A little while before Christmas, I was making my way down to Urban Outfitters in Templebar. Its a nice little bohemian spot Templebar, but it’s also quite a labyrinth to navigate your way around. I’ve never fully found my way around there, usually there’s a little bit of backtracking and moving in the general direction before you find your way to your destination.
It was on this pre Christmas wander that I happened to pass by Helter Skelter (located on the left hand side of the central bank) no less than 3 times before I finally found UO. So I got three chances to notice that they were selling nigh on identical stock to UO.
And it was only once I returned back from there with plenty of vintage goodies and 20minutes to kill before my bus , which leaves from across the road from the central bank, that I decided to have a little look around Helter Skelter.
And let me tell you, when I went in, I was Impressed! And I’m a bitch, who is usually underwhelmed by even “the best” of things. But walking in the door was like stepping into a time machine and stepping out backstage at a photoshoot for an achingly hip band of the 80’s/90’s and finding that you are the stylist.
Like I said a good 50-60% of their stock is the same as UO – they must have the same supplier, but their stuff is cheaper. This is because you are not paying for all the extras that come with UO. Like an international website, professional store landscaping, an extensive size range, stylists, and supermodels for your add campaigns, or ever the little things like interesting carry bags saying UO in an arty font and colour from a sustainable forest.
Like I said its vibe is very ‘’backstage/behind the scenes’’ which, as everyone who’s ever been backstage or behind the scenes somewhere knows, isn’t half as glam as the, idunno, ‘’front of the scenes’’. But if you have a good enough eye to find stuff without it having to dance in front of you on a faux shabby-chic table, with a spotlight over it, then this is the place for you.
I picked up a surplus Italian army jacket for 25 euro that was in Urban Outfitters for 65 and a pair of Levi’s 550’s from the 1990, in size small that I have been searching high and low for, for 29 euro. There were loads of those cool 80’s student-artist style Christmas jumpers for around the same. Their staff are very nice too, not pushy at all which I like, it’s a totally bohemian atmosphere, the changing room assistant had me in stitches telling me all about his recent adventures and his boyfriend, but he wasnt “camping it up”, as so many do to create atmosphere, so you buy more, he seemed to just genuinely be that way, very bohemian.
One thing I will say though is that you have to try on everything before you buy, and check for small flaws like rips and marks. They don’t have the same number of staff as UO so the quality isn’t always up to their standards. They also don’t have the same size range so if you see something and its love at first sight, but they don’t have your size- prepare for a broken heart-they will usually only have that size.