Tag Archives: Oasis

Toe the line

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QUICKIE POST ALERT!

I’m sure you will have noticed that toe-capped shoes and boots are all over the place at the moment and are sure to be an AW ’12 staple!

Trouble is with these sort of trends is that you never know how long they are going to be around for.

Follow my two simple steps on maximising you PPW (pays per wear) out of this particular fashion:

1. Forget expensive shoes (this season) – buy cheap or buy in the sale. You don’t know how long this trend is going to be around for. Buy a cheaper pair; wear them to death. If they’re not in again this time next year, you’ve got your PPW out of them. If they are, then it’s a trend with a bit more longevity – that’s the time to buy a more expensive pair.

2. Don’t bother with kooky colour matches – yes clashing colour toe caps might look cool now, but you may not feel the same about having different coloured toes in six month’s time. Buy dark – navy, grey, brown or black. Less expensive shoes can look cheap in lighter colours. If you must have a different coloured toe, go metallic.

Here are my top five under £30:

5. Leopard flats – £25 at Oasis

4. Brown/bronze heels – £30 at Dorothy Perkins

3.  Black/gold heels – £16 Matalan (also available in this season’s burgundy. At this price, go for it!)

2. Silver toe and heel ballet flats – £29.50 Wallis

1. Black suedette/black patent heels – £24.99 H&M (Also available in red or grey. And supremely comfortable!)

So, adorn your toes for under £30! Do it. x

Sale away

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Sales are a blessing and a curse. I’m sure you have been in some of the below scenarios as many times as I have:

Blessing: find something super awesome that you wanted for ages but you couldn’t afford full price.

Curse: find something super awful that you try on because it’s a ‘bit different’. Buy in a frenzy of ‘out-there-ness’. Put at back of closet and never look at it again.

Blessing: Try on something that you liked but hadn’t dared to try on before because it was out of your price range and you might really love it. It fits a treat, wear forever and a day.

Curse: Try something on in a size above/below your actual size because you really, really like it and are determined to have it. Convince yourself it sort of fits. Buy. Put at back of closet and every time you try it on, remind yourself of the money you wasted on it because it doesn’t fit.

Blessing: Find some great wardrobe staples from better quality labels at high street prices.

Curse: Buy something that is ‘on trend’ at the moment, but is a fad and the reason it’s in the sale is that no one will be wearing it in a month’s time. (Macrame and tie dye, I’m looking at you.)

So. I have hit the sales recently and in a valliant and conscious bid not to waste my hard-earned on any ‘cursed’ items, I think I’ve done rather well. (Gloat, gloat.) Here goes.

1. Safari shirt dress

Totally loved this safari dress from Oasis when I saw it, but tut-tut they are so naughty with their full-priced stuff sometimes – they definitely overcharge on most items I find. I’m a bit of a ‘lining-pedant’. If an item is over a certain amount of money and isn’t lined I refuse to buy it on principle.

This shirt dress (a freaking wardrobe classic) was originally £65 and WAS NOT LINED! I declined to buy, on the basis that it wasn’t worth the money. Imagine my delight at finding it in the sale for £27, which made me less bothered about the whole lining thing. That’s a bit more like it, isn’t it Oasis?

Verdict: Sometimes its worth holding out when you like something but it ain’t worth the RRP. (P.S. this has been reduced to £20 since.)

2. Leather handbag

I’ve needed a new handbag for a LONG time. My current one I bought about five years ago and I have used it pretty much every day since then, and it is hanging on by a thread! I trawled the online catacombs of John Lewis and happened upon several Radley bags I liked. Now, traditionally Radley had been the leather-based stomping ground of the conservative and slightly older lady, but they have brought me around with this Christa handbag. Full price: £169. Sale price: £84.50.

Verdict: Some bags on the high street cost this much full price and aren’t real leather. If I use it every day for the next 5 years, that’s a pays-per-wear figure of  5p. Investment.

