One of the best print offers on the high street, but a few too many long-sleeved tunics.
Queen of the print, Wallis is head and shoulders above its Bath rivals in offering unique and vibrant patterns for its 35-plus customer. The 1970s trend is played out across split-sleeve batwing tops, tiered floral tunics, smock maxi skirts and maxi dresses. Printed, long-sleeved tunics look great and allow for an easy winter-to-spring transition, but there are far too many styles. Embroidered necklines, lace and this season’s ubiquitous blouse also feature, with good execution. A high-waisted polka-dot palazzo pant may be a touch too bold.
Although no one approached Drapers, there were plenty of sales assistants on hand, leaving shoppers to browse at their leisure in what is a well laid-out, tidy store. Large graphics of Wallis’s spring 11 campaign decorate the store and highlight the key trends. Beachwear and Sale items are upstairs.
Wallis has its pricing architecture spot on, with few items going above £60. A putty pink blouse in polyester is excellent value at £30 - it could easily pass for silk - and tunics generally hover around £35. A lace dress is a bargain at £35, as are maxi skirts at £40. You can bag two T-shirts for £18. Maxi dresses stretch pricing to about £60 and, while you can buy a maxi anywhere on the high street and find cheaper alternatives, Wallis’s prints offer that vital point of difference.