Marks & Spencer’s new collections always make headline news, and the same goes for its AW18 offering. As one of the biggest brands on the Great British high street, what they create for the season ahead really does set the retail tone for the coming months.
Thanks in no small part to the onslaught of digital brands that have cropped up over the last few years, there’s no denying that the affordable fashion market is tougher to crack than ever before. But with a refocus on edit, fit, marketing and, of course, Marks & Spencer’s promise of unrivalled quality, is the quintessential one-stop shop able to compete?
Well, at today’s autumn/winter preview, Marks and Spencer made its stance clear; it’s a next-season style front-runner.
Coat, £99, Marks & Spencer
While the brand has had to make significant cuts of late, with some of its solely fashion stores set to close, this in turn means the garments you do see on the shop floor have to work harder than their rail-gracing predecessors. Every piece on the shop floor needs to earn ‘must have’ status to keep customers engaged and coming back for more.
Naturally, there’s a bounty of beautiful trend-led pieces to be had; think sequin midi skirts, leather joggers, a chartreuse jacquard dress (£55, above) and a rich, camel suit made of ultra-luxe wool. But what of the sartorial necessities: the items we wear day-in, day-out? The pieces with the most mileage? For this, Marks & Spencer brings you The Foundation Edit.
Coat, £99; Jacket (worn underneath, £49.50; Jumper, £29.50; Trousers, £35; Shoes, £35, All Marks & Spencer
Offering a curation of wardrobe essentials, M&S’s 12-piece capsule compromises of the outfit building blocks every modern woman needs to look effortlessly styled, while fitting in seamlessly with her lifestyle. Think the ultimate throw-on, come rain or shine trench coat (above), Bretons with perfectly proportioned stripes, cotton white t-shirts that won’t grey after the first wash, and chic trousers that work for the office or after dark.
Jumper, £32.50; Skirt, £39.50; Boots, £45, All Marks & Spencer
With prices starting at just £3.50 for basics and peaking at £99 for the trench coat in question, there’s something to suit every style and budget. Some pieces are available now, while the coats will come into play from early August.
As well as the clothes, M&S promises to raise it’s techy game this year too, with a slicker on-site experience, later delivery cut-offs and speedier click and collect turnarounds.
Cardigan, £35; Bra, £22; Knickers, £10, All Marks & Spencer
It’s clear Marks & Spencer is adapting to the way we shop now, as opposed to reminiscing the high street’s glory days. In our minds, the collection is a success, but perhaps one of the biggest wins for the brand is that it seems to be quietly introducing a new, more relatable branding strategy. Stomach rolls (albeit small ones) in a lingerie campaign shot? Refreshing: a small sign that the fashion tides are finally changing.
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