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Professional Stylist- Ask the Expert with Catherine Cassidy

What styling tips can you give women?

I’m pretty diligent about keeping my clients on budget for their wardrobes, however big or small. I think it’s important to be mindful of what you’re buying when you’re shopping and not just so you’re spending less, but so that you’re buying pieces that really maximize your wardrobe and make you feel fabulous. I love that I ultimately actually help them SAVE money because they tell me that they only buy things they LOVE and wear. It becomes about quality not quantity and I know SO many friends and colleagues who spend so much money on clothes they wear a few times and that just doesn’t make sense to me. For one, to amortize the cost per wear, it’s actually more expensive than a great, higher cost piece. And for two, I literally love my clothes, so I get bummed out when they wear out … I want them to last for years!

What was the best piece of money advice you were taught growing up or learned during your lifetime?

There are two key pieces that I appreciate and use to this day. One, give yourself a budget. This actually started with my seasonal clothing budget that my mom gave me in middle school after I’d transitioned from Catholic school to public school and so had only enough clothes for the weekends. Two, only buy what you can afford and save up for those things you really want. I’d wanted to go to France in HS on an organized group trip and my parents said, OK, but you have to pay for half of it. So, I went and got a job at age 15 and started working part time.

What is a favorite money quote or affirmation?

The standard of success isn’t the things. It isn’t the money or the stuff. It is absolutely the amount of joy you feel. ~ Abraham Now, I definitely believe money is important in our society, but it is not the most important and too many people make it the most important and a lot of that is fear based. That’s why I think it’s so great how you empower women financially because you make it less scary!

What does being a Financially Wise Woman mean to you?

Making decisions about where you are now, but keeping in mind where you are heading. Meaning, if you have a quality of life you’re striving for, then start living that way now in every way that you can and that doesn’t mean spending money you don’t have! Again, I’m all about quality over quantity for your wardrobe, but also in every area of your life. I think it also means making smart decisions and asking for help when you need it. As women, we’re often afraid to ask for help for fear that we’re going to be a bother. In fact, people WANT to help you … whether or not you’re paying them for their time or expertise. When you ask for help, it saves you SO much time, energy AND money!

Catherine Cassidy, CEO & Chief Stylist of U*styled,,

Britt Castro, CFP® and Founder of Financially Wise Women

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Catherine Cassidy and Ustyled are not affiliated with Perennial Financial or LPL Financial.