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Monsoon, 41 Old Christchurch Road

A rainbow of coloured dresses leads the way at Monsoon, with plenty of added extras

Product 8½

Dresses a-plenty at Monsoon, with a rainbow assault on the senses courtesy of technicolor tribal prints, printed maxi dresses and paint-box embroidery perfectly suited to Monsoon’s ethnic holiday aesthetic. Embellished shift dresses in lime and electric blue are scattered with beading and clashing Aztec embroidery. Gobstopper-sized jewels decorate necklines on watercolour floral-print silk shirts, while in Monsoon Fusion sequins dot capped sleeves on fitted vivid shifts.

Experience 7

Monsoon’s target customer doesn’t want to be overwhelmed with loud music or scary-to-wear product, so homeware is dotted around the store, including glass cake stands and jewelled picture frames, a ploy which seems to work. A large kidswear section at the back of the store means the womenswear offer is slightly smaller than at first glance.

Value 7

The Fusion dresses look to be more competitively priced this season, with a capped-sleeve fitted sheath dress just £70 despite its jewelled shoulders. However, a mainline floral-print satiny dress with ruched hem is expensive at £95 as it is polyester rather than silk. An embroidered below the knee A-line skirt offers lots of detail for £65. White linen wide-leg Capri pants, one of the few trousers in store, impress at £40.

Score 22½

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