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Budget-friendly fashion staples

Is your wardrobe filled with quirky one-off pieces that were on-trend once, five or 10 years ago? Are you always missing one key item to pull your outfit together? It may be time to get back to basics and stock up on some budget-friendly wardrobe staples.

Women shopping for clothes

While we all like to show off our personalities through our clothing, we often need a few key pieces to pull our outfits together. Quirky, colourful skirts need a basic tee for balance, flouncy blouses need a quality pair of jeans to streamline your figure, and your gorgeous evening gown needs a pair of classic heels to complete the look. You don’t need to invest thousands — if you shop around, hunt for bargains and scout out the sales, you can find all of these for very affordable prices that won’t have your husband rolling his eyes. Happy shopping!

Basic tees

A few plain tees in block colours will mean you always have a shirt ready to throw on over jeans or a skirt. These are great for layering in winter and look cute under knitted sweaters and cardigans. One black and one white tee are essential.

Flesh-coloured singlet

A basic singlet (and perhaps a slip dress or two) will give you extra security under sheer blouses and figure-hugging evening dresses.


A pair of great fitting jeans that allow enough stretch so you can pick up the kids, do the grocery shopping and take a breather on the couch — plus keep their shape so you can wear them a few days in a row — are a wardrobe must. Dark jeans will allow more wear between washes. Go for a straight leg, high-waist style that allows plenty of movement and still flatters your body shape. A pair of skinny jeans are also great for teaming with an oversized tee or sweater in winter.


This basic will see you through spring and autumn days without having to rethink your entire outfit every time the sun hides behind the clouds. A decent hoodie is also great for winter days in the park with your kids.

Trench coat

A waterproof trench will not only look great, but also allow plenty of comfort and is light and durable. Find one in a neutral shade so you can wear it over most clothing.

Black pencil skirt

This is a workwear must. Invest in a few interesting blouses and wear your skirt over and over again without your colleagues noticing!

A blazer

This is perfect for throwing on over your work outfits and will see you through those cold weekday mornings. Look for one that skims the figure but doesn’t crush the blouse you’re wearing underneath. To get the most use out of your blazer, find one that complements both skirts and pants.

Ballet flats

A pair of comfortable ballet flats are a wardrobe essential and can be worn with just about any outfit. Aim for quality and pop a pair of inner soles inside if you don’t feel like your feet are getting enough support. Go for beige to lengthen your legs or a pair of black flats for a simple, classic look.


A plain pair of heels can see you through work meetings, special dinners and evenings out. Make sure they offer support for your feet and are comfortable enough to wear all day in the office. A great pair of black heels will never date.

More saving tips and tricks

Budget busters: Where to trim spending
Make saving a cinch with online coupons

Getting fit financially

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