I've been an online writer for over eight years. I'm a big fan of celebrity style who strives to cover major topics in the fashion world.
Getting Celebrity Style for Less
So, I thought I would share with you some ways to get celebrity-style clothes when you're on a shoestring budget. Fashionistas have to get creative nowadays because of the slow economy and limited shopping budgets. Bartering is the new money and works well for me. It can work for men, women, and children's clothes.
Times are hard, but that doesn't mean you have to look like you do not have any money. Believe me, you can still look fabulous for less. I see proof of this every day on television, especially reality TV. Just make sure that you do not fall for the many imposters and fake designer labels being sold on the web.
How to Get Free Designer Clothes
- Organize closets for the wealthy.
- Become an image consultant.
- Start a clothes barter club.
- Help a non-profit organization.
- Check pawnshops for jewelry and shoes.
- Try shoe swapping.
- Pick up unwanted gifts.
- Get into bartering and thrifting.
- Find stores going out of business.
1. Organize Closets for the Wealthy
The first thing you can do is to offer a free closet de-cluttering service in your city or town. Many people have too many clothes and not enough space for them. If you offer a home service where you help them organize, de-clutter and donate their unwanted clothes, they will jump at the chance. So pass out flyers or run a small classified ad and offer to clean and de-clutter their closet or garage for free.
Now this option will work best if you do it in a very expensive area, which means the homeowners are high net worth and spend lots of money on designer clothes. Run an ad and connect with those who have retired from well-paying careers. They will be glad you want to help them out.
2. Become an Image Consultant
Are you good at coordinating outfits? Do you know what looks good for formal, casual and business attire? If so, you can help others look the best they can look. You may not realize how much style you have naturally.
Becoming an image consultant is fun and a great way to meet new people at the same time you get free designer clothes. So many people need some designer style trend tips and you can help them pick out the right looks for themselves from their own closet or be their personal shopper. Instead of charging a fee you can just get free clothes for your services. Let your clients know ahead of time what you're expecting from them. Once you start looking at how your skills and talents are valuable, you'll see new ways of getting the celebrity style you want most.
3. Start a Clothes Barter Club
Another idea is to get some shopaholics together and trade fashion clothes and shoes at home parties. The easiest way to do this is to start a shopping interest group on sites like meetup.com and find other girls in your town who love to shop.
Members who join your group must bring with them one of their favorite designer shoes or apparel to the get together. Then when everyone shows up they can trade it for someone else's fab fashion accessory. Some people may even still have items with the tag still on them.
Start a Menswear Club: Let's not forget the men in our lives. The great thing about designer clothes for men is that most of the pieces are interchangeable. Although menswear is expensive, the thread count and the type of fabric in men's shirts, slacks or suits can last literally for years and years.
Some popular men's fashion brands include Ralph Lauren, Diesel, Calvin Klein, Gucci, Burberry Prorsum, Hugo Boss, and Armani.
Start your own swapping party. You can also check out online swapping as well.
4. Help a Non-Profit Organization
You can partner up with a non-profit organization and tell them that you would like to help them raise money for a cause. Charity events are always needing extra hands to help.
Organize a Clothes Fund Raiser: Helping organizations in your community can be a great way to get designer clothes for free. The reason this works so well is because most non-profit organizations need ways to raise money to keep offering free services.
Become a fashion advocate and ask for donations of designer apparel from people who want to get a tax write-off and help at the same time. Then, as the organizer of the event, you can pick out some of the clothes, handbags or shoes to keep. The rest you can sell online or auction off at a fundraiser event. All the money you receive will be given to your favorite charity.
It can be a city by city project that allows you to travel, wear celebrity designer clothes, and help people at the same time. Try recruiting stay-at-home moms who like to organize small events with online meetups.
Vintage Baby Clothes: Children's and toddler's clothes are usually still in good condition due to the fact that many kids grow out of their clothes before they have a chance to wear out. Designer baby clothes are made from the best material and can be used on boys and girls.
Moms can have house parties where they swap or trade gently worn designer children's clothing. Most of the time, the two-piece outfits have been washed in Ivory Snow or Dreft which keeps the colors bright and the fabric soft without fading.
5. Check Pawn Shops for Jewelry and Shoes
Clothing accessories can make or break an outfit. This is why it is a good idea to try to match your jewelry, shoes, scarves, belts and ties together.
One of my favorite pastimes is to go to vintage stores and pawn shops in my area and look at designer jewelry and watches. I have often found antique rings for low prices.
Vintage Designer Watches: If you find an expensive watch that has a nice face, but the wristband is broken, try using a watch repair service to get it back working again.
Use Jewelry Cleaner: Diamond earrings are always special and if you find colored diamonds or rare gemstones take them to a jewelry cleaner to get them back that sparkle.
