Today's Everyday Fashion: Budget Update

Jeweled neckline Ann Taylor dress
Jeweled neckline Ann Taylor dress
Jeweled neckline Ann Taylor dress

Ann Taylor dress, $56

I cannot believe it's already July! Here's everything I bought since my last budget post

Realistic clothing budget

Dress   /  Dress  /  Top  /  Shorts 
T-shirt  /  T-shirt  /  Purse  /  Coverup
Blazer (similar, similar)  /  Shorts  /  Belt  /  Skirt


1. Ann Taylor, $56 - (The dress I'm wearing in the photos above!) The original price was $189 and I used a 60% off sale coupon code about 2 weeks ago for this price. I fell in love with it in the store and stalked it online for approximately 2 months before the price fell that low. It's one of those dresses that will work absolutely anywhere - church, work, errands, TV.
2. Ann Taylor, $45 - This was a contender for engagement photos and ultimately I decided photos or not I had to have it! I love the Grace Kelly vibe and this is another dress that will work both casually and professionally.
3. C. Wonder, $35 - I keep my clothes for many years, but white items tend to become discolored and are harder to keep. I can always use a classic piece like this in my closet, and caught a good sale in-store.
4. J. Crew, $25 - I found this deal in-store and could hardly believe my luck. I love wearing shorts like these with some structure, they feel so much more proper than my usual denim cutoffs in the summer, and mint anything is always welcome in my closet.
5-6. Gap, $22 - T-shirts were 50% off in the store yesterday and I picked up these two neon v-necks. I throw these on to walk the dog, wear them as pajamas, and they may even show up in a blog post or two.
7. Forever 21, $17 - I had a mint purse on my wish list. I normally only buy leather purses but mint isn't a color I want to invest in, and I was really impressed with the quality of this one in the store yesterday.
8. Forever 21, $18 - Absolutely loving this for a swim coverup. Great price and matches almost every swimsuit in my drawer. 
9. Banana Republic, $35 - I originally featured this blazer in February. It (finally!) fell to a low price in the store and I couldn't pass it up yesterday. Sometimes sale stalking for 5 months really pays off. 
10. J. Crew Factory, $30 - I haven't bought this one yet so hopefully I don't jinx myself. I've seen the skirt version in the store and I love the neon color. Planning to order soon.
11. Ann Taylor, $10 - I ordered this nude skinny belt when I ordered the two Ann Taylor dresses. I have so many colorful belts, but I didn't have a light nude color yet and several times I found myself wishing I had one.
12. Amazon, $34 - I ordered this straight off my wish list a couple weeks ago. I have another full floral skirt that's mostly pink and I wear it like crazy. Whenever I love something that much, I often try to find a similar item because I'm guaranteed to wear that one a ton, too.

Total = $327
Alterations = $40 (pink shirt dress and floral skirt) 
Grand total = $367

My clothing budget is $250 per month. I treat it like an allowance, so on the first of each month I deposit $250 into an account. I haven't been shopping much this year, so I currently have $514 of unspent clothing budget in my account for the year (see chart below). There are tons of different ways to budget, for my best tips and tricks see "How to Set a Clothing Budget." 

Links to budget posts:    22 Feb  /  29 Mar  /  26 May  /  2 Jul

ps. I decided not to keep the Ann Taylor yellow dot dress from yesterday's post. I took it to the tailor yesterday and alterations were going to be $25.  I only paid $44 for the dress, but at $70 that pushed it over my "willing to pay for it" threshold.


Last but not least... my engagement photos dress! (Coming from the wedding budget.) It's sold out now, but that link will take you to product details. I ordered it from Nordstrom for $238. 

Update 9/18/14: I didn't keep the engagement photo dress, just couldn't do it for the $238 price tag. I also returned the $10 belt, bringing my grand total to $357.