A shop of two halves.

And obviously two very different halves.  To start with, I've had a thought about something I'd like to blog about (not sure if you want to read or not but I do know it's something that I find interesting, so hopefully someone else will as well) 

As i've mentioned before, there are shops on the high street that once you get to, ahem, a certain age, it's very easy to swerve.  The ones that essentially are aimed at a younger demographic.  When it gets to the point that your 9 year old daughter questions why you're shopping in x as that's where your 15 year old niece shops, it's understandable that a lot of people just avoid them. 

And I can see that there is good reason. Most of them are incredibly difficult to navigate, usually you are assaulted by a plethora of neon cropped tops or something as equally unsuitable for a woman who remembers said item from the first time round.  Plus the Sales Assistants look young enough to be our daughters and many (not all for sure) have managed to perfect that look which clearly says "really?? You?  In here?".  It's a fascinating combination of both confusion and pity - a look which only the truly young and naive can pull off without getting a punch. 

However I have an inner "two fingers up" which means I don't give a monkeys and will plough on regardless.  As often it is really worth having a look and sorting the wheat from the chaff.  So in the next couple of weeks/months, I shall be having a good old rummage (and yes a lot of them are like slightly upmarket jumble sales with the amount of stock they have) to bring you some gems that are worth taking a deep breath and seeking out. 

Starting with... Warehouse.  Now this perhaps doesn't fully fit the criteria of a shop where few of us feel at home as it is slightly more mature than a lot of the younger ones out there.  For a start it's definitely not at the cheaper end of the High Street - more mid range I would say. 

Which is interesting when some of their stuff is absolute rubbish.  I should probably point out at this juncture that (obviously) I have not been sponsored or asked in any way shape or form to look at any of these shops.  Seeing as I will be bringing them to you warts and all. 

A lot of the clothes in Warehouse are really not that great quality.  I wanted so so much to love their shift dresses.  It's one of my favourite shapes and they're not particularly expensive.  But they quality?  What I would expect for £15 in Primark.  They definitely are not the only offenders with regards to this - Zara - take note.  Sensible people aren't going to pay approaching £50 for an unlined 100% polyester dress that after 5 mins of wearing will look like it's been slept in.  The thin fabric wouldn't do anyone any favours and frankly just looks (and feels) cheap. 

And the travesty about this is that they're the first thing I saw when I went into the shop.  Had I not been a) on a mission and b) on the way to midway down the shop as I had to return something, I would have hot footed it out of there and not gone back probably all season (and maybe next as well).  It's not as if there isn't choice on the High Street and certainly first impressions last.  And mine wasn't a good one in Warehouse. 

Which is such a shame as there really are some excellent things to be had.  Truly gorgeous items (hanging right next to pieces of tat - it really is quite surprising) which are definitely worth looking at. 

Starting with a jumper which is perfect for the Spring.  A great shape to wear over a shirt - it's not cropped per se (dear god no) but it's definitely shorter than your average crew neck thick knit jumper (and this is a lovely chunky cotton knit sweater). 

Ideal for layering but also just the right length to wear with looser boyfriend or straight leg jeans - cutting you off just below the waist as opposed to at the bottom of the bum. 

Unfortunately you can't see the texture detail but it's a fab detailed knit.  Poppers at the back are just gorgeous (not functional - purely decorative - no gaping back on show thank you) 

Warehouse Popper Back Stitch Stripe Sweater £38.00  In black.  Love love love this for the monochrome look in the Spring but just as great with blue denims.

And in the bright red.  £38.00  Now there *may* be a hint of the Where's Wally about this but I completely love it.  I've kicked myself for not getting a similar one I saw in Anthropologie two years ago and so this is definitely going on my lust list.  And this is someone who doesn't even do red.  (personally I would be avoiding the bin liner inspired mini skirt.  Just throwing it out there.  A prime example of why there are certain things which should be avoided in shops like these)

Warehouse Ponte Flippy Dress in black £65 This is what I went to return.  And I am gutted I had to. Truly truly gutted.  This to me is pretty much identical to the Joseph Dora dress which costs 4 times as much as this.   And genuinely, the quality of this is better.  For me the only (and it's quite a big only) was the fit.  On me, being 5ft10 the dimensions were ever so slightly off.  The 12 was too big around the arms - the 10 gave me under arm muffin (barf) and the waist was just that little bit too high.  

