How To Save For Investment Pieces

by Claire Chanelle


My Work History

Why Working Hard Helps You Shop Better

This article has been requested by so many of you. Following on from my “cost per wear” theory that I last spoke about here, so many of you have been asking for me to share more. It seems many of you agree with my theory and believe in investing into designer pieces but you don’t know how to save or prioritise. Maybe you are just interested to know how I prioritise? First of all let me start off by saying that saving does NOT come easy to me and I am not a responsible person. With that said I have managed all my life to get the things I want by saving so I can’t be that bad. I have also learnt a lot over the years, made mistakes buying stupid, pointless things so I will share all of this with you. If you don’t like to spend money on designer that’s fine, my sister never chooses to spend her money on designer stuff and she always looks great. This just how I shop and save, a normal girl who shops wisely. I love high street and I love to mix high end with high street. I love shopping on a budget because it makes me love and appreciate everything I wear. I think it also made it easier that I grew up with nothing. Like I explained in my Youtube video, we struggled as a family due to my dad being terminally ill. At the age of fourteen I started working as a waitress, when my mum was at the hospital I would walk to the restaurant and back and it would take me  two hours there and back. I wanted the exercise but I also knew if I didn’t get the bus I could save £40 a month. Even back then with no money I had something against public transport. This gave me discipline and made me understand how hard I had to work to in order to buy “things.” As soon as I turned sixteen I got a job in River Island, my thinking was: I could buy more if I had a discount. See I am not sensible, I wanted to buy more not save. This thought process still stayed with my when I chose my Harrods job over a Grazia internship. I used to work three jobs; waitressing (at two restaurants) cleaning schools and pubs and River Island as a shop assistant. I am telling you this because I believe that working hard for your “things” makes you appreciate the item more and appreciate your money more. I know plenty of girls that don’t work and have money handed to them, these girls can not save and do not understand the meaning of money or know how precious a new handbag is.  If you are reading this and you are one of those girls, sorry to offend you but I can’t relate to you and think if you worked it would build your character, help you understand my theory and buying process. When you are working so hard to get money, you appreciate every penny you get. When I used to clean toilets at the pub and then go to an evening shift as a waitress I used to think “I am working way too hard, how can I turn this money into more”. Okay so I am going off track a bit here and spilling into my entrapanerural thoughts but it’s all inspiring I hope? I used my money to buy things in bulk buys from America and then I would sell them. This would triple my monthly wage. I hope now you can understand how I was growing up. No one bought me anything unless I worked for it and bough it “you want something get it yourself.” I work so hard and this has helped me appreciate everything I have and think about how I spend my money. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

My Money

I have had comments on my instagram such as “money but no style” “covered in designer but you look horrible” “she’s probably got a rich husband” “she’s just a another rich girl with no budget” “I could never afford that bag” “why have you got so much money.” These comments used to upset me, I used to think you have no idea how I grew up or how I buy my bags. I think enough of you know me by now and know this is not true. I can afford this stuff because I save, work hard and go without. If you don’t do those things then don’t expect nice things in your life.

I work hard for my money and I always have priorities to pay for before I consider shopping. I really do understand how to budget and I could live of £20 a week no problem. I would miss my Starbucks but I could do it. When I want something I can get by on the minimum. It’s all about how passionate you are about that “new bag” or “Balmain jacket.” If you are not that bothered then there is not much of an incentive to sacrifice.


My Theory

For those of you that don’t know my theory I believe that if you invest into say a Balmain jacket that retails at £1200, technically it doesn’t cost that. First of all it will make you look and feel amazing. A low budget blazer for £25/£50 will not make you feel as good, and the cut, fabric will not be the same. You get what you pay for. Stay away from over priced rubbish just because it is a designer brand, doesn’t mean it’s classic. My theory only works on classic brands, classic items and good quality pieces. I have made mistake before buying something that is expensive like 6″ Louboutins for £600 and it wasn’t worth it; I hardly wore them and they got ruined after two wears in a  club. These are not invest buys. A blazer like this, a bag like this, practical shoes like these; these are investment buys.

Back to the theory. If a high street blazer cost you £60 and you wear it five times. This blazer cost you £12. If you buy a designer blazer for £1200 and you wear it 50 times because it just looks so good and the good quality has lasted you years then this blazer cost you £24. I guarantee a designer blazer like Balmain will last you a lifetime, those blazers keep their shape and the fabric is so durable. Not to mention the difference in how they both look on. Investing is always best. Throw away fashion is pointless, you are throwing away your money. I wear lots of high street because I like it and I can’t afford to wear designer head to toe. Even if I could there really is no need to waste so much money on clothes.


