This isn’t a post that I thought I would ever write but 2020 hasn’t really shaped up to conform with the 21st Century has it? As clothes shops prepare to open, there will be a new normal - at least for a while.
Leisurely browsing with the occasional coffee stop is something that we can but dream of for the time being - but I hope we'll be back shopping together very soon.
For now, we will be faced with the prospect of queuing as shops limit the number of customers at any one-time, one-way systems, sanitiser stations, the loss of changing rooms and of course maintaining a strict 2m distance. When it comes to returns queues are likely to be much longer than ever, which all makes for a very painful experience.
My hope however, is that people will be encouraged to buy less and choose well, something I have championed since I started working as a stylist in 2012. Sustainability could be a positive by-product of the pandemic.
That said, we are likely to see huge sales as retailers try to offload their disastrous spring/summer season. And so you have a choice; do you adopt the smash and grab approach in your local budget store or do you use this opportunity to invest in better quality items that will last for years to come?
I will always point you to the latter approach. Use this opportunity to look at retailers that have always been slightly out of your reach, because the discounts on offer may well mean that you can afford to treat yourself now.
Here are my top tips to shopping smart in the current 'new normal'...
* Before you part with your hard-earned cash, check that the intended purchase will go with at least three other things in your wardrobe. If you have to buy ‘around’ the item to make an outfit, chances are it isn’t a bargain.
* As changing rooms are closed at the moment I would recommend opting for styles, fabrics and cuts that you know work well for you. Do a little homework before you set off by reminding yourself of those 10 out of 10 outfits. Note the style, necklines, hemlines and fabrics (even take a few pics on your phone to refer to if needed) This will give you a great chance of success as returns are likely to be more laborious at the moment too.
* You know I always bang on about colour but it's SO important to consider. It may seem obvious but before you make an unnecessary purchase, check in the mirror that it looks good on you. Hold the garment under your chin and have a look at what it does to your face. Your complexion should look clear and vibrant.
And if you really don't know where to begin, start with me.
I can help you to build a lifestyle and age appropriate wardrobe that provides you with endless outfit opportunities. Discover more about my services HERE.
Wishing everyone safe and happy shopping trips (as we try to get back to a little bit of normality)