5 Budget-Friendly Buys

The holiday excesses are over, the credit card bills are due, and thoughts have turned to income tax returns and RRSP contributions (in my household, at least). While I love a good sale, I'm also keen on keeping my 2013 resolution to save more money. The solution to my conundrum? Affordable yet stylish finds that can be worn right now and well into spring. Here are 5 items worth spending a few dollars on.

1. Refresh wardrobe staples with an adorable belt: Cinch in button-up shirts, layer over pencil skirts, or swap it with the belt on your wool coat or trench. LOFT colour-blocked bow skinny belt (on sale now for $24.90).

2. A lightweight wool scarf in a bright print keeps you warm on wintry days, and wards off the wind on blustery spring ones. Madewell polka dot scarf ($52).

3. Even a simple change like lightening one's nail colours can feel fresh. Pick neutral shades that work with winter woolens and spring's lighter palette. Sephora by OPI 'Metro Chic' and 'Nonfat Soy Half Caff' ($12 each).

4. A sparkly brooch pinned to a dark wool coat will earn you many, many compliments. (I speak from firsthand experience.) Pinning one on blazers or faux fur accessories can be just as effective. Forever 21 cross-shaped brooch ($7.80).

5. I'm a sucker for striped sweaters. A fine merino wool knit layers well in the middle of winter, and keeps you warm as the weather transitions to spring. Gap intarsia chevron sweater ($54.95).

Your turn! How do you keep your style feeling fresh while on a budget? Are there any items you still find yourself indulging in when you're staying away from shopping?

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