How To Save and Prioritise 

You have probably heard your parents say “money doesn’t grow off tress” and they are right. If you want something expensive you need to work hard and then save. Saving means you need to really want what ever you are saving for. Then comes the prioritising.

Going out was always my number one thing that I would cut from my luxuries. Going out cost money. I used to stay in watching films (probably why I love films so much now) working out or doing my nails. If I did go out I would 9/10 not drink. 90% of my uni days I didn’t drink because I was saving for my first CHANEL bag and Louboutin shoes. If you do go out drive or take cash. Never ever take your card it will end badly. Try not to drink, it will save you money and your figure.

Holidays. This is a tough one because now I love holidays and I see it as an investment because of the memories you hold. I think it’s also fair to save for a luxury holiday and go without all year. Paris and I stay in a lot but we holiday BIG. It’s our treat because we stay in 99% of the time.

I used to miss out on girls Ibiza holidays because I wanted a new bag. I didn’t exclude myself I would just go once a year instead of three times.

I always used to go out for fancy meals BUT I never ordered cocktails and never ordered a full  meal. I used to go to Nobu all the time and no joke my bill (with a friend) used to be £16. We would order a dessert each or just edamame beans, veg sushi and tap water; they hated us.  So bad but it was the only way to dine nicely and not spend money.

I never got my nails done I always did it myself. Now I am really good at doing my own nails.

These were just a few examples of extreme sacrifices, stuff I had to do when I was really young. I hope this helps any student reading this.

Now as an adult I don’t have to be as strict. But I still live on a budget and make lots of sacrifices.

I don’t shop pointlessly every month. I never walk into Zara and spend £300, all my friends do that all of them. I do it but only when I actually need clothes or a once in a while spend up. I get my nails done once every few months, I don’t have a cleaner and I sell things every now and again. I also buy good quality tees, they last longer and it is worth spending £50 instead of £15. I do buy cheap tees to pad out my wardrobe but buying the odd nice tee pays off. I love these tees here and here they last forever.

Right now I am saving for something major. It’s killing me because I haven’t shopped on ASOS, or any of these online sites. I haven’t been out, I have been saving every penny. Each time you go to crack think of that item you badly want in your wardrobe and how you will feel wearing it. The best tip ever is find someone on social media who has it and just stalk and stalk them; look at the item you really want and remind yourself you are nearly there and it will be worth it when you have it. It’s worse when that person is someone you don’t like. Nothing worse than seeing someone you don’t like with something you want. Or maybe you want to be the first one with that item? You need to constantly remind yourself of the item and have it on your sights. Don’t give up because giving up is for failures who don’t try hard enough. Do you want to be a failure? No you don’t so just suffer it for a few months.


The First Investment Buy

The first buy is the hardest because it’s the first time you will part with so much money on clothes or a bag. But you get used to it and it becomes “normal”. Be careful not to go mental and get your self in debt and get to the point where you don’t appreciate your new items. I will never ever forget where I came from and how hard I worked and still work. I will always appreciate my bags, shoes and clothes. I treasures my clothes and my wardrobe is immaculate. Never not appreciate your wardrobe. After six months of buying designer you won’t look back. For the next two three years you will probably go wild buying things and no doubt make a few mistakes. Just try to stick to classic colours, you won’t get board of classic colours and classic brands. Mix your key investment buys with high street, that’s the fun part. My first ready to wear investment was my Balmain blazer and then my leather Balmain. I still wear all of them. The Acne coat you can see below was on my wish list for two years. I couldn’t justify spending all that money so I just didn’t buy it. Last year I had had enough of being cold every winter so I started to save. It was the best investment ever! It looks amazing and most of all it’s so warm, I never feel cold wearing this coat and that was such a receive; a coat that actually keep me warm. All that money waisted on polyester coats from Zara, it was pointless. Click here to shop my Acne coats.

Another tip on your first big buy is to simply replace a cheap item you love. For me I worked at Harrods, so I had to wear a black blazer everyday. I knew if Invested in a designer one it would be worth it, I would wear it everyday. I had a fitted black blazer with gold buttons that I wore everyday. I knew if I spent money on  Balmain one it would be worth it. Maybe you wear a red blazer from Zara every week and it’s getting tatty, buy a red designer blazer because you already know it will fit into your wardrobe.


