Lots of you may have heard about the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community and lucky for them, I’m now a part of it!
My first project was clothes shopping for Dexter in Next.
I’ll be honest, I really like Next clothes but budgeting has meant I haven’t had the opportunity to shop there in a long time. It was nice to be back, although I still think that there are always much nicer clothes for girls than boys in every shop. But that’s another story.
Dexter and I decided to make a day of it and I asked my best friend’s son if he wanted to come along to Bluewater with us. Don’t think he was that impressed tbh … until I mentioned Iron Man 3. Then weirdly he jumped at the chance.
Shopping with one boy is hard enough. I worried that shopping with two would be horrendous but actually, I needn’t have worried. I think giving them a little ‘project’ of having to find an outfit for Dexter made them feel like they were on a mission and, at aged 7 and 8 respectively, they’re both really interested in clothes and, I quote, ‘looking cool.’
Next at Bluewater is pretty big, set over two floors. The children’s department is upstairs and although some sections of the department felt a little cramped, most of the department was roomy enough.
The first T shirt that caught their eye was navy blue with red lettering on that said, ‘Born to Rule.’ They thought it was hilarious. Me? Not so much. But hey, whatever puts a smile on their face. I thought I’d treat Dexter’s friend too, so that they could have matching T shirts, which they thought was a great idea.
Two things I struggled with: Firstly, the sizing. It’s not particularly Next’s fault, I’d say it was more mine and his Dad’s, but Dexter is a big boy for 8! The biggest size I could find was aged 12 (even though I know they go up to aged 16,) and I can’t imagine that’ll last him that long.
The second issue is the cost. I’ve bought Dexter’s clothes in Primark, Sainsburys and charity shops for the past year and we’ve managed just fine. I see shopping at Next as a treat but I know that a lot of my friends shop in Next all the time. Personally, I just don’t think I could afford it.
So for me, it’s a balance between finding clothes that Dexter deems ‘cool’ enough and me being able to afford them.
I think we did well finding an outfit that Dexter likes – the ‘Born to Rule’ T shirt, denim cut off shorts and a skull baseball cap. Total cost of this outfit was about £30.
Overall, there’s a great selection of clothes, shoes and accessories in Next. The queuing was a bit of a pain, but the friendliness of the staff made up for it.
Would I go back? Yes, if I had a spare few pounds in my purse.
You can see more photos in my G+ album.
I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community. This content has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias® #CBias #SocialFabric. All opinions are my own. As usual.)