Spring Wardrobe Refresh: Taking on the Savers New Year, New You $50 Challenge

Taking on the Savers New Year, New You $50 Challenge

$50 at Savers can go a long way!

I’ve shown you before how to stretch your money at Savers, with posts about making $60 work and spending $100 there. This time around, I was given a $50 budget and told to look for pieces that were perhaps a bit out of my comfort zone as part of a “New Year, New You” challenge. I opted to look for pieces that would work for spring, and got really smart about shopping this time around. I hit up Savers during a 50% off sale, so my $50 was well-spent, and I got a ton of pieces that will not only work great for spring, but will help take my wardrobe to a new level as I work on cleaning out my closet and refining my style for 2015.

Before I went shopping, I followed my own first thrifting tip and put some ideas together regarding what I was looking for. I created a secret Pinterest board with those ideas so that I could easily reference them while I was shopping. Then I planned to spend a few hours at two nearby stores on Sunday (the Club Card Member preview day). I figured if I didn’t blow through my $50 on Sunday, between the two stores, I could hit up the Hoffman Estates store after work. Then I headed to the store, $50 in hand, and got my saving on!

So what did I score?

My total haul ended up costing me $52.86. I did throw one board game in the mix of clothes though, so that I didn’t have to have a balance of a couple bucks left on my gift certificate, and that was $3.99 (and not part of the 50% off sale). So if you take the board game out of the total, I spent $48.97 on shoes and clothes at Savers. Not too bad, when you consider that I brought home four tops, three skirts, three cardigans, one sweater, one dress, and one pair of shoes. It’s even better when you look at some of the brands I added to my closet: Armani Exchange, Kenneth Cole, Vince Camuto, Nine West, and Ann Taylor being the real draws of the bunch.

Let’s start with tops.

I stayed out of the normal top areas of Savers on this trip and ventured into areas I usually breeze through. I didn’t even look at the men’s t-shirt section because I really don’t need more fun tees, and that’s not really out of my comfort zone at all. So I really scoured the women’s top sections looking for things that suited what I was looking for. I was surprised when I found quite a few things. Perhaps I need to pay more attention to these sections regularly!

Since I mentioned Armani Exchange first above, it’s only fitting that I share the A|X top I got first. It’s a basic, ribbed knit black shell that can easily be dressed up or dressed down. It’s perfect for layering, for the office, for rocking sporty looks… the options are endless. It was $4.99, less 50%, so it came up to $2.50. I found a similar shell currently available on the Armani Exchange website for $79.50, so this was a pretty awesome find. It’s a piece that I imagine will last quite a long time in my closet. I’ve already worn it to a gala event (along with a skirt you’ll see below) and can’t wait to wear it more. Not really out of my comfort zone, but it was too good of a deal to pass up, and I surprisingly didn’t have anything like this in my closet.


Kenneth Cole is up next! This silky, peasant-style top is definitely a little out of my normal style bubble, but I grabbed it anyway, and when I tried it on I knew it was coming home with me. It’s a really pretty top that will work with a lot of my existing pieces and will be nice for warmer weather. It can lean a little sporty and I know I can rock it up with the right accessories, so it will fit in with my style nicely, I think. I wasn’t able to find anything similar to this to compare pricing, but at $3.99 less 50%, it rang up at a mere $2, and since Kenneth Cole tops range from $35 for a t-shirt to over $100, I’d say $2 was a pretty awesome price to pay for this top.


Next in my bag of tops is a Heritage 81 piece. Heritage 81 used to be a branch of Forever21, but they’ve since combined it all. This heavier sweater-like top is a boxy, short-sleeved crop that has a really eye-catching pattern on it. Normally, for $5.99, I’d have turned my nose up at a Forever21 item, but with it being 50% off and just $3, I grabbed it. It’s a cool pattern, and a cropped top like this, especially with it’s sweater texture and short sleeves, isn’t something I’d normally go for. It will be fun to play with as the weather warms up. And the more I see it, the more I love the pattern. While Forever21 doesn’t have anything like it on the site, I’m wagering it was probably a $25-30 item, so for three bucks it was a decent deal.



