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Dress for the Recession

red recession dress The Big Discount Store is apparently taking a lesson from history, which teaches us that women get girly when money gets tight. For £9.99, they’ll fit you out with this little 1950s-inspired number called the Red Recession Dress.

Maybe not a totally new concept, creating fashion to match the mood of the times — Asda launched two versions of the classic “little black dress” for £12 in November, followed by its £20 little black “City Suit” — but, hey, it’s RED!!

Now, at first blush this would seem to be a brilliant idea, and I totally agree with Ladyblogger Wendy Sullivan:

Personally, I love that retro look. The 50s were a time of great beauty in women’s fashion, and I am bored to death with having the 70s come back every few years. It’s really refreshing to see a much classier decade return. And frankly, the prices are pretty close to the same as they were then.

But let’s look a tad more critically at this specific retro-fabulous red dress, shall we?
Ignoring for the moment the misspelled “seam” in the product description…

Fitted knee length dress with cap sleeves and shaped neck line, waist seem and back split. Concealed back zip fastening. Belt not included. 48% Polyester, 48% Vicose, 4% Elastane Dry Clean

… and assuming that we can find enough of a waistline, after the excesses of the holiday feast season, to rock a fitted dress, check out the fabric:

If you’ve ever made the mistake of trying to wash a polyester-viscose-something garment (hands up? yes, me, too…) — even if you hand-wash it carefully in cold water — you’ll know that forever afterwards your once-stunning poly-viscose fashion statement will droop like a sad dishrag. So, when they say “Dry Clean” — you’d better believe it, that does mean “Dry Clean only“!

Twenty bucks (ish) for the dress — but what will you spend on the dry-cleaning?

There’s a difference between cheap and frugal, that’s all I’m saying. And a bargain is only a bargain if (a) you can and will use the item, and (b) it won’t keep racking up a lot of extra cost for maintenance through its lifespan.

Ah, but it’s RED!!!

1 comment… add one
  • Kim Woodbridge 2009/01/24, 10:21 am

    I avoid dry clean only. It makes the price of the item too high over time and the chemicals used are pretty bad for the environment.

    That’s interesting that women dress more girly during a recession. I will be more of it fashion-wise that I usually am ;-)

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