Don’t Cross The Line

I am thirty years old and I don’t have a credit card. I tried to have one. You know using it for petrol and food to help my credit score. Nope didn’t work, I knew I had access to money so I cut up my card before I didn’t any damage. Some people say that’s pathetic but I know so many people will credit card debt. I never once had any trouble or debt so it works for me. I also do not have a large over draft so my money is my money. I don’t believe in buying bags on credit, save and then buy. If you are sensible then fine use a credit card, it’s good for you credit score. Just be sensible and if you can’t be trusted don’t get one. To all those girls that have commented “she probably doesn’t save and wastes money on bags” “she needs to save of her kids future not buy bags” to all those girls I hope you are reading this, because your comments were wrong, you don’t know me.

Don’t deprive yourself all the time. Treat your self to a hair appointment and get your nails done or go out but do everything in moderation. Buy high street but if you save for four months at the end of it you will save enough for what ever is you wanted.

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Classic Items I Recommend

Always stick to neutral colours, you won’t get bored and you can wear them a lot more than bright colours. If there is a cheap item you love and wear a lot this could be the first item you buy as designer. I always buy black first, black never goes out of trend and doesn’t stain. If I love it I buy it in a nude or white. All my designer pieces like the CHANEL bags, Balmain blazers, leather jacket; I always start off with black then nude. If I am feeling rich 🙂 I buy the odd colour, like a red CHANEL or pink leather jacket. Below I have listed some great invest buys. There are also some more at the start of this article.

I hope this article helps you save and buy your dream item. Please feel free to leave comment. If you have any tips to share or further qaurtuosn to ask me.




CC xx

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Chantelle March 26, 2016 - 10:28 am

I absolutely love how honest you are, great post <3

Chouquette March 26, 2016 - 1:27 pm

Thank you. Nothing to be ashamed about if you didn’t grow up with money, if anything it shows are hardworking you are that you achieved something xx

Kath March 26, 2016 - 10:44 am

I have followed this theory since I got a job, I’ve always bought for example genuine uggs as opposed to copies as they last years and years. I also made the mistake of ordering louboutin lady peeps from NAP as I was too scared to walk into selfridges in non designer shoes and ask to try them on, I have a high arch so they didn’t even stay on my feet! Your blog has made me think more about what I should actually be investing in and what isn’t worth it! Thanks xx

Chouquette March 26, 2016 - 1:26 pm

I am so happy if this articles helps you xx

Jane March 26, 2016 - 10:47 am

So much ❤️ For this! I’m exactly like you, we never had any money and I grew up knowing if I wanted nice things, I will have to work hard to get them. Now at 22 I have a Celine bag, Prada purse, givenchy antigona and I’m saving up for the Valentino rockstuds and Saint Laurent sac de jour. people are always asking me how can I afford so many designer things, but they only see the glamorous Instagram side, they don’t see that I work 30/40 hours a week whilst studying full time. My friends think I’m boring just because I’d rather miss out on a night out or eating out because I’m saving for designer bag or shoes. Glad to know there’s more of us like that out there hopefully at 30 I’ll be where you are! Love, Jane x

Chouquette March 26, 2016 - 1:26 pm

We are exactly the same then! nice things don’t come for free and when you are my age you will be glad you lived like that. If you keep pushing and don’t give up you can achieve anything xx

Dom March 26, 2016 - 11:01 am

Great article, really like. Well done Claire!

Chouquette March 26, 2016 - 1:25 pm

Thanks Dom x

Jayne March 26, 2016 - 12:33 pm

Love this article! Where do you recommend finding good quality, authentic, well priced Chanel bags? Obviously apart from Chanel itself!
Thank you.

Chouquette March 26, 2016 - 1:24 pm

Designer Exchange @webuydesigner on Insta. I have a couple from there xx

Jessica March 26, 2016 - 1:31 pm

Love this article! I’ve been thinking of starting a savings jar, just for special designer items I always admire, but I started to feel guilty! I’m hopeless for feeling guilty whenever I buy something! I work really hard and want to treat myself!
Did you ever get the guilty feelings? And how do you overcome them?
Love your blog Claire!

