Newsletter sign up

Follow the Trends in Fashionable North London

By | Blog | No Comments

 

North London has been the home of fashion in London for many years. The areas around Islington, Stoke Newington and Hoxton have their own unique styles and offer creative, innovative fashions from a whole host of independent stores and boutiques.

Head a little further west and you’ll find some fantastic vintage and bargain fashion finds on the famous Portobello Road Market. Mingling in with the small independent fashionistas you’ll find some big names vying for attention amongst the rest of the market vendors.

Each area has something different to offer, so take a look through our guide and choose an area with a style that fits with your own take on fashion.

 

Angelic Islington

One of the most up-market areas in North London, Islington brands itself as a village rather than as a London borough. From the air, it almost looks like one with a village green and relatively small streets teeming with local people shopping and eating in the many boutiques and bars around the area.

islington angel building

Islington’s famous Angel – a building that gives hints to a grand past for Islington village

 

The signature of Islington is minimal glamour, and this can be seen at one of its most sought-after boutiques – Wild Swans – on Cross Street. Established by Danish designer Caroline van Luthje, inside you will find the straightforward, clean lines and simple styling of Scandinavian designers in the clothing, shoes and jewellery on offer. A soothing ambiance with comfortable fitting rooms and fresh flowers make for a real shopping experience to remember.

Islington’s boutiques definitely offer the most refined style of our featured destinations and is the place to go to find timeless pieces to add to and enhance your wardrobe.

 

Stoke Newington

Stoke Newington, or Stokey as it’s affectionately known locally, is a centre for independent fashion boutiques. Alongside other independent stores including bookshops and non-chain restaurants, Stoke Newington has a loyal set of devotees to the cult of independent shopping who frequent its many stores.

One of the most celebrated outfitters in Stoke Newington is Hub, on Stoke Newington Church Street. Stocking men’s and women’s wear, the boutique stocks clothes from small independent designers and a range of shoes and accessories. Their Mimi Berry handbags are a particular find and come in a range of on-trend colours to co-ordinate with any outfit.

As a prime spot for young families, Stoke Newington also has a number of independent children’s fashion boutiques. Little People and Pink and Blue, both on Stamford Hill, stock a range of fashionable outfits for the kids in your life.

 

Hoxton heroes

At the cutting edge of London fashion is Hoxton. The area has gone up in the world in the past few years, finding it elevated from salt-of-the-earth London heartland to the epicentre of art and fashion in North London. Designers such as Alexander McQueen have rubbed shoulders with modern artists like Tracy Emin and brought about a cultural revolution in this formerly neglected part of the city.

hoxton square garden

Once you’re all shopped out, take a break at the pretty Hoxton Square Garden

The Hoxton style – garish, mismatched prints and oversized plastic accessories – was a deliberate backlash against the polished Portobello princesses and Sloane Rangers from the West End, making a statement about using what was available to best effect. The area now plays host to the Hoxton Street Market, London’s only dedicated fashion market, just off Hoxton Square, every Saturday from 10am-6pm. Amongst its many stalls you will find only independent fashion designers offering clothing at the leading edge of style in London.

Hoxton is the fashion capital for young people, and if you’re looking for indie clubbing attire, this is the place to go.

 

Conclusion

North London has a whole range of fashionable districts that appeal to different people for different reasons. From timelessly stylish Islington through to trendy Hoxton, there’s somewhere for everyone to find a style that suits.

 

 

Image Credits: Wikipedia 1 & 2

London’s Great Stadiums

By | Blog | No Comments

 

As well as being the UK capital and a thriving hub of business and culture, London has a number of world-class sporting venues that have played host to some of the most prestigious events in the world. In summer 2012, London held the Olympic Games and the stadiums across the city old and new saw some incredible feats of sporting achievement watched by spectators in the city and across the globe.

The stadiums within the city can host a whole range of sporting spectacles from football, the country’s national sport, through to track and field events more at home on the Olympic programme. Including some household names, London’s stadiums hold some of the greatest sporting spectacles in the world.

 

The home of British football

Located in North West London, Wembley Stadium is thought of across the country as the spiritual home of the British national sport. Playing host to decisive league and cup final games from across the spectrum, the stadium has been visited by some of the most prestigious clubs as well as many an upstart who wish to challenge the dominant clubs for their place in footballing history.

london wembley sport event

London’s famous Wembley Stadium is used for all sorts of sports and musical entertainments

The current stadium is a reworking of the original, which stood on the site from 1923 to 2002 when it was demolished to make way for the impressive new structure with its soaring arches that replaced the former stadium’s iconic twin towers. During the reconstruction, all its usual fixtures were moved to the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, over the Severn in Wales.

