Having queued for a good half hour, bracing myself against the elements and the ever-increasing crowd of shoppers, I am sorry to say that the Alexander McQueen sample sale was sadly not worth it. Though the invitation made it explicit that pieces would be selling from a mere £30 upwards, I did not come across a single item below the £90 mark. Furthermore, when it came to the more iconic pieces such as the Classic Chiffon Skull Scarf, a quick browse on Selfridges’ website revealed that it would in fact be cheaper to buy this item in a department store than at the sample sale. Shocking!
The handbag section lacked flair, offering shoppers only the more conservative of McQueen’s designs. The label’s more daring, and quite frankly more interesting creations, were not to be seen. According to the invite, stock is constantly replenished, yet in the few hours that I was there not once did I see the classic Box Clutch I had my heart set on, despite the fact that the sale supposedly included several different collections. However, on a slightly redemptory note, the prices of the handbags on display were significantly lower than the RRP, which was a joy to behold. If you’re willing to spend into the hundreds rather than the thousands, and are not looking for anything too pizzazz, then the handbag section of the McQueen sample sale comes highly recommended.
…even the most hard-to-please shoe-lover will not leave disappointed…
Another plus-side to the McQueen sample sale was the shoe section, featuring such beautiful creations as the Floral-engraved Leather Boot from McQueen’s AW10 collection, for just £595. For those footwear fanatics whose wallets can stretch this far (alas, mine did not), a trip to the sale comes highly recommended, and I would suggest that even the most hard-to-please shoe-lover will not leave disappointed.
However, despite the slashed handbag prices and the promising footwear section, I still feel that the sample sale was something of a disappointment. There were only a handful of pieces on offer that really stood out as McQueen classics, and I certainly did not appreciate the overload of plain T-shirts that cost in excess of £60. The anti-climactic nature of the sale was, for me, summarised by the red-and-blue Matt Viscose Stretch Dress, selling at £295: I could have purchased a less garish version of this now rather unoriginal dress, for a fraction of the price, from any high street store, and would have preferred to do so without the crush of hundreds of frantic shoppers crammed into a tiny little function room.
Images courtesy of Alexander McQueen