Fall to Winter Fashion on a Budget

Hello Pretty People,

I’ve had many people ask me where I get my clothes, and I’d like to think I follow fashion fairly well. I love keeping up with trends and incorporating some of my own. Although I love clothes, it can be expensive to keep up with every trend, especially as a college student. Not everyone has a budget that allows for shopping every season. So, I’ve decided to create little guide for the girls like me!

Now, I know we always see these types of posts on “fashion for college students” and then it shows $100 leggings and $150 rain boots that you actually cannot afford. You know exactly what I mean…

Well, this is not that fashion guide. This is for the legit college girl who cannot afford fancy clothing brands just yet. We will get there one day, but we got to get the degree first. These are the ways that I stay on top of fashion without breaking the bank.

Shop Deals:

The number one way I can afford fashionable pieces is by shopping deals and sometimes shopping out of season. For example, I found these super cute grey booties at a boutique in the Spring, they were only $20 but I knew they were perfect for Fall. Now, they are one of my staples for the Fall + Winter.

I love brands, but sometimes the best way to shop is by style not brand. Stores like Zara + H&M may not scream rich girl, but you can find all the same trends as the high fashion brands at these stores.

Jeans/pants aren’t seasonal:

There is nothing better than a new pair of jeans. But, one tip I recommend is not buying jeans every season. Sure, there will be styles you will want to purchase but jeans are timeless for the most part. A light wash, a dark wash, a ripped jean and a colored jean; that’s all you need to survive. Jeans are jeans, no one will notice if they are new or old.

Jeans are one thing I will spend more money on. High quality jeans last a long time and as I said, the don’t really change too much. Unlike a shirt, jeans cross seasonal trends well. Any unique style pants are a great way to mix it up too!

Shop Styles:

I mentioned this tip in the first point, but I am mentioning it again because it’s not always about the brand name. If you like Steve Madden shoes, check out Target for similar styles. If you like J. Crew stuff, check out Old Navy. If you are looking for modern trends like Gucci or Burberry, check out Zara or H&M. I found a quilted vest, cashmere (look alike) sweater and a black + white flannel all under $50 at Old Navy. I also snagged some Steve Madden looking sneakers from Target for only $20. They are all great quality too!

Something Borrowed:

A final tip is to borrow items from a friend or family member. This is not something I do on a daily basis, but when I am attending an event or something special, I will sometimes ask a friend for an outfit. Instead of spending $50-$100 on a new dress, I’ll shop my besties closet to see if there is something that fits the occasion. If I’m going out and feel bored with my own clothes, I will sometimes ask to borrow something too! It’s an option if you are really looking for something new but do not have the money.

I will share some of these items below, along with outfit ideas. Simply click on the brand name in the parenthesis to shop for yourself.

My Fall to Winter Outfits

Black + White Flannel (Old Navy, $15), AE Ripped Jeans (Similar AE Style, $30),

Grey Wool Hat (Similar Style, $20)

Caramel V-Neck Sweater (Old Navy, $12.50), Olive Green Quilted Vest (Old Navy, $17), Same AE Jeans, Boutique Blanket Scarf (Similar Style, $17)& TOMS Wedges (Similar, $50)

Turtle Neck (Gap, $17) & same Green Vest from above

These outfits shared above are all basically using the same pieces. I wanted to show you how it easy it can be to style just a few basic pieces. This vest allows you to mix up any outfit. I wore it with three different pieces here; paired with a turtle neck, a sweater and a flannel (not pictured). You can also layer with the flannel, although it is not shown above, I could easily layer the flannel over my sweater. I also accessorized with my blanket scarf, which is another Fall/Winter wardrobe staple. This wool grey hat has also been my go-to accessory for the season. It not only covers a bad hair day, but it also protects your hair from the wind and rain (it’s been a rainy season in Michigan). Plus it’s pretty cute!

Once again, most of these tops were under $20 and they are easy to mix and match. My jeans are from last Fall, proving my point you do not need brand new jeans. My TOM wedges are about 2 years old too! These are my favorite Fall shoe, along with my pair of grey booties I mentioned earlier.


Being fashionable does not have to be expensive. You just have to be confident in your style and realize you may not be able to afford everything you want. I always say it’s not about where you get the clothes but how you style them that matters. Whether you shop at Goodwill or Prada, if you wear it proud, no one will question you.

I proudly wear my inexpensive clothing because I’m not worried about attaching my identity to a brand. I don’t need brands to define my personality or style, and neither do you. Just wear what makes you feel most beautiful and comfortable.

I planned to make a video with this post, but with the rainy weather we’ve experienced in the mitten, I had no luck. I hope you still enjoy this post and I hope it works as a guide. These are just my fashion secrets on a budget. Shh…don’t tell anyone ūüėČ

Thank you for reading PYM.

xo, Lyss

Single Girls Guide to the Holidays: Friends

Hello Little Christmas Elves,

It’s time for the next post in the Single Girls Guide to the Holidays here on Pretty, Young & Motivated; and this¬†week’s guide is going to share some festive activities you can do with your girl gang. Last week, I talked about activities that you can do with your family, and most of the ones I will share today are some that you can also do with family too. If you missed it, check it out right here. This week I have fallen into the Christmas spirit because it has been nonstop snowing in Michigan. I cannot believe Christmas is only two weeks away!

