Dublin sales haul, y’all

ITS JANUARY, that scientifically-verified most depressing month (although not for much longer, it must be admitted). It’s been a month of flux too – some bad news, some good – and my secondary school English teacher would be delighted to hear the weather’s been reflecting the mood. There’s nothing more changeable than an Irish sky in January.

I went into town yesterday to buy a measuring tape and some sewing needles (and mostly to get out of the house and avoid working on my much-talked-about, ne’er written chicklit). I neglected to bring an umbrella however, and that’s how I found myself going from shop to shop, ducking droplets the size of kittens’ heads. We can blame the weather, therefore, for my latest haul.

After the retail rush of late December/early January, I sometimes forget that the sales are still going this late. I was idly flipping through rails in Pull&Bear (I’ve always had a certain affection for P&B after a stint working there during college) when I lit upon a beauty – a structured, quilt-effect neoprene sweater. And there it was, in no short supply, and in all sizes, which made me wonder (not for the first time) if my sense of style is particular (and peculiar) to me alone.

I may have idly flipped through the rails in Zara and idly roamed the shelves of Office too. Check out my sale goodies below.

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Belts, Pull & Bear, €1.99

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Leopard-print Converse All-Stars, Office, €25, Black ‘YEAH!’ clutch, Pull & Bear, €2.99

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Pull & Bear white pleather shopper, €7.99, black neoprene sweat, €7.9920140130-151440.jpg

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Black neoprene sweat as before, Zara floor-length wool dress, €12.99.

Total: €58.95! I am, as they say, safe to let out on my own. Have you gotten any sales bargains, and where?

Canny Penneys

It’s been nothing but a pleasure watching Penneys (or Primark, as the rest of the world knows it) expand its range and tap into trends over the last few years. I used to work in the same building as the Penneys Dublin HQ, and get a little thrill of excitement up my spine seeing rails of trend-focused clothes rolling past or sharing the lift.

Primark is going from strength to strength internationally. This has also been the 12 months in which we’ve seen Primark’s flagship Irish store on Henry Street expand hugely, and the year in which the budget retailer expanded its wings and took to online sales at ASOS.

And all the while, producing clothes that truly look the business – no doubt the work of a team of canny buyers and trend forecasters.

I’ll be the first to admit it. Philo’s latest diversion scared me a little – just when you think lo-fi is comfortably embedded in the fashion consciousness and here to stay, the queen of minimalism throws something strange and discomfiting out. Gorgeous, to be sure, but shocking? Hell yes.

I’m not sure I’m ready to give up on my craggily structured coats, sweaters, skirts and muted tones. Thankfully, Penneys isn’t ready for me to do that either. Here are some of the gorgeous Spring pieces you can see in store now and soon.

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Jumpsuit in stores from  February

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Neoprene backpack in stores now

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Sheer dress available in store from March (shoes, bandeau and pants in the coming weeks)

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Sandals (in my opinion, a lot more publically wearable than Adidas Slides but still getting a good dose of monochrome)

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Grey quilted sweater and white visor, available now

I’ll dream about that sheer dress tonight.