It's been a particularly great time for the Great British High Street. Relative (and digital-only) newbie Finery has reported major profits in its first year and has a forthcoming launch into bricks and mortar via John Lewis stores. Then there's the so-clever-we-can't-believe-we-didn't-think-of-it-first curation of reworked archive pieces from M&S by none other than Alexa Chung—see a sneak peak of Archive by Alexa before it launches in April. Then there's the impressive sales of ASOS's wedding dressing department and the cool new Spanish labels making their mark on our fashion landscape.
Affordable fashion is better than ever, so in order to guide you into the hot zones, we've enlisted the skills of a girl who knows it best: Meet Alex Stedman, the stylist and high-street guru behind super-blog The Frugality. She knows top-quality buys from the too-good-to-be-true items that are best avoided. So what would she recommend for the season? Keep scrolling to see the best three brands on the high street right now…
"I only buy a few items per season here, but when I do, they last. I love the minimal, sleek tailored pieces. Looking for a great shirt? Look no further, I bought a fab white one last week; plus the brand's utility denim pieces dropping into stores are worth spending a bit more on. It’s the closest I get to feeling as chic as Phoebe Philo and I love my new wide-leg trousers—they made me feel ready for London Fashion Week." — Alex Stedman
"M&S have been acing it for the last few seasons and show no sign of stopping. I just bought the most amazing cotton poplin off-the-shoulder top that could pass as Tibi (shh!), plus I've got my eye on the blue poplin button-front off-the-shoulder top too, which I've seen a few Instagrammers with. It's not available anymore, but I bought my faux-fur shaggy coat after being on the waiting list from last winter's press day and haven't taken it off since. And I also can’t wait to see what the Archive by Alexa collection has in store…" — Alex Stedman
"Like most of the fashion pack—or anyone—at this time of year, I’m dreaming of oversized kaftans to wear on a fabulous holiday… I've found them. Wonder & Weaver isn't strictly high street but it's a small online shop I found via the power of Instagram after noticing They All Hate Us were way ahead of the curve finding these tops first. Wonder & Weaver offer just a few colourways and sell out almost instantly. These tops are still an investment at £125 but they’ll make your Zara ones pale by comparison. I've just bought this beige and pink style!" — Alex Stedman