Italian & French Fashion crack
For those of you who already adore the unique, European style of Love It! the ladies’ clothing store up on the balcony in the Beechwood Arcade, you will be delighted to have discovered it has doubled in size with the opening of Love It 2!
And for those of you who have not yet discovered this hidden gem, prepared to be swept away by a tempting range of clothing, shoes, bags and jewellery carefully selected by husband and wife team, Darren and Catherine Britton-Jeal.
Love It! first opened six years ago with the couple also owning and running the popular Thread Shed shop next door for almost 18 years. The Thread Shed specialised in alternative clothing and vintage Levi jeans imported from the U.S and first opened as a menswear store, becoming unisex when Darren realised girls were coming in to snap up the jeans in the smallest men’s sizes they sold!
Love It! was opened to draw in the long-suffering Mums and offer them something different while their teenage daughters spent their cash in Thread Shed.
The Thread Shed has now become Love It 2! featuring a wider range of stock than could be contained next door, with the addition of ‘plus’ sizes and shoes.
Darren explained how they had decided to expand Love It! and are looking forward to a rosy future. “We offer a certain something which isn’t high fashion but is unique and very stylish,” he said. “We travel around France and Italy buying stock from labels such as Zone Blue and Yves Callin with jewellery by Marilyn Mode. It’s a unique style which you expect to find costing hundreds of pounds in designer boutiques tucked away in Montpellier, but the savvy shopper can get it all here for a fraction of the price but with the same superb quality.”
Darren told me how the expansion into the shop next door will give customers old and new a greater choice. “It’s a little unusual,” he said. “You can browse and select things in Love It! then a sales assistant may suggest something next door to go with what you’ve chosen, a bag for instance, and you can take things in there and buy it all in one place as we share the same till system. The best of both worlds!”
Darren and Catherine live and breathe Cheltenham fashion and style, so much so that they are the driving force behind ‘Street Style’ – the Cheltonian’s latest competition, and are offering hundreds of pounds of vouchers to spend in Love It! and Love It 2! to the winners.