Angeleno Topshop fanatics’ dreams were realized in February. Judging from the copious fashion mavens (more than 10,000 people) that attended the Topshop opening at The Grove – the largest opening at the shopping center to date – it is safe to say that the British invasion has returned...at least in the fashion world.
Tucked in the peaceful corner across from The Original Farmers Market, there lies the fourth Topshop in the U.S. and the first on the west coast (if you don’t include Las Vegas). It is hard to miss the store when passing by: not only are there big, fat and bold letters that spell out the shop’s name on the multi-level building, but also the entire building literally glows. It is sleek, white, silver and accented with a touch of neon orange. The illumination is even more prominent and pretty to look at when the sky darkens.
The store’s interior is consistent with its outside; it's almost completely white. The clothes burst with funky bright colors and are a great contrast against the walls. As the new-wave dance beat music plays in the store, you fall in love with the ambience before even giving the clothes a close look.
Topshop is divided into different sections according to the clothes’ styles. There is something for everyone, no matter how distinct their tastes may seem: rocker, vintage, party, casual, girly, hipster, edgy, dressy – they have it all. This is totally in alignment with the L.A. fashion spirit that allows you to go for the preppy look one day and sport the grunge look the next.
Even though each item’s style may vary drastically from piece to piece, there are several unifying elements found at Topshop: the evident playfulness with colors and patterns (think lime green giraffe print sweatshirts featuring tiger embroidery. Or, burgundy floral batik skinny pants for men), designs that are reminiscent of ‘80s and ‘90s fashion (including flared skirts and a lot of overalls) and the overwhelming fashion forwardness that screams “freedom” and “individuality.” Simply slip on one of their designs, and you are well on your way to make some fierce and unconventional fashion statements.
In order to tailor towards various local demands, all of the different Topshops around the world are infused with a dash of local style that is in compliance store's location. For example, cotton jersey and denim are in full focus at this L.A. branch – there are sections solely devoted to cotton jersey pieces in vibrant sherbet and neon colors, as well as Topshop's Leigh Jeans line. Other lines that are featured at this flagship include the Topshop x J.W. Anderson collaboration; Topshop Unique, which is a line shown during London Fashion Week; Boutique, a premium limited-edition line; and, of course, the brand’s trend-driven main line.
-A tailored dungaree jumpsuit in an allover elephant print ($110). The white elephant print makes a very rigid contrast against the black dungaree. The quality is very sturdy yet comfortable. The print and cut will definitely help anyone stand out from a crowd. With the numerous overalls/jumpsuits/rompers seen repeatedly in the store (they don’t only come in denim; they are also available in leather, velvet, corduroy, flannel), it seems like Topshop is attempting to push these one-piece garments back into the mainstream.
-The second item is much more girly and casual. It is a light blue Aztec Strappy Sun Dress with subtle geometric shapes all over ($72). While the first item may not be everyday wearable, this one definitely is. You can wear it to the classroom, beach or mall.
-The third and final is the Bright Floral Jacquard Trousers ($100) – pink and navy floral jacquard print premium cigarette trousers. For fashion fanatics, what’s a better way to ring in the season than by rocking a pair of bright, poesy pants that radiates spring?
Really, all of the items at Topshop are so unique and distinct that you may forget that they are mass-produced.
The store’s only major downside is that it is on the pricier side. Since many compare the brand with H&M and Forever 21, one may easily think the three stores have similar prices, which apparently is not the case.
However, unlike the other two fashion chains, Topshop does not sell "throwaway" fashion, and the pieces are made to last. Because of this and the fact that the merchandise is of high quality, shopping here is worth every bang for your buck.
Another one of Topshop's shortcomings is that most of the items are very trendy, and that might be a tad too much for some people. But, those who are fashion forward will definitely find some treasures here.
Pay a visit to Topshop next time when you are at The Grove, and judge for yourself if it lives up to the hype.
Topshop is located at 189 The Grove Drive in Los Angeles. For more information, click here.