Re-learn the art of good shopping with John Lewis & Partners

John Lewis & Partners purse

In 2018, fashion is fast and furious. Traditional department stores are struggling to capture our attention. Will there ever be a place for slow, considered shopping again?

With just a few taps of your finger you can have that must-have piece from Instagram sitting in your online shopping basket. It’s like one eternal race to the bottom – quick, get it before it sells out and watch your bank balance diminish on the way down.

I miss proper shopping

Remember when you used to make an event of going shopping? It was fun and sociable (most of the time). Now I often get my shopping fix while squinting at my phone screen and shoving a sandwich down my throat. Elegant stuff, hey? The nicest of the big department stores still have the potential for something more civilised. I think it’s time more of us embraced that.

John Lewis & Partners culottes and purse

How can John Lewis & Partners help?

My invitation to see the new John Lewis & Partners women’s collection at their Cambridge store came just at the right time. Note the new name. It’s part of a larger re-branding exercise, but it’s also the store’s largest own-label fashion offering to date. This multi-generational collection has been designed to sit well in the stores and make shopping easier. It’s best viewed in person, the old-fashioned way.

A new lay-out

I’ve always found department store fashion to be very bitty – everything is spread out and it’s hard to find what you want. The new John Lewis & Partners collection is different. In larger stores, like Cambridge, exploring the range is like stepping into a giant walk-in wardrobe. Everything is together in one place and imaginatively sorted by colour. Like a giant paintbox, it’s easy to spot your favourite colours and styles.

John Lewis & Partners Collection

Learn how to shop again

Denise, a personal stylist at John Lewis & Partners Cambridge, reminded me that it’s far more clever to shop for whole outfits in one go, rather than single items. Impulse buying doesn’t always lead to the most cohesive wardrobe. The theory is: invest your money wisely and you’ll always have something to wear in the morning. It’s easier to do this when you’re shopping in person – you can see straight away whether something works rather than having to wait for the postman.

John Lewis & Partners capsule wardrobe

A capsule wardrobe made easy

Everything in the colourful new John Lewis & Partner collection is designed to go together. Don’t be afraid to mix bold colours. They’ve done the hard work of making sure everything works – all you have to do is pick out your favourites. I particularly loved the colour-drenched outfits the Cambridge staff put together to show us.

John Lewis & Partners capsule wardrobe

Three steps to style

A good outfit transcends fashion and age. John Lewis & Partner’s advice for putting together the perfect look is to mix three pieces: one basic, one hero and one accent. So we’re talking a classic knit mixed with a bold trouser, perfectly accessorised with a gorgeous scarf. Or a simple wool coat with a bright pink hero dress, accessorised with a gorgeous pair of heels.

Easy, right?

I’ve picked out my favourite outfits from the new collection, all following their three easy steps to style…

John Lewis & Partners Collection

Basic: Crombie coat, £249 / Hero: Midi dress, £99 / Accent: Slingbacks, £89

– all John Lewis & Partners

Basic: Navy cords, £49  / Hero: Rib Stitch Sweater, £39 / Accent: Scarf, £26

– all John Lewis & Partners

John Lewis & Partners Collection

Hero: Wool culottes, £99 / Basic: Grey ribbed sweater, £39 / Leather backpack, £125

– all John Lewis & Partners 

Some of the items I’ve linked to above are sold out online, however there was lots of everything in the Cambridge store. So, ditch the computer and take some time out to do some good old fashioned shopping! You can even book one of their free personal style consultations.





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