Finding affordable ways to live is important for college students. As collegeboard.org estimated in a 2013-2014 study, the public four year in state on campus student must budget for $22,826 worth of expenses.
These expenses included categories ranging from the cost of tuition, room and board, textbooks, transportation, and other expenses. When it comes to adding fashion to that budget, college students at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point have found creative ways to add trends to their closets without detracting too heavily from their wallets.
Allison Kelley, a communication major, found a way to purchase trendy fashions for as little as three dollars.
Kelley shares her advice for students on her blog fittingly titled Three Dollar Fashion. On her blog, Kelley takes note of several upcoming fall trends like polka dots and animal designs. She explained how college students can find these trends for a fair price while shopping.
“You can match any of these prints with a bold color or another print. It’s fun to mix and match different patterns and change things up a bit,” Kelley said.
Kelley said that a large part of her back-to-school wardrobe came from Goodwill. When shopping at Goodwill, Kelley said that she is able to visualize ideas she has gotten from Pinterest. She puts outfits together based on those ideas. Kelley said that she gave special attention to finding versatile pieces this fall.
Mai Ger Vang, a social work major, said that versatility is also important for her when searching for a budget-friendly fall wardrobe.
“A versatile scarf is a must have for me. I have a nice comfy black scarf, which I can either wear when I’m in my sweat pants or when I’m wearing a nice dress,” Vang said.
Aside from searching for versatile wardrobe pieces, Vang said finding reusable clothing is important to her for saving money on a back-to-school wardrobe.
“I definitely like to shop cheap. Goodwill, stores at the mall, clearance and sale sections, even recycling and re-wearing my old clothes from previous years is something I do to save on a back-to-school wardrobe,” Vang said.
While some students thrift shop to save money on their fall wardrobes, Sasha Everett, communication major, suggested students also seek out online shops to find affordable fashion.
“I do most of my shopping online because during school I am too busy to travel to a good mall. Shopping online is more efficient. I look for online shops that have reasonable prices, free shipping and easy return policies in case something doesn’t fit or I don’t like it once I try it on,” Everett said.
Everett said that signing up for promotional emails from online retailers gives students easy access to online coupons and deals.
“I try not to buy too many trendy pieces because if you buy a lot of trend clothes there will be a new trend in a few months and you’ll have to restock your wardrobe. I try to buy staple pieces to transition between seasons,” Everett said.
Whatever expenses female students need to cover, there seems to be a way to find affordable fashions no matter your budget. Whether shopping for inexpensive clothing online, thrift shopping or scavenging through mall clearance bins, with help from these UWSP women, students are sure to find a way to get the best fall fashion for the best prices.
By Gaonou Lo