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Coveted Collection: Erdem X H&M 2017

By now, I’m sure you will all have seen the new Erdem X H&M collection. I love designer collaborations but wasn’t able to go to the launch on November 2 as I was working.

I nipped into town last weekend to see if there was anything left but the H&M on College Green appeared to be cleared out, apart from a few pairs of shoes.

There are slim pickings on the official site also, with only one jumper, one shirt, scarves and men’s shoes still left.

I’m a huge fan of this collection mainly because I’m a sucker for anything floral.

The styling also really appealed to me, opulent dresses paired with simple plimsoll sneakers, hoodies over sequin dresses and the use of real flowers in the shoot.

Erdem X H&M dress
Erdem X H&M Pic:H&M.com
Erdem x HM floral dress
Erdem X H&M campaign. Pic:H&M.com

I would definitely buy these trainers if my ankle was ready for them…

Erdem is known for romantic designs, such as these pretty lace detailed dresses, I like the contrast between the floral print and lace and the delicate jewellery.

However, the accessories like the rest of the collection come with a relatively high price tag, €22.99 for a hair clip!

These trouser suits are just divine, too nice to be wasted on work!

ErdemXHM suits
Erdem X H&M. Pic:H&M.com

Needless to say, this collection doesn’t come cheap and customers are also limited to buying one of each item.

One of the more “affordable” items is this hoody coming in at €59.99. I later saw it on eBay selling for €84!

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One of my favourite pieces from the collection is this beautiful dress.

Erdem x H&M long floral dress
Floral print dress Erdem X H&M. Pic: H&M.com

Apparently, there were queues outside College Green in Dublin and I can totally understand why.

The H&M site also crashed from all the eager shoppers logging on!

This is the first time Erdem has produced a menswear collection and it’s every bit as covetable as the ladieswear collection.

From sharp tailoring to laid-back pyjama style tops and trousers, the menswear is stylish and suave.

Erdem menswear
Erdem menswear. Pic: H&M.com
ErdemXHM mens floral shirt
Floral men’s shirt. Pic: H&M.com

For research purposes, I trawled eBay to see if there are any pieces available online.

There were lots of offerings on eBay but the competition was fierce with 25 bids on one blouse for example.

If you do decide to buy a piece online, check the seller’s feedback before purchasing and be prepared for a bidding war!

There are some items for sale with just photos from the campaign, I would steer clear of these and look for items which the seller has taken themselves and check for details such as the tag.

This beautiful vintage crocodile handbag with floral interior is listed on eBay and so far no bids on it but I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing! It’s listed for €90 and retailed at €99 on the Irish site.

Erdem X H&M crocodile bag
Erdem X HM crocodile bag. Pic: H&M.com

These fabulous floral boots in a size six are also listed by a different seller but they’ll set you back a whopping €300!

erdem floral boots
Erdem X H&M floral boots

If anyone has bought a piece online, let me know because I would love to get my hands on pretty much anything from this collection.

Hope you enjoyed this post, leave me a comment below and let me know what you thought of the collection.

Thanks to Olivia from the H&M press office for kindly providing me with photos for this post.

Thanks for reading and check out my InstagramTwitter and Facebook page here.

Edel

Visiting Belfast: Shopping and sight-seeing over the border

If you don’t normally go up the North for shopping or sight-seeing, you’re missing out. Recently I went on a weekend break to Belfast with my boyfriend and we had a brilliant time.

I’ve posted about visiting Belfast before but I spent less than a day there. This time around I spent more time in the city centre and was there for a full weekend.

I have only been to Northern Ireland four times including the last trip which is quite embarrassing!

Where to go shopping:

Belfast has two shopping centres, Castlecourt and Victoria Square. Castlecourt is slightly old-fashioned but has some decent shops, including a nice Debenhams.

Victoria Square is a more modern building and has all the high-street shops such as Topshop, H & M and River Island.

The Topshop is massive and I could’ve spent all day there! But that would’ve been the end of my relationship.. 😛

On the street there’s a massive Stradivarius (one of only three in Ireland), Zara, Primark etc.

What to buy: 

I always buy cosmetics in the North as they are a good bit cheaper. I picked up a new bronzer in Superdrug and got my eyebrows threaded there for only £5!

I also bought Queen of Shaves shaving gel for £2.99 (This is very gentle on your skin but can’t find it in ROI anymore). It was about €8 down here.

