Customer service rep Patrice Howell loves staying on top of trends and ahead of the season, fashion-wise. But, finding those fashions at a bargain is also a top priority.

Age: 26

Residence: Baltimore

Job: Saleswoman for Chase's Corner, a clothing store inside Blade Master Barber Shop on Reisterstown Road

Self-described style: Vintage. Classy. Elegant. Looking like you paid more than you did.

The look: Ruched gray cotton turtleneck drop waist dress. Brown plaid blazer. Brown cotton / spandex leggings. Brown leather wedge boots. Bronze rectangle dangle earrings. Gray snakeskin pattern tote.

Where it came from and what it cost: The dress was $25 at Forever 21. The blazer went for $40 at H&M.; She found the leggings at Gabriel Brothers for $5, and both the $50 boots and $30 tote at Bakers. Those earrings? A steal from a New York City street vendor at $8.

Bargain-hunting lifestyle: "I shop about three times a week. I'm always looking for a bargain: Columbia mall, Towson Town Center, Arundel Mills, Montgomery mall, Ross, T.J. Maxx, Marshalls. ... Gabriel Brothers has really good bargains on all sorts of pieces of clothing. It's my favorite store for bargains. ... Literally, I have found half of my summer wardrobe there."

Specializes in dressing up: "I always dress up. I wear heels all the time. I very rarely wear tennis shoes. ... A blazer can always make an outfit look professional. A blazer or heels can dress up anything and spice up an outfit to make it look like you paid more for it than you did."

Sets limits: "Of course, I'm always looking for the cheapest. The most I'll spend for a top is $50 and a blazer is $100. Jeans? $50. Shoes? $150. They have to be good quality shoes, and my feet have to be comfortable. Besides, they can make a whole outfit look like it cost more."

Highs and lows: "The most I ever spent was $250 for a dress in Anthropologie because it was really cute. It was for an event, and it was a sweater dress. I thought it was worth it. ... My best bargain? $9.99 for a dress. I got it at Gabriel Brothers. It's got spaghetti straps and can be really dressy or casual, depending on what shoes you wear with it."

Summer stock: "I just found some really cheap summer dresses at Macy's. They just had a sale. ... I got five dresses there for $9.99 each, another from Honeycomb Hideout. I've got six or seven shirts, three or four pairs of pants, two skirts, two cardigans from Macy's, two trench jackets from Macy's, another jacket from Delia's, a few shirts from Forever 21, beige pumps and two pairs of moccasin shoes from Aldo. ... ... I am all ready for summer."

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