HOW TO BE A BUDGET FASHIONISTA: The Ultimate Guide to Looking Fabulous for Less
Kathryn Finney. Ballantine, $12.95 paper (240p) ISBN 0812975162

This delightful little guide to the fashion good life is perfect for money-conscious shopaholics who “love purses because they can instantly identify your personality and be used to ‘fake’ your income level.” After teasing out the all-important personality and style differences between Sex and the City and Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman women, Finney rates everything from discount designer web sites to outlet malls so that readers will be assured of their catch. The author also proves herself to be more than mere fashion tourguide as she takes time out to explain the Value Added Tax, the surprising ways to spot a designer fake and how to safely purchase high-end goods on eBay. While this fun-to-read frippery won’t reveal too many new secrets for die-hard Vogue and W fans, some of the author’s more practical advice (“Take Care of Your Clothes Like a Stylist”) make the upbeat guide well worth the price of admission. Finney’s personal quest for the sartorial best on a budget, combined with her knack for sniffing out the best designer deals, will win her legions of fans. (June)

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