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Style Spot Special: January Sales

30 Dec

With memories of turkey and Santa slowly fading away, many of us will be taking to the shops to snap up those post-Christmas bargains.

The high street sales have been particularly strong for men this year, with many key trend pieces making their way onto reduced rails.

Many stores in fact opened their online sales on Christmas Eve to give shoppers the maximum amount of time to shop before the VAT increases on January 1st. But never fear, there are still some great bits to be found.

Much of Topman‘s knitwear found itself with good reductions, some great pairs of jeans were slashed to as little as £13, and although the accessory sale has never been TM’s strong point, there are one or two nice trilbys at half price.

Oatmeal Cable Knit, Topman, Was £38 Now £20

Cable Knit Shawl Cardigan, Topman, Was £75 Now £55

Good quality shoes didn’t fare quite as well,with only minimal amounts knocked off, but you will notice a really nice pair of brogues found themselves reduced.

Tan Classic Brogues, Topman, Was £36 Now £35

Brown Vintage Boots, Topman, Was £65 Now £55

There were also two surprises in the sale. With tweed and roll necks looking set to be big for 2011, you can pick up these new trends for a snip of the price.

Stone Chunky Roll Neck Jumper, Topman, Was £38 Now £20

Brown Fleck Skinny Suit, Topman, (whole price) Was £150 Now £75

I managed to bag myself these two from the sale.

Grey Textured Trilby, Topman, Was £16 Now £8

Black and White Jumper, Topman, Was £38 Now £23

Over to River Island, who, in my opinion, are having one of their strongest sales in years. Although it is messier to shop in than the likes of Topman (although it doesn’t beat the bombsite of a Next sale), the rummage is well worth it for some great reductions.

Many of their military coats had good reductions on them.

Grey Double Breasted Military Jacket, River Island, Was £84.99 Now £50

Black Customised Military Jacket, River Island, Was £69.99 Now £35

Military blazers will also be a good transitional jacket as we move from winter into spring with some  even less than half price.

Navy Nautical Style Blazer, River Island, Was £59.99 Now £20

Grey Wool Military Blazer, River Island, Was £59.99 Now £20

There are also some great fashion suits in the sale, with the grey ones with black detailing being my particular favourites.

Grey Slim Fit Suit, River Island (whole price) Was £130 Now £70

Navy Super Skinny Stretch Trousers, River Island, Was £29.99 Now £12

Middle-of-the-road Burton also has some had two pairs of shoes that will be perfect for the warmer months.

White and Blue Stripe Espadrilles, Burton, Was £22 Now £12

Brown Tasselled Loafers, Burton, Was £45 Now £20

While a sale price at All Saints may be a normal full price anywhere else, there are some really good bargains to be had. Some of their fair ilse and oversized cardigans are heavily reduced.

Tallin Grey Open Cardigan, All Saints, Was £85 Now £59.50

Alexi Crew Neck Fairisle Cardigan, All Saints, Was £80 Now £40

Some of their typically smart shirts have also made their way into their sale, which also has an extra 10% off online on New Years Day.

Munich Bleached Grey Chambray Shirt, All Saints, Was £60 Now £30

Greenwich Ligh Wash Shirt, All Saints, Was £60 Now £42

Style Spot: X Factor Style Crimes – Men’s Harem Pants

29 Nov

FORGET Wagner’s Pat Butcher earrings and Katie Waissel’s bird nest haircuts, there is another fashion crime on The X Factor that has been going criminally unnoticed.

This year the contestants have been styled by Britain’s Next Top Model judge and stylist Grace Woodward. With the contestants sometimes sporting up to four different outfits over the weekend’s shows, it is perhaps no wonder that she has begun to run out of ideas. But is there really a need to dress the boys is girls trousers?

Harem pants have long been a woman’s fashion favorite, first becoming popular in the UK during the 1980s and experienced a renaissance during the latter part of the noughties. With their elasticated waists, tapered ankles and baggy legs and crotches, the shape gives a cross between a skinny jean and a skirt, with their comfort offering a smarter alternative to jogging bottoms.

The carrot fit jeans and chinos were popular with chaps during SS10, and are continuing into autumn/winter, but these harems are experimenting with their loose cut, pushing the boundaries of baggy. Over on The X Factor, Woodward has been pushing contestants on the show into them, perhaps drawing inspiration from one of the show’s fashion icons?

Cheryl Cole is a champion of harem pants

On last night’s results show, One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson became the latest perpetrator of the harem felony, sporting a black pair with his trademark snood and espadrilles, (seriously, summer is over – it’s snowing out there).

One Direction's Louis

Aiden Grimshaw














Although bad, it’s quiff headed Aiden Grimshaw‘s harems that really deserve to be burnt. Wearing them on the night of his elimination two weeks ago, Aiden’s crimpled grey harems took bagginess to excessive new levels with his crotch almost trailing the floor. Woodward chose to team them up with a smart blazer and shirt and military boots, and the result was a mismatched disaster which saw itself deservedly voted off the competition.

The high street is also catching on the trend, adapting the designs. Topman are carrying slightly more tailored harems with their grey super-drop crotches, which come without the elastic waist and ankle.

Grey Herringbone Super Drop Crotch Trousers, Topman, £40

Grey Shark Skin Super Drop Crotch Trousers, Topman, £36

Black Drop Crotch Jogger Trousers, River Island, £26.99

Meanwhile, River Island are playing it slightly more casual with a range of joggers and jeans.

Grey Acid Wash 3/4 length Joggers, River Island, £24.99

So what do you tink of men’s harems? Should we be free to embrace them or should they remain firmly inside our girlfriends’ wardrobes?