Westfield for less than $200

with Alyce Cowell the Westfield Insider Westfield under $200

When I meet Alyce Cowell, she's puffed. It's been an early morning, and one flight and three interviews later, the flight of stairs to the first level of Westfield West Lakes was pushing her limits. The tall, blonde stylist who rose above hundreds of bloggers and even appeared on A Current Affair to become the Westfield Insider is human after all.

It reminded me of the way I tend to approach shopping centres: flustered, time-poor, and on a mission. I'm not a leisurely shopper. Give me what I want. In one place. Now. (Can you see why Westfield centres suit me perfectly?)

I described to Alyce the look I was searching for: a bright short suit, seen at Marnie Skillings and Stolen Girlfriends Club at RAFW this year. Her reaction reflected her endearing enthusiasm for high street fashion: 'I have one from Dotti! It would have been perfect!' Endearing, because while most stylists would dismiss the chain stores, Alyce knows what it's like to shop on a student's income, having recently graduated with a bachelor of journalism. 

alyce cowell Marnie Skillings
Left: Alyce talking to Kayla Bath, who formerly designed for local label Frankie and Bath. F&B were one of my favourite labels in Adelaide, so it was sad to hear they have no plans to resurrect the label. | Right: The look from Marnie Skillings S/S 2011/12 that inspired our shopping spree.

Before long we're off, and our mission is to buy an entire outfit on a $200 gift card (disclaimer: provided by Westfield). Despite being stopped a couple of times by people who recognised Alyce, and running into local designer Kayla Bath, we managed to grab everything in just over an hour. Say what you want, but everybody needs clothes fast and cheap once in a while - for me that's usually when I've forgotten to do the washing and I need a dress for the wedding tomorrow. And that's what Westfield is all about.

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