Wednesday, 1 March 2017

I Bought Clothes From a "Everything £5" Website - But Would I Recommend It?

Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb

Last month I thought I'd try something I'd not tried before - have you seen these crazy-discounted online fashion sites where everything is one fixed price? 

I was intrigued to read about Everything5pounds.com which - you guessed it - sells everything at the one single price point of £5. Sounds too good to be true? Sounds like it could be a pile of poo? Maybe, and maybe. But I thought for the purposes of this blog I'd give the website a whirl... What could possibly go wrong?!

(This is not a sponsored post, by the way)

How it works

First of all: How can they sell everything for just £5? They describe what they sell as "high street fashion", and from what I can tell (this info isn't easy to find), they sell excess or unsold stock from various different retailers - I assume they bulk-buy to keep their own costs down. So I don't think they're seconds or rejects per se, but let's face it... you're NOT going to find a Jaeger or LK Bennett gem in there.

With this site it's no different to shopping on any other site to be honest, you just don't have to worry about what anything costs as literally every single item is £5 - no exceptions. They sell everything from shoes to clothes to accessories to menswear to kids clothes, and a few (not worth it) homewares. Generally there is a lot of tat, but it's reasonably stylish and occasionally you'll come across a complete gem that you love.

However, unlike a lot of good retailers (the ones I like shopping from most), you DO have to pay for postage and you DO have to pay for returns. So although each item is £5, you have to factor in those costs, and overall it'll make each item cost more than a fiver.

I set myself a budget of £50 (10 items!) and got shopping. I've got a summary of what I bought below - I just thought I'd start with the positive and show you the outfit I did end up keeping.

Just as a guideline, as postage is based on weight, the pieces I bought would have cost me £8 in delivery charges, but I had a discount code for free delivery. Ordinarily, had I paid for delivery, the (spoiler alert!) three pieces I kept would effectively have cost me £7.66 each. NOT including return postage price, but that's just getting complicated if I start trying to work that out.

Starting with the good - what I kept

The images here show two items I did end up keeping - a red sweater and leopard print joggers. The shoes, bag and necklace are pieces I already own.

Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb
Surprisingly, the leopard joggers were the item I loved the most. Granted, they're polyester, but that means they hang quite heavy which is perfect for joggers because you don't want them to look pouffy and bulky. I love the harem trousers-style (hiding all manner of cake-eating sins) and those elasticated hems which are always flattering with a super high heel.

And secondly the sweater... I didn't fall in love with the sweater quite as much as the joggers - I would have liked a bit of extra length in the arms - but I was after a red sweater anyway and I liked it with the leopard. It's not amazing quality (acrylic), but it doesn't look cheap and nasty. I have yet to see how it washes, however...!

Styling the two pieces I added some bling in the shape of a black and gold pendant and then went against the (black) grain and added a tan tote bag, not black. It absolutely needed high black heels - the combination of a pointed d'Orsay shoe (love these) and those hems is soooo flattering in my book.

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For warmth I had to keep a long-sleeved t-shirt on underneath - I rolled up the sleeves just to keep the overall look a little casual. And that's pretty much it - the main part of an outfit for £10. (And I LOVE the outfit BTW, in case you were wondering.) Though as mentioned you have to take the costs of delivery and returns into account, so the question is, Was it worth it?

I'll show you the rest of the outfit first then give you my thoughts on the other items and the whole process!

Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb
Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb
Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb
Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb
Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb
Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb

What I actually bought

So you've seen two pieces I kept - here are all the pieces I bought (with reviews for each) and then my shots of them laid flat at home. I thought that would be better than showing them on because the quality is the main thing for me here. Clothes look different on everyone: What looks awful on me might look good on you, and vice versa. This is everything I bought...

I Bought Clothes From a "Everything £5" Website To See if They Were Any Good | Not Dressed As Lamb, over 40 style blog
Top row, L-R: Espadrilles | Red sweater | Cream joggers | Leopard joggers | Watch
Bottom right, L-R: Sheer black top | Sheer white top | Heart necklace | Maxi dress | Velvet dress

As you can see the pieces are pretty stylish, but you have to search hard for them. My usual trick of sorting search results by price doesn't apply here of course, so you have to wade through pages of goods until something catches your eye (even with filtering by style, size and colour).

As you know I kept the red sweater and leopard joggers, but here are the other pieces as they arrived, not ironed or anything... You see them as I found them straight out the parcel.

Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Espadrilles: In theory these would have been a success if they weren't too small for me. I always, always take a size 7 in shoes and these fit more like a 6... much too short at the toe. The problem with sending them back? They come in a box so not only does that make your return parcel heavier but larger too which all add up to make the parcel more costly.

Verdict: I've kept them to see if I can resell them and break even.


Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Necklace and watch: Both were okay. As you see the necklace turned to be by Lipsy, but I didn't like it enough to warrant spending £5 on it. Now the watch I really liked - I like a bit of antique-style when it comes to watches - but unfortunately the clasp (which they didn't show on the website) was links. I have incredibly tiny wrists so I nearly always have to pay for links to be taken out, and in this case that would cost as much as the watch itself.

