Our Editor-in-Chief's high street edit is in

high street edit
Sarah Tomczak's high street picks of the monthHearst Owned

When it comes to shopping, I'm a huge cheerleader for the high street. In fact, as much as I love to invest in designer buys, I get more satisfaction from buying something that looks really expensive, but wasn't, and that I can wear on repeat without feeling too precious about it.

I'm trying to build a capsule wardrobe of timeless, investment pieces (think denim, blazers, trench coats and designer bags), layered with smarter-priced clothes that can instantly update everything else and give a new season refresh.

Working in magazines, it's hard not to have my head turned by every new trend (Red's fashion team is amazing at advising me which I should buy into!), so often the best approach is to look to high street stores, which are brilliant at translating the catwalks into more wearable and accessible iterations.

Whether I'm dipping my toe into a new look (like gathered waist trousers) or have fallen for a more whimsical trend (hello mesh ballet flats!), buying from the high street is a great starting point.

Arket and Massimo Dutti are my go-tos for cool pieces that feel really considered and more expensive than they are. I think it's tricky to find prints that look polished so tend to gravitate towards plain styles like this knit dress from & Other Stories or stripes like this oversized Arket shirt. And H&M is always worth a trawl for a gem – I can't see this boilersuit sticking around for long so snap one up while you can.

Finally, high street accessories are often a winner. I am obsessed with this raffia tote from Anthropologie, which looks like it should have a far higher price tag than it does, and this Boden cross body bag reminds me of a designer version I own, which was considerably more expensive.

Oh, and the smartest high street shopper should always have their eyes peeled for designer collaborations. I'm kicking myself that I didn't snap up the sunglasses I'd been coveting sooner from the Linda Farrow collaboration with Cos, because they're now sold out. If there's a pair left that you love (these are my second choice), I'd suggest shopping now!

Here are my current high street highlights...

The Arket shirt

Oversize and slouchy, this collarless shirt feels like a new iteration of everyone's favourite button up. Wear it loose over a swimsuit or skinny tank top, or tucked in and unbuttoned low.

The Cos sunglasses

Every pair of sunglasses in Linda Farrow's second collection for Cos is a winner – and most of them have sold out already. I still think these are rather fabulous and will add something special to any outfit.

The John Lewis skirt

Denim skirts are big news for spring and I love the idea of adding a white version to my wardrobe. This one from John Lewis is a timeless shape that can be worn now with a sweater but into summer too.

The Mango ballet flats

If I'm buying into a trend, I'm less likely to make it an investment piece, which is why these Mango mesh flats tick the box. An instant outfit update without a big price tag.

The M&S tee

A really good tee is a really hard find, but this relaxed shape elevates it above the competition and I love the expensive looking colour too.

The Massimo Dutti trousers

I keep seeing white slouchy trousers that I want to buy and after a few months of coveting them, I imagine I'll bite the bullet and invest in a pair. If you feel the same, I think these are a cool choice.

The Anthropologie tote

I love love love this bag – in all three colour ways and for any occasion. I think it would work as a smarter office bag for all your extras, paired with a small crossbody bag, which seems to be my duo these days.

The White Company sweater

"This classic striped sweater becomes cooler and more unexpected thanks to the wider open weave of the organic cotton. I like this worn casually with jeans, but I love the idea of buying it oversized and wearing on the beach over a navy swimsuit."

The Oliver Bonas jeans

The jean shape of the moment is wider and baggier, with a pleated waistband. These from Oliver Bonas fit the bill exactly. A great buy that will refresh the rest of your wardrobe too.

The Dune sliders

Dune's best-selling shape returns in an even more comfortable design. With a cushion sole, these offer a bit more support and a more relaxed vibe, but the leather still makes them feel polished.

The Jigsaw jacket

We're big advocated of cropped trenches here at Red and I think this is one of the best. For more ideas on how to style them, check out our story here.

The & Other Stories dress

Such an elegant and expensive looking dress. Also perfect for these chillier spring days, worn with knee high boots.

The LK Bennett earrings

I adore anything with shells on, and these earrings are no exception.

The H&M boilersuit

A cool boiler suit is always a good idea, particularly when it's a classic shape and colour and 100% cotton. I like how this has a gathered waistband at the back for a more flattering fit too.

The Boden crossbody bag

I think this is the kind of bag you buy thinking you'll use it occasionally and then realise it's your daily go-to. It will work with everything, it's a great size and it adds a bit of polish to anything.

Want more fashion? Here are the trends you should buy into now and the 9 new shoe brands on our radar.


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