An Investment Worth Making?

Designer collaborations are all the rage these days.  Whether is it H&M, Target, Gap or even J.Crew, an excitement builds at the thought of being able to wear something from a designer label that we usually just drool over.   Depending on the store, the investment is not too great and there isn't much thought involved in making the purchase.  It goes something like this... designer's signature look, not the best fabric, but it is only $34.99, so why not?  If I only wear it a few times, it was worth the purchase, right?  Right!  But what if the investment is significantly more than $34.99?

Well, I am usually a fan of the Target collaborations.  The quality is not the best, but when you aren't paying much money you can't expect the best fabrics.  But, they do a great job of giving you the look of the designer in very wearable clothing.  They create everyday pieces that can be mixed and matched into anyone's wardrobe.  Not too long ago, I bought two of the Tucker dresses during their stint at Target.  I have to say that I have worn those dresses a lot!  Nothing fancy, but just out and about during the day running errands, schleping the kids around, etc.  And, because I didn't spend very much money, I don't worry about anything happening to the clothing... I can just throw it in the washing machine!

Then there is the the type of capsule collection that Prabal Gurung just released at J.Crew.  Absolutely beautiful clothing at contemporary pricing.  This kind of collaboration is on another level.  You have a very hot designer (a CFDA/Vogue fund nominee), a specialty retailer that can do no wrong and the fruits of their labor are to die for... literally!  Gurung has only had his own label for a few years, but has already made quite a mark.  He is known for his architectural take on designs and attention to detail.  He treats his designs as pieces of art and in doing so creates timeless pieces of clothing.  And, yes, his collection at J.Crew is truly a piece of Prabal Gurung.  Just 7 pieces, but all with the architectural details that you would expect.

However, here is the dilemma... do you spend $198 - $450 for a piece of art?  Definitely, if it fits into your personal style!  There are a great pair of tuxedo style pants, white denim cigarette pants, two different blouses, a dress, and a very cool white denim blazer.  All of which are pieces that can be worn forever.  They are statement making items that can be pulled out from time to time, worn in different ways and will never look out of style.  So, really think about it.  Check out the looks online. Think about how great it would be to be able to pull out the exploding bow blouse to wear with a pair of skinny black pants, jeans, shorts, etc the next time you have somewhere special to go, and don't want to look like everyone else.  This is an investment that just might pay off in spades!

                                           - Allison

*Photos courtesy of J.Crew.

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