Please - please please please if you are looking for a dress for the summer - buy this.  It could be worn to a wedding with coloured accents, it could be worn to a casual lunch with flipflops.  It is honestly the loveliest dress I have seen in ages.  Superb quality. 

Dark Floral Print Dress £60  Amongst the sea of flimsy polyester dresses, this is a shining beacon (along with the Ponte flippy dress).  Lovely sturdy structured fabric dress.  Gorgeous colours and print.  Stunning dress - again could be dressed up or down.  I fear it may be too short for me. 

Warehouse Japanese `floral Print t-shirt in Cream £28.00  This is a lovely silky fabric with a jersey backing to it.  Gorgeous detail on the reverse - very Ted Baker for a fraction of the cost. 

Marmont Print Zip Back Jumper £42.00  A great printed knit jumper - fab for wearing as is or layering a shirt or long vest underneath.   The perfect alternative to a printed blouse.  This for me would come into its own over a leather skirt - either a pencil or full skirt - skater or midi length.  

Warehouse Winter Floral Print Trousers £45.00  The same print as the dress above - a lovely heavy twill feeling cotton fabric.  I am having a bit of a print trouser love in at the moment - the wish list is growing - watch for a blog on them soon. 

Lily Print Lace Trim Cami £25  Now I have to say one of the best things I saw in Warehouse were the printed camis.  These are perhaps not at the forefront of your buying agenda right now but come slightly warmer weather, these are a great great idea.   Strapless bra, smart capri pants and a blazer and courts and you're set for a dressy Spring night out.  Alternatively with a pair of boyfriends and flipflops, perfect for those warm summer days. (tan and strapless bra also obligatory in my book)   

Pixel Print Cami £22

Warehouse Birdcage Print Scarf in Light Blue £20  There are lots of scarves in Warehouse but the one that caught my eye is this huge (and it is huge) grey/blue/black/green one which is just perfect for the Spring.  Absolutely adore this colourway. 

Warehouse Navy Boucle Longline jacket £48  Finishing with a cardigan/jacket.  This is a great Spring throw on - marvellous alternative to a jacket or coat. 

So there we have what I thought was worth looking at.  There were definitely a couple of other things but for the main part, I was slightly disappointed.  However I'm clearly not their target market but refuse to let that deter me....  Are you a Warehouse fan?  Any other shops that you think you simply can't shop in any more?  I have a list I'm compiling but would love to know what you think of the High Street. 

Finishing with my outfits from the weekend.  This is from Friday night - dinner and drinks at a Pampered Chef party.  Really good fun (am I past it when I actually think a party where you buy cooking utensils is good fun....?  It's like having a rave in Lakeland.  Wrong on every level.  I am, however, the owner of two new sets of stoneware which were 20% off in Jan. I shall not extoll the virtues of it on a fashion blog as that's below even me, but suffice to say, it's darn good stuff) 

Untitled Untitled

Cream oversized shirt - Zara
Distressed Real Straight jeans - Gap
Leopard print wedges - M&S
Tan leather belt - Primark
Camel coat - Zara
Leather cuff - Hultquist
Leather studded cuff - Warehouse
Whisky Medium Marcie satchel - Chloe

Saturday - usual round of football, drama followed by lunch out with the family and then the start of the some chuffing rugby thing.  How many weeks of this do we have to endure? 


