How to Make Cheap Clothes Look Expensive

As the (very blunt) title suggests (SEO, you know how it is), in today’s post I’m sharing some tricks I’ve learned on how to make your high street pieces look like they’re designer or, at the very least, a lot more expensive than they were.

It’s amazing what a few simple hand stitches or a piece of tape can do! Read on for my top styling secrets.

Whilst most of us would love a wardrobe full of couture clobber, that’s sadly not very realistic financially. Instead, I like to invest in the odd premium accessory and then tweak my high street purchases to look more high end to reflect my expensive taste.

My favourite way to upgrade a coat or jacket is to simply switch up the buttons for nicer ones. Cheap and simple buttons are one way that high street brands usually save money on these pieces. Pretty buttons from a haberdashers, like these gold coat of arms, ones only cost 99p for four so to upgrade this whole jacket cost me just £2.98 – bargain!

Luxury items are all about the finer details that show that extra time and care has gone into the craftsmanship of each piece. For this reason, extra design details that you can add to budget items will help to upgrade them and make them look more luxurious, as long as they’re neatly done. Expensive blazers often feature extra button detailing on the sleeves and pockets so, as well as switching the regular buttons, I added some mini buttons to mine that you don’t often find on high street pieces. Just take care to sew them neatly and all facing the same way – I so nearly sewed a button upside down – d’oh! (Mine don’t all look straight here but it’s just my arm pulling the lining, I made super sure they were all military straight as I sewed them).

I’ve been lusting over the Puma Suede Heart Satin trainers for months now but given that I don’t wear tennis shoes that often, I couldn’t justify the £70 price tag. Instead I decided to upgrade these affordable M&S SS17 collection tennis shoes by making my own ribbon laces. I bought 2.5 metres of crisp white ribbon from the same haberdashers for 99p. I then simply cut it in half and wound speckled gold craft tape (skip this is you don’t have it), followed by regular sticky tape around each end of the lace to make the stiff tips that you need for looping them through – eh voila – beautiful bow laces in under five minutes! It was so fast and I love how this makes my otherwise boyish trainers look pretty and girly. I’ll be wearing these with sundresses now that the weather is starting to warm up in England.

To finish off the look, I like to style the items that I upcycle with my high end accessories, most of which I have bought pre-loved or been gifted. When I see a girl sporting a beautiful designer handbag and a glossy watch that I recognise, I naturally assume that her gorgeous blazer is probably designer too. I doesn’t occur to me that she may have sat in from of Made in Chelsea with a needle and thread and sewn those gorgeous gold button on there to make it look so fab!

These are just a couple of my upgrading tips as I don’t want to overload you but I’ll be sharing plenty more so you can follow me here on Instagram for news of when the next ones are up.

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x Jade Mercedes Fraser x