High Heel Shoe Replacement: If you are a shoeaholic like myself, it can be hard to find designer shoes in great shape. Most of the time, they are worn down on the heels. This is where you can use shoe heel replacements to get them back in good condition.
6. Try Shoe Swapping
Start a shoe bartering club in your area or look for pre-existing clubs where you can come together and swap your favorite high heel accessories.
Expensive designer shoe outlets will have special one-day sales where the prices are marked down really low to 75% off regular price. You may have to buy your favorite accessories out of season to get the best deals.
The trick is to take your own discount designer shoes and try to swap them for two pairs of an exclusive brand.
7. Pick Up People's Unwanted Gifts
How many of you were given a gift by a friend or relative that you did not like or will never wear? Think about how many other people are in the same situation. Did you return it? Probably not because you did not have the receipt.
Since this is such a common situation, why not start an unwanted gift exchange club. It sounds odd but just because your neighbor does not like the diamond watch or gold plated necklace doesn't mean you won't.
Run an ad in your local paper and pick up people's holiday, anniversary, birthday, gift items for free. Offer to take any items they may have stored away in their storage unit such as gift items, jewelry, watches or shoes.
8. Bartering and Thrifting
Just because you can get free items does not mean that you do not have to spend any money. If you're willing to spend a little money, you can even make money by finding nice things at pawn shops or thrift stores and selling them or swapping them with nicer items.
It works like this. I go to a yard sale, estate auction or pawn shop, and I find a really good vintage piece of jewelry that is selling for $50 dollars and retails at $200. I will buy it and use it to swap for some other designer stuff worth even more money.
Example: I had a friend who did this with a pair of Michal Negrin Vintage Chandelier Earrings which can sell for $60 dollars or more a pair.
She found some at an estate sale that were stuck in a bag of old earrings, so she paid $40 dollars for a bag of earrings to get the one designer pair.
Later, she was at a clothing swap party and she saw a pair of Jimmy Choo Shoes that she wanted. As you know, these designer shoes retail at $600 or more a pair. So she swapped the Vintage chandelier earrings for them and then after wearing the shoes a few times she then sold them on eBay for $300 dollars. Not bad for a $50 dollar investment.
For the Die Hard Fashionistas: The name of the game is to use what you have to barter for bigger and better items. You want to have items that other fashionistas will want to trade you.
Sometimes it will take some research. Learn what is in season and what is in high demand. Get a personal assistant or a best friend who is in love with fashion and share notes.
It is cool to get free stuff but the goal is to get expensive, fashion label, designer, rare or exclusive items. Those who know what they are doing can spot a fake immediately, so do not get an impostor brand.
9. Find Stores Going Out of Business
Places to look for "going out of business" sales:
- Your local newspaper listings. Check businesses for sale, public notices, and the auction section.
- Online. Look for websites that have listings of businesses liquidating or getting rid of inventory.
- Sign up for notifications from a paid service (may be worth it).
- Contact moving companies who specialize in commercial property.
Tips for Wholesale Buying and Selling
Getting free designer clothes is an art in itself. The shoppers who have become experts at it know all the best places to get fashionable attire for pennies on the dollar. Many of those places are wholesale lots and liquidator outlets due to so many department and retail stores going out of business.
For example, I just was reading an article the other day of a bridal store that was closing all of its 30 or more locations and the designer bridal gowns were going to be destroyed. As you can imagine, protestors demanded the wedding dresses be donated to a charity. If you can contact and get in touch with companies who pick up these closeout items then you could end up with multiple fashion pieces to keep, trade or sell.
Shop for items in the off-season months: Another idea is to look for clearance items during the off-season. For instance, in the summer months, look around for winter coats, boots and gloves. I know it sounds silly, but that is when you get the best deals. The same is true during the winter months. You will want to find any swimwear or beach attire that is marked down. I have seen some stores that will mark items down to $3 dollars or less because they just want to get rid of the inventory.
Buy in bulk: Try to buy in bulk if you can because you will get a better rate than if you bought each item separately. This will only work if you have a place to sell the extra stuff, such as eBay or Etsy. Most of the time, you will have duplicates of the same item. Find out how much the item is selling for currently so that you can be competitive in your resale price.
Get Inventory from other auction sellers: Lastly, if you sell items on an auction site, check with other sellers and see if they have inventory they want to get rid of. It's pretty common for an auction seller to change their mind and want to try a different product line. This could be good news if you know you could make a profit. The best part is getting the inventory for free.
Deadline Shopping Video by CNN
Travel to the shop or outlet yourself: Go to yard sales, estate sales, consignment stores and pawn shops in wealthy geographical areas. Take the time to travel to the location and look, feel and smell the fabric. Build relationships with the shop owners and get them calling you when items come in their stores. You will have to do the legwork, but it is worth the effort when you get that million dollar piece of designer clothes for less than you could have thought possible.
