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A smiling girl holds a shopping bag in a store.
A smiling girl holds a shopping bag in a store.
Original photo by Alyana Nurani
Style > Fashion

Nothing Beats In-Store Shopping: Princess Polly in Westfield Century City Mall

Updated Published
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCLA chapter.

I have always been averse to shopping. The sheer amount of stylistic decisions to be made – compounded with the physical labor of getting undressed and re-dressed over and over – is my definition of exhaustion, especially given the fact that I usually wind up leaving with one “maybe” and apologetically handing an armful of “definitely nots” to a mildly concerned salesperson. Perhaps the one good thing about COVID-19 wiping out my chance of a high school prom was the fact that I never had to spend hours under harsh, fluorescent, fitting-room lighting, trying on dress after dress, feeling like a frumpy, oddly-dimensioned, defective mannequin who can’t stop sweating.

All this to say, when a few members of Her Campus at UCLA’s executive board were invited to the new Westfield Century City Princess Polly’s “sip ‘n shop”, I assumed I’d be doing a lot more sipping than shopping. Boy, was I wrong.

Two mannequins stand in a store of women\'s clothing.
Original photo by Alyana Nurani

Princess Polly, an online fashion boutique with roots in Australia, has been producing trendy, quality clothing since 2010. And fortunately for us here in LA, in September, this boutique company opened one of its first locations less than 20 minutes from UCLA (not accounting for LA traffic, of course).

At the sip ‘n shop, my shopping-averse self initially gravitated towards the bouquet-making stand and the cute wooden drink cart (how could I not? They had maraschino cherries and salted rims!), but I found myself picking up an item or two, or maybe three or four, to just try on. Low stakes. Why not see if it fit, while I was here?

I started small, with a pair of strappy black Cammie heels, simply because there was one pair left and it was in my size (I know fate when it slaps me in the face). But if I was going to try on heels (which I almost never do – in your average heels, I’m six feet tall), I should probably test out some dresses, maybe some jeans. And if I was going to test out jeans, I’d need a sweater or two. And a jacket to top it all off. Obviously.

A shopping girl smiles in front of a clothing display.
Original photo by Alyana Nurani

The Westfield Century City mall is gorgeous, and I could spend ages wandering through its sleek, semi-outdoor halls, popping in and out of stores. But once I was in that newly-opened Princess Polly, I had zero desire to leave. I felt like a girl in an early 2000s romcom shopping montage. The fitting room lighting wasn’t devastating to the ego (a rare but wonderful thing), the staff were friendly and helpful, making chit chat as we waited for dressing rooms, and each piece of clothing just made you want to grab another to go with it.

I left with the heels, a pair of Zephee wide-leg dark-wash jeans, a coastline cropped sweater, an oversized crewneck sweatshirt, and a brown Goldsmith bomber jacket. Thankfully, it was an all-expenses sort of sip ‘n shop, because good quality clothing adds up and I’m already paying that out-of-state tuition. Still, the pieces were affordable and perfect if you feel like treating yourself.

A clothing display in a women\'s store.
Original photo by Alyana Nurani

As graduation season looms for UCLA students, the need for new springtime dresses and business-casual interview-worthy outfits increases tenfold. I assure you, a daytime trip to Westfield Century City’s Princess Polly will cure this demand. Wander into the clean, white store, take in the well-styled displays, and have the classic “okay, let’s both put it on and come out to assess” discussion through dressing room curtains with your friends.

For all that I avoid shopping, if I’m going to do it, I do it in-store. It’s much more intentional, you can better asses how clothes fit your dimensions (so you don’t have to do that tedious return process), and you can make a fun little girls’ day out of it. I also find in-store shopping prevents hyperconsumerism, which is a favor to both the environment and your bank account. It’s that skull-crushing season of spring quarter midterms; we all deserve a little treat. And at the Westfield Century City Princess Polly, treating yourself has never been easier!

Alyana is a third-year English and philosophy student at UCLA, from Toronto, Canada. She is the Editor in Chief of HC at UCLA. She loves stories in all forms, whether that be watching coming-of-age films, getting lost in a book, or putting on a show. You can also catch her playing team sports and crocheting plants in her free time.