Everyone loves a bargain and this year’s January sales offer some cracking offers and markdowns! The high street is buzzing with the new year sales and many stores have marked down entire ranges of clothing, footwear and accessories. A recent scan of the high street has revealed reductions of up to 70% in some stores, with seasonal mark downs of 50% being fairly standard fair this year. The trend does reflect the difficulty of the credit crunch, but for the savvy shopper the January sales mark a fantastic opportunity to stock up on key essentials for the year ahead.

The trick with the January sales is to have a clear idea of what you want before you hit the shops – to save impulse buys which become immediately consigned to the nearest charity shop! So, elementary rule 1 – know what you’re looking for. Rule 2 – look for key classic pieces – for example, quality or designer wear that you possibly couldn’t afford pre-sale. Rule 3 – be brave, get there early and try things before you buy! Remember, many stores now only offer a seven day return policy on mark-down items, rather than the usual 14-28 days – you may otherwise be stung if you’re not careful!

In terms of hunting down those bargains, you have two main options. You can either hit the high street in person, or browse the fantastic range of boutique and high street stores online. There are pros and cons to each – on the high street itself you can enjoy the thrill of the bargain ‘chase’, you can try things on, and weigh options up against each other. On the other hand, online shopping is hassle free and relaxing – and everything arrives neatly packaged at your doorstep!

For great bargains, check out high street favourites such as Debenhams – with 70% off the end of lines, and huge ranges of markdowns on clothes, footwear, accessories, lingerie and household items. Next has its famous half price sale – great bargains include their tailored suiting and party dresses. Oasis and Warehouse also have up to 50% off their lines with new items being added only in the last couple of days, and other lines featuring special ‘seasonal’ offers. Monsoon also has up to 70% of it’s ranges – again with some fantastic party, ball, cocktail and bridal dresses on sale – and its partner store Accessorize also has 50% off its jewellery and bags. For designer fashion and bargains on concessions, head to Selfridges and Harvey Nichols for some amazing reductions on designer clothing and footwear – a fashionista’s dream!

For those who prefer shopping online, in addition to high street stores’ online sites it’s worth visiting online boutiques such as theitguide.com, koodos.com and net-a-porter com for fantastic designer fashion from all the big fashion houses. These sites have huge ranges from classic and new quirky designers, and often give advice on building outfits to help you pull your look together.

In conclusion, to get the best of both worlds your best bet might be to combine the best of both the online and high street sales to ensure that you get all the sales bargains your heart could desire! Happy bargain hunting!

For more great fashion ideas and advice visit: The ‘it’ Guide

Marie Hilland

Fashion Director – Designer Wear

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Categories: Fashion