Every so often, an item launches that is so good pretty much everyone you follow on Instagram is wearing it.
Products that you and your friends, despite having completely different aesthetics, are all lusting after are a rarity, so when something comes along that manages to transcend countless taste levels, you know it must be worth investing in.
The only snag? Fashion investments notoriously come with higher price tags and, while we are total advocates for splurging on pieces that promise to become much-loved additions to your sartorial arsenal, there is a way to build an Insta-worthy wardrobe without breaking the bank.
ICYMI, we are currently in the midst of some pretty epic summer sales from luxury retailers across the internet, with the likes of Net-a-Porter and Matches Fashion offering dramatic drops in prices on pieces from some of the fashion industry’s biggest names.
While it is not unusual for brands to host sales in the summer, a shift towards online shopping amid the coronavirus pandemic, coupled with the fact that physical stores are now reopening, means that there is surplus stock that needs shifting before the new season collections arrive, making now the perfect time to score a designer It piece for less.
From puffed-out dresses and pint-sized bags, the pieces to look out for are the ones that come with a fashion-girl stamp of approval, are right on-trend, and will see you through almost every occasion – from socially distanced picnics in the park to lockdown weddings and the long-awaited return to the office.
To save you from hours of scrolling through pages upon pages of sale items, we have done the hard work for you and gathered our pick of the best cult pieces that will ensure your style credentials don’t falter this summer.
Ganni, Smocked Checked Cotton-Blend Seersucker Maxi Dress, was £215 now £107.50, Net-a-Porter
Among the must-have products that are infiltrating our Instagram feeds, is Ganni’s Seersucker Maxi Dress.
The Scandinavian brand has been around since 2000 but in recent seasons it has dominated the wardrobes of some of the trendiest women around, including supermodel Gigi Hadid. While much of the label’s collection is lust-worthy, it’s the brands dresses that really draw in the fashion crowd and this season one style in particular making its way into everyone’s online shopping baskets.
While the neon green version has sold out everywhere, wannabe “Ganni Girls” can still get their hands on the monochrome version, which features a summery gingham motif, a ruched bodice and frilled shoulder straps.
Ditte Reffstrup, Ganni’s creative director, recently revealed that sell-through for the dress hit 80 per cent on the brand’s website over a period of six weeks, which is well above average.
“It’s so fascinating to see how a certain item just all of a sudden takes off,” she told Vogue magazine. “We don’t really work with trends, we always follow our gut.”
Staud, Audrey Leather Sandals, was £225 now £135, Net-a-Porter
There's no sound quite like the smack of flip flops to signal the arrival of summer and while the standard rubber styles are great for slipping on around the pool, the fashion conscious are favouring versions that have been given a grown-up makeover.
From Christina Aguilera to Tara Reid, heeled flip flops were everywhere at the start of the Millennium and now, thanks to the likes of Kim Kardashian West, Kendall Jenner and Rihanna they’ve made a comeback.
Instagram has been awash with stylish women trying out the divisive style for themselves in recent weeks, with many opting to invest in Staud’s black leather sandals, which evoke Nineties minimalism and are finished with neat square toes.
The Instagram-favourite brand boasts a shoe collection chock-full of heeled flip flops, with another three styles available, including a stylish croc embossed finish and a pair that feature a unique circular toe divider – all of which are also in the sale.
Le Micro Vanity Mini Checked Leather Shoulder Bag, was £190 now £114, Net-a-Porter
Like it or not, the micro bag trend is continuing its fight to become this season’s most impractical street style staple.
Kickstarted by Jacquemus, tiny bags have been sported by celebrities such as Lizzo and even reached the heights of TikTok fame in a video that sees a woman removing inconceivably large contents from inside her mini tote, Mary Poppins-style.
And, just as Jacquemus' mini bags keep getting smaller, they’re also becoming more covetable, so now is the time to add one to your arsenal for a fraction of the price.
Our top pick is the 'Le Micro Vanity' style, which has been made in Spain from smooth leather, emblazoned with pastel pink painterly checks and embellished with a tiny golden ‘J’ at the front, presumably because ‘Jacquemus’ wouldn’t fit.
Marine Serre, Draped Crossover Wrap Jersey Top, was £480 now £240, Matches Fashion
But, it was a brown Marine Serre moon print body suit that proved to be the most popular look, with searches for “Marine Serre Crescent Moon Print” up 426 per cent in the 48 hours after the film’s release, according to global fashion search platform, Lyst.
But, the popularity of the motif stretches far beyond Beyonce’s latest endeavour. Introduced in the brand’s first collection in 2017, the crescent logo has reappeared as a print, an embroidered logo, a zipper pull, and more in its collections ever since and been worn by an array of stars including Kylie Jenner, Dua Lipa and Adele.
The good news is that many of the brand’s items are currently in the sale, including this jersey top in a bold, futuristic palette that features the brand’s iconic motif.
The Row, The Ascot Silk Cluth, was £800 now £400, Matches Fashion
When a handbag is seen swinging from the arms of Priyanka Chopra and Emily Ratajkowski, it is hard not to take notice. From models and actors to influencers, multiple spheres of It girls have been spotted wearing The Ascot Silk Clutch from Olsen twin-owned brand The Row but, like most of the luxury labels offerings, it comes at a price.
While the classic style is a worthy investment, it’s a big one to make so if you’re looking to add the cult bag to your collection, now is the time.
The slouchy bag, which is made from silk twill with knotted top handles inspired by the soft folds of silk scarves, is in the sale in a variety of colourways but our favourite is the magenta-pink version which promises to serve as a statement accent to muted ensembles, day or night.