Shopping with experts; Uniqlo

Ines jeans

In a bizarre twist of fate that I promise I didn't plan, I discovered Ines's damson trousers while shopping with my sister in Uniqlo on Friday. Well, I'm sure they are not actually Ines's as hers are probably Chanel or YSL or some fancy designer brand, but these are a pretty close match and only cost £19.99.

I have been meaning to rave about Uniqlo for a while so this just gives me a reason to feature the brand, which has displaced Gap as my casul clothing supplier of choice. It also helps that the three teenage sons also love it so when I visit for them I can sneak in a quick purchase for me too. It is one of the cheeriest stores at the moment because its spectacular range of bright hues and jewel tone colours in sweaters, cashmere and T shirts makes the place a joy to visit. Uniqlo seems to have mastered the art of getting interesting colour right at a good price. Often the cheaper ranges end up with rubbish attempts at colour and print, but Uniqlo's assortment makes the place sing.

The damson cords also came in a gorgeous tangarine, emerald and colbalt, with the soft super stretch corduroy really saturated with colour. I've also recently bought laced trimmed T shirts that are long enough to cover your bum (such a relief after seasons of short ones that unwantedly expose flesh) and our mate Lorna also bought a lovely jersey cropped pea coat in Navy that is a classic, although this might have sold out by now.

Teenage sons love the checked shirts in flannel and the jeans, whose quality after many washes seems to be holding up well. We're obviously all waiting for the +J range from Jil Sander that is out soon, but until then the damson cords (which I bought in a store, couldn't find them on the website) will do fine.

Uniqlo

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