money and contribute to less waste going to the landfills.</p> <h2>Thrifting High-End Items</h2> <p>Whether you're shopping in brick-and-mortar secondhand shops or online, a few tips hold true for building a killer designer wardrobe.</p> <h3>Know Your Brands</h3> <p>Familiarize yourself with brands that you like and their signature designs (as well as, if possible, your size in that brand). That way, you'll be more likely to recognize them in a store, and it'll be easy to search for them online.</p> <h3>Focus on Quality</h3> <p>Often you can tell a designer piece from the quality of the fabric. Disregard clothes that are pilling or worn out. And don't fall into the trap of buying something just because of the brand when it's too worn out, stained, or just won't work for you.</p> <h3>Know What You Want</h3> <p>Have an idea of what specific pieces you are looking for. For example, I knew I wanted a light gray cardigan, and therefore searched specifically in the light gray sweater area at my local thrift store. I found several pieces that would work before I settled on my favorite. When I go into a thrift store with specific pieces on my mind, I have a much higher success rate than when I go in without a goal (which makes it much easier to get overwhelmed).</p> <h3>Go Outside Your Comfort Zone</h3> <p>The great thing about thrifting is that you're paying so much less than retail! So if you've always had the urge to wear hot pink pants, but have never had the guts, go for it! This is your opportunity to expand your style.</p> <h3>Check the Cleaning Label</h3> <p>I try to buy clothes that don't have to be dry cleaned (unless it's special occasion wear), as I'll end up paying more in drycleaning than I spent on the dress.</p> <h3>Don't Buy Stuff You Don't Need</h3> <p>It can be tempting to buy several pairs of 7 for All Mankind jeans when they're $9.99 a pop, but do you need more than one or two? Money spent thrifting is still money wasted if you never end up using the item.</p> <h2>Where to Buy Secondhand Clothing</h2> <p>Now that you know what &mdash; and how &mdash; to look for used pieces, here's where to shop.</p> <h3>Thrift Stores</h3> <p>I've found that the key with thrift stores is finding one with high volume and high turnover, to maximize your chances of finding something new and on-trend. Thrift stores are crammed full of both high and low-end clothing, so you'll have to sift through a lot of poor quality pieces to find the treasures. Usually though, you get a good price on it. Going to a thrift store in a fancier part of town might increase your chances of finding designer items.</p> <h3>Resale and Consignment Stores</h3> <p>Resale and consignment stores differ from thrift stores in that they buy or consign their inventory (instead of getting it through donations) and thus filter out a lot of the lesser-quality stuff. You will usually pay more, but you won't have to search as hard. Consignment stores are great if you don't have a lot of time to dig through racks of clothing, but still want to get a decent price on secondhand goods. Often, a consignment store might cater to a specific style &mdash; so don't go to the hipster consignment store if you're really preppy at heart!</p> <h3>Online Resellers</h3> <p>Online is where the resale and consignment trend is booming. Websites like <a href="http://thredup.com">thredUP</a> buy new or almost-new brand-name clothing and sell them for very reasonable prices. I've bought from thredUP before and have been very satisfied with the quality of the items I bought (they also offer free returns for store credit, a rarity in the resale market). thredUP's main strengths are the sheer number of great items they have, and the excellent search functions that allow you to filter your search by size, color, brand, etc.</p> <p>Other resellers include <a href="http://snobswap.com">SnobSwap</a> and <a href="http://www.therealreal.com">TheRealReal</a>, but I continue to patronize thredUP for its ease of use and low prices.</p> <p>You can also buy direct from sellers through sites like <a href="http://poshmark.com">Poshmark</a>, which has a social media aspect to it (you can follow favorite sellers, participate in virtual &quot;parties,&quot; etc.). If there is a problem with the item received, the selling website protects you and can offer you a refund. And of course, you can always search on eBay (be sure to check the &quot;pre-owned&quot; search filter to narrow down your choices).</p> <p><em>Have you punched up your wardrobe with great thrift or secondhand finds? What'd you get?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camilla-cheung">Camilla Cheung</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-best-thrift-store-finds-of-all-time">My 5 Best Thrift Store Finds of All Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-ways-to-save-money-on-clothes">101 Ways to Save Money on Clothes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/things-you-might-not-know-about-your-local-thrift-store">Things You Might Not Know About Your Local Thrift Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-convince-a-store-clerk-to-give-you-a-deal">6 Ways to Convince a Store Clerk to Give You a Deal</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/31-reasons-why-im-in-love-with-thrift-shopping-and-you-should-be-too">31 Reasons Why I&#039;m in Love With Thrift Shopping (and You Should Be Too)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping bargains clothes designer saving money secondhand thrift stores wardrobe Wed, 23 Mar 2016 10:00:10 +0000 Camilla Cheung 1675388 at http://www.wisebread.com Can a Capsule Wardrobe Actually Save You Money? http://www.wisebread.com/can-a-capsule-wardrobe-actually-save-you-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/can-a-capsule-wardrobe-actually-save-you-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_clothes_closet_000024507503.jpg" alt="Woman learning if a capsule wardrobe can save her money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Capsule wardrobes have become something of a trend these days. Along with a general push to radically declutter <a href="http://amzn.to/1PIqmQH">Marie Kondo-style</a>, simplifying one's wardrobe seems to be an attractive lifestyle change. But can a capsule wardrobe save you money? Always one to try something new if it saves me a nickel or two, I set out to find out.