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    8 Wallet-Friendly Fashion Brands

    Here is a quick round-up of 8 wallet-friendly fashion brands and a quick guide on what to shop for. A curated list of manufacturers and retailers from here at home and across the pond.


    If you are a fashion forward gal who enjoys deep discounts while shopping for quality clothes, then you know Zara. This Spanish based retailer has grown to be a wildly popular clothing brand. It offers a budget friendly clothes-shopping experience without sacrificing style. It is a go-to favorite brand of main street fashionistas as well as celebrities who are know to hand-select Zara items from time to time to create a fashionable yet relatable look.

    Zara is a wallet-Friendly Fashion Brand

    I rely on this brand for basic wardrobe staples, as well as one of a kind signature items for special occasions. Zara has some pretty nice footwear however, in my experience it seems to forego comfort to a certain extent.


    A competitor of Zara, Mango is my go-to for good-quality, well-fitting basics that are affordable as well. This brand to me, feels like a more sophisticated and grown-up version of Zara. Whether I’m looking for an everyday cardigan Fall or a check tweed blazer winter, For a wide array of high-fashion-low price point affordable styles, Mango does not disappoint.

    Affordable Midi skirt from Mango

    It’s footwear line is pretty good, but if you’re looking for true longevity, perhaps it’s best to look elsewhere. I like Mango for the chic handbags that could easily pass as designer. Mango is the place to go if your style is more subtle. If you’re looking for nice work wear or classic pieces that you will want to wear for years to come.


    If you ask me, this brand also known as Hennes & Mauritz has something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for a trendy instagram-worthy signature piece to wear this current season, or a classic item that will last you years, H&M never fails to deliver.

    H&M is one of 8 wallet-friendly fashion brands

    Additionally, H&M frequently offers lines in collaboration with high-end designers such as Alexander Wang and Kenzo, as well as celebrities such as the Weekend and Nicki Minaj.


    This retailer from across the pond is a part of Asos. It offers a more cutting edge version of the basic H&M look in the world of affordable fashion. I love this brand because it offers access to reproductions of runway styles in a very affordable price range that makes it truly approachable as a brand.

    Another budget brand in womens fashion


    Along with providing access to a multitude of affordable designer brands at affordable prices, this English outfitter also offers its own name-sake brand. I like ASOS pieces because they are on the trendy side, sometimes bordering on edgy. Despite that, they also carry options that are classic and mature-looking but never boring or matronly.

    purse-friendly fashion brand - Asos

    ASOS also has a terrific selection of formalwear that proves that getting dressed up for a special event can be fun and stylish but doesn’t have to cost a lot.


    This is a particular favorite brand of mine. It is in my list of 8 wallet-friendly fashion brands not only because it is an affordable clothing brand but also because it is also known for transparency of its supply chain. The company was founded in 2010. It provides information about where its clothes are made, be it in LA or Ho Chi Minh City. Some of their items are made outside America.

    one of 8 wallet-friendly fashion brands

    J Crew Factory

    If like me you enjoy the fun but slightly preppy-yet-on-trend look of J.Crew, but perhaps you dont like the prices, opt for J.Crew Factory instead.You will find an equally-chic, more affordable, line of amazing work-wear staples like blazers slacks, trousers, blouses and tops.

    Modcloth Cardigan

    From time to time J.Crew Factory releases items that look identical to the ones sold at J.Crew, but at lower price points. However, they tend to wait until a later season to do so. So patience pays.


    This is another brand known for their quirky indie and retro-inspired pieces. Modcloth is a great source if you’re in the market for a boho chic inspired fun print dress or a pin-up-style swimsuit. In addition to clothing and accessories, ModCloth sells unique shoes, vintage inspired accessories, and home decor items as well.

    another wallet-friendly fashion brand

    What’s more, ModCloth has an extensive selection of plus-sized clothing as well as petite and tall sizes.

    This is my quick list of 8 wallet-friendly fashion brands that offer high quality, high style clothes. I have attempted to give you a peek at my go-to brands for wardrobe staples as well as signature pieces that one can wear to work and social events all year round. Clothes that won’t fall apart and will not burn a hole in your wallet.


    Black Pantsuit photo courtesy Zara | Pleated Midi Skirt with White Shirt courtesy Mango | Silk Scarf photo courtesy H&M | Red Patterned Topman Dress courtesy Nordstrom | Image of clothes rack photo courtesy Everlane | Photo of Black Leather Pants Black Jacket and Slingback high heels courtesy ASOS | Picture of Black & Gold Floral Cardigan and Maroon Drawstring Pants courtesy J Crew Factory | Tweed Pencil Skirt and Black Top photo courtesy Modcloth

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    Summer’s Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    According to Pantone, the color experts, the hot new colors this summer range from Grape Compote, a muted purple tint – to Flame Scarlet, which is perhaps the brightest, boldest shade of fiery red, just like the name sounds. In between these two extremes, is dovetailed, the easier to live with shades of Denim Blue, Coral Pink and White White, all of which have remained ever popular summer go-to shades for Fashion as well as Home Decor through the years. Here is my take on Summer’s Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home,

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    As you work these trending colors into your everyday outfits this summer, here’s a cheat sheet on how to mix and match like a Pantone expert creating color-schemes tying together walls floor, furniture and accessories for each room in your home using this year’s trendiest tints.

