Cotton cable cricket sweater ($85) at J. Crew.
Cotton cable cricket sweater ($85) at J. Crew. (J. Crew)
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Thursday, August 14, 2008

Frugal fashion, part deux: Just when you think the financial news can't get any worse . . . it does. Tumbling stocks, failing banks, trillion-dollar deficit, your dwindling 401(k) -- and what else are we going to learn Fannie Mae has been up to?

It's enough -- with apologies to Marvin Gaye -- to make you wanna holler.

Still, you can't exactly go about your business clad in a Depression-era sandwich board, can you? You've got to get dressed. Our advice: Keep it simple, keep it (relatively) cheap. Fortunately, some of the more budget-savvy retailers are looking really good these days. We're particularly enamored of the new fall collections for J. Crew and the Gap, which have injected their lines with a hip preppy aesthetic. You can't go wrong with American Apparel or Target or Club Monaco. Pick some clean-lined basics -- an elegant trench, some flat-front trousers, a good V-neck. Pay cash. Pat yourself on the back.

Then go out and party like it's 2009. (Without popping the $100 bottles of champagne.) Because, sooner or later, a change is going to come.

-- Teresa Wiltz

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