How fashion shopping will look like post lock-down

I do most of my shopping online and I have done so for many years. It is a lot easier for me to shop online and have my items delivered. I am still learning how to drive, so moving around isn’t the easiest. However, even if I could drive, I would still prefer shopping online. Going from shop to shop is draining even when I am fashion shopping alone. So my shopping life won’t change at all post lock-down. I will continue shopping online whenever I can. However, for those who love shopping in the stores, window shopping will change once the shops open here in the UK. I have gotten a few emails from various stores and I can picture the changes already. Many people have taken to online shopping as expected, and I believe the demand for online shopping will carrying on increasing even after the restrictions have been lifted because of the ease and convenience.

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No changing rooms

Changing rooms may likely not be back in most stores post lockdown for many reasons. It would be harder adhering to social distance rules with changing rooms. I was never a fan of changing rooms. There is a whole post about how I hated using changing rooms back in the day. So I won’t be missing this hight street feature when it becomes unavailable. One thing I wonder about is how returns will be carried out post lock-down.

Hand cleaning stations

In some of the emails I got, hand cleaning stations will be introduced all over the stores. There will likely be a hand cleaning station at the entrance of every store and all customers will have to disinfect their hands before shopping.

Limit to number of customers in the stores

There will be a limit to the number of customers that will be in a store at every given time. This should be expected to stick to the social distancing rule or it will be impossible to shop the sales rack for example and keep your distance.

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What do you think of these post-lockdown measures for fashion shopping? Do you see the trend for online shopping carrying on post-lockdown?

Expert advice on what to look for when buying an expensive suit

*Collaborative post.

When it comes to shopping for a stylish suit, it takes a lot of thought and a good eye for fashion. A suit is a wardrobe necessity for almost every man so it is worth investing a little more in a couple. You can wear a suit to the office, a wedding, christenings and even on a date! If you opt for a cheap suit, it is likely you will be replacing it in a few years, so it is worth spending more to grab quality suits.

Not everyone knows exactly what to look for when it comes to buying a new suit… And how can other people tell that you’re wearing the best? CT shirts, experts in suit design, have created this guide to make your purchase the right one.

 

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The materials

When it comes to suits, the materials used determine the quality of the suit and how long they will be around for.

It is best to avoid suits with labels that state it has been created with a wool-blend or man-made materials, instead go for natural fibres. You should avoid Polyester as it retains a lot of heat, is less breathable and creases easily. A suit with 100% wool is something that you should look out for — these suits are versatile and ooze comfort. For a lustre look, often silk or mohair (a silk-like material made from the hair of the Angora goat) is added and this gives a luxurious shine to black suits For extra movement and comfort, a high-quality suit is often made with a small amount of Lycra and this improves its elasticity.

The ‘Super’ value is also an indicator on the finery of the material. The Super is a way of indicating that the wool is of high quality and the higher the number, the finer and lighter the cloth will be.

Not many people will go as far as considering the suit buttons and whether they are made from a durable material. Plastic buttons are prone to breakage and chipping — imagine if you brush against a wall or table, it will be the buttons that take the impact. Another high-quality material that is often used for making durable and long-lasting suit buttons is corozo nuts.

 

The design

Over time, a suit should mould to your individual body shape to convey a look that is truly unique.

Some weaves are considered as higher end than others, but this choice is largely personal preference. The patterns are created in the suit by interweaving different coloured threads in different ways. The ‘twill’ weave is considered to be stylish — this has a diagonal line of raised fabric and a silk-looking finish. The ‘herringbone’ also gives a smart look— this is an intricate V weave that creates a smooth feel.

Canvassed suit jackets are a popular choice, they’re created with layers of material that sit between the outer suit fabric and the inner lining. This tailoring technique helps the suit maintain structure and shape. What you should look out for is a ‘floating canvas’ — this is where the middle layer has been stitched to the fabric loosely so that the suit is able to mould to your body shape and move when you move.

Look at the lining of a suit for a clear sign on how well it has been made. Despite popular belief that an unlined suit is cheaper than a fully lined one, it actually takes more effort to create an unlined suit as the stitching and cut of the material is exposed. However, lined sleeves improve your ability to slide the jacket on and off.