    PURPLE –

    This year’s purple is a yummy hue called Grape Compote which when cleverly paired, will look as dreamy on you, as it will in your home.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    The trick is here to pick the exact Pantone prescribed shade on the paint deck or color wheel and then go upwards and outwards when selecting the paint for the walls or upholstery fabric or curtains.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home
    WHITE –

    Easy breezy white is a perennial summer favorite of one all. What’s not to love about a summery white dress in soft gauzy cotton?

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    To make a white on white room look easy-going and refreshing instead of bland and inconsequential, add a dash of texture and mix in a subtle pattern in a complementary hue or make a bold choice with contrasting black wood and metal finishes.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    When wearing pink be specific as to the exact shade – because all pinks are not created equal. Pink must always be worn in tandem with either a stronger color – for dramatic effect – or with a softer color for subtlety. Keep accessories to a minimum because less is more.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    Coral Pink is a beautifully soothing but tricky color to decorate with. It can end up looking too washed out and wimpy or too intense and fake looking. The trick is to let nature be the inspiration when choosing pink. Pick the variations of pink that are found in nature and you won’t go wrong.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    Nothing says summer more than blue denim – be it dark stonewashed indigo- blue or a soft faded chambray blue.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    ….and nothing conveys summer decor better than baby blue walls and washed blue fabric upholstered furniture.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    It is the perfect choice for a statement-making summer dress. Alternately, pair a red-striped white top with a fun pair of red shoes. This is one of those times when you do not want to match the shoes with the bag.

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    A bold red-walled room makes a unique statement. One that visitors and guests to your home will be hard put to forget and dying to re-create. The trick is if you’re going to go red, go bold and don’t drop the ball. Adding an equally bold contrasting color in the same tone will make it work. Another refreshing alternative is to bring in white to contrast with and play off the red in a fun, energizing combination which is at the same time very livable. And that is my Summer’s Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    Summer's Top 5 Color Trends in Fashion & Home

    Image credits: Purple Top courtesy Zara, White Dress courtesy Venus, White on white Living Room courtesy House Beautiful, Pink Pants courtesy Express, Coral Pink Bedroom courtesy Verandah, Blue Chambray Summer Dress courtesy Farfetch, Blue Bedroom courtesy Verandah, Red Dining Room with high gloss walls Courtesy Elle Decor,

    Fashion, Home
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    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    Staying home this week – trying to remain busy, positive, calm and optimistic – decided to start working on my new Fashion blog. This is my 14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings – the first of a series titled Wallet-Friendly Fashions.

    There are a lot of places that offer great affordable choices for fashionistas in their 20 and even 30s. But when it comes to timeless affordable fashion trends for the woman in her 40s, the landscape gets a tad bleaker.

    If you’re a style-informed fashionista over 40 or 50, these are some must-haves to add to your closet as go-to items year-round (keeping fingers crossed that we will be stepping outside real soon).

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    How many of these must-haves do you already have in your closet? FYI, from time to time, I may receive a small commission for items purchased.

    The Pencil Skirt

    This one is a personal fave in my closet.

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    I wear my pencil skirts in multiple colors to work three to four times a week – as some of my design clients and friends will attest to 🙂 It is a timeless and stylish women’s fashion staple. Check out the skirt on SALE at Boden USA (they have a 90-day return policy – but not on sale items).

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    A pencil skirt is timeless, elegant and comfortable to work in – except when I’m on a Design project that needs me to climb up a ladder to measure floor-to-ceiling French Doors for custom window treatments.

    The Not-So-Tank Top

    I feel tank tops and 40 somethings don’t mix well. My version is a not-so-tank with a silk lining, which is still fashionable and fun to wear (and yet not quite as unforgiving as a fitted tank top with spaghetti straps) like the one below, in black silk embellished with a hint of lace, for evening wear…

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    ….or for daytime, choose a well-cut tank with wide straps like the one from Anthropologie currently on SALE!!

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    The A-Line Midi Dress

    A staple on my list of 14 fashion must-haves for 40 somethings for whatever one might find on the to-do list on any given day – whether it be running errands by yourself, brunch with friends or out on a first date. Shop Modcloth for this Midi dress on SALE now….!!

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    The Black Work (Or Play) Suit

    This is a wardrobe essential that you can throw in the suitcase to take on out of town trips for business or pleasure – to be mixed and matched with separates. Shop Frank & Oak‘s Transit Packable blazer and Grant Tapered pull-on Pants that wear well with travel over multiple days and nights.

