The dawning of a New Year often means a time of reflection… so mirror, mirror on the wall who’s the fairest of them all? It has been a busy year for Instant Goddess, but which stores and designers were the hits of the past year?
At the time of going to press, The Golden Globes are in full swing, showcasing some of the best talent in the entertainment world. With the Grammys and Oscars just around the corner, Instant Goddess thought, why not have my own awards ceremony?! After all, if it’s good enough for Hollywood royalty then it’s good enough for Instant Goddess! (Alas, there’s no champers on hand but I’m writing this at 8.50am!) This is what made the podium – thank you speeches are strictly limited to 30 seconds… beep!
And the winners are:
Best High Street Store goes to Zara. Yes, yes, Zara gets a lot of stick, but time and time again it proves its style credentials at great prices to boot. It’s one of the few affordable chains that has managed to consistently take on the vastly inflated HK rental market, providing customers with ample shopping opportunities across the city. Designs inspired by the catwalk often appear in Zara shops quicker than they make it to the designers’ own shops (much to their disgust!), bringing us mere mortals an affordable slice of fashion heaven. Thanks to its Spanish roots, the leather never fails to disappoint – in particular the shoes and jackets are always reasonably priced and good quality.
Best High Street Newcomer. Back in the summer Topshop opened its hallowed doors for the first time in Hong Kong to a huge fanfare, and to even huger queues of hungry fashionistas! Instant Goddess and the Sassy girls had a ball beating the queues at a personal shopping experience (frocks, bubbles and cupcakes – we highly recommend!). Some have criticised Toppers for being too small with a lack of choice BUT Instant Goddess takes her hat off to any chain willing to bring affordable clothes to the barren HK High Street.
Top left: Oversized collar cardigan, $345; Top right: Embellished A-line skirt, approx. $540; Bottom left: Leather-look front leggings, approx. $360; Bottom right: Knitted flower embellished top, approx. $590, all Topshop.
Best Independent Clothes Boutique. The joint award goes to Déjà Vu and sister shop Betty Blue. Instant Goddess is currently in rehab trying to beat her addiction to this pair of Soho shops. With some of the best designer-inspired frocks in town at very keen prices, Instant Goddess has been finding it hard to tear herself away. They get new deliveries every Friday… so if you want to be ahead of the game you know what you have to do!
Betty Blue, Shop D1 G/F, 34B Staunton Street, Hong Kong.
Both open daily from 11am – 8pm
The Best Costume Jewellery Shop award goes to Caty. For row upon row of statement necklaces and show-stopping bling, Caty is always a crowd pleaser and its traffic-stopping statement bling has been a firm Sassy fave since we discovered it on Caine Road back in 2012. Back in autumn 2013 we were very pleased to report that this little shop has grown and is now a bona fide Hong Kong chain with new store openings in Wanchai and Sheung Wan. Follow Caty on Facebook to discover more!
Caty in Wanchai, G/F, 126 Wan Chai Road (Near Tai Yau Plaza), Wan Chai, Hong Kong.
Caty in Sheung Wan, 11 Aberdeen Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong.
Best ETSY store goes to Emily Gau Jewelry for the most affordable statement jewellery the Instant Goddess has ever managed to lay her paws on! This quality bling is often inspired by J Crew, Anthropologie, Kate Spade and other similar designers. Emily Gau also provides a speedy shipping service to the ‘Kong, which means you can be ready to deck yourself out in jewels in as little as 3 days from the time of order (make sure you request SF Express in a separate convo with Emily Gau). For more of Instant Goddess’ ETSY tips, check out our full guide here.
Best Online All-Rounder Fashion Store goes to… ASOS for the most affordable range of clothing from its own ASOS label, to a wide selection of well known high street and designer brands, plus free worldwide shipping! No wonder ASOS was one of the few retailers to show a considerable upturn in its profits last year.
Best Online Fashion Store goes to River Island. For constantly updating their collection week in week out, providing the latest fashions at reasonable prices but most importantly for shipping to the ‘Kong from the UK… ok, it’s not free shipping, but in our desert of affordable clothing, beggars can’t be choosers!
Best Online Fashion Newcomer goes to Virgos Lounge. Discovered earlier this year by Instant Goddess, we were simply bedazzled by the selection of exquisitely beaded frocks that will take you from Plain Jane to Belle Of The Ball in a nanosecond. They’ve also got a sale on the sale at the moment…so stock up for those parties! They ship to HK for approx. $120.
Both images: Sadie Maxi, reduced from £200 (approx. $2538) to £90 (approx. $1150) from Virgos Lounge.
Best Independent Label goes to Aly & Rachelle. There’s no denying that fashion is a tough business with so many of our homegrown labels only lasting one season, so Instant Goddess loves the tenacity and consistency of Aly & Rachelle, who featured another strong A/W 13 collection (where Instant Goddess was pleased to be FROW until the masses invaded!).
And not all the awards are covetable… the Most Punitive Shipping Award goes to Anthropologie at a whopping US$60 to ship to HK… come on, in this day and age, surely you can do better?!
Ones to watch in 2014 are Cameo and LUVMYDRESS – both Hong Kong-based labels. Instant Goddess discovered Cameo back in 2012 and was impressed with their designs that are made to be affordable and on-trend, with great fit and quality. Due to their overwhelming popularity Cameo have not only been working hard behind the scenes to produce their S/S 14 collection, but also to find Hong Kong stockists in addition to their online shop.
Instant Goddess is also super-duper excited about LUVMYDRESS – a relative newcomer to the HK fashion scene whose aim is to “bring beautiful and affordable clothing to all women who want to look fabulous without breaking the bank“… now if that’s not a worthy mission statement then what is?! We’re talking designer-inspired pieces at a fraction of the price. The only slight technical hitch is that due to the overwhelming demand for their first collection it has totally SOLD OUT online, but do not fret Goddesses, as they are currently in the process of restocking and updating their online shop…so watch this space!
Until next week Goddesses… and remember you are ALWAYS, ALWAYS worth it!