How the Marie Claire team shops

Aspasia – The Impulse Buyer

Your Strategy: “I have no strategy, I just have compulsions. If I see something and I like it, I go to get it. Which is why I try to live with no credit in my life, otherwise I’d be in trouble.”

Why is it the best way to shop? “I don’t think it’s the best way to shop, I feel like I have enough clothes, shoes and bags in my cupboard. But if I see something I really love then I buy it.”

Your best impulse buy: “My Prada Mohawk Shoes.”

Pros: “You know that everything you own, you love.”

Cons: “It’s not good for the fiscal bottom line.”

Tips: “You have to really love something before you buy it.”

Aspasia’s blue suede Prada Mohawk heels with studded embellishment.

Sharon – The Wardrobe Swapper

Your strategy: “I got together with friends and did a ladies wardrobe swop; everyone bought 7 items which all got mixed up and put onto a rail. There was a variety of clothes, shoes and bags. Each person picked a number out of a hat and went in that order to pick their items.”

Why is it the best way to shop? “It’s green, it’s up-cycling and it’s social. We’ve decided to have one every six months.”

Your best ‘purchase’ from the swap: “A pair of vintage pastel mint green patent Mary-Janes.”

Pros: “You drink wine! It’s free and more relaxed than shopping in a mall. You also clear out cupboard space in preparation and if your friends are like mine, the unwanted clothes go to a good home.”

Cons: “Beware the ‘shopping’ frenzy!”

Tips: “Be clear on the type and standard of merchandise that everyone needs to bring. Make sure there at least ten people as anything less would be a little flimsy in terms of selection. Pick a focus, ours was South Africa designers and vintage.”

Kelly – The Online Shopper

Kelly wearing a jacket, bag and shoes which were all purchased online.

Your strategy: “I constantly trawl, online sites are always being updated. I think with international shopping the pace is a lot faster. You must research the site before handing over your money. I don’t really follow trends; I look for some thing different. If I know that you can get something similar here, I won’t bother.”

Why is it the best way to shop: “The thrill of getting a parcel in the post, it’s also a gamble. I also love having something that isn’t available to local shoppers.”

Your best online purchase: “A beautiful leather jacket for £25 on sale at ASOS.”

Pros: “It helps develop an individual wardrobe, the prices are generally really good. It’s easy and international shopping keeps you ahead.”

Cons: “You may be surprised by the fit or feel of your item when it arrives. You can overspend because clicking on something and owning it, is so easy. Sometimes you can pay extra tax when it comes in the country.”

Tips: “Look carefully at sizing and materials the items are made from so you know as much as possible about what you’re buying. The sales sections often have great bargains. Usually they clear out often, so check regularly to see if an item you love has gone on sale or discount. Sign up for a newsletter so you are aware of sales, discounts or daily specials. My top three sites are nelly.co.uk, shopbop.com for labels and ASOS.”

Bee – The Vintage Shopper (below left)

Your strategy: “If I’m bored at home I like to go treasure hunting. I park my car, walk the streets and find odd, little places. If I have an event to go to, I never go to shops with ‘new’ clothes, because everyone already has those items.”

Why is it the best way to shop? “It’s affordable; it’s one of a kind. Vintage clothes fit way better than ‘new’ clothes. They feel like they are made for my body. With my hourglass figure, clothes aren’t made like that anymore and if they are, they are really expensive.”

Your best vintage buy: A quilted Chanel hand bag.

Pros: “It makes you feel special, ‘cause you’re the only one who can rock that look. It’s like you’ve gone through a mine and found the biggest piece of gold, when you find your special piece.”

Cons: “There’s a lot of bad stuff out there. So you have to dig to find all of the options and it can take much longer than normal shopping.”

Tips: “Go to thrift stores or the Salvation Army for everyday clothes, for show-stoppers try the high end stores like Reminscene in Melville,Johannesburg or Cape Town’s Reindeer – get a good dry cleaner and you’re good to go.”

The type of ‘gold’ Bee finds on her treasure hunts.

Reminscene 011 726 7905

Reindeer 021 44215

Sheena Bagshawe- JHB Intern

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