Maya McDonald, our Fashion Editor, talks of the so-called offbeat fashion, and designers catering to a more provocative clientele at a reasonable price.


 

With fashion idols like Rhianna sporting the iconic YSL heart-shaped fur coat, and Miley Cyrus making nipple pasties a wardrobe staple, there is something to be said for “offbeat” fashion. While it is easy to shop for items which emulate the classic styles of Suki Waterhouse, or Alicia Vikander, finding designers which cater to a more provocative clientele, at a reasonable price, is often a significant shopping challenge. At an extravagant price point, the Italian label Moschino creates runway looks inspired by pop-art that embody the “risk taking” style niche, but let’s get real, those pieces are hardly accessible to the mainstream consumer. As a result, today’s article is focused on online boutiques which produce either jewellery or apparel designed with that niche in mind, but at prices that do not max your credit card!

First up we have suzywan.com, with designs also available at ASOS and Nasty Gal, this fabulous jewellery line has been modelled by the likes of Snoop Dogg and Joan Smalls. With collections sporting names like Sweet PomPom, Holographic Magic, and Club Section, its pieces are anything but boring, and are often reminiscent of 90’s music videos. The motifs of the collections usually involve silhouettes of flamingos, mermaid-inspired patterns, multicoloured pompoms, and the brands signature holographic mirrors. With the articles ranging from chokers, and earrings to septum rings, Suzywan curates collections which cater to the full spectrum of avant-garde shoppers, while keeping most of the designs under £50. I will admit, when you first peruse the stock it can seem slightly unwearable, but honestly, that is the fun of it! The pieces motivate you to experiment with your everyday look, and before you know it you are looking more like a trendsetter instead of a trend groupie. So if you are in the market for some psychedelic jewellery I would definitely recommend this hidden gem!

Now when it comes to the general accessories department, lamoda.co.uk is one of the best sites to shop quirky, up and coming UK brands who are heavily inspired by the LA music scene. These brands such as, Hey Mama, Cake By The Ocean, California Love, and Ignition (see a pattern yet?), all share a key interest in low prices, while keeping the quality of their pieces high. Many of the articles, be it bags, stilettos, or sunglasses, all push the norm with their bright colours, unusual materials, and geometric lines. The beauty of the site is really that it caters to so many tastes while simultaneously pulling inspiration from some of the edgiest trends of the moment. One of the reasons this is a perfect site for experimenting with bold trends is the prices, especially their section called “Look like a Jenner for a Tenner” with nothing exceeding £9.99. So if you have £10 to spare I would check out this site and their rad designs!

So now that we have covered jewellery and accessories, let’s talk clothing. It is pretty easy to find your staple “hipster” items of clothing at your local H&M, but if you are looking to make heads turn with some genuinely vintage and unique pieces, then you need to check out theraggedpriest.com. The site, like many online boutiques, has a limited number of pieces per season, but that is partly why the collections have so much appeal. Each collection contains a dozen tops, skirts, sweaters, jackets, skirts and dresses, each with a limited and finite amount of stock. The pieces are all mainly pastel colours, with sheer fabric, offset by unusually placed patchwork. This distinct combo, combined with the brand’s repeated images of eagles, rainbows, and tarot hands, create a grunge look that is both wearable and bold.

There is no way that I will be able to describe the style of The Ragged Priest adequately because frankly there is nothing I can compare the style to, it is just so different, so do yourself a solid and check out the site now! I will say that being confident in your own skin and your body is definitely key to being able to pull off these body conscious and stand alone pieces, but trust me, once you wear one of them you will feel like dynamite. Now, in case you are wondering how this site does in terms of price, I would say it is very reasonable given the quality with the apparel never exceeding £60, the only exception being the biker jackets for £130. So if you are looking to restyle yourself as more of a 90’s Angelina Jolie and trying to avoid looking like Jen Aniston in Friends, than this brand has you covered!

So what is the moral of this long-winded spiel? That there is this common misconception that dressing audaciously is difficult. We see celebrities do it constantly, but often dismiss our own potential to do the same. If white t-shirts and jeans are your look and you like it, then keep on keeping on, but if that is only your look because you are nervous to take a risk then you are missing out! The boutiques mentioned above provide easy ways to take fashion risks, so you can channel your inner Miley or Rhianna, and maybe you will find that dressing like you are on the cutting edge of fashion will be liberating. Until next time, keep it real!

 

Maya McDonald