I’ve been enjoying life lately as I got to go to two amazing concerts,(Kings of Leon and Eminem) visit Belfast and go to the Ooh la la magazine blog awards and magazine launch party. All of these events were great fun plus great blogging fodder!
Recently I went to Belfast with my housemate Carol to the Tennent’s Vital music festival.
The festival didn’t start until the evening so in between we had time to check out the local shops! We both love charity and vintage shops and there was incredible choice in Belfast. We had a wander around the city centre and the outskirts and found some really cool shops.
The best one we found was The Rusty Zip on Botanic Avenue. I was really impressed by this shop on several levels.
Firstly the selection of stock was awesome, real leather jackets including motorcycle jackets, great shoes, bags, hats, bow ties and other accessories, lots of menswear as well as ladies clothing and even wedding dresses!
The second thing I noticed was the prices were really affordable for good quality clothing. It irritates me when vintage stores bump up the prices of what essentially are old clothes! I love and appreciate vintage clothing but sometimes buying vintage items feels like a rip-off.
Leather jackets were approximately £35 to £70 which is great for real leather, some items were as cheap as £12 and even wedding dresses retailing at £30, £50 and upwards. I had to drag Carol away from a beautiful lace wedding dress with a long train which really was beautiful but slightly unsuitable for the festival!
I think they had beautiful alternatives to ridiculously priced modern wedding dresses. I also really liked the layout and decoration of the store and thought it was easy to navigate and shop in.
Overall it was one of the nicest vintage stores I’ve ever been in and well worth a visit. If I had more money with me I definitely would’ve bought something and I hope to visit again to buy! Check out their website and Facebook here.
We also had a look around some charity shops where Carol picked up some bargains and I got a pearl and lace hairband for 50p!
We ended up at Queen’s University by accident while looking for a hostel and it’s a really amazing building!
After that we went into the city centre and wandered into Primark/Penneys, Zara, Boots and The Body Shop. While in Penneys/Primark (this English thing is a mindfuck!) I took a few pictures of their Autumn/Winter display and stock.
I saw some great pieces and a lot of tartan which will be really big this winter.
I love the styling of these mannequins in Primark. The limited edition necklace is amazing and is available down here as is the black and white shirt.
I’m not sure about the availability of the other items. Beanie hats are going to be huge this A/W also, I’m not sure how I feel about them yet! 😛
More tartan than the MacDougal family reunion in Sex and the City!
I love patterned tights and I’ve missed buying funky tights as I don’t wear dresses in my current job. These are gorgeous and I’ll definitely get a pair when they arrive in stores.
This shirt’s a beauty! I don’t know if this is new season but I hope so!
This lovely satchel bag in Primark/Penneys was only £9, styled with this animal print cardi to make a cool A/W outfit! It was in black also but the brown is more autumnal.
I really liked this wallet and matching bag. Studs are still around for this autumn!
I think the blue is lovely alternative to the black bags with gold studs, switches things up a bit!
Not remotely seasonal but I love these amazing tapestry and denim shorts!
And in case that wasn’t enough tapestry, here’s a really cute purse.
I’m in love with this tribal jacket! I really like all the little details, the leather cuffs, little studs and asymmetrical zip. It’s just calling my name! The cut and contrast of colours and textures is great.
Animal jewellery like this lion necklace really appeals to me and this looks great for a glamorous occasion. However I haven’t bought any of Primark/Penney’s limited edition jewellery ever so if anyone has please let me know! I’m curious about the quality…
Torc style necklaces like this and thick chains are the trendiest options for Autumn/Winter.
Finally a few pieces that aren’t Autumn/Winter but caught my eye anyway!
Grungy denim waistcoat.
This was on the bargain rail, nice for the end of summer.
Also had to include this short sleeve denim shirt, just perfect!
Belfast is pretty amazing, it was only my second time EVER in Norther Ireland but I will be back soon.If any of you have been there, let me know what you got up to and what you thought of the town.
In terms of money-saving by shopping in the North you will save a little but not necessarily. Primark prices are much the same as Penneys when you convert them back to euro. I bought some cosmetics in Boots, Barry M nail polishes and a Bourjois blusher thinking they were cheaper but when I saw the euro price on my bank statement, I realised it’s only a small difference.
However in stores like River Island, Topshop etc. the euro mark-up is well above the recommended conversion rate so next time I’ll be paying a visit there. The Body Shop is significantly cheaper i.e. a body butter retails at €18.95 in the Republic but only £13 in the North!
We went there on the Aircoach bus just over two hours journey from Dublin and our return fare was €20.
The easiest place to change your money to sterling is the post office as there’s no fee to change however you have to use a bank if you have any left to change back! Be sure to spend any coins first before you leave as you can’t change these back to euro.