"She thinks she's really cool man, but she shops at Oxfam.
She think's she looks so fresh though, but she shops at Tesco."
Catchy little ditty ain't it? At the time, I did actually buy clothes from Oxfam - indeed any charity shop or jumble sale I could find, such was my love of clothes from bygone eras. We used to call clothes from charity shops 'retro' but now the High End call it Vintage (daaah-ling) and stick an extra zero on the end of the price tag which, back in my day, would have had £1.50 on it.What was once sniggered at is now incredibly stylish. We all want to be that insouciant girl at the dinner party who replies with a faint smile "Oh this? It's Vintage." When somebody asked me where my clothes were from in school, I mumbled something incoherent about Miss Selfridge or Tammy Girl (remember Tammy Girl?!) Fashion certainly has a sense of irony.
Now, I own my charity shop bargains. I've bagged a Louis Vuitton scarf for £3, Phase Eight dresses for a fiver each, sweatshirts by Sandwich. I even came across a tweed Gucci jacket in a little village charity stall for £40...but was, alas, too small.
Yet buying your clothes at supermarkets still seems a little taboo in the fashion world. Dare I say shameful? The amount of women I've complimented on their shirt or dress who have then blushed and replied that it's 'only from Asda' is surprising. Surely it doesn't matter where you spend your money as long as you're buying something you love and feel good in?
Want to know a secret? Today I'm wearing a black maxi skirt...from Lidl. It set me back a bargainous £4.99 and it's brilliant. It doesn't feel cheap and nasty, it fits well and it's washed really well so far. It also looks pretty good on me. So why should I not be screaming from the rooftops about the benefits of kitting yourself out in new gear when you're buying your bread and milk?
For me, the benefits of supermarket shopping far outweigh the cons. It's convenient for one, because after the age of thirty with a baby in tow, who really has time to trawl around a shopping centre with a bunch of nubile teens making you feel like a frump? Secondly, clothes from supermarkets are generally cheaper than on the high street (not counting Primark here or as I call it 'the place where clothes sizes go to die. How can i fit in to an 8 and an 18 in one shop? Hmm). Finally, supermarket clothing ranges are seriously cool. The brands are stand alone fashion houses with well designed pieces that are on trend and well made. George at Asda, Florence and Fred at Tesco, TU at Sainsbury's are the big three but don't underestimate the power of Esmara at Lidl or Avenue at Aldi. They are as yet undiscovered.
As a new mum on maternity leave, I don't have the finances to buy a new Summer wardrobe but just because I'm a new mum on maternity leave doesn't mean that I don't want to look stylish and on trend. Supermarkets solve this dilemma for me. So in honour of supermarket style, I've out together a range of outfits from a capsule collection of supermarket buys, old and new, to show you just how versatile and fashion forward buying your outfits with your groceries can actually be.
First up, Gym gear. Yes you really can buy super stylish, comfortable and fit for purpose workout wear from your local supermarket.
Leggings, TU at Sainsbury's, Sports bra, vest and sweatshirt all, F&F at Tesco. Trainers by Puma.
"But I love my designers" I hear you wail! Ok then, check out this Barbara Hulanicki dress from George at Asda. That's Biba...in case you didn't know. Shoes F&F at Tesco. Necklace, DP
Double denim can be dangerous but a denim shirt dress over striped jeans is a great way to tackle the trend. Plus the dress can be worn on it's own on warmer days.
Denim shirt dress, T-shirt and sandals: F&F at Tesco, Jeans, TU at Sainsburys
What's that? A dinner date outfit for under £30? Cheers Tesco! Top, trousers, shoes all F&F at Tesco. Necklace Ben De Lisi at Principles
Top and shoes F&F at Tesco. Cropped linen trousers, Esmara at Lidl.
This is a great look for weekend day trips with the family! Whole outfit: F&F at Tesco. Necklace: Debenhams.
So there you have it, 7 looks from varying supermarket stores that can be mixed and matched throughout the summer at a fraction of the price of high street stores. Maybe now I won't be so stumbling when people ask me where my outfit is from...or maybe I'll keep it our little secret. And to those playground taunters...it might be 15 years too late, but I have a response for you: I know I'm really fresh though, cos I buy my clothes at Tesco.