i used to love shopping. it would be something i'd look forward to doing, and something i could happily make a whole day of; coffee in hand, wandering the rails looking for a bargain, and coming home at the end of the day, excited to get the chance to wear all the new bits and pieces in the coming days... i'm my mother's daughter like that, and until recently, the apple didn't fall to far from the tree.
so, when i decided recently to attempt an afternoon of shopping inside the biggest urban mall in europe, i will admit that maybe i didn't think my adventure through well enough. still, places "being busy" is just one of those things you get use to, in london, so with coffee in hand, i focused on the opportunity to enjoy the time "alone", while trying to reignite my passion for passion (or, shopping at least).
dress*: primark | backpack*: george at asda | jacket*: just jeans | shoes*: clarks | sunnies : vintage
it's taken me years to really nail my "style". when i was younger, back in australia really, i wore whatever was cool. i was "fashionable"- i had to be, i worked in retail, and i had to wear the stock as a uniform; jeans. basics. whatever the latest trend was was what i wore to work. the discount helped make that feel ok, but when i wasn't at work, i liked to wear dresses and tights and cardigans and brightly coloured shoes and clunky jewellery and accessories in my hair and - well, you get the picture. "weekend erica" dressed completely differently from "midweek erica", and people would notice.
i'd get "ooh that's unusual", "that's a quirky outfit", "did you find that from the kids section?" when i'd see colleagues outside of work, but my friends and family knew that was how i was comfy. i never liked wearing the same thing as everyone else; i liked to be original. still do. not to a point of standing out - not like the crazy art teacher with bright hair and ceramic earrings, but like, well, like me. i love wearing bright colours and happy prints and a lot of glitter, and i don't really care what anyone thinks. in london, it's so easy to get away with it with no objections from the public. i work in an office, sure, but if i can get away with pink hair and tattoos then a little bit of polka dots is hardly concerning.
what ~is concerning, is how little of that there is on the high street at the moment. i headed to my fail-safe stores to check out their spring lines, expecting to see the classic pastel and florals and everything else i love from this season's fashion, and saw...none of it. what i found was horrible 90s reconstructions, in white linen and beige leather and tasseled jackets, and was totally bored by everything. from store to store i wandered, hoping to find a nice skater dress in a spring print or pastel pink jumper or polka dot skirt to take home with me, but no such luck. instead, i was bored by geo prints and crochet crop tops and distressed denim. where are all the spring frocks? where are all the pastels? where are all the flattering shapes?!
fed up, i stuck my nose in at primark on the way out and spotted this simple floral wrap dress for only £13 - without considering trying it on or stopping to consider that maybe £13 is a little pricey for primark, i joined the back of the extremely long line to buy it so i could leave. as soon as i got in, the first thing i did was try it on. primark can be very hit and miss with their styles, but not this time. and, other than the fact it's a little tight around the wings and also it's super revealing and i have to wear a long cami underneath it to ensure dignity is maintained at both the top and the bottom of the dress, i genuinely just love it.
and it totally brings out the watermelon in my hair that was an actual accident that i hope fades really soon... please tell me it's not just me though, and we're all hating the 90s fashion of the moment, yeah? like, where are all the cute spring florals, man... clearly only in primark. take all my money.