Art of Style

Shopportunities: The Art of Sales Shopping

How to make the most of markdowns

BY October 28, 2015



Having downsized our home, I have fewer closets, so I’m determined to be a better
shopper—particularly during sales. Do you have any tips?

 —Jennifer R., Estero

It’s easy to be beguiled by special offers and massive markdowns, so before you even leave home, assess your current wardrobe and make a checklist of what you actually need. It’s also worth adding some questions to ask yourself, such as, “When/where will I wear it?” and “Do I love it?” A bargain is only a bargain if it’s something you’d have considered buying at full price. If it isn’t a good color for you, the right fit or something you’ll wear, then walk away from it—quickly. 

Make it easy on yourself by wearing clothing that can be removed easily and undergarments that work under anything you try on. It is essential to try items on—if something doesn’t fit you in the shop, it won’t magically fit you when you get home, either. Check the store’s return policy regarding sale items. (Stores want to clear the stock, so it’s not unreasonable to have an “all sales are final” policy.)

Sale shopping can be an excellent opportunity to snap up wardrobe staples or buy a second version of something you already have and know you love. It’s also a good time to update existing outfits with new accessories, so look for price reductions on quality belts, shoes and jewelry. Planning your shopping trip will help you secure a steal, rather than be stung.

Cheryl Lampard, founder of Style Matters International, answers your questions each month. If you have a question for Cheryl, send it to

Related Images: