When fashion was born, it was with the intention of catering to the individual fashionista’s needs. In today’s culture of disposable, idolatry trends, Chelsea, London remains faithful to the boutique trademark that put it on the style map.
One may not be so likely to find the provocative garments of the Punk era, but retail in SW3 still promotes the idea of the unique trendsetter.
Hardly a fashion secret, but something that must not go unmentionable is Rigby and Peller’s unparalleled underwear service. Every stylist will tell you that even the best tailored clothes can look ill-chosen without good foundations. Fitted and dressed according to one’s unique bust size and shape, this store offers a personal consultation followed by a complimentary personal shopping session for all sous-vêtements needs.
Donna Ida’s shop on Draycott Avenue is exemplary of the client-oriented boutique culture of Chelsea. Her business is devoting to matching each woman to her ideal pair of jeans – to fit not only her body, but her lifestyle and personality, providing the best wardrobe staple for the woman about town.
Dealing mainly in pastels and basic colours (navy, white, stone, black), Comptoir des Cottoniers stocks timeless and versatile essentials that blend in as well at the office as on the high street or restaurant on weekends, while its neighbour Ekyog has everything for the active lifestyle – from loungewear to yoga outfits.
Austique is guaranteed to be on trend, without forcing the mutton look. The current range embraces this summer’s romantic themes, translating them into wearable and long-lasting investments. Paired with key pieces from Kew’s effortlessly stylish collection, building your capsule wardrobe for the coming seasons could not be any easier.
Staying true to the vintage-bricolage ethos of London style, Steinberg & Tolkien could be mistaken for an Aladdin’s cave, as it stocks marvellous one-off trinkets, some of which deserve to be held in a museum. Across the way, Anna & Victoria offer a splendidly laid-out selection of merchandise from tomorrow’s top designers, with friendly and accommodating service, while the bolder among us should head for Butler and Wilson, who provide a host of sparkly gems and party frocks guaranteed to get you noticed.
And of course, King’s Road is still home to one of the brands that made it such a fashion haven – Vivienne Westwood‘s World’s End, which continues to sell revolutionary garments that influence high street stores from All Saints to Warehouse.
Be it for the boho look of the summer, or cosy knee-high essentials this winter, R Soles is the go-to boutique for unique, fashion-forward boots. Since its establishment over 30 years ago, Judy Rothchild’s boots has graced the catwalks and front covers of Vogue. You are guaranteed to fall in love with a pair, and wear them until they fall apart.
The Finishing Touches
Rated Urban Path’s 39th loveliest thing in London, Korres houses amazing sensitive skin-friendly cosmetics, translated through agreeable staff in a luxury setting. It is typical to an area where customer satisfaction is king. And for that signature scent, head to perfume connoisseurs Penhaligon.
For soft furnishings, look no further than India Jane. There are several homewares retailers in Chelsea, ranging from the one-off to the superstore, but many of them fall into the trap of being too generic, too mass-produced, too clichéd. At India Jane, however, one finds an eclectic range of stylish home solutions that present themselves as antiquated finds, and won’t be found in every other house in the borough.
Picture of King’s road shop originally posted by Wolfiewolf