Cream ribbed longsleeeved top - Michael Stars
Ovresized Cable jumper dress - Aubin & Wills
Fairisle scarf - Aubin & Wills
Stone Kirsten jeans - Topshop
Grey wrist warmers - Toast
Camel Cypress boots - Acne
Stone maxi zip satchel - Anya Hindmarch

However all was not lost on the Saturday as in the evening we had a surprise 40th birthday party for a friend of mine that was organised by her husband.  Oh. My. Lord.  What an amazing amazing party.  Champagne, wine and fabulous food on tap followed by.... drum roll.... a Take That Tribute band.  They were utterly awesome.  Admittedly I am a huge Take That fan and these guys, whilst not being the real thing - to a bunch of ageing Take That addicts, they may as well have been. 

So lovely to be able to get dressed up and - very very unlike me - I bought nothing new.  Shock. Horror.  The three a month thingymajig is really working.  I raided the wardrobe - had forgotten how much I adore this dress (third outing which isn't bad for an evening dress I don't think) and ditto with the shoes.  Beyond pleased with this Tory Burch bag from Bicester last year, it really was a great buy as opposed to just using a plain black bag as I would normally have done.  Accent bags, definitely something to think about. 


Black ruched silk jersey dress - All Saints
Asymmetric black suede court shoes - Zara
Filigree earrings - Forever21
Gold & diamante cuff - Taylor Stephens
Leopard print clutch - Tory Burch 

Tomorrow will be back with another High Street Fave.  Be warned though, this time I am rantastic.....

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13 comentarios:

  1. Oooh I love those camis but just can't bear to part with any money on warm climate clothes at the moment. I'm with you on the quality thing. Some retailers have upped their game and others have most definitely gone downhill which makes it really difficult when online shopping. You look fab x

  2. The first two dresses are fabulous. I am loving the idea of a high street shop critique!

  3. Can I still wear that?Monday, 03 February, 2014

    Love the coatigan and the first cami. I am also tall and find all the dresses way the short. Love your blog by the way.

  4. Oooh I guessed right it was Warehouse. I always find Warehouse store layout depressing with sludgy khaki green colours dominating - makes it hard to see the gems. Love the black swishy dress and the longline cardi. You look fab in another all saints number and yes totally with you on the accent bag.

  5. I wont go in there as feel I am to old funnily enough I never feel like that when I go into Oasis, however I love the black flippy dress and navy boucle cardi so I may rethink this! You look amazing in the black dress. ps I once walked passed Howard Donald in the street a few years back and nearly passed out!

  6. Agree that the quality is sometimes disappointing in Warehouse. However, they do the most amazing skinny jeans - the "super fit" ones are a great fit and don't go baggy the minute you put them on. Seriously the best fitting jeans I have ever had. They cost £48 so aren't cheap, but I always buy when there's a promotion on. Also love their scarves, I have a great leopard print one from a few years ago that I wear to work most days.

  7. You look amazing in the black dress! I never really find anything in warehouse either! Another shop along these lines is Oasis. I just don't think of going there for anything any more. But I just wrote a blog on how great Karen Millen is at the moment after years of feeling like I'd outgrown it, so maybe I should go back and revisit the others - any excuse! X

  8. How stunning do you look in your dress? Totally gorgeous.
    I feel the same about Warehouse and Miss Sekfridge. Slightly differentt I know, but I am ambivalent about Jack Wills and Hollister. Love so much in both but so does my almost 13 year old daughter. With both though the quality is usually very good and the price point not directed at teens xxx

  9. What a wonderful, wonderful post - I so recognise the shop assistants!! And never have I changed an opinion about an item so quickly as when I read the "Wheres wally" comment. It so is!!
    There are a few shops like Warehouse where the offerings are a real curate's egg - Some items are absolutely wonderful and some are just complete dross!

    Love your black all saints dress picture - very nice!!

  10. I bet you were the Belle of the Ball! xx

  11. What to say i praise of this blog, which contains a lot of amazing information as well as the thoughtful writes.

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  12. A ride. You're an absolute ride in that dress!

  13. You look amazeballs in all 3 outfits Kat! Love the idea of your High Street Raid n Review! looking forward to the next one! Ax