High Street Hero: Let's Talk About The Range

If you are a regular reader of my blogs, then you will know that I am a big fan of budget High Street stores when it comes to accessorising and decorating my home.  Independent stores are always my go to for anything special but when it comes to a quick fix, the High Street can't be beaten.  So I thought I would start a new feature where every now and then I'll talk about my current High Street Hero.  For those days when you are dropping the kids at football and then have an hour to spend hanging around the less salubrious shopping areas trying to look like you have a purpose and not that you are desperately looking for something to buy or worse, that you are a regular.

So guess who I'm starting with?  Yep.  The ubiquitous Range.  I promote this store so often that I really should be a Brand Ambassador.  I've been frequenting this shop for years, ever since we lived in Reading, and it generally comes up with the goods.  It's the only place outside of IKEA where you can buy poster frames that you don't need to take out a bank loan for.  £13.99 - bingo.  You have to work your way through an absolute pile of shit to get to the good stuff, but when you do, it's worth it.  The baby blue nautical range with ship anchors and fisherman nets for your bathroom isn't one that I'd recommend and they are currently really big on bronzed Buddha's.  But they've obviously got someone on their buying team who knows what they are doing because recently they've seriously upped their game and if you are shopping carefully, you can find some absolute gems.

If you were playing Snog, Marry, Avoid, you would definitely be avoiding this lot.

If you were playing Snog, Marry, Avoid, you would definitely be avoiding this lot.

From experience, the online customer service is shocking.   My cleaner had a glass topped coffee table that she bought from The Range and one morning she came downstairs to find it had literally exploded.  Joe found out and decided to fight her corner.  Now, Joe is ridiculously good at complaining.  He once travelled from London to York on an East Coast train with no air conditioning and came out of it with five first class tickets to London.  I've lost count of the amount of John Lewis gift vouchers we've received in return for him bollocking them for having to wait more than two minutes for store service.   But The Range were insurmountable.  They wouldn't give in.  Not even Joe's worst threats could encourage them to offer even a free coffee.   It's his only failure and it still galls him to this day.   That's my Brand Ambassador chances blown.

If you like the French Connection for DFS sofa, then this is The Range version at £399.99.

If you like the French Connection for DFS sofa, then this is The Range version at £399.99.

However, in defence I have to say that the in store staff are always lovely and happy to help.  When planning this blog, I visited The Range for market research purposes aka spending spree.   I immediately spotted a huge white Christmas tree that was originally £70 down to £20.  After haggling - yes, I have no boundaries when it comes to a bargain - they agreed that it could be mine for a tenner.   The assistant was more than happy to shrink wrap it and carry it to the car, he couldn't have been more helpful.  He even wished me Happy Christmas (so comedy).  So somewhere along the line they are doing it right.

So after an in depth and thorough investigation of their current stock, I've picked out my current top ten High Street Hero items.  I've linked to the website where possible, although some are just available in store.  Let's do this.


Three Silver Framed Hexagon Mirrors - £6.99

Lots of good things about these mirrors.  Firstly, there are three of them.  The perfect number for styling purposes.  Secondly, they are geometric.  You can tick the on trend box.  And thirdly, they are 25cm in diameter so a decent size..  Out of stock online at the moment but still in store.  Click here.

The Wise One Framed Canvas - £26.99

So I was in two minds whether to add this beaut into my top ten, mostly because lovely Shelley from Hilary & Flo sells a superior version.  But my rationale was that if you love Shelley's print but you can't afford the cash, then this is a good back up plan.  He's huge btw.  A whopping 38 inches tall and framed in black wood.  When I featured him on my story the other day I had about 20 direct messages asking for more info.  My kids are convinced we have Osama Bin Laden in the hall but I love him.  Currently in stock online and in store, click here

Copper Cushions - £5.99

Saw these and immediately wanted them.  Copper metallic cushions with slightly distressed effect fabric.  Standard cushion size and perfect for anywhere you care to put them.  Would look amazing mixed with other textures.  They don't have them online but they had plenty in store.  

Blush Pink Pom Pom Cushion - £6.99

Yep, another cushion but it's a good one.  The Ranges cushion game is strong, there's hundreds of them in colour tone order (like Homesense) and it was hard to pick my favourites.  This ticks the blush pink box and the pom pom box, a winner.  And it's online and in store, click here.

Wood Effect Oilcloth - £3.60 a metre

I was asked the other day the best place to buy oilcloth that wasn't a) twee, b) pastel or c) covered in chickens wearing bibs, and this is it.  I've been using The Range for kitchen oil cloth for years - previously I've bought the white lace effect one but this one is new and I love it.  It's cool, it'll fit any decor and not look as though you are channelling farmhouse.  Unless that's the look you are going for, obvs.  It's not online as it's sold by the metre but you can buy it instore.  They've also got a World Map one which is also brilliant although slightly more expensive at £9.50 a metre.

Industrial Bar Stool - £59.99

First of all, apologies for the picture quality of this one.  I did try and remove it from the shelf to take a better shot but it was so heavy I was at risk of head injury.  The seat is solid curved mango wood and it's a good enough product to be featured in any cool interior store but without the price tag to match.  A bargain.  Only available in store.

Braided Jute Rug - £16.99

I actually clapped when I saw this rug.  Lovely colour, good quality and nearly a metre diameter, it's perfect for layering and texturing your space.  I've cheated a bit and added the Moroccan style one above it as it was too good to miss out - total bargain at £5.99.  That one isn't available online but the Jute one is - click here to order.

Botanic Leaves Pendant - £12.99

This is a total winner all round.  Made of gold metal with palm leaf design, it's gorgeous and super on trend.  I'm definitely having this for my downstairs palm loo once Joe gets his electrical act in gear.  It's £15.99 in the shop but illogically online it's currently only £12.99 so get in quick.  Click here.

Olive Wood Board - £9.99

I had another clapping moment when I found these.  Natural olive wood circles ranging in diameter from 25cm - 30cm.  An absolute winner and the price is madness.  I'm definitely wanting a few of these as serving boards.  NB:  I was in Anthropologie today and they were using these exact boards to display candles in store.  If it's good enough for Anthropologie, it's good enough for me. Not available online but you can find them in store.  

Victoria Chandelier Pendant - £26.99

I couldn't compile my ten favourite items without including this one.  I actually bought this in the Sale last year for Ella's bedroom - the box was broken and it was marked £10 (another Christmas tree moment).  It's back in stock and looking as good as ever.  Check my Instagram feed for it in situ, it's a total star of a light.   In stock online and in store, click here.  

So that's my round up of the current ten best products you can pick up on a trip to The Range.   If you're passing, it's always worth popping in and having a look - I can usually bribe my kids with the till pick and mix although our visits are usually soured by them attempting to get into the blow up hot tub or risk eviction by jumping on the trampoline.

Who's your High Street Hero?  I'll be doing this as a regular feature so let me know your favourites and I'll plan a shopping visit.  I know, I'm selfless.