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    I bought my black pantsuit a long time ago at Talbots. It has stayed with me through one childbirth, a divorce and multiple moves and I dare say, has aged well!! I still swear by it. From time to time I have paired it with a black and white silk top for a classic look, worn the jacket with blue jeans and pink linen blouse for a casual weekend look and opted for a fun and flirty short skirt over a black top for a grown-up play date. Black pants make getting dressed for work a breeze as you only have to think about the top – be it a white pussy-bow blouse or abstract floral pattern peasant blouse or sleeveless geometric top.

    The Leopard Print – In Small Doses

    No list of 14 fashion must-haves for 40 somethings would be complete without this one. However, note to self – leopard print is only good in small doses (I learned that from trial and error over the years) like a leopard print bag or stiletto sandals….

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    …or a short animal print jacket (this one from Zaful is 56% off), that looks straight out of Mrs Maisel’s closet..!

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    The Trench Coat

    A wardrobe staple of Parisian women inside and outside of the glossy pages of fashion magazines everywhere, this a must-have for anyone who speaks these three French words – “tout le monde”…! The Trench Coat is one fierce fashion choice that will instantly upgrade your closet to that of a 40-something global fashion icon before you can say “touché”…! Shop Banana Republic for a classic trench similar to the one below…

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    …or go to La Redoute (they now ship to the US and accept returns for $5) for this statement-making vintage-looking brick-red number from that you can sweep up for a 50% OFF SALE !

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    Mine is a cotton creation in a black and white houndstooth that is less fierce and more casual but still elegant at the same time. I left it with my niece, the 20 something fashionista. Oh well!


    Another basic item that will nicely finish your wardrobe – in winter, fall or spring. Zappos has long been my go-to for affordable women’s shoes for booties that look like one pictured below.

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    As well as DSW – because it fulfills my three requirements for women’s shoes – affordable, comfortable and fashionable.

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    The Houndstooth

    The houndstooth is my staple for women’s clothing options that are bold yet sophisticated and every-day at the same time – creating an interesting texture, it is a must-have for the fashion-forward 40-50 something woman.

    Cropped Pants

    Stretched Capris or cropped Pants combine the comfort of leggings with the looks of work attire. It transitions from work to lunch to back at home.

    I feel like the moment when the humble stretched pants received the seal of approval to enter into the world of work attire, needs to be celebrated by hard-working women that want all-day comfort in an outfit that at the same time makes them look well put together.

    The Big Little Black Dress.

    Wear a different black dress every day. It was Designer Bobi Leonard who put that fun idea of a-black-for-every-day-of-the-week work dress code in my head. It works!

    I have worn a not so little (calf-length midi) black dress – to work with a mossy green bomber jacket over it, then thrown a washed gold cashmere shawl on top, switching to gold H&M sandals for an evening out.

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    Accessorize with a multi-colored glam necklace – like the orange and brown bead necklace that I picked up on a trip to Goa, or the gun-metal choker my friend Meenu bought me in New Delhi. A chunky necklace is my go-to for accessorizing whether I’m getting dressed for work – or for a social event.

    Red Shoes

    A must must-have, whether you plan to “dance away the blues” or plan on heading out to work in, paired with a white button-down shirt and basic black leggings and/or capri pants. If you’re looking for a sexy pair of shoes to wear with your white wide-leg pants at work or for date nights – this is it. I have three pairs of reds. One pair of knee-high boots, a pair of booties and the third, a sexy, strappy number for going out – when I don’t have to be on my feet for long – each one really affordable!!

    14 Fashion Must-Haves for 40 Somethings

    I found the red boots at a store on Melrose Avenue that was going out of business – and had a 75% OFF sale. The booties I bought at Sheik Shoes and the strappy sandals that look like the one pictured above, came from a Nordstrom half-yearly sale!! Affordable fashion…yay!

    This one above is good for going casual in, all through the spring and summer months.

    The Not-So-Basic Black Bag

    A decent-sized everyday bag in black goes a long way to round up your wardrobe.

    I swear by my patent leather black bag, It is roomy enough for everything I need with me at work, like cellphone keys, etc., etc., as well as handy for when I’m out and about running errands.

    ….and I have a smaller cross-body style one with a long strap – once again in black patent leather – for partying.

    The Wide-Leg Pants

    Okay, enough with the black! It’s time to add some joy to your closet with a pair of semi-casual wide-leg pants either in blue denim for every day on the go or an eye-catching, brightly colored pair for the office or afternoon shopping or just for hanging out. I found these Mustard Yellow Banana Republic pants on SALE !!

    I love my wide-leg pants – in beige and tan – and plan on getting a pair in white to step out in, come summer – hope and payers and fingers crossed !!

    The White Button-Down Shirt

    This one works really hard to make you look fabulous both at work – tucked into a pair of wide-leg black and white striped pants or worn with an amply cut pencil skirt in a rich port color or over plaid gray skinny pants – and at play – paired with a casual pink and white box-pleated skirt or beige satin pleated spring skirt ….

    It also makes for a great date-night fashion option when worn over a pair of faux leather black leggings a pair of strappy red high heels and a chunky red necklace….!!

    Hope you enjoy experimenting with sartorial suggestions for my 14 fashion must-haves for 40 somethings….!!

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