So on Wednesday I jumped on the train and headed down to Newark, where Boden were holding their sale in one of the huge Showground buildings. (Newark is 150 miles from Newcastle, so this was a 300 mile round trip. I am truly committed to the
Now I learnt a thing or two from last year's sale - like: 1) don't dither, 2) if in doubt, grab it, and 3) wear decent undies, because you'll be showing them off the several hundred ladies in the communal trying-on area. I headed straight for the shoes this time, as they were closest to the door, and all laid out neatly on the tables (for a few moments, anyway, until we all got our hands on them). I was specifically looking for some leopard print boots, as the Boden pair I already own are possibly the best boots I've ever owned and I'm terrified I'll wear them away to nothing since I wear them so much. Shoes and boots were priced at £20 a pair, so I made a bee-line for a gorge pair of pony-skin leopard flat Joni boots sitting right there in the middle of the table. Not exactly the same as the pair I already own, which are block heeled, but I can still see me getting plenty of wear from these. Did I mention these were originally £119? Result!
I wasn't particularly looking for work dresses this year, since my office now has a permanent casual dress code, but I did want to see if there were any dressy options or nice summer frocks (y'know, on the off chance we get any summer this year). All dresses were £10, which is even better than last years prices (they were £20 then). I picked out a few to try on then took a mooch to the tops, which was actually the most disappointing area, I thought. There was very little choice in tops (all priced at £10) - no shirts or silk Ravello tees in sight - so I picked out a couple of things to try on but nothing that really grabbed me. Same with knitwear - there was quite a bit more here (jumpers £20, cardi/coatigans £25-40), but the only thing I was really looking for was the Caroline Coatigan in tan, which they had a few of, but none in my size. Sob!
There were some good buys in jackets and coats - I picked up a grey Chelsea Blazer which was £30 and a lovely cape style coat for £40, which actually turned out to be too big, so I reluctantly put that back. I wasn't really interested in trousers (£20), skirts (also £20) or accessories and swimwear (anything from two quid upwards).
I managed to pass a full two and a half hours wandering about the sale (stopping only for a coffee - conveniently there was a coffee shop inside). New stuff was being brought out all the time so I did a couple of laps to see what else I could spot, and it was a good job I did as I managed to grab a pair of navy jewelled pointed flats that I've actually been having dreams about for the best part of two years. Seriously. The best part? They were only a tenner, due to missing a couple of jewels from the underside of the shoes, which is unnoticeable when they're on, anyway.
So what did I actually come away with? Well, I was quite aware that I'd have to lug whatever I bought back onto the train and to my car once I got into Newcastle, so I just picked out the things I thought I'd definitely wear. That included five dresses - a green lace number, which actually looks like a two-piece and is really nice on, a black lace full skirted dress (yep I'm always drawn to lace dresses. I love the shape of this one and I can see it being an LBD staple in my wardrobe), a black and cream polka dot pencil dress that I thought I could wear for work if I ever have the urge to dress smartly, a denim shift that I know I will wear loads, and a light cotton blue and white print dress that will be perfect for holidays.
Then there's my leopard boots - there was no way I was putting those babies back. Love, love, LOVE them. I also picked up a pair of super cute pom pom slippers, because they match my cashmere M&S pjs and, bizarrely, the paint on my lounge walls. I'm nothing if not coordinated.
I love blazers, especially tweedy type ones, so the Chelsea blazer was always coming home with me. Plus it's got the cutest That London themed lining! And lastly, I picked up a green and white breton I found discarded by the tills as I was queuing to pay. You can never have too many bretons, right?!
And then there's my jewelled flats, which, if I'm being honest, seemed like shoe fate. We were destined to be together, and who was I to say otherwise? I was never going to leave them behind.
So - £130 in total, with an original value of around £800. I'm saying that's a pretty decent haul and definitely worth the journey! I'm already planning my enhanced shopping strategy for next year's Town Hall Sales. Bring it on!!