Sure, we'd all like to be fashionable, but designer clothes are prohibitively expensive for many people.

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You might be wondering why anyone would want to buy name-brand clothes. After all, the economy is in terrible shape, and unemployment is ridiculously high. Although shopping at discount retailers is perfectly fine, self-proclaimed fashionistas have a hard time donning clothes without a designer label. Also, although the price tags are higher, designer pieces tend to be better in quality and fit and last longer than their discount counterparts. Plus, sometimes it's nice to know that you're wearing something truly chic, especially if your friends are likely to covet it.

The beauty of the current shopping industry is that it's no longer necessary to haul yourself to a store to seek the best deals. In fact, the Internet gives everyone equal opportunity to scoop up name-brand bargains from the comfort of your own living room couch. So it's still totally possible to be fashionable, whether you're isolated in a country cottage or pounding the pavement in Manhattan.

Some buyers work around the system to get the designer pieces they long for. For example, men's items are often cheaper than women's, so some ladies opt to pick up guy's duds -- like coats and running shoes -- to save a few extra bucks. Naturally, that's not going to fly for bikinis and bras, but no one's going to know your new wool pea coat came from the men's section of the department store.

Anyone that's ever done serious time in the mall or other shopping circles knows that it's possible to get great deals any time of year. Keep reading to learn some of the tips and tricks that die-hard shoppers swear by.