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A fashionista's guide to shopping online

Last updated on: February 26, 2013 13:23 IST

Click on couture: A fashionista's guide to shopping online

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Priyanka Sharma, Courtesy Business Standard

Online clothes shopping is on the rise. But with so many sites, it could get confusing. We guide you on portals.

You are looking for the perfect palazzo pants to pair with a swish 'boyfriend' jacket (a loose fit enhanced by shoulder pads), which fashionistas have hailed as the trend of the coming season. But you don't have the time or patience to visit a fashion store. What can you do? Well, you can simply go online.

You are not alone. The number of people shopping online is on the rise. According to a recent report compiled by combining data from Google Trends and an online research by TNS Australia, consumer interest in online shopping in India grew 128 per cent between 2011 and 2012. The survey, conducted on 800 respondents in November, found apparel and fashion accessories emerged as the second-biggest product category (30 per cent) after consumer electronics (34 per cent).

However, online shopping could be confusing, with so many sites competing in the same category. Here are some that offer you the best in apparel and accessories...

Click on NEXT to read on


Photographs: Collage: Jackly Nepham/Creative Commons
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Perniaspopupshop.com

A brainchild of stylist and designer Pernia Qureshi, this portal is arguably the first in India to offer high-end couture from 50 big labels in Indian fashion at great prices — from Sabyasachi Mukherjee's chanderi saris with elaborate buti borders to Anamika Khanna's silk anarkalis to Gaurav Gupta's coral saris with kat dana detailing.

Last month, Qureshi added a range of menswear. If you log on to Pernia's Pop-up Shop, you will find eccentric ties by Atsu Sekhose, chic slippers from the house of Rajesh Pratap Singh and classic Jodhpur pants from Raghavendra Rathore.

"Men hate to go shopping in malls, but will go online for the perfect outfit," says Qureshi, "and women love buying gifts for men online!"

With its user-friendly interface, beautiful product shots from different angles and timely shipment (five to six days), you might find Pernia's Pop-up Shop an ideal online destination for designer togs.


Photographs: Perniaspopupshop.com
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Elitify.com

Launched in October last year, the website targets the "premium, well-heeled buyers who have an affinity for high-end brands," says Elitify Founder Amit Rawal. He says the website is the country's first and only online destination offering merchandise exclusively for men.

Elitify offers classic shirts for the elegant 'boardroom look' from Hugo Boss, Isaac Mizrahi, Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren, et al. You can also shop for dapper navy jackets from Armani Exchange, cufflinks from Paul Smith, ties and wallets from Burberry and Etro — at prices nearly 25 per cent less than in offline stores.

You could be excused if you thought the website offers not just apparels. The most fascinating and useful accessory, according to Rawal, is the electric wine opener. "Bar connoisseurs love this. We've already sold 20 of these in a few weeks!"

Then there are the pocket squares from Club Milano and the Oxhorn shaving accessories. All the products are sourced from suppliers from across Italy and the US and shipped to a warehouse in South Delhi. So, make a lavish purchase and the item will be yours in 24 hours.


Photographs: Elitify.com
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Jabong.com

The lifestyle and fashion e-tailer stocks over 700 brands of footwear, apparel, sports equipment, bags, jewellery, accessories, fragrances and more. While items are delivered within the same day in Delhi and the national capital region, for other cities, it could take up to three days. More, if you're confused about the style or size, Jabong's fashion stylists are just a call away.

The payment options are flexible, too. In addition to cash-on-delivery, credit card, debit card, net banking, you can also choose card-on-delivery.

"A lot of people are not comfortable punching in their credit card details online, but are comfortable swiping their credit card," says co-founder Manu Jain.

Launched in January last year, the website has since added a "premium" section, taking orders by phone, and even offering "open-box delivery" (a customer can open the packet and see the product before accepting delivery).

Tip: Watch out for clearance sales — you might just get ethnic kurtis, dresses and shoes for both men and women at a 50 per cent discount. You may also want to check out the new range of merchandise from Carlton London, Adidas and Miss Bennett.


Photographs: Jabong.com
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Myntra.com

Myntra recently acquired Sher Singh, a global online brand specialising in sports-inspired lifestyle apparel for men and women  and offers 500 leading fashion and lifestyle brands such as Nike, Adidas, Puma, Lee, Levis, Wrangler, Arrow, Jealous 21, Biba, Fabindia, US Polo, etc.

Make use of the "Style Studio" app, a virtual dressing room. Style Mynt, Myntra's style blog, offers the current season's style tips and recommendations from designers and stylists.

Don't miss the end-of-season sales twice a year. With a million Facebook followers, Myntra gets 600,000 visitors daily, says co-founder and CEO Mukesh Bansal.


Photographs: Myntra.com
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Fashionandyou.com

FashionAndYou is a flash sales site. While it doesn't hold inventory, it connects sellers with buyers and works on open-purchase orders; once you make the payment for the product, the company sources the item from the seller and then ships it.

Here's the catch: You have to be a member to avail of the offers. You can register online, or receive an invitation from an existing member. If you invite more members, you can avail shopping coupons of Rs 500.

Women continue to dominate their consumer profile and shop for everything from apparel, accessories to footwear, says Director (sales) Aasheesh Mediratta. "This also includes interesting gifts for men," he adds.

If you're looking for trendy yet affordable party wear, FashionAndYou may not disappoint you.


Photographs: Fashionandyou.com
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