Friday, 7 August 2015


River Island arrives in Sandton City

So the rivers have flown and brought a new River Island store to our banks in Sandton City. For many individuals, the opening of a new store is just something that happens. For me, it is rather quite the exciting experience, which means it is new clothes, new fashion and new spaces. When I heard that River Island was, yet again, coming closer to home I couldn't help but smile and wonder what they would have in store for us.

Some quick facts about River Island:
Started in 1948 by Bernard Lewis in London.
Over 350 stores worldwide.
In-House designs.
As stated on their website, "With over 60 years of fashion retailing experiences, River Island is one of the most well-known and loved brands on the High Street"

Greeted on arrival with a flute of bubbly, I instantly knew that it would be a great evening.

My very 1st impression was of the amazing space of the new store. Nothing is cramped and things are spaced out in such a manner that it is easy to move through the store without bumping into every other railing. Big plus for me.

The lighting. There is nothing worse than walking into a store that is badly lit and it feels like your eyes need to adjust to darkness just to see that a shirt you thought is black is actually blue. The lighting in the new store is definitely up to scratch. It is bright and nothing is left in a shadow. I feel that lighting in a store is very important. I am a visual person. If I see something that I like (this tends to happen more so in stores that have good lighting) I tend to get a closer look and inspect a garment. Feel the fabric. Inspect the colour. Feel the weight. Watch the flow. All little things that I do believe many people unknowingly actually do when they go shopping.

The smell. Many people won't even realise this, but different stores have different smells. As you walk in at the River Island store in Sandton, you are greeted with a fresh clean scent. I am sure that many people will agree that you hate walking into a store and it smells like a mix of fast food, body odour and a dirty bathroom.

There is methodology behind the way that River Island will stock up the store. In the men's section, you start off with the more casual looks, then something a bit more preppy and a bit more evening orientated that is not full on formal wear, to the formal wear suits. So next time you walk into a store, appreciate the layout and actually think about how the shop is displayed.

River Island is not the cheapest place to go shopping, but then again, shopping for clothing is something that has become a lot more expensive in general. A while back I was at 'A Fashion Insider' evening hosted by 5FM's DJ Poppy & A Fashion Friend's Robynne Kahn at the River Island in Brooklyn Mall. There is one statement that Robynne made that evening that I will never forget. She said that if you ever walk into a store and you feel like you can't afford anything, go straight to the accessories section as there is bound to be something there that will be able to afford. If you want to buy clothing of a high quality that will last you for more than 2 washes, you need to be willing to pay a bit more for a t-shirt or a jersey. I feel that garments at River Island are made of high quality fabrics and that they sure will last you for some time and that is why I don't mind paying more for my clothing that I buy at River Island.

Getting back to the accessories. River Island stocks some of the best accessories that I have come across in a while. From stylish sunglasses and flashy rings to stylish gym bags and glamorous clutches. There is most definitely something for everyone in store. (Thank goodness I left my wallet in the car, or else this may have ended up being one of those months where there is more month left than money.)

These are some of the items that grabbed my attention in store.

And naturally there is a whole lot more for the ladies.

The #PandaCrew was there bringing some serious fashionable #Pandamonium to the evening. Thanks to Ryan Enslin from My Lime Boots for getting the rest of the #PandaCrew there on the evening. 

Photo Credit - My Lime Boots

These are 2 of the biggest inspirations that I have in the industry. It is always lovely to catch up with #TrendMen Alan Foley and Krishen Samuels.

And we spotted #TeamBowtens aka John Owens and Chantelle Bothma too, along with Creative Revolt representative Kristy Hesom.

Now who doesn't love a photo booth?

Be sure to go check out the new store sometime soon.

Check out the online presence.
Facebook: River Island
Instagram: RiverIslandSA

Just a quick word of thanks to 4ElementsMedia and Phatic Communications for once again proving what a wonderful job they do and for the lovely evening out at the launch of River Island in Sandton City.

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