8 InStyle Editors Reveal Their First Fashion Splurges
As major lovers of fashion (it comes with the job), we keep a pulse on what's happening in the industry and inevitably fall in love with "It" piece after "It" piece. But, while we have had many a fashion crush (we've been smitten more than once), there is something about that first splurge, the one purchase that had us at hello. Ahead, our editors share their firsts.
Eric Wilson, Fashion News Director
"My first splurge was a classic Giorgio Armani midnight crepe suit. I was still in college, working at Saks Fifth Avenue as a holiday temp—this was back in the days when a high-end designer suit cost around $800, so a looong time ago—and every weekend, I went to visit the suit, waiting for it to go on sale, and thankfully, it eventually came home with me for about half that price. It was a big purchase for a student, but that suit carried me through several job interviews and even stood in for a tux on a couple of occasions. I wore that suit for more than a decade, until it finally gave out, unfortunately during a memorable CFDA Awards when the zipper broke open mid-ceremony. I spent the rest of the night with the pants sewed up in safety pins."
Ali Pew, Senior Style Editor
"I loved the Marni balloon bag! I bought mine in burgundy patent. I was so excited that it was the "It" item for the cool girls (at least I thought it was). I still have it, too—I’ll never let go of that one."
Danielle Prescod, Accessories Editor
"The first thing I really consciously purchased was a Juicy Couture zip-up hoodie. My mother was totally opposed to the idea of a $200-plus sweat suit, so she refused to indulge me. My sister and I could not live without it, so we pooled our Christmas money and brought a logo-ed out Juicy hoodie. It was 2003, OK? Give us a break."
Mia Solkin, Market Editor
"In England, it is encouraged that students take the year between high school and college off and travel or work. This is known as a 'Gap Year.' During my Gap Year, I worked in a local store to make money with a plan to travel. Once I had saved up enough, I planned to spend the money on my trip and keep just enough aside to possibly make my first big bag purchase (my father wasn't overly impressed with this plan). I tried to see where perhaps the exchange rate would work best in my favor, but in the end, it was here in America. Some random department store in Portland just received its first shipment of the iconic Chloé Silverado, and that's where I bought the mini version. Although that bag is definitely not in season anymore, I love it for what it reminds me of—an 18-year-old girl who worked very hard and wore it with so much pride (while hiding it from her father)."
Lashauna Williams, Senior Credits Editor
"I went to my first Barneys warehouse sale back when I was a senior at FIT. I was on a budget, but I told myself I would get something nice as a graduation gift. I spotted a pair of really cool Marni brown leather sandals with navy grosgrain bows. I was in love—not only were they cute, but they were surprisingly comfy for 4-inch heels! I wore them for years. I decided it was time to part ways a couple years ago and sold them to Beacon’s Closet. Hopefully, they're bringing happiness to a fabulous woman!"
Andrea Cheng, Associate Fashion Editor
“When I first started earning money as a summer intern in New York, I was out of control with my spending—I wanted to hit every single sale and buy everything I could get my hands on, even if it didn’t fit. One of my first purchases was a fancy pair of red satin Manolo Blanik pumps that 1) I had no occasion dressy enough to wear them to, and 2) were so incredibly painful to walk in. Clearly, I didn’t learn my lesson, because my second splurge were these 7-inch Alaïas that I still can’t walk in for more than five minutes at a time.
Alexandra DeRosa, E-Commerce Editor
“I made my first fashion splurge pretty recently. I had a wedding to go to and I didn't own the perfect pair of shoes to match my Alexander Wang slip dress. I walked into Saks Fifth Avenue’s shoe department and within seconds found myself turning the shark tooth closure on a pair of cream-colored Givenchy leather sandals. They were perfect for the dress, but I didn’t know that the wedding was outdoors, so the heels sank into the ground (as did my heart) with every step I took. Luckily, we all survived."
Caroline Vazzana, Digital Fashion Assistant
"My first fashion splurge was during my senior year of high school and it was a pair of gold glitter Betsey Johnson T-strap pumps. I went to a private all-girls' high school where my daily wardrobe consisted of a navy uniform, so I never really got to dress up. When I found the shoes on the Betsey Johnson website, I fell in love and started saving my money. One day they went on sale and I went to my mom with all the money I had saved up and begged her to order them for me (I wasn’t trusted with a credit card at the time). When they finally arrived I wore them around the house for days, and when I graduated high school and went to college, I wore them to class, dances, and even on interviews. I wore them so many times that the heels wore through. I couldn’t part with them, though, so I took them to a cobbler to add new bottoms and fix the heels—it was worth every penny."