How to Get an Expensive-Looking Wardrobe Without Spending a Ton

Is there any bigger compliment than when a stranger is compelled by the greatness of your outfit to approach you with the potentially embarrassing question “Where did you get that?” This ego-boosting occurrence usually happens when you’re wearing your most luxurious-looking items, whether they were actually pricey or not. So in the name of looking our most expensive, we had to ask: What is it that makes clothes look fancy? Fast-fashion stores like Zara and Topshop are experts on emulating the current designer trends in terms of prints, cuts, and style, but what’s a little harder to fake? Fabric quality. But since we can’t all afford cashmere and silk, we figured we’d do a little research on the best affordable materials that only look expensive, plus which cheap fabrics often belie their humble origins. With your clothing label know-how, you can make smarter and more luxurious fabric choices, even when you’re shopping discount.

Scroll down to check out our easy fabric guide and shop some of our affordable finds made from high-quality materials.