.... and mine. Hang head in shame. I know, I'm probably a little bit older than the average Jack Wills customer but I've got a young and immature head on my shoulders (I said it before you did).
I received an interesting email in my inbox a few weeks ago about a Jack Wills Outlet being opened in Dean Clough in Halifax. Not too far from the God Parents actually. An engineered trip was in order. The seed of suggestion was sown into my God daughter's brain and it rooted quickly and before I knew it, I was heading to Dean Clough with Kirstie, her family and George Dude for a browse.
Not knowing where we were going and bearing in mind I haven't been to Halifax for probably nigh on ten years, I found myself short cutting through the Dean Clough art gallery at break neck speed (George was leading the way) before we found our shopping goal.
And the record for navigating through an art gallery in 3 secs goes to ... George!
The only picture I managed to take of any artwork and it looks a bit rude.
I'm not sure what I was expecting but I knew I wasn't expecting this. When someone says outlet to you, you imagine a little shop, a bit of dim lighting, a little bit tatty around the edges but this was impressive. Jack Wills basically have taken over a former boiler room of the old Crossley Carpet factory. And it's a big boiler room at that!
Welcome! All major credit cards accepted.
Being an outlet, this is not current stock but given the nature and styling of Jack Wills clothes - that shouldn't really matter. A preppy shirt is still a preppy shirt, this year or next - we just change the print a little. A sweatshirt or a hoody is exactly that - we just change and tweak the logo a little but overall - same shape, different colour. And that's one of the good things about Jack Wills clothing - it doesn't date that much and it's quite formulaic - a glance through their lookbooks will confirm this in more ways than one. It's posh university preppy. British style. As Jack Wills proudly boasts about itself over it's registered trademark "Jack Wills - University Outfitters".
I would imagine most parents would be happy about their kids wearing this kind of look - what's not to like about your child looking like a posh thing in casual wear. Skinny jeans for the boys with a nice fitted check shirt. Pretty (liberty) print dresses for the girls most of which are of a bum skimming length. But the big big thing here is you're not really a Jack Wills'er until you have one of their hoodies or sweatshirts (hang head in big shame between knees - I have one .. err two).
So first floor for the men's wear (not interested) and second floor for me .... err I mean Kirstie. I already have access to the Jack Wills outlet website so I knew what to expect and what price range things would be set at. Apparently having access to the online outlet is a bit of a privilege and by invite only. I think I did a mad splurge online one year and they thought - easy prey that Sue there and they were right and passed me on an invite.
This is two floors of clothing heaven for teeny boppers and probably two floors of purse hell for parents.
Lovely original beams and structure
Living the J Wills brand (if you want to)
Great place for hide and seek!
Prices when full price at Jack Wills need a bit of thinking about. Prices when they hit the end of the sales are pretty good though. I managed to acquire a sweatshirt for £14 one year - cheaper than most high street retail brands. Most of the JW pieces I have, I have managed to pick up in the sales over the last couple of years and and the pickings have been pretty good. And believe it or not, though their hoodies and sweats are logo'd and these seem to be the favoured items for teens, some of their items do not have Jack Wills logo emblazoned across them. For instance, they do a lovely line in shirts for women. I know, I have three of them. They do nice little summer cotton tops. I know, I have three of those too. A little floral jacket, a couple of cardigans ... and so the list goes on but nothing in your face and if I wore any of them, I don't think anyone would say "Sue, you really shouldn't".
Can I just say - the changing room I had was brilliant. It was huge, airy and even had a mattress on it for George to chill out on.
Lovely big changing room space
George in his luxury cell.
I was tempted by the cute blouse below (I love a good silk/cotton mix) and even thought about a check shirt and I even made the SA go and look for my size for a number of things but I didn't buy. What's wrong with me? I must be ill. Even the Grumps was surprised to find out that I hadn't bought anything when I told him later about my little excursion.
Wish I'd bought it now. Drat!
However, this is still a lovely outlet and I still really like their clothes. What does really surprise me though is the choice of location for this Jack Wills venture. I'm not complaining - it's nice to have something which is almost on my doorstep but why the north of England and especially Halifax a little old textiles town which is not really on the map for a lot? If anyone knows - do tell - I am curious with a capital C.
- If anyone from Jack Wills/Aubin & Wills is reading (fat chance) - any chance of opening an Aubin & Wills outlet here too? It would make me very happy.
- If anyone from Hollister is reading (fat chance) - any chance of getting your lighting sorted out in your shops so I can actually see the merchandise? Make like Jack Wills and get some brighter bulbs at the very least. I walked out of your Trafford Centre store as I couldn't see a thing in there and it made me very grumpy. How can I tell what colour something is if I can't see it? Go on - do it now! I'll even donate you a few bulbs if it helps.
- That's it. Getting off my soap box now. Thank you for reading.