‘Shopping’ even if it is not normally high on your list of priorities, the shopping bug inevitably finds us all in the festive season! Whether it be for updating your winter wardrobe, finding that perfect winter coat, shimmering through the party season, or Christmas present shopping. At some point most of us will be out braving Oxford Street, Westfield or your local high street to find those special purchases. To make your shopping life far less stressful and more successful, here are a few of my personal shopping top tips!
Wardrobe Review & Edit
If you are looking to update your wardrobe or shop for new party outfits, start with going through your wardrobe to see what you already have. Look at everything including shoes, bags and accessories - if you want to wear a special necklace or pair of shoes, make sure you take them with you. Make this an opportunity to clear out your wardrobe of garments that no longer fit, are outdated or cannot be mended.
Whilst you go along compile a list of the gaps you need to fill and prioritise with things you need to buy and purchases you would like to buy. Always set yourself a budget and make sure the lists fall within budget.
Decide what you want to buy: daywear, workwear, something for an evening out or Christmas gifts? It is easier to narrow the field of what you want to purchase in one trip, than starting with just a vague idea. Look online beforehand so you have an idea of where you might find your ideal dress or present, make sure your size is in stock by phoning ahead and stay within budget by comparing prices.
Without fail I always advise clients on the best time/day to start their personal shopping trips. It is generally calmer and less stressful to shop when the stores are quieter which is normally Monday – Thursday, the benefits of taking a day or half day off work far outweigh rushed, panicked evening or weekend shopping. If it isn’t possible to take time off work, start early. On a Saturday morning the shops aren’t stupidly busy until around 1pm, but by then you should be in full shopping swing and able to handle 1 or 2 hours of crazy crowds.
Give yourself a pre-shopping makeover, so you don’t have to imagine the overall look of your new outfit. This will also give you increased confidence when shopping in shops you might never normally venture into, or asking for help/advice. If shopping for a figure hugging party dress, wear your spanx or bring them with you. Ask the shop assistant for a pair of heels to try on, it beats simultaneously holding in your stomach and standing on tip toe!
Be aware of the return policies. Check how many days you have to return purchases, as they vary from 14 to 28 days. The vast majority of shops will through December give you until the end of January to return unwanted items. Some stores though still don't offer a full refund and will only give a credit note. Check before you buy!
If you still find the thought of shopping daunting, why not try the services of a personal shopper to either shop with you, or do it all for you. A professional personal shopper will ease the stress, save you money and work with you to get the most out of your shopping trip.
If you would like to know more and are interested in any of my personal shopping services or would like to buy someone special a personal shopper gift experience , please do get in touch. Personal shopping services are available throughout London.