PJ’s – check, slippers –  check, coffee – check, credit card – check.  Say what?  or does that sound familiar.  Who likes a bit of online shopping? Because that is how you do it.

If you do already shop online, then you’ll likely be familiar with some of my hot tips, but if you are an online shopping virgin, I’ve put together some top tips for you to follow to ensure your a happy little camper at Camp Sisterhood of the online kind.  Too long there? Moving on.

I know a lot of women, my clients and friends included, who have never, say they would never, dip their toe into online shopping.

The most common replies to why not are “what if I get the wrong size”, “I like to touch the fabric”, “I need to see it on me”.  They are all valid reasons.  But they don’t need to be the reason you never do it, so let’s break your online shopping cherry Sisters. One of the most gratifying feelings is the knock knock of the courier, delivering your parcel, the morning after you make a purchase.  So to make it easy for you timid onliners, I’ve provided you a guide to the shops that do online really really well, make it a great experience, offer a little more than you might think they would and deliver it quick.

Where to shop 

My favourite go to places within New Zealand are Superette (their sales are epic and they pop lovely little things in the packages – I was devastated recently when my camo print umbrella that I got with a pair of shoes, went bye bye’s on a night out.  Paper Plane Store in Tauranga wrap things beautifully and they offer a sassy little range of The Beach People Roundie Towels.  Father Rabbit  for beautifully curated gifts and my favourite Rains raincoats.  Trelise Cooper and her COOP range – a funky, bright, bold shop that offers fabulous sales too – there’s one on now, right now with 40% off. Thank me later. Other New Zealand online shops that are handy for a quick shop for basics or capsule wardrobe fillers are Ezibuy & Glassons and their deliveries are quick. (update Feb 2017) – Two other fabulous online shops based in NZ are ShineOn and TwoDaughters (which is 100% kiwi-made)

When hunting, I mean shopping a little further afield, I choose The Iconic and ASOS.  I swear by them.  A recent discovery is Bohemian Traders, which I am about to agressively stalk for their Striped Midi dress – once good old styleitdontbuyit stops at the end of the month.   But back to the The Iconic and ASOS. Imagine if you will, needing a kaftan, togs, shorts, cullottes that are out of season here or the bomber jacket of the moment or a pair of Adidas Originals and you want something that no one else will likely have.  Then Iconic and ASOS are your friends.  But there in lies the trick – never shop on either site with mindless abandon – you’ll get sucked into a vortex of satorial misadventure and end up broke. Yes it’s a rabbit hole of awesome, but without a plan (I’m a powershopping queen), online shopping on these two sites could be endless and expensive.

How to shop

As I mentioned above and in my powershopping blog, you have to work with a plan.  Be focussed and maintain an air of calm, particularly when you find that amazing jacket, that looks like nothing you have seen before but only has one size left, and it ain’t yours.  This is one of the hardest things about online shopping, accepting it’s lost to you, cause there ain’t no shop assistant lurking around the corner to find you the right size “out the back”. Having said that, you might get lucky as some sites have concierge services and click to chat offerings, where you can ‘talk’ to someone at the click of your keyboard and they might search the ether for your size.  TIP: if you login to certain sites, they may offer a wish list page for you to store your items you’ve given a heart emoji too.  This is a great way for me to wait patiently for my chosen item to come back in in my size (or not).

The fine print – shipping costs and returns policy

Most of these sites offer small to no shipping costs, especially if you spend over a certain amount.  But if this is a barrier to you, then shop around sites first, decide what suits you for your look and then see what their shipping costs are.  Equally, make sure you check on their returns policy.  ASOS offer returns and they will repay you the cost of shipping.  I’ve sent two pairs of shoes back before at a cost to me of $60 postage, but they refunded it with a couple of weeks.  Tip – before you rip open the bag that your items come in, think carefully, rip carefully, save the bag somewhat.  Then, if a return is imminent, you have a perfectly good bag to do it with. Trelise Cooper offer a full refund on any items you return to their online store (not in-store) and do this even on sale items.  Gotta love that, as it makes the purchases low risk. Next, read the labels, check the fabric type and care instructions. There’s nothing worse than finding your eagerly awaited item is hand wash only.

Use their styling advice 

Most sites above offer a “complete the look” or “shop the look” suggestions.  Use them. Often you can complete the outfit in seconds.  It will provide the details for everything worn in the shot, not just the item you clicked on.

Have fun

The wonderful thing about online shopping and by far the best thing for me, is the feeling of it fitting in with my timetable.  I like being able to do it in my PJ’s, particularly the sales, there’s no “elbows out” as you reach for the last one on the shelf. If you have a little more time, go deeper into the sites and look at items you normally wouldn’t, style them up in your head or use Polyvore to bring the look together.

I love being able to have the thrill of hunting online as much as I love getting together with clients and friends to shop in the retail stores.  But then, I just love shopping and clothes full stop, so its a no brainer.  Have I turned any of you, will you give it a go now?  If I have, then share your finds and any great sites I haven’t mentioned with the Sisterhood.

Love your work Sisters,

EJ x Mother of the Sisterhood.

If you would like to book a styling session, or want to chat about any style related queries, then drop me an email emma@sisterhoodofstyle.com and I’d love to chat. 

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