Carnaby Christmas Shopping Evening

Photo credit: Martin Pettitt via Flickr

Here's another piece I wrote for The Clothes Maiden, check them out here.

Every Londoner knows that if they want quirky stores, independent boutiques and unique, scrummy restaurants, the place to go is Carnaby. Situated in the heart of the West End,  the iconic area hosts over 100 places to shop and eat, making it a the perfect destination for a bit of Christmas shopping with a difference. Tonight, Carnaby is hosting a fabulous Christmas shopping party, where attendees can enjoy complimentary drinks, music from live DJ’s, and 20% discounts in various stores around the area. Grazia’s editor-at-large will be hosting free AW13 trend talks in Book Exchange, while the magazine’s style hunters will be strolling around snapping some of their favourite street styles. Shoppers will also be the first to see the newly installed Christmas decorations and get the chance to see the Carnaby Christmas lights turn on. To celebrate the launch of this fantastic event, The Clothes Maiden were invited for a mini taster shopping session, popping in to several stores around Carnaby and learning more about the companies and their histories.

We started out with champagne and nibbles at Whyte and Brown in Kingsly Court, where the wonderful owner Fiona Gale told us all about the company’s ethos. One of the only restaurants in London to specialise in chicken (the free-range kind, of course), Whyte and Brown has a wide range of dishes, ranging from wild mushroom risotto scotch eggs, to the chicken, bacon and leek burger, to their wonderful breakfast menu, complete with salmon slices and sourdough bread. A truly decadent start to the evening!
Our first shopping destination was Lomography, a wonderful store where fans of traditional analogue photography can feast their eyes on the most unique and interesting designs of cameras and accessories. 

Originating from Vienna in the early 1990’s, the company has become extremely popular with expressionists who love to experiment with their photos – from the Diana range that shoots dream-like, saturated images, to the wide-angel La Sardinia, to classic Fish Eyes, Lomography has something for every photographer, amateur or pro. The company has just released their brand new Winter Editions which are decorated with classic “Christmas Jumper” style patterns and adorable reindeer. We can’t tell you how hard it was for us to leave!

Next, we headed over to fine jeweller’s Joy Everley, who’s intricately detailed and delicate pieces were an instant favourite amongst the group! An independent store in every sense of the word, Joy’s company has been running for 15 years and is still going strong. Along with her daughter Yasmin, Joy designs all the jewellery herself, making the pieces utterly unique; from chunky scarab necklaces to dainty diamond wedding rings, the ladies cater to all. 

This season it’s all about layering, Joy smiled, as we all admired her collection of gold and silver necklaces adorning her neck. As a special treat, everyone got to choose a tiny charm from the collection to take home with them!

Next, we trotted along to AQ/AQ (formerly known as Aqua by Aqua), who warmly greeted us with a glass of bubbly and an exclusive peek into the latest collection. Founded in 1999, the company have recently rebranded, and with products being stocked in ASOS and Harrods, they are a definite one to watch in the upcoming years. 

From the look of the girls working at the shop who were adorned in cascading red dresses and tight fitting bodycons, we soon realise that AQ/AQ is all about the party – from digital print a-line skirts, to glittered jumpsuits, the brand celebrates the concept that the dress is made for the party, and the party is made for the dress. After gazing at all the wonderful garments, the girls generously offered us all a £50 gift voucher just in time for the party season.

Finally, we headed over to vintage store Lucy in Disguise, which, completely embellished with gold discs on the outside looked like a 1920’s flapper dress in itself! Owned by Lily Allen and her half-sister Sarah Owen, the shop has a wonderful collection of vintage clothing and accessories from every era you can think of. From 1960’s mini-skirts to 20’s cloche hats, and with pieces from a range of well-known designers including Moschino and Versace, this store has everything for your vintage needs. 

Downstairs has a little surprise; the girls have transformed the basement into a salon, where ladies (and gents!) can get “the look” from any era they desire; try a 1970’s quiff ponytail with eccentric eye-shadow and bold lip, or get your hair pinned into a 60’s beehive complete with Twiggy-esque eyelashes. Deemed “The Drama Parlour”, customers can also purchase customized hair products and (surprisingly) erotic gifts! 

After having a chat with Sarah, who looked stunning in her own beehive after a photoshoot, the group finally strode along to The Cha Cha Moon in Kingly Court where we indulged in cocktails, noodles and a whole lot of calamari.

With an introduction like this, we can’t wait to see what the Carnaby Christmas shopping experience has in store for us! Head over to carnaby.co.uk to get your free tickets now..

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comment as much as you like - all are appreciated! :)

Contact Form for Cazzy Bean


Email *

Message *