Retail Therapy

Retail Review: Karen Millen

Sunday, April 13, 2014 /

The brand

Karen Millen is a London based international fashion brand with stores in 50 countries and is renowned as the ‘destination for the perfect dress’. The brand is focussed on creating gorgeous tailored work and occasion pieces for the woman that wants to stand out. If you are looking for feminine pieces that are strong and assertive Karen Millen is the place to visit.

The vibe

I’ve been a long time fan of Karen Millen and I was a little apprehensive when I heard the brand was changing its style and direction. Traditionally the pieces have had a gorgeous edgy, sleek feminine vibe with sculptured tailoring. The brand is in no way understated as every piece has some form of embellishment.

So what’s the new direction? It has been described as ‘a stripped back approach focussing on casual clothes and separates such as denim and leather’. The move has come with the ‘general trend to more relaxed dressing’. Insert sad face – I’m all about dressing up.

I wasn’t sure that I was going to embrace the collection but I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, there are a greater number of more relaxed casual pieces that are perfect for weekend/off duty wear. But those sexy sculpted dresses (without being overtly so) are still there.

Style Personality

The key trends for Karen Millen this AW14 are:

Boy Meets Girl
Masculine shapes and suiting. Great for Natural and Classic style personalities.

Refined Rebel
A little bit of rebel and a little bit of punk. Think leather, plaids and more leather. Perfect for Dramatics and Creatives.

Oversized and luxurious fabrics such as brocades and taffeta. This will appeal to the Feminine, Dramatics and Elegants.


The colour palette in line with AW14 is dark and moody with flashes of red, burgundy, deep blues and light greys. Overall it is a cooler palette with a softer and more muted edge. For those looking for warmer shades the red check print dress (see below), trenches and gorgeous jackets will appeal.

My favourites

Karen Millen Black Leather Biker Jacket Karen Millen Check Print Dress Karen Millen Modern Jersey Dress in Purple $325.00

L-R: Black Leather Biker Jacket $675.00, Check Print Dress $395.00, Modern Jersey Dress in Purple $325.00

Karen Millen Acrylic Chain Cuff Karen Millen Cube Cluster Ring Karen Millen Pocket front Leather bag in Brown

L-R: Acrylic Chain Cuff $145.00, Cube Cluster Ring $95.00, Pocket Front Leather Bag in Brown $495.00

Karen Millen Geo Dot Print Dress Karen Millen Oversize Check CoatKaren Millen Fabric Mixing Knit Jumper

L-R: Geo Dot Print Dress $375.00, Oversize Check Coat $675.00, Fabric Mixing Knit Jumper in Grey $195.00

Shapes and sizing

There are shapes and cuts to suit every figure but the majority are semi-fitted to fitted so if you prefer looser and relaxed shapes the range is not as large. Sizes range from 6 – 16 but I find the fit is on the small size.

Price point

These are investment pieces. Tops range in price from $95 – $225 with an average price of $145. Dresses range in price from $275 – $550 with and average of $350.

What do I love?

The details. I love that each piece has something special that makes it different. Even t-shirts are embellished or have a unique shape to make it stand out.

What’s not so great?

Sizing can be a little tricky as most of the items are a fitted but I find great shape wear really helps.

The essentials

Where: Available online at

Delivery and returns

The online store offers free standard delivery (5 working days) and express delivery for $14.95 (allow 2-3 working days). Returns are free within 14 days.


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