Verdict: Both returned.


Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Sheer white top: The problem was the neckline - it was far, far too low. I'm not one for showing a lot of cleavage so this didn't appeal. I might have kept it if it wasn't for that, however.

Verdict: Returned.

Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Cream joggers: I've shown a close-up of these simply because it was the poor quality that put me off. As well as being very thin fabric, the elastic of the waistband was nasty and had imperfections all over it.

Verdict: Not impressed at all - returned.


Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Velvet dress: I took a bit of a chance with this one, thinking that you never know, it could be fabulous. Nope. The buttons were plastic and cheap-looking, threads were hanging off and the crushed velvet was just horrible.

Verdict: Couldn't get it off quick enough - returned.


Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Maxi dress: This was probably the biggest disappointment of all... I absolutely loved this dress in the picture. So much so that I thought if it turned out to be fabulous on, I'd wear it to the UK Blog Awards in April. Whilst the dress itself wasn't too bad, it just didn't wow me as much as I thought it would. And then there was the belt. Oh GOD, the belt!! The picture here just doesn't do its utter gruesomeness justice at all - it was sewn onto the dress (not easy to get off without leaving a hole) and the part that looks like metal was probably cardboard covered in plastic. If you look closely you can see a crease in the bottom strip. Enough said.

Verdict: Most definitely returned.


Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Everything5Pounds website purchases | Not Dressed As Lamb
Sheer black top: At last, something good! I was after something sheer to wear a pretty bra underneath, so I went for a white top and a black top. The white was fine but too low cut - this one was great. The bobbled texture stopped it being too sheer-looking and the quality isn't bad. This will be worn in a blog post in the near future for sure.

Verdict: Keeping.

Do I think it's worth buying from a £5 website?

Hmmm... that's actually quite tough to answer. It's most definitely hit-and-miss, and you have to take into account the postage you pay and the return postage you may have to pay. Here's a summary of my thoughts:


  • DON'T  buy shoes - they may well not fit and they're expensive to return being large and heavy.
  • DON'T buy bulky coats for the same reason.
  • DON'T buy anything for a special occasion (wedding, party etc.) - the quality is just not good enough for somewhere smart or classy.
  • DO buy basics for everyday occasions: Walking the dog, lounging about at home, workwear (if you don't need to be super smart or work somewhere corporate) - or for layering. 
  • DO take a chance on small items like tops and accessories as they're cheaper to return if needs be.
  • DO buy knitwear if you live somewhere cold and warmth is more important than quality or style - you may get lucky.


So I hope this has helped - I'm not saying Everything5pounds is the only site out there, but I can imagine it's a typical example of what these sorts of discount sites are like.

HAVE YOU SHOPPED FROM THIS OR SIMILAR SITES BEFORE? WHAT WAS THE OUTCOME? DO PLEASE SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCES IN THE COMMENTS OR TWEET ME @NOTLAMB!

Catherine

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Linking up to: iwillwearwhatilikeVisible MondayShoe and TellTurning Heads TuesdayBrilliant Blog PostsMy Refined StylePassion for Fashion FridayFun Fashion FridaySaturday Share Link Up

Disclosure: This post wasn't sponsored by or in collaboration with everything5pounds.com in any way.
Bold autumn/fall/winter outfit: Red three quarter sleeve sweater, leopard print joggers, pointed black heels | Not Dressed As Lamb
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23 comments

  1. I've always wondered about these sites. Part of the appeal of TK Max and charity shops is that you know you'll find branded bargains, so this site sounds a bit joyless.
    Gail
    www.isthismutton.com

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    Replies
    1. I think joyless is the right word, Gail - I'll stick to sale bargains from the quality retailers...!

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  2. Sometimes you can find nice items on cheaper sites. And sometimes with a little sawing it can be made as a good item. Great tips, they sure are helpfull.

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    1. You're right Nancy, sometimes you do get lucky as I did with the leopard joggers! Glad you liked the tips :)

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  3. Such a brilliant post, Catherine! So many fashion bloggers insist on only wearing stuff that's usually quite expensive so this is a breath of fresh air for those on a budget (I love to mix and match cheap with higher end clothes and accessories). I'd definitely check out these sites, but will certainly take your advice on board!
    Suzy xx
    www.suzyturner.com

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    Replies
    1. I thought I'd go the opposite way for a change, Suzy! It goes to show you CAN get some good pieces, but a lot relies on pot luck...!

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  4. I've seen this website before and been quite surprised by how stylish some of the items look for just £5, but I was completely put off by the returns policy. It's so disappointing about the maxi dress, because it looked really great from the website photo. Love the leopard print joggers though! Great post, thank you for the advice.#brilliantblogposts
    Caroline xx
    www.girlabouttownhouse.com

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    Replies
    1. Hmm normally I never, ever shop at places that don't offer free returns, Caroline! But I guess that that's how they keep their costs down by not offering free postage or returns. And thank you for the sweet comment!

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  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Ooh you seem to have disappeared!! How convenient that I'm in control and can wipe your sorry ass off of here. More room for pleasant people.

