Mail Order Listing 15 Of The Best

APC - 00 331 49 87 04 04. France-based APC offers a sharp collection of hip urban basics, such as a pale blue shirt dress, pounds 67, and Cuban shirt, pounds 30. Don't forget to check out the eclectic CD discography, the Tunisian extra-virgin olive oil or the camouflage tape - great for wrapping presents.

The Cross - 0171-221 8616. Buy into the ultimate Notting Hill lifestyle courtesy of The Cross, whose new catalogue puts Elle Decoration to shame. Long-sleeve linen rib tops, pounds 95, by Dosa; denim espadrilles, pounds 22. Great for presents. Like Interflora, The Cross will send your personal message.

The Book - 0800 3288 488. Slick catalogue showcasing ranges from favourite British designers - Joseph, Whistles, Betty Jackson, Jasper Conran and Ben de Lisi. Also shoes by Robert Clergerie, DKNY and Patrick Cox.

Space NK - 0870 169 9999. Yummy pots and potions from the entrepreneurial Nicki Kinnaird, whose new age apothecary shops turned beauty retailing on its head in the early 1990s. Goodies from Kiehl's, Philosophy, Nars, Bumble & Bumble and Stila.

French Connection Buy Mail - 0870 606 3285. Set up last year owing to increased demand from French Connection's customers, the Buy Mail catalogue is slick and easy to follow with some great good buys. From a grey linen tailored suit, pounds 140, to simple jersey clamdiggers, pounds 45 and embroidered cardigans, pounds 80.

Birkenstock - 0800 132 194. Purveyor of the hippest summer sandals, Birkenstock is the number one in comfort and price, from pounds 32.95.

Littlewoods - 0345 888 222. Now in a more palatable bite-size format, Littlewoods includes designer ranges by John Richmond and Ally Capellino.

Brora - 0171-736 9944. The cashmere specialist has just launched a baby range, Baby Direct. Packages start at pounds 24 for a pure Scottish wool baby blanket to a luxury package at pounds 149 which includes blanket, cashmere bootees, mittens and cardigan.

Racing Green - 0990 788 898. Great basics, including the ever-popular Simone trouser, pounds 49, said to fit and flatter any shape.

Ghost - - Available on the Internet, Ghost's classic styles - straight-leg trousers, slim shirts, slip dresses and T-shirts - are produced every season. Available in black or white in machine-washable viscose crepe. Prices start at pounds 70 for a camisole; long bias-cut dress, pounds 110.

La Redoute - 0500 777 777. An excellent alternative to slogging around in search of your favourite designers, such as Joseph and super-chic French designer Eric Bergere.

Toast - 01558 66 88 00. The fashion editor's favourite, Toast's mini booklet is full of desirables. Clothes are easy pyjama shapes; cotton summer nightshirts pounds 39, linen shift dresses pounds 45 and cotton apron trousers pounds 32 - they look luxurious but you wouldn't know it from the prices. Check out the soap bricks, bed linen and Syrian tea-glasses.

Johnny Loves Rosie - 0171-375 3574 .

Famed for their originality on the accessory front. Unusual floral or printed flip-flops pounds 12.95, sheer shopper bags in cute colours from pounds 14.95, along with a massive range of floral and diamante hair-clips and pretty dragonfly slides, pounds 8.95 a pair. For a bohemian look - printed or plain headscarves, pounds 14.95, and glamorous chokers embroidered with sequins and coloured beads, pounds 35.

Kingshill - 01494 890 555. From catwalk to catalogue: Joseph, Jean Muir, Paul Costelloe and Amanda Wakeley are just a few of the British-based designers showcased in Kingshill, the up-market hardback fashion book.

TM Lewin - 0171-515 3360. The renowned Jermyn Street shirtmaker is the best place to stock up on crisp, summer shirts. Available plain or in gingham checks - all the colours of the rainbow, from pounds 49-pounds 60.

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