Last but not least is a pretty, tagless, double layer top that caught my eye. It’s a pretty taupe color that my mom and I both associate with my grandma, and I somehow am able to pull off. The bottom half of this is sheer, and makes it definitely a little out of my comfort zone, but I loved the easiness of it and how fun it looked on, so I grabbed it. It was another top that rang up at $2 and I know I’ll be able to wear this a bunch of different places with a few different takes one it. Because I don’t know what brand it is (there was no tag at all), I can’t really see what kind of “discount” I got on it, but for two bucks does it really matter?



Total spent on tops: $9.50

Next up, skirts.

I got a surprisingly good batch of skirts on this trip to Savers. Usually it’s pretty hit-or-miss for me, and I really have to have the time and patience to try on bottoms. I had the time, so I figured I’d browse the section. I found quite a few pieces to try on and ended up bringing three very different pieces home.

The first one is a Chelsea Nites formal skirt, which I paired with the Armani Exchage top for the gala event earlier this month. It was hard to photograph, but it’s a full-length skirt that hits me perfectly at the waist. I went to Savers hoping to find something to wear to the event, and this fit the bill. But I’m also kind of hoping it’ll be fun to dress down too. I found a few similar skirts for sale on resale sites, and it appears this is a 90’s formalwear brand. Not a super expensive one, since they seem to be going for $15-20, but I only paid $3 so I still got a decent deal. And the color is one I absolutely cannot get enough of right now, so it has that going for it too.


Next in my skirt bag is another burgundy item. This one’s a pencil skirt with a neat “I” pattern on it. I figured it’d be a good wear-to-work piece that can work for both spring and fall, and even winter if it’s more mild out. There was no tag in this skirt either, so I don’t know what to compare it to, but it seems really well-made and it fits me nice. It rang up at $3 as well.


The last skirt I got is a dalmatian print Ann Taylor LOFT A-line skirt. I totally dig the dalmatian print, having discovered it first in a pair of thrifted pants, and later a pair of flats and a dress, and I knew that if this skirt fit, it was coming home with me. Thankfully it fit me beautifully, and I scored this puppy (see what I did there?) for $4. I great addition to my closet and one that will work for fun weekend looks and office wear. I can rock it out or sport it up too, which means it will work beautifully for the new look I’m cultivating in my closet. I was able to find this skirt for sale on Poshmark for $20, and on the Ann Taylor LOFT site there are two similar skirts (one a similar cut, one a similar print) that are going for around $65-70. So $4 was definitely a good price for this skirt!


Total spent on skirts: $10

Moving on to cardigans.


I went into Savers hoping to find a couple of loose-fitting, comfy cardigans I could layer over all sorts of things for spring. I found two that were nearly exactly what I was looking for!

The first one is a camel-colored Vince Camuto cardigan with hook closures down the front and a removable faux fur collar. Sort of a grown-up version of something similar from Forever21 that I’ve had for years and needed replacing, but also far more comfortable. This beautiful cardigan rang up at $4, but was, according to Lyst, for sale at Nordstrom for around $195. I knew it was a good find based on the brand, but I didn’t expect it was that good of a find. I’ve already worn this quite a few times, and can’t wait to wear it in spring and fall too. It’s a great addition to my closet and one I anticipate staying there for a long time.


Another cardigan I found is actually by Catherines, a plus size brand that normally I’d avoid. But I loved the color and feel of this, so I tried it on. It’s a pretty over-sized top on me, obviously, but I brought it home anyway because I liked the shapelessness of it and don’t really have much like it. And for just $2.50 it was worth it. It’s boxy and big, but it works for me. Another piece I’ve worn quite a few times already, so I know it works well. It will be fun to play with come spring, and nice to wear in fall too. It might even work in summer as “little extra warmth” evening piece, since it’s not super dark or heavy. I can’t find anything like it on the Catherines site, so I’m guessing it’s a little older of an item. Either way, it certainly never cost $2.50, so this was a good find as well.