Nivea night cream was only £1.99 which was also good value, it’s about €5 here.

Perhaps VAT is to blame but when you factor in exchange rates, we seem to pay a lot more for clothes in shops like Topshop and River Island in the ROI.

For instance, this purple frill jumper was £15 on sale from £30 in Topshop. It ws €42 full price in ROI stores.

ootd-belfast

Primark is similar value to what you get at home, one pair of nude tights were £1, a nail varnish £1.50 etc.

The Primark was undergoing a bit of a makeover and was VERY busy when we were there.

Overall the stock in Primark was only OK but the store isn’t the biggest.

 I bought a pair of Onitsuka Tigers for my boyfriend in Office, they were £65 with student discount.

Name brand runners aren’t much cheaper than at home.

Surprisingly I didn’t buy myself any shoes! Nor did I find a dress for my graduation but there’s plenty of time yet.

Bargain shopping/Charity shops

I visited two charity shops and both were pretty disappointing. If anyone can recommend a good one, please let me know.

Vintage shops

There are a few quirky vintage shops around Belfast and my favourite one was Octopus’s Garden on Wellington Street.

It sells records as well as deadly vintage threads and is a good spot for nabbing a band t-shirt.

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Markets

On Sunday, we visited St. George’s Market which reminded me of a smaller version of Spitalfields market in London.

We treated ourselves to a hearty Ulster fry and perused all the goodies the market had to offer.

There were loads of food stalls including some very tasty cupcakes, homewares, bric-a-brac, vintage records and jewellery.

I’d highly recommend this market to everyone, it’s an absolute gem.

Cash or card?

I brought cash which I’d changed commission free in the post office. If you pay in card in the North, there is a small fee, about 14 cent per transaction.

Withdrawing sterling with an Irish card from an ATM will incur a fee of at least €3. Ulster Bank customers can withdraw free from NatWest, EasyCash and RBS however.

Bag charges

FYI, there’s now a plastic bag levy in the UK, retailers must a charge a minimum of £0.05 per bag. Something to bear in mind if you are buying lots.

Where to eat/stay/have fun

Besides shopping, we did enjoy the sights of Belfast, including the Titanic experience which was fantastic. Give yourself a minimum of two hours if you are going here.

It’s an interactive exhibition and I learned so much, not merely about the Titanic but also the history of Belfast.

titanic

We stayed in Jury’s Inn in the heart of the city and our room was gorgeous.

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On Saturday night we had dinner in Deanes Love Fish restaurant and the food was DELICIOUS! Hands down, one of the nicest restaurants I’ve ever been in.

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We also went for a drink in The Crown Saloon, which is one of the most popular bars in Belfast.

The beautiful Victorian decor has been preserved from the intricately-carved wooden booths and ceiling designs, to stained glass windows and funky floor tiles.

Unfortunately it was too busy to sit down.

Another watering-hole we visited was White’s Tavern which is one of Belfast’s oldest pubs. This is a nice little pub to relax and rest the legs in between shopping and sight-seeing.

Finally, City Hall is a must if you like architecture.

city-hall

 FYI, this was not a sponsored post.

Hope you all enjoyed this post, feel free to leave me a comment below.

Thank you for visiting my blog and  don’t forget to check out my InstagramTwitter and Facebook page here.

Edel

Shopaholic Online

internet shopping

I buy a lot of my clothing online and thought I’d share some of my favourite sites and experiences.

ASOS.com

Possibly the best online shop. Massive array of products and brands, their own brand is excellent quality, they deliver pretty quickly to Ireland and their returns procedure is simple. Standard delivery is free to most parts of the world. I’ve purchased from them in America and while the delivery took longer, it was simple to make a return there also. I love the  site layout, photography and styling. ASOS have good sales and I’ve gotten genuine bargains. Among the stuff I’ve bought includes jeans, brogues, dresses, a handbag and a bikini. I’ve tried a lot of different products and so far been happy with everything!

To order you have to create an account with Asos. You have the option of saving a credit/debit card which is very dangerous/handy depending on how you look at it!

ASOS Marketplace.

This site stocks vintage and independent labels. I haven’t bought from the site yet but it’s great for styling inspiration. Some of the boutiques can be expensive but I’ve seen some great unusual things on there also. Favourite brands include We are Hairy People and Florrie Jane’s Vintage. Plus it’s a great site for independent retailers to establish themselves.

