How quickly things can change.  Six months ago, Polly wouldn?t have blinked at maxing out her credit card every weekend – new jeans from Axle, a Westwood dress from Roulette, armfuls of accessories and that military jacket that had been in Grazia that week.  And that wasn?t even a payday spree.  

 

But the world?s a different place these days. With the finance system crashing and Gordon Brown looking more and more haggard ? it?s just not the time for showing off shiny new purchases.  Brand new Balenciaga doesn?t inspire envy, it just looks brash.  Even Vogue?s less catwalk and more charity shop these days. ?It?s as if fashion isn?t fashionable any more?? sighs Polly.  

 

As a recessionista, Polly?s not going to let a little thing like falling stock prices stop her shopping.  Not while Uniqlo ship to Jersey anyway.  She?s taken all her ?it? bags to Jacqui at Sweet Pea and Willow, and spent the proceeds on the only labels that count these days ? the designer collaborations for the high street.  Bagging a Kate Moss limited Liberty print dress for Top Shop or that leather jacket Matthew Wiliamson designed for H&M gets you far more points with the fashion crowd.  Although Polly has to admit she?s secretly a bit miffed about New Look coming to King Street.  Thanks to their great Jersey delivery, she?s been smugly working Alexa Chung?s credit crunch cool for ages, and now everyone will be wearing it.  

But nothing says you?re a recessionista like a bit of innovation.  So Polly?s knitting her own beanie, after all, everyone who?s anyone is knitting these days.  It looks good – even if it has turned into a rather alarming long pointy nightcap shape because she hasn?t learnt how to cast off.  Mind you, trying to frantically click Add to Bag on the Outnet?s 80% discounted Marc Jacobs before it sold out probably didn?t help her technique.  

 

And Polly?s discovered the charity shops ? along with most of the fashion crowd.  It?s worth putting up with the mouldy old-person smell to bag a bargain, and even better to brag about it afterwards.  Nothing winds her friends up more than thinking they were 5 minutes too late for that string of vintage pearls that looked just like Chanel?  She?s even tried a bit of haggling on the high street, naming her price to shop assistants and refusing to budge.  And it works ? especially when she gives them her steely stare she normally reserves for drunk lads with dodgy chat up lines. 

 

Still the best things are the clothes-swapping parties.  The last one was a real result – she finally got her hands on Jemima?s All Saints top ? after a bit of a struggle with Lily ? and got rid of all that fake Louis Vuitton she?d been conned into buying on eBay.  Who says nobody?s profiting from the recession?  

 

And as a little bit of thrift goes a long way, Polly?s finding herself saving money at every turn.  She?s resoling shoes instead of buying new ones, and reorganizing her wardrobe and finding clothes she?d forgotten she had.  She even brings her own lunch into work these days ? in a Manna carrier bag.  She hasn?t let standards slip that much.  Of course it has nothing to do with the pair of new season J Brand jeans she picked up from Manna on her way into work. But she deserves it ? after all she?s been saving so much money?.

Sounds familiar?  

Take our Gallery test to find out if you?re a fashionista or a recessionista…  Fashionista

Afternoon at Spa Sirène

Pink champagne cocktails 

at the Grand

Claiming a wheat allergy

Net-a-porter.com

New shoes

Botox

Sushi from M&S for lunch

Updating your wardrobe

Recessionista

Getting your friend to do your

pedicure ? then doing hers

Fizzy Ribena in the garden

Dusting off the breadmaker

Asos.com

New soles

Detox

Homemade tuna sandwich

Reorganising your wardrobe