3. Decent underscroggins

I need not tell you that when it comes to underwear you get what you pay for. But a good underwear set can cost you £40 right off the bat. By the time you’ve bought a black one, a lace one, a t-shirt one, a nude one you’ve spent £200 without even realising! That is why I will always invest time in searching the sales for underwear. T’is always a bit hit and miss – often you’ll find they have limited sizes left, or you’ll find the bra in your size but the bottoms in sizes 6 or 26 only. But it’s worth the metaphorical rummage to get good underscrogs for more reasonable prices.

I bought this funky animal print set from the Caprice lingerie range on ASOS. Whole set cost me £19. The original price of the bra alone was £24, so that is a full on bargain as I see it (the whole set full price would have cost £38)

Verdict: Worth spending some time to grab yourself a bargain – but getting good fitting underwear is important, so don’t be wooed by the saving, and only keep it if it fits your brits a treat.

So there you have it! Take my advice: brave the sales intelligently; grab some bargains; regain the respect of your bank manager.

Twice Knightley

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So, I don’t know why but this week I was reminded of a fab outfit of Keira Knightley’s from last year that I was dying dying dying for.

I searched high and low last year for a beautiful yellow skirt like Keira’s but to no avail. Hers was from Whistles and was an eye-watering £110. Now much as I loves a summery frock, I’m also aware that the colour and fabric of said skirt is not exactly what you’d call trans-seasonal, and Britain is hardly a tropical paradise, so I thought it wasn’t really an investment.

But now, it having entered my consciousness for the second time, I have set myself the challenge of replicating Keira’s look, but finding the whole outfit for the price of the Whistles skirt. Remember fash-maths from earlier posts? Well, it’s back baby.

I decided that I’d leave out the belt, as if you’re like me, through the course of the last year you’ve accumulated more ‘free’ tan belts with items of clothing than you could shake a stick at. And I think I could shake a stick at quite a few.

So, here’s my first attempt.

Skirt – 19.99 New Look; Shirt £16.99 New Look; Sandals £60 Aldo

Fash-maths total: £96.98. Hurrah! This is good, yes, but I think I can do better…

Second attempt

Skirt £45 Oasis; Shirt (tie at the waist) £7.99 H&M; Sandals £19 Dorothy Perkins.

Fash-maths total: £71.99

Aside from me actually salivating at those sandals (errrrr, WANT) that leaves a delightful £38.01 to go and buy yourself a cocktail or two and attempt to attract a bloke like Keira’s.

Sorry, Whistles you just can’t beat fash-maths.

Dis-Count dracula

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I, of course, am signed up to receive many fashion alerts to make sure that I can benefit from some lovely, lovely discounts (it’s a way of pacifying my debit card “It’s ok, Visa, it’s not full price.”)

And recently, I can’t help but notice that a stack load of places are offering some natty online discounts – as it’s coming close to Christmas it doesn’t take a genius to work out why, but hey, I’m all for buying some little pre-Christmas presents for my wardrobe!

So I have taken these discounts and then found one item from each store that I would use the discount on:

New Look

Offer: 20% off with code NOVNL55

The magpie in me is loving the sequin trend hitting up the shops, and hey, we all need a spangley wee dress for a Christmas party, right? So I’ve chose this baby:

Don’t overdo this dress, the sequins and low back speak for themselves. A pair of opaque black tights and some black heels will make you look like you have legs up to *here*.

Fashion maths: Gold teardrop sequin dress: £39.99 – 20% = £31.99. Nice.

Peacocks

Offer: up to 20% off everything (no code required)

So Peacocks is not normally a shop I frequent, but with the uber-stylish Daisy and Pearl Lowe hitting the rails with their range, I have become better acquainted with the store. They are offering a lovely 20% off across most of their stock online. Huzzah. Here is a wicked checked shift:

A classic white shirt underneath and maybe even a beret (if you’re feeling a bit saucy) will set this off a treat. Avoid knee socks or you’ll look like a school girl!

Fashion maths: Checked shift dress: £25 – 20% = £20. Bargainous.

