Style police; No accounting for taste
Beware the sales. Many bargains belong in the fashion bin, warns James Sherwood
Sunday 06 July 1997
The sales are not for the benefit of the customer. Anything with a slashed pricetag is a mistake on the part of the buyer. It's the stuff people with cash to burn didn't bother buying. "Before you reach for the credit card, ask yourself whether you'd buy the piece at full price," advises Rita Britton of Pollyanna. Only a real label queen will buy a devoree, velveteen, Jean-Paul Gaultier sarong on sale - remember, people don't see the label, they see a sad hippie.
But Style Police is as susceptible to a bargain as the next man, so, here's our sale shopping guide.
Don't bother with middle-market sales. Marks & Spencer won't put white T-shirts on sale. You'll just get gingham short skirts and citrus brights that only Food & Drink's Jilly Goulden would wear.
Few can afford designer mainlines - the sale is the one crack we can have at labels. Classic designer wear can be a steal if there is a slight fault, like Liberty's Georgina Von Etzdorf scarves. The stock is bought in for the sale and the fabulous chiffon/velvet devoree stoles are down from pounds 150 to pounds 99 because the colour is slightly off-palette or there is a minor fault in the pattern. Who will know?
Liberty is the best sale. It will show you just what women aren't wearing. For example, Ralph Lauren's sale rail is longer the Maginot Line. But in the middle is a perfect, navy, crepe shift with white detail (down from pounds 370 to pounds 185). Never resist the temptation to rummage. Always look at who isn't on sale to clock the hot labels. Then see who is half and who a third off. If the full-price stock is similar, perhaps the sale piece is an off-size or slightly damaged. Buy it.
The most covetable sale pieces are the "I'm not paying" dresses. Pearce Fionda makes the most delectable jackets, smart tops and evening gowns since Madame Vionnet. At pounds 1,555, the black, crepe, evening dress is twice the amount of a mortgage repayment. At pounds 779, it is still expensive but justifiable. The same goes for John Galliano. A price tag of pounds 1,435 for a broderie anglaise short jacket makes the customer feel like Imelda Marcos. At pounds 717, it's more Princess Di. The scratch-your-eyes-out piece in Liberty's sale is a Jean Muir navy crepe dress (from pounds 605 to pounds 400). On your marks...
Life & Style blogs
McDonald’s launches clothing line using Big Mac prints
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?
Clocks change: how to make sure iPhone and smartphones automatically ‘spring forward’
Curvy model Kate Upton is returning to the big screen for the film The Layover
American Apparel gets another ad banned by advertising watchdog for sexualising children
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Germanwings plane crash live: Andreas Guenter Lubitz intentionally crashed flight 9525 into the Alps in act of mass murder and suicide – latest
- 1 Germanwings crash: Police make 'significant discovery' at home of co-pilot Andreas Lubitz
- 2 Zayn Malik already working on solo material, just days after quitting One Direction
- 3 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 4 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 5 Jeremy Clarkson calls on trolls to leave producer Oisin Tymon alone: 'None of this is his fault'
£12800 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Trainee CAD Technician is req...
£15600 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This renewable energy installat...
£22000 - £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: This is a large multi-site operation...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join a lead...