Personal Shopper: A grown-up, student-on-a-budget wardrobe for Amy

Amy C. wrote: "Hey ladies (maybe Janetor in particular after doing a bit of homework!),
I'm 24 years old and have just recently turned a lot of things in my life around. I'm returning to school and looking to jazz up an otherwise INSANELY dull wardrobe. I'm a size 14 (eating healthier and working out to hopefully slim out is one of the things I've turned around) and have never been very good at putting together outfits or knowing what key pieces I can mix and match.
I'm living on a student budget so, while I don't mind splurging once in awhile, I can't go crazy!
I'm looking for some casual pieces, some dressier pieces and some that I can mix and match to have the fun vibe while looking fashionable.
Thanks ladies!!

Hey Amy, Janetor here - thanks for the request, and props to you for gettin' healthier! I've put together a few basic jeans, trousers, skirts, dresses, and cardigans that will work as base layering pieces, along with simple camisoles & tees in a wide variety of colors and fun jewelry, shoes, and accessories (not shown, otherwise the photo would've featured items the size of sprinkles!). Then, I had a little fun and browsed for cute blouses and tops to jazz things up - when you're budgeting, it's easier to add color & interest to outfits with tops, rather than skirts/pants. I also tried to keep pieces under $50 wherever possible here, having been on a student budget myself.

Some of my personal fave stores with great cheap-n-chic clothes for gals in the size 12-18 range are: Target, Alloy, Delia's, ASOS, Gap, Old Navy, Modcloth, Kiyonna, Torrid, and Avenue. You never know what you might find or what will look good as you continue to slim down, so the key is trying on ANYTHING and everything that comes in your size. If you like it, buy it in every color that looks good on you and play around with mixing up colors & patterns with other items in your closet. I hope this serves as a good starting point... Let me know!

The Basics:
1. Old Navy ($25 on sale, in 2 rinses)
2. Gap Perfect Trouser Pants ($60, in 2 colors)
3. Victoria's Secret Silk & Cashmere Cardigan Sweater ($50, in 9 colors)
4. INC Long Sleeve Asymmetrical Hem Open Front Ribbed Cardigan ($50 on sale, in 3 colors)
5. New York & Company Tweed Pencil Skirt ($47)
6. Banana Republic Gemma Wrap Dress ($45-$98 on sale, in 5 colors)
7. Dana Buchman Smocked Shirtdress ($46 on sale)
The Fun Stuff:
8. Alloy Caroline Kimono ($27)
9. Tulle Lovely Promenade Ditsy Floral Belted Top ($47)
10. Alloy Elaina Embellished Top ($27, in 2 colors)
11. ASOS Necklace Halter Top ($46)
12. Alloy Ruched Shoulder Tee ($16 on sale, in 11 colors)
13. Singin' Sweetheart Top ($35)
14. River Island Grecian Neck Satin Top ($36.59)
15. Old Navy Dolman-Sleeve Cardigan ($30-$37 on sale, in 4 colors)

Frustrated in your search for that perfect leather handbag, red stiletto pump, or whatever makes your heart go thump in the night? Click here to check out our requests for you, the reader, and to contact us, and we might do the shopping work for you in a future Personal Shopper feature!



Posted on 09.27.11 at 2:26 PM

Thank you so much! This is phenominal, I've already placed a few orders for some of the clothes.
I really appreciate all your work!!


Posted on 09.27.11 at 4:28 PM

You're so welcome, Amy! Good luck with grad school! :)

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