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How To Stay Fashion Forward On A College Budget

08/24/2011 02:10 pm ET | Updated Oct 24, 2011

I am not ashamed to admit clothes are my favorite things in the whole world. I love everything about them, except my constantly empty wallet as a result of those Dolce Vita wedges that I simply couldn't live without. Like most college students, I find myself constantly getting disgruntled about price tags, even on supposed "sale items." We're students i.e broke, but that doesn't mean our fashion has to suffer. Please, take off that college hoodie, there are other options out there. The perfect Louboutins are a distant mirage, but affordable fashion? Now there's an ocean of possibility.

Here are 5 tips for staying trendy on your $7.00 an hour wage:

Stock Up On Accessories: Rather than splurging on an expensive dress, invest in necklaces, bangles and belts. You'll get tired of that dress sooner or later, whereas accessories will spice up plain items and allow you to create drastically different looking ensembles with the same basic pieces.

Thrift + Vintage: Paying full price for duds is totally outdated. Of course we all love waltzing into our favorite stores, having seriously helpful sales associates and leaving the store with a large and perfectly wrapped bag, but for fashionistas on a budget this isn't the way to go. It's time you explore other options. Don't be scared, thrift stores really aren't bad. You have to put a little more work into your shopping experience, but you'll get great clothes for a whole lot less. Whether it's old school vintage or recently thrifted items, all that's stopping you from perfect new outfits is a little effort and maybe a trip to the cleaner.

Consign: So you want to buy some new clothes but don't have time for a job in between classes, being president of your sorority and your senior thesis. Welcome to consignment. Empty your closet of clothes you no longer wear and sell 'em to your local second hand store. It's an easy way to score a few bucks with limited effort as long as your clothes are cute and in good condition. Then spend away!

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