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  6. My husband bought two coats from a site similar to this. And they were way too small even though we had checked the measurements. But sending them back would have cost as much as the coats...so we kept them (actually they are mine now---ha ha).
    It definitely was a lesson learned. That when there aren't free returns, will I be able to gift it to someones else or sell it myself?
    Silly question, I know, but why wouldn't you keep the white shirt and wear a cami under it?
    jodie
    www.jtouchofstyle.com

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    1. I've had the same experience with Chinese sites, Jodie - I ordered size Large in trousers and they were so tiny I couldn't get them up past my knees...!! It was a lesson learned here as well with the shoes.

      I didn't want to keep the white shirt - firstly because I'd have to buy a suitable cami (so more cost) and secondly because I was buying it specifically to wear a patterned bra underneath. I liked it, but not enough to buy extras for it ;)

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  7. This is really interesting Catherine....I have bought items from this site too, and it is very much a hit/miss.....total lucky dip!
    You are right about trawling for the decent stuff!
    Oddly, I found the "can't go wrong with that" pieces the most disappointing and the "maybe it will be okay" pieces the most surprising.
    I've had two coats.
    Both hardly the best quality in the world but for a fiver?!?! Brilliant.
    And fine with some cosy layers underneath.
    I am so disaointed for you with that dress!!! Booooo....the belt looks ghastly.
    As for your joggers....YES! They are so much fun.
    Comfy and lots of fun.
    Perfect with bold red too.
    As for the watch.... I know you have sent it back but it is quite easy to remove links yourself. You need as small tool to push out the connecting pins. Have a look on youtube. I did it with a TK bargain watch that was £3!
    Thank you for this post, it was very interesting.
    XXX
    Samantha
    Fake Fabulous | Fashion & Style, over 40

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    Replies
    1. Yes to the things that you're not sure about being the best things, Samantha!! I didn't expect to like the leopard joggers as much as I did, but I thought they were fab!

      As for the watch, I've tried removing links before and it was a total disaster... one ruined watch was the result (and probably an injury if memory serves). I'm very, very good at breaking things without even trying, and as I have about 30 watches I really didn't neeeeeeed another, hehe!!

      But don't fret about the maxi dress - I already have THE dress for the blog awards and it's a knockout. Couldn't be more excited about it, eeeek!!!!!!!

      Thanks sweetie, glad you liked the post! x

      Delete
  8. I've noticed these type of sites popping up recently & they are a good idea in theory but as you said, there are a few hitches in practice that I can' be bothered with. Posting back is a pain but paying for the priviledge is a step too far for me. By the way Catherine, I bought these EXACT joggers at a market in Italy a few years ago! True story! I know for sure because your images are so sharp. Bizarro hey?
    Fascinating topic, great read mate thanks xx

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    1. WOW we is a stylish pair in our leopard joggers, eh MT?!!!! We should go out on the town one night as twinsies, haha ;)

      Yeah it was an experiment I'm glad I tried - but never again. As I mentioned to Gail above I'll stick to sale time at places like Jaeger and M&S x

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  9. This was a very interesting post, as someone who spends a ridiculous amount of time looking at clothes (it feels like all evening, every evening) and then I spend money I don't have on said clothes. So thank you for this very honest post, I will take at look at this website, but at the same time be very aware of the dangers and won't get carried away.

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    1. Hon that is a VERY sensible way of approaching it!! Hope you find some treasures x

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  10. Ah, this is so interesting: I just ordered a pair of black jeans from there yesterday, after looking at the site for a while, and wondering what the quality would be like! Like you, Catherine, I came to the conclusion that it would probably be safest to use it for basics: strangely enough, they actually have quite a few pairs of cropped jeans, which are the only kind that fit my cropped legs, so fingers crossed that they work out!

    Also, just wanted to say that I loved your response to LoobyLoo. I'm also really sick of the idea that bloggers should just smile sweetly in response to those kind of comments: I mean, we wouldn't accept it from someone in real life, so why on earth should we accept it online? Someone really upset a friend of mine (not a blogger) this week by leaving nasty comments on her Instagram, and it absolutely enraged me to think of someone going out of their way to hurt this lovely person, who I know really *does* take it to heart - you just never know what someone is dealing with, and how your comments might affect them, so bravo for standing up for yourself! (Oh, and your outfit looks as amazing as always, btw!)

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  11. Well, that sounds like a fun experiment! Love the leopard joggers and you styled them perfectly!

    Thanks so much for sharing with Fun Fashion Friday. It feels good to catch up with everyone!

    OXOX
    Dawn Lucy
    http://fashionshouldbefun.com/

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  12. What an interesting experiment. Love the style you're rocking and the sheer top looks fab (I have a similar one). Not sure I'd bother ultimately with this having read your honest review. I'd never even heard of it. Whilst I like a bargain (who doesn't) it does she a lot of effort and for not the greatest quality items overall x

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  13. Had a blast reading your whole adventure. Love the leopard trousers you kept. Jogging trousers are usually just a bit too short for my long legs (I know... sorry.. who is complaining right?) but joggers which are too short.. no not nice.
    Greetje

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