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Tiny tweaks, big results

Tiny tweaks, big results
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If you’ve ever wished that you could be one of those people who always looks on-trend and incredibly put together, we’ve got some news for you: you can – and you can do it on a budget. And thank goodness for that, because life is expensive enough as it is without having to overhaul your entire wardrobe every season! The key to looking like you spent a fortune without bankrupting yourself is to shop smart. By knowing some clever style tricks, mixing the right pieces, and investing in a few well-made staples, you can completely transform and elevate your look.

Don’t miss these style mistakes that make you look older.

Opt for better fabrics

Opt for better fabrics
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You don’t need to plunk down all your spare cash on designer labels – as long as your fabrics are mostly natural and high quality. Nailing the perfect business-casual look, going-out ensemble, or weekend wear comes down to using better fabrics in chic ways, says Ashley Michelle Miller, a celebrity wardrobe stylist who works with everyone from major talk-show hosts to regular women in need of wardrobe refreshing. “It’s all about organic and true fabrics,” she explains. “Cashmere is the way to go, and while those fabrics need a little more love and care with handwashing and dry-cleaning, they can make all the difference and last so much longer than synthetic versions.”

Wear dark denim

Wear dark denim
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Whether you’re into trendy cut-off hems, boyfriend fits, or slim and tapered ankles, stylists say that a sophisticated dark wash can take you from a runway-worthy day to a night out with friends. The key is choosing the right size and a high-quality dark wash that won’t soon fade.

Find out what a capsule wardrobe is and how to build one.

Stock your closet with one great blazer

Stock your closet with one great blazer
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“It’s time to take inventory of your life,” says Miller. “Where do you spend most of your time? That’s where you need to invest your wardrobe budget, in items that make you look your best.” She suggests finely tailored basics like a black blazer with expensive-seeming details.  “Details matter, so a flattering cut with higher-end buttons and fabrics are ways to set you apart.”

Mix textures and patterns

Mix textures and patterns
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“Mastering the art of mixing textures and patterns is one of the keys to looking expensive on any budget,” says Bernadette Vajda, an internationally acclaimed model and professional image consultant. “Pair natural silk with other rich fabrics in the same colour scheme like denim or cashmere. Wearing the same colour scheme in different textures will elevate any look.”

Read on for the style secrets of women who always look put together.

Splurge on a strong black coat

Splurge on a strong black coat
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“Invest in classic, high-quality outerwear in timeless black or camel colourways,” shares Vajda. “It will last you decades. Classic styles never expire and will carry you through every decade – warm.”

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Accentuate your shape

Accentuate your shape
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“People tend to gravitate toward black or oversized garments to disguise their insecurities,” explains Vajda. “But the key to looking chic is making sure your clothes fit your curves. Don’t hide them or try to cover them up or even try to camouflage. Wear clothes that you’re comfortable in that accentuate your body properly.”

These are the outfit mistakes to avoid so that you don’t look messy.

Choose undergarments you feel confident in

Choose undergarments you feel confident in
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It turns out that the most important layers when making an outfit seem expensive are the bottom and top ones. Underpinnings and coats both pave the way to the most put-together looks. Vajda tells her clients to invest in good, trustworthy shapewear they’ll feel comfortable wearing beneath their favourite pants, dresses and skirts. The goal is to present a smooth silhouette and highlight your body’s natural shape.

Buy a well-fitting bra

Buy a well-fitting bra
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Both Miller and Vajda agree that a supportive bra is necessary for any outfit to deliver an expensive-seeming appearance. If you’re bulging, wearing the wrong size, or not investing in the right cup style for your assets, even the best cashmere can look cheap.

Are you wearing the right bra? Here are some tips to finding one that fits.

Add a colourful dress to your wardrobe

Add a colourful dress to your wardrobe
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That little black dress you already have is great, and Miller suggests making it look expensive with the right shoes, jewellery and beauty routine. But it’s equally important to have a colourful dress in your wardrobe, too. “If evening engagements are a regular thing, you need a little coloured dress – an upgraded riff on everyone’s favourite LBD,” she says. “Getting a solid-coloured dress in a shade that complements your skin tone is a power move. You’ll stand out from the rest and look radiant.”

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