And finally in my cardigans bag I have another Forever21 piece. Definitely an older piece, since cardigans like this aren’t really “in”, but that’s ok. I liked the layering possibilities of this piece, and the texture it had. It’s lighter-weight so I can layer it under a vest, a blazer, or a heavier cardigan easily. I don’t own too much navy either, and it was the color of this that caught my eye first. It rang up for $3 which is, again, a pretty good price for a Forever21 item. It probably retailed for around $20-25, I’d guess, so I’m pertty happy with having paid just $3 for it.


Total spent on cardigans: $9.50

Moving on to the sweater I found…

I didn’t dig too deep in the sweater section, since I was hunting for spring items, but the color of this caught my eye.  It’s a nice dusty purple color that looks great on me, and it’s a lighter sweater that’ll be good over dresses or skirts for spring (and fall). A good base piece that will be fun to make more sporty than casual, but one I can also wear to work with leggings (as I already have) easily. A similar sweater retails for $70 on sale (originally $80), so paying just $4 for this was a pretty good deal.


Total spent on sweaters: $4

And now, the dress I found.

I had been browsing the dress section looking for something formal to wear to a gala, and had no intention of finding anything casual. But of course, when thrifting, things never go as planned… that’s part of the fun of it!

The striped, high-low number jumped out at me while I was shopping. It’s black and off-white, jersey knit, and has short sleeves along with a high-low hem, and it’s nothing like anything in my closet, though it did make me think of a certain striped dress I loved. So I grabbed it even though it looked kinda tiny. Surprisingly, it fit me well, so into my cart it went, despite the “higher” price of $9.99.  It rang up at $5, so it’s really not a bad price, and it turns out it’s made in the USA, which is always nice. I couldn’t find anything on the brand at all, so I’m not sure what this would have retailed for.


Total spent on dresses: $5


Last but not least, shoes!

I usually make a couple rounds through shoes, since that section of the store always seems to be one that gets replenished often. My first trip though shoes was unsuccessful, and the department was rather busy, so I made it quick. I also probably overlooked things because there were so many other shopping at the time. My second trip through was similar, but there was a line for the fitting rooms and I’d already tried on everything I could out in the open. I made a final pass through after I tried on everything.

It was on that final pass that I spotted these Nine West booties. They are a similar shape to a pair of boots I have and love, but have worn to the point of thinking that maybe it’s time to get rid of them. I tried them on and they fit, so I threw my shoes in my cart and made my final round through the store wearing these to make sure they were comfortable enough. They were, so I took them to checkout with me. The most expensive item I bought at $12.99 before the 50% off discount, they rang up to an easy-to-stomach $6.50. While I wasn’t able to find this exact boot anywhere, this strikingly similar pair at DSW sells for $79.95 (with the “compare at” price being $159). Not too bad for a pair of classic booties that work with nearly everything! I had been looking for something like this for ages, so it was nice to find it for such a reasonable price.


Total spent on shoes: $6.50

Total amount spent before tax: $44.50

My day shopping at Savers was a very successful one indeed! I was able to find some really great items, both things I’d been looking for and pieces that really took me outside my comfort zone, but are still easy to incorporate into my wardrobe come spring (or even now, like with the sweaters). Finds like these definitely make thrifting worthwhile, and at Savers it’s easy to try on and make sure everything looks good before you buy. Plus, you just can’t beat 50% off days!

Stay tuned for some outfits I’ve planned with these items!

Since this post is long enough, I figured I’d plan some outfits and share them with you in another post. And I can’t wait to show you how I’ve put together some of these items and how I’ve mixed them into my existing wardrobe. My spring wardrobe is going to be perfection thanks to Savers, and the pieces I have here can be worn nearly year-round too, which makes it even better!

If you’d like to stay on top of Savers sales, and make sure you get the best bang for your buck, sign up to be a member of the Super Savers Club. You’ll get all of the info on their sales, and even get special preview days for some sales. Not sure where your nearest Savers is? Find it here.

Disclaimer: I was compensated for this post with a gift certificate to Savers. Compensation does not affect my views in any way. To read my full disclosure policy, click here.

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