Spending time with some of your best friends is another great way to fill your heart with happiness. I know I love visiting friends around the holidays, especially the ones from my hometown that I do not see when I’m at school. The next few activities I am going to share are just some things that you can do when you are on holiday¬†from university or your workplace. I know the Christmas season is one of my favorite times of the year, and there is so much joy to be spread. Check out these activities to fill your holiday plans with fun:

  1. Go ice skating in the city: Many larger cities have ice rinks located in the downtown area, and they are usually very inexpensive. In Grand Rapids area, Rosa Parks circle is a popular place to go ice skating and skate rentals are only $2. This activity will surely put you in the holiday spirit! Most rinks are decorated with sparkling lights and huge Christmas trees.
  2. Wine & Christmas Movies: I mentioned something similar in the last post, but this one has the wine twist to it. Pick up your favorite bottle of wine, grab the girls and watch your favorite Christmas movie. This is a great activity for those super snowy days, when it’s too cold to go outside and you’re snowed in. You can also use this as a celebration to finishing the Fall semester if you are a college student.
  3. Attend or host an ugly sweater party:¬†The best way to gather friends is by throwing an ugly sweater party! This is the perfect time to do a White Elephant or Secret Santa. The season is not about gifts, but who doesn’t love exchanging gifts. Also, if you are heading somewhere for the holidays, this is a great opportunity to get gang¬†together before the holiday break.
  4. Go shopping:¬†There are so many amazing deals around the holidays, you cannot miss the sales. Grab your girls and plan a day of shopping. Help style each other’s outfits, grab a bite to eat and enjoy the day. This is also a great time to purchase some gifts for others. Working in retail, I am at an outlet mall all the time and it takes all I got not to buy everything.
  5. Grab coffee with an old friend or a new one: I love spending time in coffee shops, but I love it even more in the winter. Cozy up with a hot latte, grab an old friend and catch up on life. This is a wonderful date to set if you are returning home for the holidays and you want to see an old friend. Another idea is to meet a new friend for coffee. Talking over coffee is a fun way to get to know someone, and brace the cold together.
  6. Volunteer: This is one of my favorite ways to spread holiday cheer; there are so many opportunities to volunteer around the holidays but it can be hard to do alone. Get a group of your friends or coworkers together and volunteer at the local homeless shelter or food bank. This will make you have a greater appreciation for the season and fill your heart with some true holiday spirit.

 

Here are some of my coffee shop suggestions if you are in the Grand Rapids area:

Ferris Coffee & Nut | The Sparrows | Lantern Coffee Bar

Check out Rosa Parks Circle for ice skating here!

You can find out where to volunteer in Grand Rapids here.

 

 

 

There is so much cheer to be spread during the holidays, and I think gathering with the people you love is a wonderful way to fill your heart with Christmas cheer. Volunteering to the less fortunate is also a great way to appreciate the things you have. Don’t get me wrong, I love giving gifts to friends & family; it’s fun! Just remember the true meaning of the holidays is to bring people together and spread kindness. Small acts of kindness will bring your heart so much joy.

Thank you for reading the second guide in the Single Girls Guide series. I really hoped you liked this one, and I would love to hear what your favorite activities to do with friends are. Share in the comments below! Be sure to subscribe to receive updates about PYM. This week I will be sharing the second Holiday Outfit Guide, and this one will include some of my beautiful fashionable friends. I cannot wait to share it with all of you. Thanks again for reading today!

Happy Monday.

xo, Lyss

Single Girls Guide to the Holidays: Family

Hello Lovely Humans,

The holiday season is underway and there is no better way to spend it than with the people you love. For us single folks, the holiday season can be brutal. All these cute couple pictures begin to fill our timelines¬†and this makes being single a little more difficult, or maybe it just makes you gag a little bit. Either way, it’s not fun! I am here to bring you the ultimate guide to surviving the holiday season (aka: cuffing season) and making it the best holiday ever. You don’t need a man to have some holiday fun!

This first post in the Single Girls Guide series will focus on ways to fill your schedule with family. Family is so important and the holiday season is the perfect time to spend time with them. I am going to share a few activities that you can plan with family members to have the best holiday ever!

  1. Attend a holiday show: During the holiday season, there are multiple holiday shows to attend. Grab your mom, aunt(s) and girl cousin(s), and catch the local nutcracker or holiday symphony. A girls night out with a holiday twist, what’s better? I have already began planning mine!
  2. Bake some Christmas treats: There is no better way to get in the holiday spirit than by doing some baking. Christmas cookies are a tradition. Turn on some holiday tunes and spend some time with your grandma. Oh, and eat the cookie dough, of course.
  3. Plan a family dinner: This is a great way to bring the family together and get in the Christmas spirit. Make a traditional family dish and get comfortable!
  4. Watch a classic Christmas movie: This is one of my favorite things to do with my family over the holiday season. There are so many great Christmas films to watch, how can you just choose one!? Home Alone and How the Grinch stole Christmas has got to be my top two favorites.
  5. Decorate the Christmas Tree: What is Christmas without decorating the tree? This is another favorite past time of mine. I love to warm up with some hot cocoa, listen to my holiday playlist and spend time with my family.

These are just my favorite traditions to do with my family during the holidays, and especially when you are single, this is the perfect way to fill that void with love. You have family and friends that will fill your heart with so much love and joy, so don’t worry about dating during the holidays. Take this time to truly embrace the people around you and share your time with the ones that matter.

Thank you for reading the first post in the Single Girls Guide to the Holidays. I figured I would start with family because family is so important, especially during the holidays. I am so excited to continue with this series and I hope you will share it with your single girl friends. It can be hard to spend the holidays “alone” but know that you are not alone. Enjoy these moments of being single and embrace the season to its full potential. Check back next week for the second post in this series. Also, check back for the second post in the Holiday Outfit Guide next week!

Happy Monday.

xo, Lyss

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