Shopping in COS has never been appealing to me, I find it too bland, the clothes are rather uninspiring, the colours too block, too bold, too cold, and too old. I prefer the fun of H&M its more streetwise older/younger sister and the contemporary ease of &Other Stories the more casually sophisticated upmarket other sister.
One day however, I got dragged in by my friend who has something of a COS obsession. She buys near enough everything in her wardrobe from COS and she manages to look as good as ever when she throws it all together, it doesn’t look like COS. Whilst she was trying things on, I got a good look around the shop. The ambience is calm, even on their busiest of days you are not banging elbows with other customers or bumping into baby buggies. It is one of the more civilised shopping experiences on the high street. Which is saying something in itself.
Besides the ambience, I found the quality of the garment top notch, it didn’t feel cheap, it felt good to the touch and rich in fabric. Looking closely at the garment, taking it apart from its uniformed blocks and stories, it stands solid. The cut, the fit, and attention has been paid to the detail. The shoes are solidly constructed, the bags well made and sound. And I love the coats. A lot of the collection is inspired by high fashion brands, the likes of Celine, inspirer of all, Balenciaga, Victoria Beckham but also MUJI, for some reason I find a link between both retailers.
I get it, it may never appeal to me as a whole but in the sum of its parts, its appealing and home to a particular kind of shopper’s wardrobe. Much like caviar its an acquired retailer if you will and taken apart it works. Caviar still remains disgusting though.