Explore London

Five Stylish Experiences for London Fashion Week

London Fashion Week is one of the ‘big four’ in fashion (along with Paris, New York and Milan). Twice a year, 250 designers present their newest collections to audiences packed with industry influencers, buyers, media and celebrities. Over the course of five days, some of the biggest names in fashion descend on the capital – and 2018 was no exception. Landmark shows by Victoria Beckham and Mary Katrantzou – both celebrating a decade in the industry – sat alongside impressive debuts from Alexa Chung and Riccardo Tisci (Burberry’s new creative director).

But if you didn’t make it to the big event (or if your invite to the front row got lost in the mail), never fear: there are still plenty of ways to get your fashion fix…

Head to the Festival

The perfect companion to London Fashion Week, the London Fashion Week Festival runs from Thursday – Saturday after the official shows finish – an ideal way to satisfy any couture cravings. With a range of designer catwalk shows to see, industry talks to attend, and great shopping opportunities, the Festival offers unprecedented access to the fashion industry. Best of all, unlike LFW tickets (which are often available only to the A-list), anyone can gain entry to the Festival – and tickets cost just £20.

Hit the Shops

As style icon Bo Derek once said: ‘Whoever said that money can’t buy happiness, simply didn’t know where to go shopping.’ Fortunately London offers a vast array of different shopping opportunities.

If designer labels are your bag, New/Old Bond Street is the place to start. The stunning buildings along this famous road host brands like Gucci, Ralph Lauren, Chanel and Cartier – and many more. But this isn’t just a street for shopping; these luxury stores put on exhibitions, too, allowing members of the public to view portraits of celebrities sporting iconic fashion looks.

From Bond Street, it’s a hop, skip and a jump to the esteemed tailors on Jermyn Street on Savile Row; and a short stroll to Fortnum & Mason (the Queen’s official grocer). Nip onto the tube at Piccadilly Station and alight at Knightsbridge for the ultimate in luxury: an afternoon shopping in famous department stores Harrods and Harvey Nichols. If looking at all the beautiful clothes whets your appetite, you’re in luck: both stores have restaurants and bars that are destinations in their own right.

Discover London’s Style Secrets

London is a city with a rich fashion history; birthplace of eminent designers like Alexander McQueen, Lulu Guinness and Stella McCartney, and home to many fashion movements, the streets have their own story to tell. As such, there are a number of tours that have been designed to give fashion fans a glimpse into London’s fashion culture and how this has developed over the years.

Haute Coutour, from popular walking tour company Coutours, offers unique insights into London’s heritage: from the male-dominated streets of Savile Row to the luxurious avenues of Mayfair, the tour covers everything from historical dress codes to the future of fashion. Or, for a fabulous combination of fashion history and contemporary clothing, try Catwalkers. Those embarking on a tour will be assigned a guide-cum-personal-shopper: a dual experience that teaches participants about London’s style history via a tour of the capital’s most famous fashion districts and allows them to pick up style tips (and potentially a new wardrobe) along the way.

Make Time for a Museum

If you fancy educating yourself on history, culture, or pretty much anything else, London is likely to have an appropriate museum for you. But if your mind is firmly set on a fashion-centric stay, there’s only one place to go: the Victoria & Albert Museum. With a huge range of displays within its impressive walls – which change regularly, but always include at least one fashion collection – and plenty of free exhibitions to explore, there’s always something to see here.

For Those in the Know…

The final two items on our list are a little different: two haunts favoured by fashion’s insiders. These hidden gems are ideal stops on your style tour of the city. First, the Shop at Bluebird; a staple for the fashion crowd, the Floral Street branch offers a carefully crafted collection of womenswear and accessories, as well as the popular ‘Fashion Pharmacy’, which provides a space to recharge during LFW (complete with health foods, revitalising drinks, and vitamin drips). Our second pick is the Chanel boutique at St Pancras; located in the heart of this bustling station, this is the capital’s most popular pit stop for fashionistas on the go. If you’re in a rush, feeling tired from a hard day’s shopping, or generally in need of a pick-me-up, one of the helpful beauty experts will perk up your look and ensure that you’re runway ready in no time!