#StoriesOfStyle: Internet Shopping For Silver Vixens
Author: Elaine Tant
I'm delighted to introduce our next featured writer: Elaine Tant. Keen to get into the blogging sphere, Elaine reached out to us to share her thoughts on shopping for fashion online. As someone who enjoys it, she explained she still finds many of her friends are hesitant, so she's eager to encourage more women to embrace the experience, with that explain the benefits, what to look out for, and equally when your warning bells should go off... We found her thoughts very interesting and helpful, and we hope you do too!
Recently, while sipping a flat white in my favourite coffee shop, I began puzzling over how I could best share the benefits of the internet shopping with women like me. Women who have access to the internet but feel a little intimidated by it and feel that they are not making best use of its many services.
Most of the women I know argue that fashion shopping sites are aimed at the computer savvy working woman or the yummy mummy. Sitting here, drinking my coffee, I am amazed at how busy young mums as well as working men and women are tapping away at their Phones or Mac books. This is obviously how they organise the different compartments of their lives. They maybe arranging meetings, buying their weekly food shop, browsing shopping sites or researching for work. It doesn't really matter to me but I do often ask myself am I missing out on a trick. Could I too save time and money by discovering more of what the internet has to offer?
Many of my friends are wary of the internet because they fear that their personal security might be compromised. What about the cost of postage when ordering clothes? How easy is it to return an unsuitable item? How do we know that we can trust the pictures of the clothes to be a true representation of quality, cut and colour? The doubts begin to multiply and so we give up, preferring to face the trauma of the public changing room or the costly journey into a major shopping centre. We convince ourselves that by avoiding the temptations of the internet sites we are reducing the risk of credit card fraud.
I follow a few simple checks which enable me to feel confident about the security and credentials of my chosen site. Always look to see if there is a physical address and phone number. Check that there is a returns policy and that the site accepts credit cards. it is also vital to check that somewhere on the web page is a little padlock or unbroken key icon. Finally, a good site will have a privacy statement as part of its customer information. Nothing is totally failsafe but following these simple steps ensures a really safe and happy shopping experience!
As an older shopper I am conscious that many of the internet shops cater for the younger market. when I first started to shop online, I opted for the familiar stores, the High Street Shops. This often left me uninspired. Choosing new clothes held no excited because the styles sand colours were all very similar. Nothing had the "wow" factor. My decision to search the internet was because I wanted to view clothes that would push me out of my comfort zone but whose quality and pricing I could trust. After all, none of us wants to part with our hard earned cash, especially on an item that might fall apart or be seen on countless other women. And it is on this very argument that internet shopping wins out. Find those trustworthy, innovative and age appropriate sites and, like me, you will become an ardent and loyal fan.
Last but not least are the hidden benefits of internet shopping and these more than anything have persuaded me to do most of my shopping in this way. I hope that by sharing these, I can at least persuade some of you to enjoy browsing and find a new and stylish you!
1. It can be cheaper in the long run
In the comfort of your own home or even in the coffee shop you can search for particular items and compare prices. If you use the app "Pinterest" then you can pin those items you like onto a board and maybe could call it "My New Look" and go back at your leisure to see if they fill any gaps or add something special to the clothes you already own. This avoids buying too many items of clothing that end up unworn adding to your guilt and draining your pocket. Shopping with friends can often be disastrous because we are sometimes persuaded to buy something that, when we go back to our wardrobes, does not reflect our personal style. Shopping on the internet allows you to concentrate and really hone in on the look you wish you project.
2. It can force you to rethink your personal style
This has certainly been my experience. Often good online shops put together outfit ideas in a really interesting way. They will navigate you towards a particular look and explain how it can be pulled together. I have found really good sties just by typing in words or phrases like "comfortable but stylish, affordable quality" etc. I would also recommend following a fashion blog specifically tailored to your interests. This can led to some excellent recommendations. I like 'Mid-Life Chic' and 'Country Wives' but there are many others. Explore!
3. Returns are no longer a faff!
Many sites offer free returns now and some will offer a collection service or are part of a nationwide delivery team where you can return your parcel to a local shop to be collected. It is still cheaper than having to pay transport costs and multi-storey car parking.
So why not take the plunge and search out those clothing sites that just might help you find a new and fabulous you!
About The Author
Elaine is a retired teacher always looking forward to the next chapter in her life. She enjoys reading and watching classic British and American movies of the 1930s, 40s and 50s, and considers Greta Garbo, Katherine Hepburn and Doris Day as her style icons. After all nobody does 'the trouser' better than these three stars. From the high waisted, wide legged trousers of Garbo and Hepburn to the sweet and sexy capri pants worn by Miss Day.
Elaine also loves writing about clothes and shopping for them when time and her purse allows! Oh and she's also an expert of the best 'flat white' a type of coffee which originate in Australia, she's been told.
In the words of the late Barbara Castle MP, you don't stop doing things because you get old: you get old because you stop doing things! And that's Elaine's motto.