</p> <p>A capsule wardrobe appealed to me for a variety of reasons:</p> <ul> <li>I didn't wear about three-quarters of my wardrobe. Some of the items I'd been keeping around included dresses that no longer fit, poor quality pieces that had become misshapen or worn out in the wash, and clothes that didn't match anything else.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>I was tired of spending time putting together the right outfit. I was longing for a wardrobe in which everything matched and I could easily throw on an outfit in the morning without thinking.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>I wanted to both save money, and get better value for my money. My current system of impulse buys meant I was spending money without a clear idea of where it was going. I wanted to set a clothing budget to track my spending, and a capsule wardrobe was the best way I could think of to do that easily.</li> </ul> <h2>1. The First Step: Purging and Evaluating</h2> <p>The first thing I did was purge. I took everything out of my closet and evaluated each piece of clothing. I kept only what still fit, what was in style (or a classic style) and in good condition, and that I really liked or loved. I let go of pieces that didn't fit, were out-of-date, and worn-out clothing that I hadn't worn in years.</p> <p>In the end, I ended up bagging two-thirds of my wardrobe to donate to my local Salvation Army. Getting rid of so many clothes might seem like a waste, but I hadn't worn those clothes in years, and this way, someone else could potentially get some good use out of them.</p> <p>Evaluating my wardrobe in this way also helped me to realize what articles of clothing <em>did</em> work for me, which would help me immensely in building my capsule wardrobe.</p> <h2>2. Building the Capsule Wardrobe</h2> <p>The concept of a capsule wardrobe entails limiting your wardrobe to a certain number of pieces per season (out-of-season clothes can be stored for another time, and this doesn't include workout clothes or special occasion clothes). After purging my closet, I already had 23 pieces that I wore frequently. This included pants, skirts, tops, sweaters, and cardigans. (I didn't include shoes or accessories.) This wardrobe was already working quite well for me, so I decided to allow myself to purchase only four more small items for the current spring season. These purchases were carefully considered and were calculated to fill holes in my current wardrobe. They were also planned to match with most of the other clothes in my capsule. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-essential-pieces-for-your-capsule-wardrobe">8 Essential Pieces for Your Capsule Wardrobe</a>)</p> <h2>3. Crunching the Hard Numbers</h2> <p>To see if having a capsule wardrobe could really make a difference in my finances, I started by adding up everything I had spent on clothes (not including shoes or accessories) in the three months before I started my capsule wardrobe. I'm naturally a frugal shopper, and I generally shop sales and clearance racks. Not including tax, I spent about $230.</p> <p>I was actually surprised that I spent so little! I guess I'm more frugal than I thought when it comes to clothes (that, or having a baby strapped to me tends to put a damper on shopping). Of that $230 of clothing, $60 worth of those clothes were wasted, because I either hated them after a week, or they were so low quality I was only able to wear them a few times before they looked worn out.</p> <p>Next, I set myself a budget for the next season. I already have some warmer weather clothing I can pull out for the spring capsule, so I only needed to buy a few more pieces. I gave myself a generous budget (for me, anyway) for the four pieces I wanted to buy, in order to ensure I got quality pieces that would last. My budget for the next three months was $95, and I gave myself an extra $30 buffer in case I needed to replace something. My next three months' clothing budget is $125. If I stick to it (aye, there's the rub), I'll be cutting my clothing expenditures by nearly half.</p> <p>Bottom line: If I can resist impulse buying for the next three months and truly stick to my carefully considered clothing choices, I'll have a better quality wardrobe in which almost everything can mix and match, for less money than I was spending on cheap impulsive purchases. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-high-cost-of-cheap-clothes">The High Cost of Cheap Clothes</a>)</p> <h2>4. Non-Monetary Gains</h2> <p>In addition to saving money, I've already noticed the following benefits of having a capsule wardrobe:</p> <ul> <li>Less time getting dressed in the morning.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Everything matches, so there's no need to think too hard about an outfit.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Less guilt about all the unworn clothing (or trying to fit into too-small clothing).<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>No more cramming clothes into overstuffed dresser drawers.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>My wardrobe reflects &quot;me&quot; better, because it's made up of pieces I love.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Buying less gives me the freedom to splurge without guilt on fewer, higher-quality pieces.</li> </ul> <p>At this time in my life, I believe a capsule wardrobe will work really well. If you have a tendency to shop impulsively, a capsule wardrobe can help tremendously to simplify your purchases and to reduce spending. A month in, I don't feel limited by the capsule wardrobe &mdash; I'm not a huge fashionista anyway, so I don't feel the need to try on every trend, and being able to carefully consider what pieces I'm going to buy helps me to buy clothing that works better for me.</p> <p><em>Have you tried the capsule wardrobe trend? Did it help you to save money?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camilla-cheung">Camilla Cheung</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/can-a-capsule-wardrobe-actually-save-you-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. 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