I'm a full time college student with a part time job. My tuition is paid mostly by scholarships and one or two loans (yay, debt....). Occasionally, I get a refund check - meaning that the amount of money paid by the scholarships and loans combined was too much!
So I use that refund money to buy from the PUG clothing site. In the meantime, I have to pinch my pennies and go thrifting (which I've had to do my whole life - my family has never been well off) or go straight to the sales rack at the mall. (I once found a really high quality dress for $8 that I used for a homecoming dance.)
I get paid every other Wednesday. Yesterday, I went to the mall and found my way to the Hot Topic clearance area. I bought a pair of capris, since I'm not too comfortable in shorts and I can't really afford the ones on the PUG site. (They're too long - I'm 5'2" and they reach my ankles, like cig. pants or skinny jeans.)
Sometimes I go on eBay to see if I can find any PUG dresses (usually still too expensive). I found a lovely green Audrey Hepburn-style dress for around $30 on eBay, though.
But really, it's amazing what you can find if you just look around a thrift store! Last time I went thrifting, I found an incredible pencil skirt, some definitely vintage shoes (made in the USA, older, wooden base), a few super cute button down shirts that can be paired with either a pencil skirt or high waisted jeans, and a lovely blue bolero/shrug.
Much of my wardrobe is from various thrift shops or consignment stores. And a lot of it is either vintage inspired or reproduction clothing. So when I can't afford to buy that one dress or that one top from PUG, I can still look like a kick ass PUG. I only have three items from the PUG store. The Dee Dee, the L'Amour, and the Heidi. I have to wait and save for the next item. (They're all worth it, though.)
As for makeup, I rarely splurge. Most cosmetics are ridiculously expensive, so I stick to ELF, Maybelline, Revlon, and Covergirl. It works, even if it's not the best out there.
But it's not really difficult to have a pinup wardrobe if you don't have the funds for PUG. You just need to know where and how to look!