If you love fashion and want a boutique-worthy wardrobe without the hefty price tag, you can have it with a little creativity and sartorial savviness. You can find boutique-inspired clothing pieces at discounted prices online, in popular stores, and even in secondhand shops. 

If you're looking for one clothing item to start building your new, stylish wardrobe around, go with a tunic top. Featuring a slightly longer length than typical shirts, tunic tops are generally fitted in the bust for a flattering look, and then slightly flare out at the bottom. Because of their added length and roominess, they're ideal for wearing over leggings, skinny jeans, or any other form-fitting bottom.

When looking for a boutique-quality tunic, choose pieces with boho-inspired crochet details at the bottom or sleeves. For a romantic, feminine look, go for tunic tops featuring ruffled or lace touches. If you want to add length to a plain, shorter tunic, you can wear a lace or crochet extender under it for an affordable boutique-inspired look. 

Following are some fashionable ways that you can style your budget-friendly tunic top:

1. Pair It With Leggings 

Tunic tops and leggings are made for each other, since the shirt's longer length helps cover any areas that you don't want to show. As one cool-weather outfit idea, pair the tunic and legging ensemble with leather riding boots for a look that is both office- and weekend-ready. You can add a pop of color to a neutral-hued outfit with a long beaded necklace or bangle bracelets. 

If you have a lot of leggings in classic shades of grey and black, consider a tunic top in a brighter color, such as mustard yellow or purple, which will add instant interest to your look. If your leggings tend to feature bold colors and patterns, stick with neutral-hued tunics.

2. Wear It With Skinny Jeans 

An easy way to breathe new life into your old skinny jeans is with a boutique-inspired tunic top. Mix up the look with a tunic featuring a fun pattern, such as chevron stripes or charming embroidery details at the neckline. 

To add instant glam to casual jeans, pair the tunic with a lace extender and a long, gold necklace. Complete the look with gold kitten heels or leather boots, depending on the season and weather.

3. Layer It Over Denim Shorts 

You don't have to wear tunic tops with just pants, so try pairing your top with frayed denim shorts as an unexpected twist. Pick a tunic that is at least slightly shorter than the length of the shorts, so that it doesn't completely cover them up. 

Add a long, beaded necklace and casual leather sandals to complete the look.