Beware of "deadline shopping" sites: To score big-ticket items for less, don't lose your cool (and your wallet). A good example of this is called "deadline shopping," where you are given a certain amount of time to get bargain basement prices on designer label items as you compete against other shoppers. To win in this game you have to know what you are looking for. You want to buy low and sell high or swap low and trade high.
The downfall of buying items online: Avoid too many online shopping stores because they are more likely to have fake and counterfeit items. In addition, shopping online leads to impulse buying, and that is the worst thing you can do because you will lose your better judgment and then you will be stuck with items you can not use or trade.
Try bloggers for online items: If you must shop online, try to find bloggers who list items they find at thrift stores in their area on a personal blog. You will be surprised at how many treasure hunters there are online who like to blog about their discoveries. Most of the time they will take Paypal and send you the stuff to a mailing address.
Luna Tick on May 29, 2019:
sounds crazy but cool!!!
Reanna guleria on May 19, 2019:
lovel to get free clothing to help other people that don not have much To empower them and make them love the people that make it and be inspired by creative of the hard work
ChristyR on August 24, 2018:
I would love to get free clothes n help others in the same sense
ernestine bradley on April 08, 2018:
i lovel to get free clothing to help other people that don not have much
Benny on June 04, 2016:
This is awesome, great post, I'd absolutely love to get free designer clothes! I've gotten great free clothes on Tryspree, but designer clothes are hard to find!
Curtez brookins on June 08, 2015:
I like it
CatalinaHD on October 12, 2014:
Thanks so much! Wow! You really do think outside the box on this one, don't you? Great job! Thanks for the suggestions. I've tried some of these myself.
Benjamen Adams on August 20, 2014:
I love beautiful designer clothing for me and my fabulous lady!!!
RanaKm on August 18, 2014:
Oh you got so many ideas concerning this! Love this :) Thanks for sharing, although most of the things that you mentioned need some time and are not instant..
agatha on July 25, 2012:
Thanx for the very usefull tips. i now know i have to make a real study of this thing. This you should know , you realy did insipired me. You must know, that i don,t want this for myself alone . i so much want to help others supplying there primary needs. Be able dress up nice should be there for everyone. xx
Ruth McCollum from Lake Oswego, Oregon on April 06, 2012:
Great tips! I never even thought of this.What great ideas!
celebritie (author) on April 05, 2012:
One idea would be to collaborate with a non-profit organization in your area so that when you start up your clothes swap you can tell everyone that joins as a member that 50%, 30% or whichever amount you choose will go to charity.
alonzotLandes on April 03, 2012:
fmaven32 on March 25, 2012:
These are great ideas! I'm in a new area and wanted to host a fashion swap here. I'd like to do it for charity but also make somewhat of a profit doing things like this. How can you make money doing things like this?
erikasreview from Lancaster, CA on January 18, 2012:
Great article. Very interesting way on staying on trend without breaking the bank!
myalee1234 from staten island on January 10, 2012:
Thanks you have given me some great ideas
celebritie (author) on January 08, 2012:
Thanks everyone, I am always finding new and innovative ways to get clothes, LOL
It has become a profitable pass time for me.
Tracy B from Canada on August 14, 2011:
Great ideas! I learned a lot of new things from your hub.
Mark from Alabama,USA on August 10, 2011:
Great hub, I love it
fashion on July 15, 2011:
Beautiful hub.I would never have thought of this idea,this is really great with great tips.It is very useful indeed!
celebritie (author) on June 28, 2011:
Thanks TVGuide Girl, I try!
TVGuideGirl on June 28, 2011:
Awesome!! Love, Love, Love it!!!
celebritie (author) on June 06, 2011:
Vocal - the more I think about creative ways to stay fly in the latest fashions, the hub would be extra long. LOL
Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on June 06, 2011:
Love your hub! Now, I have a few new ideas for getting designer clothes for free. Thanks.
celebritie (author) on June 05, 2011:
Lettres - I took pieces of the content and expanded on each section for a whole week, thats why it ended up being so long. LOL
lettres on June 05, 2011:
I love the way you wrote in small sections...easy to read. Also, great tips!! thnx,
celebritie (author) on June 04, 2011:
Thanks Cyndi I appreciate it.
Cynthia B Turner from Georgia on June 04, 2011:
Congrats on your hubnuggets. The info was interesting.
celebritie (author) on June 04, 2011:
sassy - thanks so much for your comment, I am really surprised at how popular this hub has become.
Karen Anne Harris from Jacksonville, FL on June 03, 2011:
Wow.....thank you for the advice...very useful indeed!
celebritie (author) on June 03, 2011:
Jamey - it is true that girls on a budget need to look for new ways to get designer stuff, but this hobby can also be turned into a profitable side hustle.
