How Not To Attend A Discount Lock In

On 16 October I ventured into Bristol to attend a discount lock in at BS8, a vintage and fashion store on Park Street. I found out about the evening thanks to Lily Doble, thanks to the #BlogClub Facebook page, though due to another event not many of the other girls were able to make it. I still went and found made two fantastic winter buys. However, I did learn some valuable lessons that probably seem obvious to most people. My excuse is having lived in rural areas all my life- apart from Norwich but to be honest for a city it’s pretty rural. Anyway, I digress. So once I had made it to Catherine’s, who was putting me up, I decided to turn my mistakes into a ‘How Not To…’ post.

On with tonight’s ‘How Not To Attend A Discount Lock In’. There are three guidelines with these kind of events and I broke every one!

  1. Make it a social event and take a friend (or let them take you).
  2. Make sure you know where you are going.
  3. Make sure your hands are free for rumaging and that bags are small/manageable.

Firstly, I was not able to meet up with any of the others from Blog Club. This was due to several of them being double booked and the inconsistency of Facebook when it comes to meeting up with people. (I look forward to the day when wifi is EVERYwhere!) So I ended up on my own. Now I like my own company as much as the next introvert, but being on your own in a shop full of people is not the most self-esteem boosting place to be. Waiting in the queue was the worst part. However, I do give my appreication to the BS8 staff who were intent on offering my free drinks and selling me raffle tickets. (Though I would have been a sad figure drinking on my own.) It also meant most of my photos were taken in the changing room, as no friends meant I needed a mirror for them.

Secondly, I had no idea where Park Street is or how to get there. Trying to figure out bus stops in the dark in an unfamiliar city is not exactly fun. Fortunately, Bristol buses have handy screens that tell you which stop is coming up next so I was able to get off at Park Street. It then took me about five minutes before realising I was walking the wrong way after stepping off the bus. Trying to find Catherine’s house was a whole other kettle of fish though I know I can find her flat in the light and dark. Basically, this can be summed up as street maps will never go out of fashion because mobiles lose internet signal and run out of power. So next time I head off to Bristol I will be finding/buying a pocket street map.

Thirdly, I had a small overnight bag with me. This just got in my way, and everyone else’s, as I rummaged through the racks. Plus my shoulder was killing me by the end from the weight of my boots and sleeping bag. So next time I’ll be arriving a bit earlier, dropping my stuff wherever I’m staying over (if necessary) in order to make life for everyone that little bit easier.

In conclusion; go with at least one friend, take a non-electronic map, and keep bags to a minimum. All pretty basic yet it managed to escape my ‘common sense’. I can only really blame no.2 on being rural. Anyway, those were the lessons that I learned. On to the fun bit.

What did I buy? I tried on three different items; a velvet mini skater skirt, a pleather midi A-line skirt and a body-con faux-tartan dress.

The velvet skater skirt came in a variety of colours. I chose a gorgeous dark blue as something slightly out my comfort zone but not so far that it would be out of place. Normally I love skater skirts. (I seriously need to rescue my batik-style New Look one from the bottom of my ironing basket.) Unfortunately this time the skirt didn’t suit. I think it was the material. As much as I love velvet, it just didn’t feel right for my wardrobe. Maybe a little too ‘student’, not enough ‘professional’. STill trying to make that ‘style jump’.

Next up was the pleather midi skirt. This was way, way out of my comfort zone. I don’t own very much in the way of pleather and I do not do the whole princess ladylike look that goes with midi skirts. So I very quickly discarded this as something I could never wear though I will probably want everytime it appears on someone else’s blog.

The winner was this beautiful dress. The photo picks up with tartan pattern really well, which was faux as it was created by manipulating the velvet material. As you can also tell from my pose, it made me feel downright sexy and ready to take on the world (if you added thigh high boots). The high neckline sealed the deal, keeping it modest without feeling frumpy. Add black tights and ankle boots for a great ‘ladies who lunch’ outfit. I wore it with pearls and smart flats to church, feeling very middle class though the dress is edge-y (can I say that?) enough to avoid that cliche.

The Winning Item. Shows how misleading a hanger can be.

I also gave into an impulse, i.e. no trying on pre-buying, item. It was a navy cape with a faux fur trim to match. So it’s not exactly counter-couture if you live in a city but in small towns they’re not particularly widespread. However, it has turned out to be incredibly warm. Too warm for this crazily mild weather we’ve been having. Yet another reason why I just want winter to begin.

So that was my trip to BS8’s discount lock in. I found some wonderful items and would definitely go to another one. However, next time I will be attempting to follow my guidelines and feel less like a country bumpkin. At least I know where it is.


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