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A fashion and style blog for the over 40s covering body shapes, colour palettes, how to wear neutrals, style personality and capsule wardrobes. Come on in!

My Fail Safe Brands

Here is a list of my favourite, favourite brands and why I buy from them. Click on any of the brand names to take you to the website.

Good For Wardrobe Builders



Baukjen

They understand a woman's figure and so dresses particularly are cut beautifully. Love their leather leggings (check out them out here - I love mine). Mainly plain fabrics. Good quality, timeless classics. No faddy trends. And the founder is a gorgeous woman who just so happens to be called....Baukjen  (funny that) #girlcrushalert

Fit is ever so slightly on the generous size (size down if you're in-between)

Boden

I rate the Bretons as they're not too thick and stiff. Shoes are always good and ponte jackets are well made and hang really well. I tend to buy only the plain fabrics and steer clear of prints which some might feel are a little too quirky. Very 'British' producing good quality, reasonable value smart-casual clothes. Look out for diminishing discounts and special offers. Worth signing up for their emails (bottom of the landing page).

True to size

Kettlewell Colours

Their unique selling point is that they 'understand' colour so make it very easy for you to shop your correct shade. Lot's of information on colour. You can take the colour quiz here and read the blog here. It's worth spending an evening indulging in all the useful colour advice.  Mainly plain pieces. Very good quality for the money. Not high fashion but easy pieces to mix. Particularly like their long sleeve tops and knits.

True to size

Marks & Spencer

Favourite brands are Limited Collection and Autograph. This is one of the few shops that I prefer to go in to, than shop online. I don't enjoy the website, it's a necessary evil I guess. I tend to buy jeans and tops from here but they normally have two or three pairs of shoes that I swoon over each season. And obviously it's my go-to for underwear.

True to size

ME&EM

Striking pieces. Ideal for impact but some easy wear day to day pieces as well. Good quality. Worth checking out their sales, often good savings to be had.

Fit is ever so slightly on the large size (size down if you're in-between).

Winser London

Beautiful quality basics that you can use to build outfits incorporating your existing wardrobe. Lots of neutral colours: navy, black, grey, camel, ivory etc. with a pop or two of seasonal trends. Investing in a couple of pieces a season will provide you with timeless classics that will stand the test of time.

Fit is ever so slightly on the large size (size down if you're in-between).




Good For Fashion Pieces



ASOS

A huge selection. If you're looking for something in particular, you'll probably find it at ASOS. The downside is that you have to trawl through endless pages because their stock is vast!  Excellent unlimited next day delivery which costs £9.95 per annum with their Premier Delivery).

Sizing is all over the place as they stock hundreds of brands

H&M

Hate the stores, love the catalogue and online shopping. Cheap as chips and quality can be questionable especially knits. But jackets are amazing for the price! Look at the blazer section for less fashion-led pieces.

Sizing is minuscule - best to open an account with them and order several sizes.

Mango

I prefer Mango over Zara as the quality tends to be slightly better. Great for summer dresses, basic trousers and the odd jackets. I've also been very impressed with their bag collections of late, some pieces are leather and are reasonably priced.

Many pieces (dresses particularly) come up big these days so size down

Mint Velvet

Grown up fashion! Sophisticated collections for the 35+ woman. Nod to trends but nothing too over the top. They say relaxed glamour. I tend to agree.

True to size (but I normally size up in jeans)

New Look

Produce a few humdinger pieces each season (read that as perfect designer dupes, particularly in the footwear department). Aimed at the younger end of the market but there are the odd few things that I like each season. Hate, hate, hate the shops. Online platform is boring but functional. Fairly low quality/low cost.

Footwear true to size (but I normally size up in clothes)

Next

Stocks great pieces that nod to current trends without being over the top ridiculous. Great prices and good quality (I'm always surprised at how well garments are finished).  Free next day delivery to your local store. Love the pull on coated leggings.

True to size

Top Shop

A great go-to shop for shoes. Very fashion forward but you're not breaking the bank! Lots of things are way too young for me but their basics especially jeans are good.

Footwear true to size, clothes sometimes come up on the small side

Zara

Jackets. That is all. But don't forget TRF outerwear as well, although aimed at the younger end, you can occasionally pick up some nice stuff.

Very small, size up twice!


Good Independents



Gemini Woman

Good online presence and the shop in Stratford-on-Avon is jam packed full of goodies. Stock well known brands such as French Connection, Sandwich and Great Plains.
Mainly true to size

ILU
A small collection of amazing fitness wear. Incorporating easy wear tops that hide the muffin tummy and compression leggings. Stylish and practical. See my review here
True To size

Mimi & Thomas
A beautiful range of cashmere wraps that can be worn in different ways thanks to the clever buttons running up and down the hems. Also carry a range of bags (mainly clutches) that offer something a little bit different to the High Street.
One size fits all

Good For Discounts



Jaegar Outlet

Excellent savings on old season stock. Jackets are particularly good value. Often run special events so even more discounts to be had
Ever so slightly big


Joules Outlet (Ebay)

Good for the odd piece of knitwear and tops. The shop is part of Ebay so easy to navigate if you're familiar with this platform. Free delivery.
Haven't bought for a while but used to come up slightly small

Mango Outlet

A great site to pick up previous season Mango stock. Occasionally have sales on this site as well so it's not unusual to save upwards of 70%. Be careful though as you have to pay for returns!
Many pieces (dresses particularly) come up big these days so size down

Next Clearance

Contained within the Next official site. It's worth putting in a search now and again if you're looking for something specific eg. cropped jeans.
True to size




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