Growing up in Antrim meant that we spent many a Saturday heading up the road to go shopping in Ballymena. That's why I was delighted to be contacted by the folks at Ballymena Means to work with them for Ballymena Means Fashion on the 8th April. This meant that I was able to get a preview on the shops and venues involved and do a bit of shopping; and if you guys know me, you'll know I love shopping!
Now if you're not familiar with Ballymena my recommendation is to head straight for the main shopping centres. Both Fairhill and Tower Centre are great focal points to help you keep your bearings.
First up we started with the men's fashion. I was a woman on a mission to find my brother some new items and wanted to check out what was on offer. We visited Remus Uomo and Wallaces where we were shown around the suits and accessories. I was pleasantly surprised at the modern ranges available; I'm no expert on men's fashion but it was nice to something beyond your typical grey and black suits.
Next up we headed for Marmalade on Greenvale Street (outside the back of Tower Centre) and met Molly. Molly was an absolute ray of sunshine on a very wet and windy day and if you go see her for a cocktail on Saturday you will not be sorry. We talked about the brands available and it was lovely to see local brands like My Sister's Closet and Ciara Daly stocked among international brands like Frnch and Traffic People. The whole store is full of super cute and individual pieces where you are guaranteed to find some that suits your style.
Next up we visited Primrose where I fell in love with this little navy dress but was instantly heartbroken when it didn't fit. My only quibble with boutiques is the lack of larger sizings but I instantly forgave them when I spotted the nude bumblebee shoes pictures below. Yes they amazingly comfortable and yes I bought them!
By this time we were getting hungry and headed to the Adair Arms for a special afternoon tea. They had the biggest, fluffiest scones I've ever had and oh my they were delicious. A perfect way to break up the day and all that sugar provided a nice boost to finish the rest of the afternoons shopping.
After lunch we headed to Cameron's. This was actually my first visit to Cameron's as I had always thought it to be for a much older demographic. I was surprised to learn that they aim to cater for 18-80 and all different price ranges. That's pretty much as wide a range as you can get under one roof! My favourite brands were Soya Concept and Thought. Muted tones, midi skirts, and ultimate girliness. Everything I love!
FYI you get a free scarf with purchase at Cameron's and what a choice you have!
Last on our day of adventure we headed for Just Boutique, a gorgeous little shop across the road from Cameron's (who also happen to own it). This is a gem of a shop with quirky knick-knacks and a sea-side feel. That yellow mac is giving me life right now! I might just have to go back for it.
I want to thank the Ballymena Business Improvement District for inviting me down to preview their 8th April event.
For the full list of retailers and fab special offers see below:
Fairhill Shopping Centre
Remus Uomo, Fairhill Shopping Centre
Tommy Hilfiger, Fairhill,
Fashion shows 1-3pm on 8th April
Buy two shirts and receive a third free
Discounts throughout the day and also providing clothes for the fashion show
Afternoon Tea with a Fashionable Twist, 2-5pm; Booking Essential
Front Page Bar
Spend £35 or more on full price you get £5 off
Dresses and Daiquiris plus special 20% discount when you quote "Faeriwood20"
Exclusive discount on the day; Lucky dip discount pulled from a hat; 5-30% off; Serving pink champagne too
Friday night, 7th April, fashion tea
31a Greenvale Street Boutique
Glass of Prosecco
Sam’s Yard, Tower Centre
Sponsor of Best Dressed Shopper - £100 worth of vouchers for winner
Buy any suit and receive a shirt and tie for free
(56-60 Church St)
Free shoes with every man’s suit purchased (excludes suits already discounted); 10% off all Ladies fashions and footwear when you spend £60 or more
(78-90 Church St)
£500 worth of vouchers in spot prizes throughout the day
(25 Broughshane St)
Style Pod on Sat 8th
Free scarf with purchase
(55 Broughshane St)
Discounts throughout the day on children’s and babies clothing
(60-64 Lower Mill St)
10% off Bradley Mountain range
Ultimate in Fashion
(13 Wellington St)
Models in store