Last week, I shared 5 of my favourite budget shops--now it's time to feature some of my pricier favourites (in alphabetical, not preferential order). These are the kind of stores where I only buy stuff if it's on sale...but luckily, their sales are frequent and/or good.
1. Banana Republic
Both Vicky and I have worked at BR at some point in our lives, and we had the nice little 50%-off-everything Gap Inc. discount that comes as one of the perks. While neither of us work there any longer, we'll still occasionally buy stuff from Banana Republic because of their great sales (frequently 50% off the lowest price tag). Twice a year, they have a "Friends and Family" event where employees can give 50% to their friends on up to 5 items of regularly priced clothing (which is why you should all be friends with BR employees ;-). In terms of what to buy there: they're great for high-quality workwear and big-item pieces like coats.
2. French Connection
I don't really have a lot from this British high street staple, but what I do have I love and wear a ton. I can't comment on what the sales are like there over in the UK, but here at their Vancouver location they tend to be pretty good. As a store, I find it's great for sophisticated yet feminine pieces: think dresses, tops, and jackets.
3. J. Crew
You either like J. Crew or you don't, and I'm one of those people who loves it. They don't call it J. Crack for nothing! While some of their stuff can be super pricy at regular price, I find their sales are fantastic--if you have a Student Card, you get an additional 15% off sale items (and their sale items are usually 50% off the lowest price tag; I've got some pretty sweet 65% off deals because of this). They're great for preppy, often colourful basics, and we all know how much I love their dresses!
I love Topshop because it is the one store that seriously caters to every style of dress, and it has some of the most delightfully WTF items (not to mention that they have a separate Tall section. Yay!). However, it can be pretty pricy, which is why I hold out for their sales--the best of which are the after-Christmas ones, although I find they tend to have pretty decent ones throughout the year.
If I had to pick just one shop to buy all my clothes from, it might just be Zara. Often, when I shop, I'll wonder if an item is too young or too frumpy, but with Zara there just seems to be this unspoken guarantee that everything in their store is cool and age-appropriate. The caveat of course is the price (their TRF brand is cheaper, but in general, I find it a pricy place to shop at), which is why I pretty much always buy from their sales (which are phenomenal after Christmas, by the way).