I’d been to Bicester Village once before, to use the train station and take advantage of the quick link back to London (less than an hour) after staying at a friends during a University summer. I hadn’t considered it as a realistic shopping location for someone with a budget like me (aka student, blogger, over-spender), thinking it was full of designer shops I couldn’t afford even with the hefty discounts.
However, I recently received an email promoting the launch of the new Lululemon and New Balance stores.
Now these are shops that I happily pay full price in (ok Lululemon I do wince as I put my card details in, but their clothing lasts forever!) so I messaged my fellow outlet lover, Jess from Twins in Trainers and organised a date for us to hit the shops thanks to Bicester Village.
Our plan of action was – start at one end and work our way back, however we ended up getting sidetracked in New Balance as soon as we spotted the JCrew collaboration in the window. I’ve been lusting after this orange and blue jacket since the launch of the collection in October and I finally bought it! It’s £120 in the regular shops, and only £70 at the outlet- £50 saving!!
The orange and blue top bought at Bicester Village – they’ve also got the spotty tanks, stripes long sleeves and blue shorts that I love. Read more about the New Balance X J Crew collaboration here.
We were less successful at the Superdry Active pop-up, however we did both find pieces at Lululemon. Unfortunately I was looking for some specific leggings (long black ones with not much detail) – which isn’t always the best idea to be on the hunt for a particular item at the outlets – so I didn’t find them. But I did buy their classic Cool Racerback’s in black, and a white (bought for £24 each reduced from £38). My favourite item was the No Chill Mock Neck, a merino wool turtle neck top that I’ve worn with leggings, jeans, on a run and to recover after a run. I love it. Paid £34, was £88!
As well as purchasing activewear, which we all know I don’t need more of – I also had a look around for the Valentino Rock Stud sandals that I really want for my wedding shoes. Top tip – did you know you can add yourself to their Whatsapp group to find out what they have in their deliveries each week?! Just ask instore, it’s the same at a number of the Bicester Village shops.
We lusted after the Mulberry and Chloe handbags, All Saints leather jackets (how can I justify buying myself the dusty pink one?), and tried to shove our runner’s feet into the Jimmy Choos. The LK Bennett shop had some amazing deals on dresses and shoes.
I’m working on a project that justified me getting new bedding so we also made some large purchases at the White Company. Their bedding, towels, sheets, and kids clothing is just such great quality. Did you know that you can leave your bags at the concierge or visitor centre so that you don’t have to lug around your bed linen, suitcase (Jess & I both bought new ones at Samsonite- I’m taking mine to Boston tomorrow) for the rest of the day.
Unlike the outlets in America, where the best you can do for lunch is a Chipotle or Starbucks, the Soho House chain have opened Farmshop Restaurant and Cafe, as well as a coffee stall where the coffee is just the pick-me up you might need. Additionally there’s a huge Pret, Le Pain Quotidien, and Itsu – so plenty of healthy options.
It’s dangerous how close Bicester Village is to our house in Henley, I feel like it might become a regular shopping stop. Why pay full price when you can get this season, and last season kit with a massive discount?
I was given some vouchers from Bicester Village to spend at their stores, I also spent my own money…and Tom’s money (he had to come and collect me with my purchases!)
Thanks goodness I’m nowhere near there – I’d spend all my money at Lululemon (and I’ve got my eye on that New Balance X J Crew kit since hubby got me the stripy top for Christmas!)