Wednesday, December 30, 2009



Every true fashionista knows: when you're strapped for cash, it is not about which designer label you are wearing, but looking like you are wearing it. Of course, every true fashionista has at one time or another skipped a meal here and there to help pay for those special items with aspirational price tags.

Below you will find your secret A to Z shopping index of San Francisco's best places to satisfy your sartorial fetish with a high style quotient at a low price. Some of these places you may have heard of, while others are smaller boutiques - soon to be your new obsessions where you can find a range of fashions from Marc Jacobs jackets for $32.50 to Diane Von Furstenberg-inspired dresses for under $50.

I scoured and hunted many of these places to present you with four styled looks for $100 or less, including shoes and accessories. I dug, toiled, and fought over Missoni sweaters for eleven dollars (yes, you read that right), at Goodwill, and cried when the Dries Van Noten shoes were not my model's shoe size, but alas, I emerged triumphant with heaps of cute clothes and styling solutions report back on.

A)merican Apparel: This entry should come as no surprise. Child porn-ish advertisements and glittery leggings aside, American Apparel is a reliable source for basics. Key items to shop for here are T-shirts, cardigans, and zippy sweaters. (2174 Union Street, 1615 Haight Street, and 363 Grant Avenue)

B)uffalo Exchange: The prices have risen here in tandem with the rest of the Haight Street thrift stores, but you can still find women's shirts for under five dollars. (1555 Haight Street and 1210 Valenicia Street)

C)rossroads Trading Company: You'll have a lot of luck finding big name designers for small prices at the Irving and Market Street locations. Cross your fingers they have your sizes, too. (1901 Fillmore Street, 1519 Haight Street, 630 Irving Street, 2123 Market Street)

D)SW: The women's shoes are much more consistent than the men's collection, but you'll find rock bottom prices for name brand footwear in the basement, where the clearance is located. (111 Powell Street, 306 Westlake Village)

E)state Sale: It may seem creepy to wear a dead woman's clothes, but she can probably save you a lot of money.

F)orever 21: Key items here are booties for under thirty dollars and stacks of bangles and bracelets you can get for just seven dollars. There's also the designer-inspired pieces and leather jackets you can get for around thirty dollars. (7 Powell Street)

*Portions of this text were originally published in Xpress Magazine.

One-Shoulder Dress, Double Zero, $31.99 from Pink Lilly 1748 Haight Street

Heather Grey T-Shirt, H&M, $9.90 from H&M 150 Powell Street

Booties, Forever 21, $20.80 from Forever 21 7 Powell Street

Tights, $2.75 from New York Apparel 1772 Haight Street

Total: $65.44


MODEL: Shelby Rothwell

STYLIST: Seth Leeper

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