Good on-trend pieces and basics but struggles to carry off high-end interpretations.
Dorothy Perkins has moved from mainstream to contemporary this season due to its location in Cabot Circus (most retailers in the former category are outside the shopping centre) and the prime location of its on-trend product, which dominates the front half of the store. Leopard-print shift dresses, lace, Fair Isle knits and comprehensive outerwear offers create a strong season. But the retailer fails on the design front when replicating high-end items such as the aviator jacket.
The excellent use of mannequins - in clusters of four highlighting a key trend - means that customers can easily find what they are looking for. Accessories and footwear are also merchandised with clothing to show complete wardrobe looks, while the windows bring together key trends under the heading ‘Into the Wild’. Upstairs, maternitywear, petite, tall, workwear and concessions for Lila, Purple and Rise Elite are all clearly segmented.
Dresses and coats are good value at Dorothy Perkins. A leopard-print shift dress is £40, while a V-neck, long-sleeved dress in lace is £38. A double-breasted camel coat comes in at £75 and macs are about £50, while a grey wool-mix pea coat is a bargain at £45. Long, paisley-print tunics come in at £23 and leggings just £10. Basic knitwear starts from £15 and a faux-leather jacket may be cheap at £45, but it certainly looks it too.