Rosemary Mac Cabe

Hemlines, heels and haute couture – your daily dose

A New Look for the artist formerly known as Arnotts Project

Last night I headed along, briefly, to the launch of New Look in the Jervis Shopping Centre, to see what all the fuss about the “largest New Look in the world” was about. New Look is one of those funny …

Fri, Nov 5, 2010, 09:59


Last night I headed along, briefly, to the launch of New Look in the Jervis Shopping Centre, to see what all the fuss about the “largest New Look in the world” was about. New Look is one of those funny high-street stores; I generally like what I see, and rarely leave a store without buying something, but for some reason it would never be top of my Friday-night go-to list.

Well, that might all change now with a store practically on my doorstep – and what a store it is.

When you walk in, on the ground floor of the Jervis Street shopping centre, it’s just like a normal store, perhaps the size, roughly, of Miss Selfridge, across the way. The layout at the moment features a large selection of Limited items – gorgeous embellished dresses, printed tops and floral tea dresses in a range of colours and patterns (my favourite was a very on-trend camel polka dot, but unfortunately by the time I got around to trying it on, my size was MIA), with a corner of partywear on the right and then, at the back by the escalators, a selection of coats (am kicking myself now that I didn’t purchase a rough wool coat in khaki, with a gold and brown detail belt).

But it’s downstairs that the full scale of this store really hits, because as you descend on the escalator it’s as if the whole space opens up in front of you: it is enormous. I would recommend hitting it up early in the morning (not on a Saturday, you crazy fool) and taking your time, because there is a huge range of items to choose from. Womenswear, menswear, childrenswear all jostle for space alongside footwear (a huge range – at one stage I heard someone say “8,000 shoes”). It also has a really large space for its Inspire range of plus-sized items (a lot of which I wanted to buy but, once again, not in my size) and its shoe selection is great and really on-trend (shearling, military and lace were big draws).

The downsides? You won’t like everything. Certain items I almost liked, but found ruined by unnecessary embellishment. The fabrics aren’t super-luxurious or well-wearing. But bear in mind that these items are set at a really good price point, and for that you may have to handwash your tea dress if you want it to last. Some of the cuts are a little odd. (I’m now in possession of my first pair of trousers ever, that hang slightly oddly in the front but I loved the draping so have my fingers crossed that they’ll come good.) I put that down to, again, cost-saving on design and manufacture.

In conclusion? Check it out. You’re a better woman (or man) than I if you emerge empty-handed . . .

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