It’s incredible to note the way we shop compared with 10 years ago.
Back then, shopping was all about magazines and intense days on the local high street with your girlfriends. I clearly remembering trawling the streets of Cheltenham on heaving Saturdays with almost a primal sense for that night’s outfit, eighty quid in my back pocket and a desire to spend, spend, spend. And often it didn’t matter what I spent on, as long as it was a pair of Baxters from Topshop and something borderline provocative from Morgan (remember that shop?!).
But now, as a just-about-millennial member of the Instagram generation, the process of shopping is wildly different. I no longer spend stressful hours combing the high street for the hottest bargains but instead prefer a much mellower approach. Preferably sat on my sofa.
You see, these days I just wait for my favourite instagrammers to buy the things I MIGHT want to purchase, spot them looking fab on my phone and then emulate their outfits, pain-free, without leaving my house to get trampled in the shopping centre rush.
Image – Alex Stedman
Take Alex from The Frugality for example. I LOVE her sense of style: a bit preppy, very casual, totally relaxed. I know she’s of a similar body shape and type to me, so anything that looks good on her has a chance of looking good on me, too.
Image- Erica Davies
Ditto Erica, from The Edited. She’s a mum with a busy life akin to mine, but still manages to rock new season M&S like Kate Moss in her heyday and looks incredible in the current season A-line skirts. I’ve purchased many a red shoe or statement blouse after seeing it on her Instagram.
Image – Sarah Clark
Then there’s Sarah Clark of Little Spree. Sarah’s a mum and also a roving Fashion Ed for a glossy magazine (plus a lovely person to boot), so she’s the one to speak to when you want to translate your Issey into H&M.
Between these ladies, my wardrobe is happily sorted. No muss, no fuss, no stress-inducing shopping centre Saturdays.
We’re coming to the end of fashion week right now, and this is one of the happiest shopping times of them all for me. I adore ogling my favourite bloggers’ looks for the presentations, and love seeing them in the front row of my favourite shows (Mulberry and Topshop this weekend were absolute treats).
Back (back-back-back) in the day I used to attend fashion week myself and still remember the thrill of being seated next to Susie Bubble by a misguided PR at Bora Aksu: those days are gone, but being able to watch the shows via Instagram are the next best thing.
So when online payment company Klarna asked me to put together my own LFW-inspired outfit from one of their retailers, I was all over it.
Klarna is a Stockholm-based company that offers a new, simplified online buying experience called Pay After Delivery, giving you the flexibility to order online, then pay for your items after they’ve been delivered. It’s perfect for those like me who pretty much exclusively shop online: you browse and purchase, Klarna guarantees your payment with the retailer, the items arrive for you to try on and then you have up to fourteen days to pay Klarna as per the instructions emailed to you. No interest is charged and it’s a VERY simple process. I’ve used them in the past – shopping at Swedish Hasbeens, natch – and I was excited to have another go.
This time I decided to shop with one of my favourite London-based online stores, Finery London. Finery produce contemporary designs that are well-made and wearable, all from their studio in Hackney, and I love their classic pieces.
I took inspiration from three of my favourite bloggers when ordering: I’d seen these magnificent earrings on The Frugality, know this is the kind of skirt Erica would rock (probably with some amazing contrasting shoes in electric blue) and have fallen in love with romantic white blouses and flute sleeves after seeing them on Sarah’s blog, Little Spree.
(I was also incredibly tempted by this red leather skirt, this gorgeously simple funnel-neck top and a structured white blouse. Lovely).
My order arrived today (just in time for a day of meetings in town tomorrow); as I hoped the items are AMAZING. As you can see in the photo, the pink skirt needs a good old press but the colour is glorious and it’ll really work for dates, events and work days. Unfortunately the fluted sleeve top wasn’t really ‘me’ (and I felt the proportions were slightly off when paired with the skirt) so it’ll be going back, but no matter! I won’t even feel the stress of the money coming from my bank account then awaiting its return because my Klarna payment isn’t due until mid-March.
Here I’ve paired the skirt (and the wonderful earrings) with my new Donna Ida Miss Maggie blouse (I’m going to have to get this in more colours – it’s gorgeous) and a pair of leopard print platforms from Topshop.
And not that I want to be an enabler or anything, but Klarna also work with Topshop, and have you seen this embroidered blouse? It’s an absolute corker.
Happy Fashion Week!
Huge thanks to Klarna for working with MTT.