For the next few weeks it is non stop research. I'll be checking out the new seasons offerings on the high street. It's all well and good looking longingly at the catwalks but the High Street still remains the place for most people's budgets and that includes the production companies when PR's are unable to loan or have samples available.
I'll be trawling the main high street shops and the delightful shops dotted around Central London, but Kingston and Bluewater also need to be assessed.
Today in Kingston-upon-Thames, (it's part of Greater London and has a great shopping area if you want to avoid the crowds) I had a scout around to check the slow progress of the new stock. I'll be delving into detail on specific retailers in posts over the next few weeks. September's British Vogue has a focus on page 127&8 on the new direction at Whistles. I had a quick peek today and liked the look except for the continued use of faux shirts and tops. I call it lazy dressing - when a top is a mesh of jumper and shirt. the shirt bit is sewn in and yuk it is a personal no no for me. Lots of promise and great quality. (I'll just whisper this - it's a bit Topshop for grown ups).
Check, tartan and purple are early offerings with a useful back up of grey with red yet to make a full arrival.
For those hearting Gucci and the trend of Winter Garden (or late bloomers as I like to think of it) then Oasis have a peachy number retailing at £70.
Warehouse have two dresses that wouldn't look improper in Anna Wintour's wardrobe - so if society siren is your style then these winter florals might be your high street finds. The Blurred Rose Tulip dress retails at £70 and the Bouquet Floral Shift Dress at £75.
Whilst the crowds were away I took the opportunity to visit Primark and check out whats coming in. Their accessories are flying in and they've gone their usual homage designs with a clear D&G focus with plaid bags and quite punky gothy shoes and other accessories.
I tried on a clear nod to Marc Jacobs and another dress, with ruffle and pleat detail in two different colour. The MJ number was the better quality of the two and the cheaper at £10.00. The pleated dress was £14.00 and the material was very synthetic and wouldn't last beyond a few wears not least because you'd ruin it trying to yank the zip down. I took some pics in the changing room which was difficult in a small, slightly smelly and quite trashed cubicle. Primark is not for the faint hearted!