Chouquette March 27, 2016 - 10:04 am

I get that guilty feeling every time j buy something. It’s so bad that it ruins the enjoyment sometimes. I think I will always have it but as long as you don’t use a credit card and it’s your cash I think it’s okay to enjoy it. Xx

Jessica March 27, 2016 - 11:27 am

Thanks Claire! Yes, you know you’ve been honest with yourself and worked hard! Plus, the excitement over the packaging of the product also helps the guilt! Xx

Maria March 26, 2016 - 1:39 pm

Congratulations this is a fantastic artical which is worthy of a magazine! Seriously if you or anyone else knows someone in the fashion/style magazines, show them this blog. People are slowly becoming aware of the issues that are also behind “quick” fashion. Low wage earners etc.. But you are very inspirational person, even to me at my age lol. I don’t buy the way my peers buy, I like good quality classic items which will last. I wait until a good sale is on and I don’t mean 20%. That’s the problem to young teenagers/young adults they are not aware of this information they are just fed by ” what’s in fashion right now”.
I am 52 yo and I would have appreciated this advise at a much younger age. I grew up in a working class family, money was not available to us as it is today. I agree not to use a credit/ debit card unless you are sensible, to many young adults carry an awful lot of debt.

Chouquette March 27, 2016 - 10:03 am

Gosh thank you! I don’t think a magazine would print my terrible writing, I struggle with writing and just relived everyone can read what I’m trying to say! Thanks for commenting xx

shan March 26, 2016 - 3:17 pm

Absolutely loved this post ! I started reading your blog about 2 years ago when I was in my final year of Uni and could never afford to buy Chanel or anything so high priced. I remember reading your blog and wishing I could have a classic Chanel bag as it was my dream bag. You also mentioned styleismything who has a huge collection like yourself and I was literally determined to own and buy everything I wanted. I literally never gave up and started my own business back then within the same year I brought myself my first designer bag which was a Givenchy Antigona and a pair of loubs. A year later I finally brought myself a Chanel maxi that I has always dreamed of and couldn’t be happier. I now own my second business and still save up for my favs pieces and can afford so much more. You literally kicked of this huge drive and I realised no matter what background you come from you literally can have anything you want as long as you wok hard enough. Thanks for the inspo and would love to see your entire Chanel collection in a Youtube video. Love Shan X

Julie March 27, 2016 - 7:28 am

Wow so wonderful article from real person who works so hard to get what she dreams about!! Work is actually real life and pays when you invest all yourself of what you dream about. I am like you I work 7 days a week not for the glory not because I love it but just because I want this or that, and I am so proud when I can say that I bought it myself with lot of work. Thx Claire again for this article. Xx

Chouquette March 27, 2016 - 10:00 am

It’s a nice feeling when you finally buy that item you saved and saved for. Thanks for commenting xx

Adele March 28, 2016 - 8:44 am

I remember my first Chanel bag purchase, a black lambskin 2.55 jumbo double flap, the SA in the London Bond St store took the time to tell me all about how the bag was made, as she had been to the facotry to learn about it. It really was special & felt like I was buying so much more than a bag. I agree with your ethos, it’s all about priorities & what you’d rather spend your money on.
Great article Claire.
Hugs Adele xoxo

Nicole May 8, 2016 - 10:17 pm

Love this artical so much as its made me think about the way I spend my money and how I can save in areas. I’ve always done the same in regards to going out and I’d rather drive than drink which makes people think I’m weird but I don’t care if rather spend my money on something that I’ll get more enjoyment out of. I have been uneducated in where to spend my money in regards to designer and have wasted quite a lot. I was surprised you don’t have a cleaner with such a big house and busy lifestyle. I’m struggling at the moment to fit everything in. How do you manage to fit it all into your lifestyle and get everything done that needs doing xxxxx

Chouquette May 9, 2016 - 1:30 pm

Thanks for the comment.

I feel like I don’t cope well as all haha. I try to be organised and write lists everyday but there are never enough hours in the day and I have no relaxing time.
The only answer is; I get up early and go to bed about 1:30am every night. I have also given up hobbies like going to the gym but this needs to change! I suffer from head aches because I am always on the go. I feel like I am giving you rubbish advise, but I just write lists everyday and work like a machine. I am thinking about getting a cleaner once every two weeks so help me. xx

G January 7, 2017 - 1:01 am

Very well written and inspiring


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