 

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The details

A well-informed shop assistant will be able to help guide you through your purchase, identifying which tiny details of the garments have the most impact on the style and fit. It can be the tailor’s own way of integrating quality into their work.

The suit lapels are the folds on either side of the opening across the chest. One detail that can indicate the quality of a suit is the lapel roll — this is the fall and curl of the lapel from the collar to the first button. If the suit is one of many rolled off a production line, it is likely that the lapel will be completely flat against the jacket and the roll will be almost non-existent. In a high-quality suit however, the lapel roll will look like it has been carefully curved — giving the jacket more texture and a better appearance.

The back vents will determine how freely you can move around in the suit, and most importantly they will determine how comfortable the garment is. Choose suit jackets with twin back vents on the back of the jacket to improve its flexibility and range of movement.

Another feature to look out for on a suit is the stalk loops. This is a traditional tailoring feature which neatly keeps your flower stalk tucked away. Although it may not be a necessary feature for everyone, it shows attention to detail that’s likely to be an indicator of a good suit.

Look at the buttonholes carefully. Cheaper suits can often have frayed buttonholes as they haven’t been stitched with delicacy. Small details like this are big giveaways as to how your suit has been made.

How many garments do we really need in our wardrobes?

*Collaborative post.

Shopping no longer feels as guilt free as it used to back in the day. A lot has changed now and we consumers tend to think twice before splashing out on new pieces and accessories. Times have changed and we have all had to adjust to the new times. I no longer shop like I used to a few years ago, and I think twice before I add any new additions to my wardrobe.  But the question remains – How many garments do we really need in our wardrobes? Let’s see if I can break this down –

 

How many garments do we really need in our wardrobes?

Many of us think it is easier to shop for men than for women, but it is pretty much the same process most of the time. I remember being shocked back in 2017 when it was revealed that British women spend an average of £74 per month on clothes compared to British men who spend an average of £100. That same study also revealed that the average man owns about 56 pieces of clothing but only wears about 62% of these regularly. Women on the other hand own 95 but only wear 59%.

 

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Tops and blouses

With tops, the best way to go is to have about six to ten pieces per wardrobe. Having said that, this is just an estimate. The amount of tops you would need in your wardrobe depends on your lifestyle, employment, budget and so on, but it is a guide to go by. I like to mix and match my tops with other pieces to create different looks. This works great for me and I find I get more wear out of each and every piece that way.

 

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Pants, skirts and shorts

With pants, I like to have about six to eight of them in my wardrobe. That way I always have options but not too many that I forget about them. One denim expert recommended having about three pairs of jeans in the wardrobe and it makes perfect sense! There is no point having over ten or twenty pairs of jeans in your wardrobe. It is likely you won’t be able to wear half of the jeans most of the time.

It also makes sense to make some room for skirts and shorts especially in the summer months. I like to have a couple of these each for when the weather allows.

 

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Outerwear is key

Having a great quality outerwear is very important. They are great wardrobe assets as they can help finish off any look. I like to have about 4 outerwear pieces. The key to getting your outwear pieces to stay with you for awhile is to invest a bit more in them. I always recommend at least two casual jackets, one waterproof jacket and one or two blazers in different designs.

Blazers are particularly important as they can take you from the office to the restaurant effortlessly. You can put on a blazer for a meeting at work underneath a stunning dress shirt, or top and skirt for example.

 

 

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Shoes are made for walking

Shoes are super important. They have the power to take an outfit to a whole new level, and they can also completely ruin an outfit. I must confess, O like to have a couple of pairs in my wardrobe but you don’t really need as many pairs of shoes as you think you need. Three good pairs of shoes would work for many – One pair of smart shoes for work and events, one pair of boots for when the weather demands, and a pair of trainers for casual outings.

 

So how many garments do we really need in our wardrobes?

I would say between 18 – 25 garments. At the end of the day, this is just a guide. You may need more or less depending on the weather, lifestyle, budget and space. I hope this post helps you rethink every new wardrobe purchase you want to make. Have a great week.

 

 

 

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