I simply can't afford to buy clothes that I can't see myself wearing in a variety of settings. If I can't imagine myself wearing to different occasions and for different purposes I think very carefully before handing over any money.
Here's an example of how I style something to make it work harder..
This is the "Pleather Insert Dress" from "Damn you Alexis for city chic". I got it in a clearance sale.
So the other night I was off to the club and I wore it.. I put on a shrug, leopard print wet-look black legggings, tall boots with red lacing up the back from Demonia, a black chain-knot necklace, and my dred falls swept up into a huge bun on the back of my head.
I also did some wild makeup which I will show you the details of in a post later this week.
Then a few days later I wore the dress to work.
I put my red millers blouse on under it so that the neckline was more work-appropriate, traded the wetlook leggings for wider-legged plain ones, put on my everyday flat shoes instead of the boots, and toned down the makeup... I did a really similar hairstyle minus the dredfalls..
For the cooler morning I also wore a pleather-insert jacket I have (also from City Chic) and topped it with a belt. The jacket is a bit big for me (another clearance sale bargain) so I don't usually wear it without a belt.
I hope this gives you some ideas for your own wardrobe - what's something you can dress up (or down) to make it work harder?