It’s the beginning of London Fashion week, but before you start cooing over street style shots and new A/W looks, you might want to take a moment to see what else is happening on the UK fashion scene.
It’s not all about showcasing in London you know!
Whilst the British Fashion Council do a sterling job of highlighting top British designers from up and down the country, I can’t help but think that the celebration of our industry shouldn’t be confined to the capital.
Yes, that place where the emo kids hang out! Look it’s got a bad rep, but I promise there are some total gems in there! Whether you want a handmade dress or the materials to make your own, Afflecks is home to pretty much everything you’d ever need to look as if you’re fresh off the runway.
Describing itself as a ‘totem of indie commerce’, you’ll feel as if you’ve stepped into a physical manifest of Etsy. The independent retailers vary in styles and as mentioned, it’s not all about fashion from the scene kid age. From the floral kimonos of ‘No Angel’ to the retro fancy dress hub in ‘The Attic’, it’s worth wandering away from Market Street to discover this quirky gem.
Sophie Cameron Davis
Nothing beats the luxury feel of a silk shirt, particularly one made by British fashion maven Sophie Cameron Davis. What makes each piece so special is the incredible attention to detail. With a background in lingerie design, you can see Sophie’s skills influence the finished look of every shirt.
Lace detailing and a tailored fit ensure that every shirt has a feminine feel. Whilst some of the cut out items might not quite be office appropriate, these stunning shirts are definitely key for fans of power dressing.
The Jewellery Quarter
I once heard a story about someone going through a divorce from their husband. Instead of giving the ring back, she had a replica made in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter and kept the real one herself (probably to sell on later). Apparently the guy never realised because the replica was made perfectly to match – and that really is testament to how good they are!
The Jewellery Quarter is home to Europe’s largest school of jewellery, so naturally these skills of detail, craftsmanship (and sometimes deception) have been passed on to those lucky enough to study there.
The Cool Line
Even the most demure of outfits can benefit from a colour pop scarf. The Cool Line create digitally printed scarves that can be paired with just about anything. Round your neck or weaved through your handbag handles, the vibrant colours in each piece bring new life to your everyday attire.
Despite only launching in November 2015, The Cool Line already have an impressive range of unique designs. If you’re a fan of geometric patterns, you’ll love these bold designs.
Outdoor gear might not necessarily scream style, but that’s what makes Protected Species so different. Combining brilliant tailored shapes with high-performance material, you’ll be both storm-proof and stylish.
Taking on a relatively male dominated industry, Protected Species have a completely female led team – from design right through to manufacturing. It’s inspiring to see their entrepreneurial spirit shine through their range.
Susie in the Sky
Who would have thought Jessica Alba would be spotted rocking a gorgeous leather handbag from lil ol’ Wolves? Then again, it’s easy to see why.
Susie in the Sky create an amazing array of tote bags, satchels, make up bags and belts. Their designs feel contemporary, without straying too far from the traditional craftsmanship you’d expect from a luxury retailer. Flying the flag for British design, their much loved creations have gone international after becoming recognised for their distinct ‘Lila tote’.