Jamey Garcia from Florida on June 03, 2011:
Congratulations girl! This information is very useful for girls like me with low budget for fashion. Keep it on with such a good job!
celebritie (author) on June 03, 2011:
LuLu - thanks so much
UTL - Thanks for your comment
Rosie - I like to find cool stuff on ebay too
MS - People have so much stuff now adays
Pamela - Try it, barter clubs are fun
Pamela Sarzana on June 02, 2011:
I wish I could get a Barter Club started here..
mysisters on June 01, 2011:
Thank you for the awesome ideas. I especially like the one about offering a closet clutter free service in your city.
RosieG from Nerang Gold Coast Qld on May 31, 2011:
Very cool tips, I would love to have the time to clean out rich peoples wardrobes and garages. Maybe should add that to my To Do List. I love great clothes and rarely pay full price, I shop on ebay, visit garage sales and watch for opportunities to get amazing bargains. Really enjoyed your article thank you
Under The Lamp on May 30, 2011:
A beautiful gem containing excellence in the areas of clarity, length and illustration.
You, celebritie, have my thanks.
LULU SUE1987 on May 30, 2011:
These are goods ideas. Thanks for the tips.
celebritie (author) on May 27, 2011:
Marlo that is so true, some celebrities do have a very unconventional style. LOL
MarloByDesign from United States on May 27, 2011:
lol, there are some celebrities I would *not* want to dress like - shall I mention some names? :)
celebritie (author) on May 26, 2011:
Kristyleann - it is amazing how creative we can get when cash is low
Roshall - thanks I did not realize how much people would like it
Ruby - Let me know how that turns out
Maree Michael Martin from Northwest Washington on an Island on May 26, 2011:
awesome tips, I'm gonna try some. Congratulations on your hubnuggets!
roshall from Ohio on May 26, 2011:
Wow you have some great ideas and your hub was very good.Thanks for the info.
Kristy LeAnn from Princeton, WV on May 25, 2011:
These are great ideas...I would have never thought of doing stuff like that to get free clothes.
celebritie (author) on May 25, 2011:
elayne001 - I agree about going to vintage clothing stores because it a place for some true treasures.
deborah - Thanks so much, I love clothes bartering too!
marlobydesign - you should think of starting an organizer business in your town
mskerrykk - glad you like the tips
sun-girl - I am so amazed at the response from everyone thanks again.
Sun-Girl from Nigeria on May 25, 2011:
Great piece of stuff in here which is well shared.
Mskerrykk from Jamaica on May 25, 2011:
I love these tips... Thank you
MarloByDesign from United States on May 24, 2011:
I wish I could 'De-clutter and Organize Closets for the Rich' - if only I had the opportunity! Very interesting Hub.
Deborah Reno from First Wyoming, then THE WORLD on May 23, 2011:
Congratulations on your hubnugget nomination. These are fabulous ideas. I have done a clothes barter, and it worked out great for everyone.
Good luck at hubpages.
Elayne from Rocky Mountains on May 22, 2011:
Another way is to shop at second hand stores - sometimes you can find a designer dress or clothes - it is like a treasure hunt, and when you score, it makes your day!! Although you might have to pay a little for it. Great hub and congrats on the nomination.
celebritie (author) on May 22, 2011:
ripplemaker thanks so much, in this economy everyone is looking for ways to stay in fashion. I just found out about the nomination.
TravelMan I love to shop and I have helped some of my friends with outfits and then they gave me designer clothes they did not wear anymore so it was great.
Thanks guys for the congrats I am so surprised!
Ireno Alcala from Bicol, Philippines on May 22, 2011:
Personal shopper is an awesome job where you can get all the freebies you like, without spending a single cent (well, maybe the bus fare, if you don't have the car!LOL!)
BTW, congrats on your nomination. I voted for this!
Michelle Simtoco from Cebu, Philippines on May 21, 2011:
You know I would never have thought of this idea...this is really great! Do rich people really allow somebody else to organize or declutter their closets? I wouldn't know if I would be good at it, but that sounds like an interesting experience! Hahahahha
Congrats on your Hubnuggets Nomination! Do participate in the Hubnuggets forum and click the link found there to read and vote for your favorite hub, including your own! https://hubpages.com/forum/topic/75680#post1639180
To Free Designer Clothes and the Hubnuggets! Wheeee
celebritie (author) on April 25, 2011:
Yes, I am part of a fashion barter group and we trade high end clothes and accessories, its a lot of fun.
Daffy Duck from Cornelius, Oregon on April 24, 2011:
Those are some interesting ideas. I never would have thought of them. Do you do these things yourself?