Shopping investment

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If you refuse to pay full price, can find a gem in a sea of sales racks and regularly troll the Internet for free shipping codes, you may at some point have come across Dianna Baros' blog, The Budget Babe. As the name implies, she's an independent fashion blogger who loves good design on the cheap.

Rarely will she post an item of clothing over $50 on her blog, with regular posts from retailers like Target, H&M and Forever 21. But even Baros knows it's sometimes necessary to invest in a quality piece that can handle the mileage of weekly wear. We asked Baros for five splurge-worthy items to buy this year that will yield the biggest return on investment.

5 items with the best ROI
Chain-Strap Evening Bag

Chain-Strap Evening Bag
Between weddings, cocktail parties and the occasional black-tie affair, an evening bag is a necessity. And while you may be tempted to change up your everyday bag with the latest trend, a classic black leather or metallic evening bag is a faithful friend.

"Chanel's iconic quilted chain-strap bag is proof that this style will never be out," Baros says.
Black riding boots

Black Riding Boots
Great leather boots like these can cost a pretty penny, but the return on your investment is high. "Buy a classic silhouette in the best leather you can afford, and you will have a fine footwear companion for years to come," Baros says. 

Flat black boots can easily be dressed up or down, from skirts to dresses to skinny jeans.

Wool trench coat

Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D

Double-Breasted Wool Trench Coat
"Sometimes all people see is your outerwear, which is why having a warm, fabulous wool coat is an absolute necessity for cold weather," Baros says. The shape is universally flattering on all figures and goes from work to weekend. A neutral color is always in style, or go for a youthful look in an eye-catching hue.
Statement jacket

Photo: Sarra Fleur Abou-El-Haj

Statement Jacket
Throw on a great statement jacket to add glamor to any look, whether it's layered over a T-shirt at work or your favorite little black dress for a night out. 

Choose the style that will fit the other pieces in already in your closet from a classic tailored black tuxedo jacket to a trend-setting shiny sequin blazer. This navy blazer easily transitions from work to evening.

Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D

Oversize Cashmere Scarf
"A luxe cashmere/wool blend scarf that can double as a wrap is something you'll love wearing all winter, both indoors and out, at home and when you're traveling," Baros says. A long, oversize length will give you the greatest versatility and allow you to wear your scarf in multiple ways.

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