Haute Clicks

One of the biggest bugbears in online shopping is the long, agonizing wait. You know, the one after you press the “Buy“ button and wait two weeks to get your hands on that dress you just bought—simply because that online store is based overseas. Thankfully, a number of fashionably enterprising locals have taken it upon themselves to make the whole thing easier, with some even promising next day delivery—saving you time and money. “It removes the up-front cost of retailing and ultimately we are able to offer that dress to our customer at a more reasonable price,” says Jacqueline Tan of Starlet Dresses. Some of these websites even stock international labels such as the high-fashion Oscar de la Renta, New York-based Faviana and British accessory brand Fleet Ilya, as well as select furniture and art.
Here are four of our favorites:
Doorstep Luxury
What: An afternoon tête-à-tête between friends and former classmates Miranda Lindsay-Fynn and Au Da Yu resulted in them launching a virtual store of personally picked luxury items. Doorstep Luxury is Asia’s premier online retailer of cult designer handbags, jewelry and accessories, and its cache of goods comes straight from where it matters most: The fashion capitals.
“We source our merchandise from Fashion Weeks in London, New York and Paris. We have a team in Europe who keeps us updated on the latest hot young designers to check out and the trends they see developing for the coming seasons. I personally meet with all the designers at Fashion Week and put together a collection with their input,” says Lindsay-Flynn.
The goods: Expect labels and designers such as Ragazze Ornamentali for their sublimely beautiful handbags ($850 upwards), British accessory label Ela Stone, cult British leather accessory designer Fleet Ilya, who specializes in beautifully
structured bags and corset-belts, and Misela, a Turkish-born New Yorker who makes handbags for the clued-in fashionista ($550 upwards).
Not In The Malls
What: If you think online stores are only good for a particular type of product, think again. Not In The Malls, the brainchild of Michelle O’Neill and Krista Moore, aims to bring the experience of shopping in the malls into your home. This online marketplace is a platform for sellers of unique products hand-picked by the pair. “We realized that we could provide these small businesses with an alternative avenue to sell their gorgeous creations to more people like us while still keeping their mystery and uniqueness,” says Moore. Take note though, as there is no central warehouse and everything you purchase comes straight from the seller, there might be an additional delivery charge to your order.
The goods: The website hosts more than 80 independent sellers ranging from art from acclaimed artist Diana Francis and handmade cars from scrap metal wire and tin cans by Africars, to the dark gray minimalist jewelry collection from Vanessa Ward and handmade children’s clothes by Chandamama and Little Red Wagon. $79 upwards for fashion accessories, $85 upwards for bags and $800 upwards for art pieces.
Starlet Dresses
What: Any fashionista worth their weight in wool will agree on one thing: Quality, red-carpet-ready dresses cost a bomb. But point your mouse to www.starletdresses.com, and
you’ll find stylish, high-fashion cocktail dresses and elegant evening gowns at affordable prices. You can also snag labels from New York designers such as Flip and Faviana, previously available only in the US. “We set out to serve the mid-tier evening gown/cocktail dresses segment in Singapore who find it hard to find beautiful off-the-rack gowns in the local market that aren’t overpriced,” says owner Jacqueline Tan.
The goods: From beautiful beaded chiffon dresses to luscious off-shoulder satin numbers, Starlet Dresses makes you look like a star without busting your bank account. $220 upwards for cocktail dresses and $390 upwards for evening gowns.
What: This is the only fashion e-tailer with its own bus ad (you might have spotted a bright red bus with www.traceyinny.com.sg emblazoned on it). Started in 2007 by Pamela Goi and Jeannie Pang as an online blogshop, Tracyeinny is now one of our leading independent online fashion retailers. Last year, Pang and Goi opened Tracyeinny’s first retail store, which has since moved from Pearl’s Hill Terrace to Nankin Row in China Square Central.
The goods: Look out for easy-to-wear casual and dressier pieces such as printed blouses, shift dresses, jumpsuits and outerwear at purse-friendly prices (starting from as low as $24)