How to Get Free People Style on an Amazon Budget
I know I’m not the only girl out there who low-key fantasizes about rocking Penny Lane’s style from Almost Famous. I mean, when it comes to bohemian chic, 70’s fashion she’s basically style goals, right?
Free People is one of those aspirational stores we boho style-loving millennials visit to dream that Penny Lane dream. But unfortunately, that dream often must remain just that for us. Because Free People can be pricey AF!
I remember when I was first introduced to Free People, my sophomore year at NYU. That was probably the worst possible time I could have found a place like Free People, because of course New York is a playground for shopping addicts. I basically spent my lunch breaks between classes shopping on 5th Avenue, which I still find to be such a surreal, bizarre thing to be able to say. Like, what kind of of college student can just wander around 5th Avenue to pass the time?
And of course, 9 times out of 10, these lunchtime shopping excursions did not end in purchases of any kind. No, I would not arrive at my next class with shopping bags in hand, fruits of my 5th Avenue labors. Because, you know, I was a college student. No, if any spontaneous purchases were made, they were likely at H&M or Forever 21. But that 5th Avenue dreaming sure was fun.
And then, my sophomore year, a Free People opened on - you guessed it - 5th Avenue, just blocks away from my dorm. I had never heard of Free People before, so my 70’s style-loving heart burst into a million pieces of joy when I stepped inside for the first time.
And then those pieces of my heart broke into a million more little pieces when I started looking at the price tags. 😂
Now, years later, I’m still a lover of Free People. But you know… I’m still not usually down to drop a ton of money on something that - let’s be honest - probably shouldn’t be as pricey as it as at Free People. Don’t get me wrong - sometimes it’s worth it! But if I want to buy, say, a pretty velvet hippie dress that looks like it was embroidered in the back of a van by a guy named Sage, I most likely wouldn’t want to spend a couple hundred dollars on it.
And guess what? Our Penny Lane, boho style dreams really can be realized without dropping a ton of money at a store like Free People! Fashion trends have a tendency to replicate themselves throughout all price points after being birthed on the runway, so that designer dress you love will most certainly be reincarnated many times over, from Nordstrom, to Zara, to Target, to Amazon.
(We all learned this from Meryl Streep on The Devil Wears Prada right? 😉)
Because of the self-replicating nature of fashion, you can find an inexpensive version of almost any pricey piece of clothing. When it comes to online shopping on Amazon, it’s really as simple as using key words in Amazon’s search field - velvet boho dress, faux fur coat, chunky cable knit sweater. If you use these kinds of terms, it’s more than likely you’ll find the inexpensive version of the pricey item you’re coveting.
So if you want to know the simple key to getting Free People style on an Amazon budget, it’s all about the key words!
Not sure what to type in the search field? You don’t have to be an expert on fashion terms to effectively use key words in order to find what you’re looking for. If you don’t know how to describe what you’re looking at (is that a… llama looking furry coat thing?) just look at the name of the item on the page, and if that’s not enough, look at the item description. You’ll most likely find some key words there!
So “llama looking furry coat thing” can turn into “retro-inspired shaggy faux fur coat” (found in the description for the Florence Faux Fur Coat on Free People’s website), and you’ll likely get better results from your search. Also, all clothing store websites list the materials and fabrics used in their garments, so those can be potential key words as well.
I’m telling you, for every expensive piece of clothing out there, there are tons of less expensive duplicates! Are you sacrificing quality when you go with the cheaper option? Usually, yes. Some things are worth splurging on, and some things - like flash-in-the-pan trends - are better for the budget-friendly, fast fashion route. It’s really up to you!
So let’s shop together for a minute, shall we? Below you’ll find some super cute Free People items, and their Amazon counterparts! Which do you think is worth splurging on?
This post may contain affiliate links. I may receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post, at no extra cost to my lovely readers. I only link the things I love!
Of course, here’s the usual disclaimer when it comes to Amazon shopping: as we all know, the quality can be hit or miss there! I’ve ordered some amazing inexpensive pieces of clothing from Amazon, and I’ve also ordered some pretty dreadful, cheap looking things that look nothing like the photo online. At the end of the day, you can always easily return those low-quality items. I personally think it’s always worth a try when it comes to budget shopping. 😊
How do you approach your budget shopping? Any tips and tricks you’d care to share?
Do you prefer to invest in quality pieces only? Or do you like to mix in some cheaper things for variety?
Tell me all about your style stories in the comments!
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Hey there! I’m Steffi, creator of Moda Misfit - a lifestyle blog that aims to inspire you to embrace who you are and express your creative self through decor, fashion, & music. We're all Moda Misfits here!