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Make your spring fashion shopping list now

Meryl Streep arrives at the 16th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2010.
Meryl Streep arrives at the 16th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2010.
AP Photo/Matt Sayles

With snow on the ground and the holidays just over, it may seem too soon to think about spring fashion. But retailers are already displaying their early spring merchandise. To make the most of a tight budget, establish some guidelines now.

First, invest in a hot-off-the press fashion magazine. Make a note of favorite colors and trends then watch for affordable substitutes. For example, according to Harper's Bazaar January 2010 issue, big, bold necklaces will be in this year. Instead of spending hundreds on this fad, find a close match at WalMart or Target. 

Spring this year, like any year, is all about bright, bold colors. The red carpet during awards season is an excellent preview of this year's hottest hues. Favorites on the Golden Globes' red carpet on January 17, 2010 were shades of purple and hot pink. Also watch out for yellow, green and pastels.

Keep the skinny jeans and dust off those over-sized sunglasses and long-strapped purses. These are all in. Floral prints are fine, but don't go back in time like Meryl Streep at the SAG awards on January 24. Luckily most trends have a shelf life of two to three years, but do not try to turn back the decades unless it is acceptable "retro" or an updated style.

Spring fashion this year leaves a lot of room for creative expression, but don't go over budget. And if it feels ridiculous, don't wear it. Clothes should be a reflection of the person not a fad.

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