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The Chic List: Queues? They’re so last year


One of the reasons I love to go shopping is to clear my head. I’m talking about actual physical shopping – as in wandering around stores looking at things, touching them and trying them on. I don’t necessarily need to buy anything. 

Rather it’s an escape into a world where I can imagine and experiment with different lifestyles. It’s a time to think and take stock while getting lots of valuable steps in, too.

Shopping in real life – rather than from your sofa after wine o’clock – is good for your physical and mental health. I really don’t understand people who say they don’t enjoy it – what’s not to like about wandering around, looking at beautiful things and collecting inspiration free of charge?

Although there is one irritation. On the rare occasion when I take the plunge into the luxury market to invest in a bag or pair of shoes, one of the most frustrating things is the post-pandemic trend of being forced to queue – or ‘line up’ like idiots – outside a brand’s shop. This is now the default experience at famous labels that don’t sell online to preserve their exclusivity.

JOANNE HEGARTY (pictured): One of the reasons I love to go shopping is to clear my head. I’m talking about actual physical shopping – as in wandering around stores looking at things, touching them and trying them on

JOANNE HEGARTY (pictured): One of the reasons I love to go shopping is to clear my head. I’m talking about actual physical shopping – as in wandering around stores looking at things, touching them and trying them on

JOANNE HEGARTY (pictured): I don’t necessarily need to buy anything. Rather it’s an escape into a world where I can imagine and experiment with different lifestyles

JOANNE HEGARTY (pictured): I don’t necessarily need to buy anything. Rather it’s an escape into a world where I can imagine and experiment with different lifestyles

So you arrive excited at a store – Chanel and Hermès are the worst culprits, even if it’s only a lipstick you’re after – and are told by someone with an iPad to wait outside, often behind scores of others, before you’ll be granted the privilege of going inside. This does not make me want an item more – it makes me want it less.

As a customer, I find it humiliating to have to stand shivering outside before I’m allowed in to hand over my cash. This is something I’ve encountered everywhere from Bond Street to Bicester Village, as well as in Paris, Rome and New York. What’s bizarre is that often these stores have massive queues outside while the inside looks empty, making me suspect it’s all some power game. This ridiculous practice needs to stop – especially now the luxury boom is waning.

One thing that isn’t waning this autumn is our desire to find the perfect boots, and this season there are many choices of styles to try.

First up, the knee-high, which is back in business, but forget flat – this time, heels are where it’s at. Finding the right pair requires research – personally, I think you need to try them on before splashing out. Prefer a pointy-toe ankle boot – my own favourite reliables at this time of year? These are the easiest boots to buy online. For comfy styles try Aeyde (see right), Toteme and Acne Studios.

As for the most on-trend choice? The western and biker boot. Both look best over leggings with a blazer or with a minidress and tights.

@thestylistandthewardrobe

@youmagazine

Reddy, steady, go 

Burgundy is back and The Chic List is definitely onboard as it’s one of my favourite hues at this time of year.

How will I be rocking it? In this stylish rollneck by Arket, of course.

Burgundy is back and The Chic List is definitely onboard as it’s one of my favourite hues at this time of year (Pictured - Jumper, £77, arket.com)

Burgundy is back and The Chic List is definitely onboard as it’s one of my favourite hues at this time of year (Pictured – Jumper, £77, arket.com)

Perfectly pared down

Hard-cased little clutches are this season’s most stylish evening bag as they are both beautiful to look at and to hold in the palm of your hand. This one by Mango fits just the essentials – keys, lipstick, bankcard – so you can leave your phone at home.

Hard-cased little clutches are this season’s most stylish evening bag as they are both beautiful to look at and to hold in the palm of your hand (Pictured - Clutch, £49.99, shop.mango.com)

Hard-cased little clutches are this season’s most stylish evening bag as they are both beautiful to look at and to hold in the palm of your hand (Pictured – Clutch, £49.99, shop.mango.com)

Step this way

When it comes to winter boots, a simple, sleek pair such as these by Aeyde will take you far – and go with everything in your wardrobe from jeans to tailored looks.

When it comes to winter boots, a simple, sleek pair such as these by Aeyde will take you far (Pictured - Boots, £345, Aeyde, net-a-porter.com)

When it comes to winter boots, a simple, sleek pair such as these by Aeyde will take you far (Pictured – Boots, £345, Aeyde, net-a-porter.com)



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