Quality Over Quantity: How To Shop

Quality Over Quantity: How To Shop

One of my favourite pick-me-ups is buying myself a little treat – if it’s a candle from Dunnes Stores or a new Lipstick from MAC, that something new brightens my day and my mood. However, there are some things that you really need to consider before splurging on a new coat or pair of shoes.

When thinking about a luxury piece, such as a designer good or high-price item, you really need to ask yourself, “Is this luxury necessary?” In world when influencers are promoting everything from pens to penthouses, we are constantly bombarded with things nearly every hour of the day. Personally, I screenshot clothes or household pieces at least three times in a day from Instagram alone – I always think that I’ll find somewhere for it in my growing collection of shite. But more often than not I don’t actually go out and even sample anything unless a strong review is posted, especially when it comes to beauty products.

Having worked in luxury retail, I’m a bit more cautious about what I buy because I’m familiar with almost every reason to buy something and every reason why not to buy something. When shopping, I ask myself a variety of questions but there are three that I always ask myself before buying – I call them the trusty three.


1. Can I afford this? Most people have budgets – you have to factor in your basics (food, fake tan if you’re me) and then a few little bits that you may need (make-up, hair spray, tampons apparently). At the end of the week’s budget, you might see that you’ve a bit of extra cash left over. For me, I either spend this on a tasty spicebag or save for a future splurge I haven’t yet planned, like a holiday or something designer. So when I find a delicious top in the Last Chance To Shop rail, high street or luxury, I stop and think, “First of all, do I have the cash to spare?” If I do, I try it on and see how it looks.


2. Can I see myself wearing this again? This is something that really makes or breaks a purchase for me. Sure, the dress may make you look fab in the fitting room mirror and it goes great with your casual look – but can you wear it on a night out? Is it versatile? And most importantly of all, does it suit more than at least two outfits? If your answers are yes, then you need to think about the really important question…


3. Do I really need this? When I first started working and didn’t have any worries about rent, bills or savings, I would literally shop until I dropped (tight shoes are not making for shopping.) Because of this, I’ve had to give so many unworn pieces to charity shops and some I sold on Depop – the amount that still had tags on them shock me, how wasteful! Now, I’ve learned my lesson. I’m a sucker for a black tank top and generally stock up when in Penneys because I use them so much – but when I have four in my wardrobe already and they’re available all year, do I really need to buy another four? Truth be told, I do end up buying one (they’re €2.50, can’t go wrong) but it’s a totally different story when I’m buying luxury items. While scouting the higher-priced goods, like a winter coat or a leather wallet, this is when this question really matters. Like most women, I have a thing for bags – so when I’m faced with a Marc Jacobs bag that’s the exact same as another bag I have, I almost always say to myself, “You don’t need this.” And just like that, I can afford 35 spicebags.


Top 5 Baseball Caps for the Summer

Top 5 Baseball Caps for the Summer

When it comes to my hair, I am the laziest thing. I’d much rather sit back and relax as someone deals with my tresses. Unfortunately, I’m no Kardashian so I can’t afford that luxury. Instead, I tend to opt for dry shampoo when I’m not arsed to wash my hair, or a trusty hat for those bad hair days. My favourite type of hat to go to has to be the baseball cap.


1.Ted Baker, €49

Caps Ted

Yes, I know, it’s a men’s hat BUT who cares? As we all know, menswear looks great on any female body. A baggy Calvin Klein tee with a pair of ripped skinnies is a staple for many, so why not top it off with a nice hat from Ted Baker?

2.ASOS, €11.27


Like a LBD, it’s important to have a LBC, a little black cap. These hats suit anyone and everyone, ’cause it’s fashion favourite colour. It meshes in well with dark brunettes or black hair, whilst with blondes and redheads it’s a great contrast. If you happen to have pastel or neon hair, it only shows off the vibrancy of them more!

3.Boohoo, €8

Cap Boohoo

I adore all shades of green. Maybe it’s the Irish pride coming out, but I just love all shades of green, from aqua to khaki to turquoise. This shade of green gets me excited for the summer, it’s similar to a sea green, so I can totally see myself relaxing in a pair of cut off levi’s, white tee, and Penney’s finest sunglasses as the sun beats down on me. But fortunately, I’ve a fab hat to keep my face from burning.

4.Polo by Ralph Lauren, €35

Cap Polo

Okay, again with a men’s cap BUT I love Polo caps. Not only are they so easy to adjust, but they’re cheap and cheerful. You can snag it online, but it’s over €36 whilst only €35 in Arnotts. Unfortunately, you can’t buy it online from Arnotts but there is always some kind of sale going on in there from their seasonal sales to their Mega days where you can get 20% off. A trip to the Henry Street store is always worth while!

5.H&M, €7.99

Cap H and  M

For something more excited, a lot can be said for a nice print. Spice up a block colour outfit with this unisex tropical style cap. Wearing this hat during even a wet summer day in Ireland will keep you excited!

