My biggest bargain my ultimate splurge - Katara Chen

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Katara Chen, 22, who lives in Preston, is an International Journalism graduate from the University of Central Lancashire originally from Shenzhen in China. She tells us about some of her favourite wardrobe items.


Bargain/Splurge. Katara Chen Photo by Mark Storey

Bargain/Splurge. Katara Chen Photo by Mark Storey

“My biggest bargain which I love to death is a dress which I grabbed from St George’s Shopping Centre for just £10.

“I can’t recall which shop it was from but I remember when I saw it, I told myself it was the one and I had to own it.

“I call it the ‘Rome Dress’ because it has a floating characteristic which belongs to romance, or a dancer at night, which all fit into my imagination about Rome.

“It is black on the top and red in the dress part. After buying it, I searched all over the place to find a pair of matching shoes.

Bargain/Splurge. Katara Chen'Photo by Mark Storey (PLEASE BYLINE)

Bargain/Splurge. Katara Chen'Photo by Mark Storey (PLEASE BYLINE)

“I did end up taking this dress to Rome.

“I actually wore it beside the Vatican City and went to a fish restaurant feeling like a Hollywood star. I ordered spaghetti with clams.

“The second time I wore this dress was on the dreamy island of Oia in Santorini.

“I wore it to the Neptune’s restaurant in Oia island where one of the most beautiful sunsets was falling behind the mountain into the sea. It was a little bit chilly.

“The only flaw of the dress is that the inner dress sometimes moves upwards because of the movement of thighs when walking.

“Each time I have to shyly smooth it under the table or when everybody else on the street seems not to be watching.”


“My ultimate splurge is this necklace which I discovered at the Red Beach in Santorini.

“I can remember the necklace made of shells beating with the wind around my neck when I was on the back of a motorbike along the coast. The wind beat my necklace, and it beat my neck gently.

“I found it near the Red Beach when I was climbing a little stone hill.

“In the middle of the hill, a lady with perfect tanned skin was selling necklaces and bracelets made out of stones and shells.

“I saw the one I have now and asked for the price. It was 17 Euros.

“This is a lot more than I would normally spend on a necklace. I usually spend no more than £5 on a necklace.

“When it is exchanged to Chinese money, in my mind it becomes 10 times more expensive.

“But the lady at the Red Beach told me she was happy because it suited me.

“She had been hand-making this jewellary for more than 10 years in that place, usually in summer.

“She learned the skills and every thing she sold was made by herself.

“Her story inspired me. I suddenly thought I can learn any kind of skills in any part of the world and go to the most suitable place to use my skills and bring happiness to people at the same time.”

Pictures: Mark Storey