This would be a kind of opinion I guess. Or rather.. it is a confession. I'm not a person who is really into branded stuffs. I'm not a shopaholic as well. It doesn't really matter what brand of clothing I'm wearing, as long as it is not the fake ones (you know what I mean, right?). I love buying local indie stuffs. Bandung is somewhat rich of creative young designers, creating new designs which are very unique. Some of my outfits are under the label of famous indie clothing brands such as Ouvalresearch, Screamous, Dloops, Sharks and so on. Some are even under infamous labels which I don't recognize (mostly products of mass-production).
I'm kind of person who usually gets stuck in one, two, or some favorite outfits, and leave them once they become boring. It's like wearing your favorite shirt and washing-and-drying it and ironing it and wearing it and washing-and-drying it again and ironing it over and over again until the color of your shirt fades, or you become uninterested in it, or at least, you buy a new one. No matter what the brand of your clothes is, once the clothes become your favorite, you'll wear it anyway.
However when it comes to branded stuffs, I'm a person who dare to save-money-and-buy-'em. Of course, style and design would come first before deciding the purchase. I'm into casual style, having tendency to wear something slim-fit, with simple graphic and colors of my favorite palette (if it is not monochromatic palette, that should be blue or pastel colors). Speaking of branded stuff, it should be also related to my favorite brands. So far Nike and Converse are on the top of my list, followed by Adidas, Vans, and so on. The products are somewhat expensive. Then how do I buy those stuffs?
Most of shopping malls in Bandung already have Twitter account to inform news such as events, promotion, as well as discount parties! Knowing the information would surely help you decide what you are or are not going to buy, and allocate your money for the stuffs. Make sure you check the price list before going to shopping mall in order to help you make better money allocation for the stuffs. Try to find the average price for stuffs of a brand (for example, Converse), find out how many percent the outlet would give for discount, and estimate your budget. For me, the updates are like unexpected chances to buy branded stuffs. Sometimes I don't have any plans to buy new branded stuffs, even the common ones. Then, I see an update informing about discount party for several tenants including my favorite ones and suddenly I become so spirited and go to the mall to buy the discounted stuffs.
I categorize shopping centers into three types: low-end, mid-end, and high-end. In low-end ones it is less likely to find branded stuffs. Wait! Let's bear in mind that the branded stuffs I mention here refer to clothes and shoes only. In low-end shopping centers, you'll find clothes under brands you might not recognize. However, it's not impossible to find clothes of your favorite designs. Pasar Baru Trade Center is, I guess, one of the low-end shopping centers located in Bandung downtown. It has lots of clothes under various brands--which you might never hear. But when talking of design and style, you sure can't underestimate it. The prices are cheaper and you are able to bargain. My mom goes there and comes back home with, at least, six to ten shopping bags in shopping season.
Branded stuffs are more likely to be found in mid-end and high-end shopping centers. Yogya Plaza is one of the best mid-end shopping centers in Bandung (similar to H&M, Urban Outfitters, or Uniqlo). However, the plaza is not only about clothes; it has a big supermarket, usually located at the top floors. Some brands such as Lois, 3Second, and Sharks could be found here. Interestingly, the retailer often holds discount events and for those who own member cards would get more privileges--discounts, of course. My mom has her own member card and she lets me use it to buy some branded stuffs. By using the card, I could get the stuffs for any cheaper.
How about the high-end shopping centers?
Yes, famous brands could be found there. The tenants are somewhat extensive. In Paris van Java mall, Sogo (a high-end clothing retailer) stretches for approximately 3-5 blocks and spans two levels. Zara stretches for two blocks, as well as Topman and Topshop. You'll find Mango, Marks & Spencer, Zara, Topman, and so on. But honestly, I'm not into them. The prices are too expensive and the style is not interesting for me. As I've told you earlier that I'm into casual style, probably stuffs like Nike, Converse, Airwalk, Quiksilver, and Billabong are more interesting for me.
But being stylish and fashionable is not only about what branded stuffs you have. It's not only about being up-to-date to latest fashion trends as well. I don't care about being stylish and fashionable. Well, every one has their own style, right? I'm fine being like this--sometimes a bit dorky, sometimes so kiddie. I wear Converse T-shirt, Urban Outfitter plaid flannel long-sleeved shirt, skinny jeans bought at a jeans specialist in Cihampelas street, Ben10 novelty rubber bracelet, and Diadora basketball shoes. I'm so far from being stylish and fashionable, but I feel comfortable wearing them. That's it! That's the point. Being comfortable is the main point.