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Cactus print shorts and top from We are Hairy People
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Party ring crop top from We are Hairy People
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Clothing from Florrie Jane’s Vintage

Etsy.com

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I love browsing Etsy. Lately I’ve been shopping for accessories like this galaxy chain from Gina’s Tie Dye.

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The chain was beautiful and I received it really quickly. Unfortunately the pendant fell off the second time I wore it! However I may have been just unlucky. Gina very kindly sent me a replacement necklace which I was thrilled with! This shop has loads of amazing stuff such as ying/yang tie-dye t-shirts and beautiful one-of-a-kind halter tops.

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Photo courtesy Gina’s Tie Dye

I’d been looking for lightweight lace bras like those from For Love and Lemons but cheaper! I struck gold when I found these beauties from Lovy House on Etsy. They are not like a traditional bra so don’t expect a lot of support from them but they are gorgeous!

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I bought the black one pictured above. The only drawback is the lace is slightly itchy! They have a gorgeous selection of lace underwear. Delivery was quite quick considering this shop is based in Vietnam.

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Lovy House lace bra- exactly like For Love and Lemons but much cheaper!

Etsy focuses on promoting handmade or customised items only and is a great promoter of independent fashion. I’ve also bought studs from them for my own customising. You can also give feedback when you receive a product and payments can be made easily through Paypal. The only annoying thing about Etsy is that if you are buying from different stores you have to make each purchase individually. As most shops are small businesses you will generally have to pay delivery charges. I haven’t had to return anything to this shop yet.

Romwe.com

This is a huge online Chinese shop which ships all over the world. Their printed sweaters are my favourite items and they have great unique clothing. They are cheap and have lots of “flash deals” where certain items will be on promotion for 24 hours only. Delivery does take a while but that’s to be expected from China.

Romwe sizes can be quite small also so bear this in mind. I haven’t bothered returning anything that didn’t fit (only once this has happened) as the return would cost the same as the original purchase. I’ve bought a sweater, a skirt, rucksack and a dress from them. The dress was the only unsuitable item being a little too small but it was only €11 so I gave it to a charity shop.

Oasap.com

Oasap is a store which I’ve only bought from once. I bought a pair of printed leggings which were very unusual and cool. The size was good but the colours were quite different in real life and also the fabric was less shiny and slightly transparent. Jury’s out for now! Delivery took some time.

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How they looked online….
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How they looked in real life!

Stradivarius.com.

I decided to try Stradivarius’ online shopping service which is quite new to Ireland. The process is quite simple, you order an item either to your home and pay for delivery or you can pick it up in store for free. I bought these cute blue espradilles.

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You get an email when the item is sent and a text when delivered in store. Returns can be done in store also.I thought it took long enough for it to be delivered considering the stock is only coming from Spain.

Nastygal.com

Previously I devoted a whole post to this site as I went through an obsession with it! Nastygal have an emphasis on daring sexy outfits and bohemian clothing. I’ve bought one dress from them which was nice but the material wasn’t great quality. They are based in America so again shipping takes some time.

THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN SHOPPING ONLINE!

How soon do you need this item? Many shops may take 2-3 weeks with standard shipping.

Will you be able to return it easily? Read the returns policy carefully, some shops may charge for returns or may not allow returns on sale.

How much will delivery cost? An item may appear very cheap until you add in the cost of shipping! Is it worth it when you have allowed for delivery charges? Some shops have a discount if you buy several items but you may have to spend a lot.

Will it look like this in real life? Remember the camera lies and the item may be a different colour/texture to how it appears online. If in doubt read the description to see what material it is and what care it requires before buying. Some stores will let you ask questions and others allow previous customers to leave feedback which is generally the best indicator.

What are the sizes like? Probably the most important factor to consider, check the sizing guide very carefully and read any comments/feedback regarding sizes. Some sites have vintage “free size” items which will pretty much fit a size 8-12 depending whether you want to wear it baggy/long/fitted etc. Others describe items as “runs small”, “runs large” or “true to size.”

When buying from independent retailers, check that the payment methods are secure and that sellers have good feedback. All the sites I’ve listed are reputable.

Happy shopping all! Hope you have enjoyed this post, thanks for visiting the blog as always. You can like my blog on Facebook here if you’d like to see more. I’ll be preparing my next post on the Sea Sessions festival in Donegal, stay tuned! 😉