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shopping disaster - help and ideas desparately needed

(8 Posts)
PhyllisWig Fri 02-Sep-16 16:40:50

So, needed a new work wardrobe. I have lost about 4 stone and have just got a promotion so want to smarten up my act, de frump and have a lovely if small collection of clothes for work which all go together. I even had a list.

It's all gone to pot. I cannot find anything which fits or looks good. I have a blue trouser suit from H&m which is ok (especially the jacket), a pair of navy gap skinny trousers which again are fine if a bit too gappy around the back and a navy marl midi dress from m&s. Top wise I have a thin cotton star print shirt, a red cardi and an oatmeal boat neck jumper. That is it.

I have looked in pretty much every high st shop I can afford plus looked loads on line and can't fine anything else. I really have looked/tried on masses of stuff and everything looks shite.

I reckon I need a two or three tops and a couple of plain dresses and I could manage. Budget constrained at the moment so this is all I can afford really.

Work environment is corporate but not ultra smart. I am 40, short, pear/hourglass shape and a 12/14. I have a real tummy which rules out very fitted dresses and pencil skirts. On the other hand I have boobs and a waist so need fitted styles and its this issue which is causing problems.

I suit strong colours but not black or white. Was aiming for navy, Ivory, camel and red for most stuff. Maybe some emerald green if I can find anything. Don't suit mustard/burgundy type colours at all.

Pre weightloss I used to wear phase eight/Boden jersey dresses and knee boots. Not cutting edge, a bit mumsy on me but good enough and easy. I was really looking forward to a change in direction but it seems beyond my reach at the moment.

semideponent Fri 02-Sep-16 16:47:21

Maybe try Boden again but size down and use the weight loss as an inspiration to order and try a few different styles to see if you can get a sense of changing direction without changing brand. There might be some good codes on MN at the moment. And you can always return it.

I sound like a Boden rep, I know, but I'm not - I just think retailers cut for height as much as for shape, and if it worked for you before, it might work again.

PhyllisWig Fri 02-Sep-16 16:52:10

Thanks semi. Was thinking about a fresh look at Boden for the reasons you mention. I'm still the same basic shape I guess, albeit 3 sizes small.

Maybe I'll look at some fresh accessorises too. Sharpen up that way.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 02-Sep-16 16:57:22

For your shape try Pied a Terre dresses. House of Fraser stock them and I always buy them in the sale and get loads of compliments whenever I wear one.

Would a belt help the gappy trousers?

Very fitted trousers with bigger tops might be a good look too? I'll try to find a top to show what I mean.

BagelGoesWalking Fri 02-Sep-16 16:58:59

A fee people have had great success with personal shoppers at Debenhams. Have you ever tried that?

Kazplus2 Fri 02-Sep-16 19:37:01

It might be worth getting your existing suit and trousers adjusted to fit you better. Could make a huge difference. I think oasis have some nice tops that would work well with smart trousers. A nice pair of heels can also make a big difference.

Kazplus2 Fri 02-Sep-16 19:43:19

This top would be nice with the suit or trousers:

LifeGotInTheWay Fri 02-Sep-16 20:03:44

Hobbs sale or Hobbs at Boundary Mill. Great for curves and being cut correctly and super smart, good fabrics and v long lasting, I only ever buy in the sale but they do last for years.

Agree with trying Boden again as they do seem to cut for boobs and hips which is fairly rare I think.

If you are in a really tight budget, Tesco, Sainsburys have the odd good piece. It'll only last one season but will be super cheap.

Lastly, Banana Republic for good priced, long lasting good fabrics in basic pieces and colours that go with everything, look smart and last a good long time.

Good luck!

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