Sticking with Skinny

For spring 2016, my favourite style of jean is being thrown out the window; skinny jeans! According to every source under the sun, my favourite jean are dead and gone for not only spring, but all 2016. On Twitter and Instagram, I’m instead being shown wider and higher rise jeans from all my favourite fashion magazines and blogs. Now, whilst I do love incorporating some trends into my current style, such as rose gold accessories (even hair!) and tennis skirts, the new jean style  is one trend I’m not going to be embracing so easily.

Celebs Raw Style; Heidi Klum, Elle Fanning, Kim K, Alex Chung

Fortunately, blue jeans of all shades are going to be a big hit all the way from now until the summer, but there is not a clean cut skinny in sight. Instead, most fashion blogs and magazines are saying that frayed or “raw” hems and ankle crops are the must have jean style for the season. I could almost accept this, bar the fact that most magazines and blogs are showing that the new jean trend definitely have a looser fit than I would like. As my body is more plus than mini, I’m not jumping on this bandwagon. I don’t exactly want to add more inches onto my body! I’ve also got some curves I’m pretty proud of, I don’t want to just hide them. I’ve spent years trying to love them and now I’m being told I should cover them up?! Typical, right?

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Topshop’s MOTO Embroidered Straight Jeans, €77

I’m staying true to the skinny jean because not only are they comfortable, but they’ve been my go to since I was 14 years old. I can’t just break a relationship like that! But like any good fashion lover, I’ll be tweaking the new trend to my liking. Instead of wearing the horrendous new looser fit trend, I’ll still be rocking my Molly’s, but they’ll just be a little bit shorter in length. I already own a pair of frayed jeans I bought accidentally in Penney’s! Now I can wear them without being too embarrassed by the dodgy hems. Who knows, I might even end up wearing straight leg jeans in the future, despite shuddering at the thought now.

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River Island’s Ripped Matilda Skinny Jeans

If you’re looking to either embrace the new trend or modify your skinny jean love like I am, the best places to look are the usual (high street) suspects; Topshop, Urban Outfitters, River Island, and ASOS.

DC’s Bombshell Fashion Collection

DC’s Bombshell Fashion Collection

Most of the time, I love living in Ireland; where else can you get a perfectly salty spice bag? Though sometimes, I wouldn’t mind buying a one way ticket to America and never coming home. There are many factors as to why I can’t do exactly that, such as not having a green card or a visa, but man, if I could, I’d be gone! One of the reasons why I’d love to move there is that if you want to buy geeky apparel, there just happens to be a lot more choice over in the states. Sure, we have Amazon, Etsy and eBay, but that can work out pretty pricey! It’d be a lot easier if we had a one stop shop, such as Hot Topic.

Hot Topic is a store that get a lot of abuse. Known as the emo hot spot (pardon the pun), many internet users love to rip the piss out of the store. There has even been a game made that makes fun of the renowned franchise! If you like playing nonsense internet games, play it. Open it up in a tab and play it after you finish this article. Seriously, it’s a pretty fun game! Violent at points, but has some nostalgic tunes for us old emo/scene kids.

Back to the point at hand; Hot Topic and geeky clothes, which it has a lot of. I’m fortunately travelling to New York in May, and already I’ve a list of apparel and general stuff I plan on getting whilst over there from Hot Topic. Heck, half of my geeky stuff are bits I’ve ordered off the stores website and delivered here to Ireland! Despite it’s reputation, it actually has some good bits for those who are into comic books, anime, gaming, and such. It’s especially good for people who are interested in comic books, and if you happen to like the recent DC Bombshell’s launch, then you’re going to love what Hot Topic have just announced; a DC Bombshell clothing collection!

Some of the Bombshell’s variant covers

The Bombshells live in a universe where female superheros guard the homefront during World War II. Originally created as a series of statuettes inspired by 1940 pinups and dieselpunk, it later sparked two runs of variant covers, the first being in August 2014 and again in October 2015, this time to coincide with the launch of their own series, DC Comics Bombshells. Since their launch, the powerful women have been cosplayed numerous times. It’s a rare sight to not see at least one Bombshell cosplay at a convention these days! Not only are they fun and new, but they’re actually pretty easy to create. The only hard task would be if you were cosplaying Harley Quinn and having to make her jacket. Fortunately, Hot Topic has solved that problem as they are selling her jacket! For a more authentic look, you can add on the elbow patches and pins, but half the work is done for you. Don’t want to be a villian and fancy being a hero? Don’t worry, look no further for the most WONDERful news! You can snag not only the Wonder Woman top, but the bottoms too.

Unfortunately, as this is an American store, the shipping costs can charge you up to €40! But they do often have half price international shipping, and if you’re buying a bit, it can actually work out pretty handy. Be mindful of import charges, they can be sneaky. Last time I bought around €100 worths of bits, paid €20 shipping, and €20 import tax. So if you’re interested in just one or two things, chip in with friends or find a long lost relation in the States, or even sneak onto Amazon or eBay to find an alternative!

Nonetheless, it’s a pretty cool collection, and you ca check them out  here.