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House of Fraser

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Ok so the Thanksgiving tradition determines that tomorrow is Black Friday, officially the first day of the Christmas shopping season.

It’s kind of like the big Boxing Day sales in the UK, but instead it’s a pre-Christmas opportunity to buy all the best bits and look super generous when it comes to the big day. It gives you the chance to organise presents and stocking fillers nice and early, without breaking the bank before you’ve been able to enjoy the festive season fun.

You’ll be glad to hear it’s a tradition that’s quickly catching on over this side of the Atlantic, clearly we’re not ones to miss out on a bargain opportunity..

There’s a host of top UK retailers who are promising big things for the Black Friday sales. For example Very.co.uk will be offering up to 70% off their fashion, beauty, homeware and electrical items from 8am tomorrow. They’re even going to be highlighting 10 new promos every hour until 8pm so it’s not just down to a first come, first served mad rush. We’ve had a little browse and included a few of our favourite items from their latest collections, just so we know what we want ready and waiting in our Wishlists for tomorrow. The heeled ankle boots are an absolute must-have and would go nicely with either the black biker dress or brighter leopard print option, and we loved the shoulder bag with leather and chain strap, perfect for popping to the shops or taking on a night out.

Big tip people… to be the super smart shopper when it comes to one day sales, have a little browse before the sales begin and add the items you like to your Snap Fashion Wishlist. We’ll send you a handy little email or push notification when anything drops in price, so you’ll be the first to know when the sale’s begun, and the items you’ve had you’re eye on are ready to purchase. After all, there’s nothing more frustrating than holding off for a sale you know if coming, only to find your perfect piece has sold out in seconds!

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South Kunis Elastic Guesset Heeled Boots £35
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Definitions Biker Dress £55
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Modalu Twiggy Small Crossbody Bag £80
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Definitions Neon Leopard Print Tunic Dress £35

Other big stores to keep your eye on for Black Friday bargains are Asda (they’re owned by Wal-Mart and seriously know what they’re doing for this shopping extravaganza), John Lewis, Amazon, Debenhams and Dune. The sales event has developed across in-store and online shopping platforms, demonstrated by the power that is ‘Mega/Cyber Monday’. The Monday following Black Friday has now become the busiest day of online shopping for most retailers, proven by ridiculous figures from last year’s sales like Amazon selling a total of 3.5 million items on the day, working out at 41 items a second!

Another little tip… if you find shopping in the sales a bit stressful and Black Friday a little too…black, then just download Snap Fashion or Snap ColourPop and you can keep away from the crowds, and shop in a more fun and flexible way, with our clever fashion finding technology.

Let us know how you get on, and what you end up buying… We’re dying to know if this is the new solution to all our Christmas shopping struggles!

The show has hit the headlines for its short hemlines, perma-tanned characters and new catch phrases (Reem anyone?) but now reality show The Only Way Is Essex is bringing its distinctive style to the Great British high street.

We love celebrities who have a distinctive style and inject a little personality into their fashion choices, which we guess is exactly what Sam and Billie Faiers (the fashion boutique owners in TOWIE) are doing with their first collection.

Are you an TOWIE devotee?

Obviously this will not be a hit with fans of dressed-down casual, kooky catwalk-inspired pieces or devotees of grunge, but House of Fraser seems to be convinced that the line, called GraciEve, will be a hit and has rolled it out to 14 stores.

The line was reportedly bank rolled by the sisters and created with help from Essex stylist Jeff Mehmet. Prices are £42 for a pair of sequinned leopard hotpants and £65 for a bodyconn dress so beloved of the Essex girls, to give you an idea.

Billie models the hotpants (too cold for winter?!)
Sam's dress - Reem?

House of Fraser’s contemporary buyer, Louise Bailey told The DM: “Essex is very on trend at the moment, isn’t it? It’s Essex chic. I can see it translating up north and in the rest of the country. When I saw the collection I loved it and placed a considerable order there and then. Sam and Billie have a great eye and really understand how young women want to dress and shop today.”

Sam and Billie are already Essex-preneurs due to the incredibly successful launch of Minnie’s Boutique in Brentford, which regularly features in the show. When the store went online this month, it reportedly got a staggering 10 million hits before going live and 380,000 hits in the first 10 minutes!

We’ll admit now that the range isn’t our cup-of-tea but we’re sure it will be huge! Would you wear a TOWIE spin-off outfit?