Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Sales Queen

I am the queen of sales shopping. After years of throwing money around on the high street, buying mountains of clothes in sales that I never wore, I've honed my skills so that I’m now a trained, focused, ruthless sales shopper!

I looked at my wardrobe last night and could hardly spot anything that had been bought at full price. Even the outfit I wore on my wedding day was bought in a sale!

So at this time of year, when all the shops have that enticing four letter word in the window, let me bestow my top sales tactics.

1. Go in early. Go in late. But never go in the middle.

Know the stock of the shops you love beforehand so that when the sales start, you are in there like a whippet hunting out the items you loved at full price and get them with their first discounts. They may not be the best discounts...sometimes only 30%...but if you loved something full price and really want/need it, that’s a pretty good reduction.

Last sales season I bought a pair of jeans that I had been lusting after from Reiss for months...jet black with zips up both sides. As soon as the sales started, I walked straight into Reiss, ignored the rest of the stock for fear of temptation, went straight to the jeans and voila...I walked out with a lovely pair of jeans reduced from (I think) £80 down to £45.

Otherwise, go in at the tail end of the sales season and do the shopping equivalent of bar sweeping. Amongst the dregs there can be a little treasure! My best finds over recent years have been three Zara jackets at £9.99 each and a cropped cotton jacket from House of Fraser for £10 (I will attempt to get organised and start posting photos of some of these in the future…).

2. Only buy what you love and/or need…even in the sales!

Don’t ever buy anything you would never have bought full price...or at least considered buying at full price. Just because it’s dirt cheap, doesn’t mean to say it’s a bargain if you never wear it and it ends up down the charity shop in a few years with the tag still on!

3. Don’t just focus on how near to the zero mark sales prices are.

I find sales are one of the few times when I can buy brands that I would not normally be able to afford (or would have to agonise over buying!). Why spend hours foraging around Topshop for a dress reduced from £35 to £25 that you think is ‘alright’ when you could buy a dress you love from Whistles reduced from £175 to £95 (see right!).

r years of seeking a cheap thrill from sales shopping, I’ve come much more to the view of maybe buying one or two items that I would never normally afford to buy.

And that’s it; three simple steps to pain free, effective sales shopping!

Now, if I was shopping in the sales this year, this is what I would be buying:

All Saints – Laima Corset Dress Was £140, Now £70

LK Bennett Sabira Court shoe Was £150, Now £75

Reiss Bingham animal print shoulder bag Was £129, Now £65

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