Warehouse

Offer: 20% off with the code 25WRAF

I am loving the studding and turn ups on these lovely jeans from Ware. And 20% off never goes astray in Warehouse.

Plonk on a pair of killer shoe boots and a band tee and you’re ready to rock some socks off.

Fashion maths: Studded turn up jeans: £60 – 20% discount = £48.

Oasis

Offer: 20% off with the code 20NOV2011

Lookie lookie at these awesome high waisted shorts from Oasis. Normally a shop I would go in for workwear, but as discussed in a previous post, SHORTS ARE NOT FOR WORK! But these checked high waisted lovelies are definitely for play:

Get comfy and cosy by teaming with a nice snuggly arran or cable knit jumper, a big wooly hat (bobble optional) and some thick tights. Snug as a very stylish bug in a lush rug.

Fashion maths: High waisted shorts with belt: £40 – 20% discount = £32. That is def keeping me warm.

So, they are my top tips, but there are these places also offering discounts are:

Gap – 30% off with the code GAPSAVE30
Dorothy Perkins – 30% off most of their range (no discount code required)
Wallis – up to 30% off online (no discount code required)
Accessorize – 25% off with the code ACCNOV25%AF
Ted Baker – 20% off with the code TED2IFJB7
Kurt Geiger – 25% off with the code WRAPUP

GET SHOPPING!

Faux pas

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I have recently been inundated with requests for help finding clothes, shoes and accessories for my beautiful friends.

Fashion maths seems to have been a bit of a hit too – with people finding items they would like but at a price their bank manager does not like, and charging me with the task of finding cheaper alternatives!

By way of illustration one of my friends found this beautiful retro dress (£40) at your beloved and mine, ASOS. On sight of it, we both love the whole outfit so much, that I suggested she should try to replicate the whole look and get the other bits as well.

 

Alas, ASOS let us down by not stocking the accessories shown in the outfit (=severe loss of brownie points) and subsequently elevating the need to find the extra bits elsewhere.

My friend did this, but unfortunately stumbled into (in my opinion) massively-overpriced French Connection. And she found this Maud crop jacket for £85. Whilst it is beautiful, it is also a shed load of money for something that, fashion-wise, will be in and out quicker than a right arm in a hokey-cokey.

So, as fashion mathemagician, I have been charged with the task of finding something similar but at a much more reasonable price. Here’s what I found.

1. LK Bennett – Imagine my surprise when even high-end-high-street luvvies LK Bennett came in cheaper than FC. This little beauty came in at £59.99, which well and truly sticks two fingers up at French Connection, and tells it to go FCUK itself.

Fashion maths:

  • LK Bennett: £85 – £59.99 = saving of £25.01

Although it is lovely and cheaper, I still think that we can do better!

2. Debenhams

Debenhams came up trumps with not one but two possibilities, neither of which were to be found in the bridal department (to my astonishment).

Firstly I found this LK Bennett-alike as part of their Debut range for £40, swiftly followed by this grey beauty in the Star by Julian MacDonald range – in the sale at £32. Nice.

Fashion maths:

  • Debut: £85 – £40 = saving of £45
  • Julian MacDonald: £85 – £32 = saving of £53

3. Oasis and Horses and Riders (!)

I decided that I’d move slightly from the bolero and turned my search to tippets and scarves: much more versatile than a jacket, as you could wear as a scarf, or with coats and jackets as a sort of detachable collar. This totally ups the potential pays-per-wear calculation.

Oasis bequeaths us with this little brown scarf at £20 (also available in a leopard print) and I also found this posh-totty website called ‘Horses and Riders’ (what, what) which gave us this bargainous Dubarry tippet (available in three colours) also for £20.

Fashion maths:

  • Oasis: £85 – £20 = saving of £65
  • Dubarry: £85 – £20 = saving of £65

So there we have it. A maximum saving of £65 – which will give her some cash to splash on the tan satchel and boots so she can complete the outfit.