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Saturday, 23 March 2013

WestEndGirl Shops: Forever 21 at Buchanan Quarter

It was with a massive build up and blaring fanfare that Glasgow's first branch of Forever 21 opened up it's doors yesterday morning.It also signalled the opening of Buchanan Quarter, a slick new addition to Buchanan Galleries shopping centre. Situated across the street from the main mall, Buchanan Quarter boasts a 'runway' of new stores including Gap, Vans, Sketchers, Office, Fat Face, Watches of Switzerland, Paperchase, Evans Cycles and Forever 21. It is part of a larger development that also includes luxury apartments, coming in at a whopping £70 million.

Some of the stores we already have in the City Centre, and some of them are the first branches to be opened. With it's print-heavy advertising campaign, it was clear to see that the most anticipated store to open would be American fast-fashion giant Forever 21 with the 10AM opening being marketed as an event in itself including entertainment and giveaways. I headed down later in the day to check it out.

Upon entering the store the first thing that struck me was the sheer size of the place. Apart from department stores, it is surely one of the largest retail premises in the city (along with Primark & TK Maxx Argyle Street. The only other shop I've been to that made me physically react to it's vastness has been Topshop Oxford Circus (AKA the mother land). It was also very busy with excited shoppers, which was to be expected on it's first day - I can imagine it will be as busy for some time as shoppers - local folks and tourists alike - travel to the City Centre to see what all the fuss is about. It was clear that the staff were working very hard to make sure customers were being attended to, they seemed to be a blur as they moved around the store checking stock and helping people.

The store is also very clean and bright with attractive visual merchandising, making it easy to browse and navigate through the selection of products. I particularly liked the accessories department which was decorated to reflect a dressing room with pretty chandeliers and ornate feminine detailing on the walls. The men's department located on the ground floor was a little smaller than I was expecting but still looked like it had a decent range of clothes.

Shopping-wise, I had set myself a budget for the visit but it turned out that I never even came close to the limit as I never bought anything! I seen a couple of fun items that looked OK but just never seen anything I liked enough to buy. When I normally visit Forever 21 in America, I can easily buy a couple of bags worth so I was surprised that I didn't buy anything. It could be down to how busy the store was, or even the clothes they have this season might not be my thing. I know that Forever 21 can pull it out the bag (I adored their collaboration with Sanrio last year and could have easily bought most of the things in that collection) so I haven't given up on them. I am confident that I will make purchases from the store in future visits.

Overall I'm impressed with the new store and from the public reaction to Buchanan Quarter  it seems to be a welcome addition to Buchanan Street, helping cement it as the most popular shopping destination in Glasgow.

You can find Forever 21, along with the rest of the stores at 185-221 Buchanan Street.

Have you visited any of the shops at Buchanan Quarter yet? What did you think?

Thanks for reading!


  1. I popped in yesterday after work and like you, I was shocked by the size of the place. It's huuuge!

    I didn't buy anything either - the queues for the dressing room and the fitting rooms were huge and I just didn't have the energy for it.

    I thought some of their bags were really nice though and looked quite expensive.


    1. Yeah, I am hopeful that it will be better though - maybe later in the year! I never got to do a proper bag inspection - too many people and didn't see the point in pushing my way through.

      Let me know if you get any of their bags - I've only ever bought their clothes and would like to hear what their bags are like and if they hold up ok!

      x :)