The stadium is not just a venue for sporting events. During its short life, it’s seen some huge music spectacles as well as sports ones. It offers the greatest capacity of any venue in the city for music and with big hitters such as Bruce Springsteen and Robbie Williams, there’s always something big going on.

 

Not exactly a stadium

The second most famous sporting venue in the UK is located in South West London and sees a huge amount of international attention in the summer each year. The All England Lawn Tennis Club, better known to most people as Wimbledon, hosts the British Open Tennis Championships that sees the best of the best in international tennis battle it out on the courts for a £1 million prize.

The tennis club sits on undulating ground and has at its heart the now-famous “Henman Hill,” which grew popular with people hoping to see the first ever British Men’s Wimbledon Champion since 1909. The crowds still haven’t seen a Brit win the final, but did have the chance to see Andy Murray secure the Olympic Men’s title last year during London 2012, causing much jubilation on what is now referred to by some as “Murray Mound.”

 

Lording it

The home of British cricket can be found in North London at Lord’s Cricket Ground. The site of many an historic victory of England’s best men in white, the ground has most recently seen a smashing victory of the English side over the visiting Indian team in 2011, where the four-match series was won decisively 4-0 by England.

 

lord victorian pavilion

Lord’s beautiful Victorian pavilion

 

The test matches played at the ground are ticketed on a ballot basis, which means that anyone can get tickets provided they apply and are successfully drawn from the hat. There can be few more quintessentially English ways to spend an afternoon than listening to the sound of leather on willow with a pint of ale in the summer sunshine.

 

Conclusion

London is the home of several high-profile sporting venues that offer a full programme of entertainment throughout the year. Boasting names that are iconic around the world, followers of tennis, football and cricket will find something of interest to them in the city.

 

 

Image Credits: Wikipedia and Wikipedia

The Past and Present of London’s West End

By | Blog | No Comments

 

The West End of London is the famed theatre district and place where people come from far and wide to enjoy the sights and sounds of the entertainment capital of the city. With the greatest density of theatres in London, the West End has a whole host of hit theatrical productions from popular musicals to long-running plays that lure pleasure-seekers in off the streets with promise of entertainment.

 

london west end post war

London’s West End in the immediate post-war era was a thriving place

 

The West End has a long history as a draw for people across the city and far beyond. Learn a little about the background of the capital of theatreland and get a little bit more out of your visit.

 

The growth of the West End

When London was still a smoky pre-industrial city, the West End was favoured by the gentry and aristocracy for its cleaner air. The easterly winds that prevail in London tended to keep the smoke and unpleasant smells from the filthy Thames and the South London tanneries away from the easily offended noses of the filthy rich. The residential areas around Mayfair and Belgravia are still the preserve of the wealthy, and the property prices in these areas tend to be prohibitively expensive for the vast majority of Londoners.

The area of the West End that has traditionally been more accessible for the majority of Londoners and visitors to the city is the theatre district around Covent Garden and Tottenham Court Road.

Theatre in the West End started to boom in the early 19th century when a number of small theatres and music halls were established including the Adelphi Theatre, which still stands on The Strand today. In the middle of the 1800s, the government passed the Theatres Act and the conditions for the performance of theatre were relaxed. Music Hall acts were the cinema of their day and the working classes would take a trip “up West” to see some of the famous cabaret acts of the day in the Vaudeville Theatre.

 

Theatre in London today

With just under 40 venues in the West End’s theatreland, London’s West End stands alongside Broadway in New York as representing the highest level of commercial theatre in the English-speaking world. The shows open in London’s theatreland venues today range from some of the longest running plays in the Western world – The Mousetrap, which has run in the West End continuously for over 60 years – and new plays and musicals that open on a regular basis.

 

the mousetrap st martin theatre

The Mousetrap at St Martin’s Theatre, now above 60 years running in London

Some of the best known names on the silver screen have also done their turn on the West End stage in recent years. Hollywood actors Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow are just two of a whole host of A-list stars that have taken time out of their movie schedules to star on the West End stage, and there are plenty of others waiting to follow their lead.

One of the biggest draws of the West End for visitors is the big budget musicals that take their place in the theatres around Covent Garden. Currently, the recently opened risqué musical The Book of Mormon is making a stir in the Prince of Wales Theatre, but those who are looking for a more family friendly theatre experience will find more than enough between the two Roald Dahl-based musicals, children’s favourite The Lion King and many musicals based on the back catalogues of some of the most successful pop acts in the past 50 years.

 

Conclusion

The history of the West End’s theatre district is part of what’s made it the place it is today. The beating heart of London’s cultural centre, the West End has something in store for the whole family to enjoy.

 

 

Image Credits: Wikipedia 1 and 2

Support London’s Air Ambulance

We are delighted to support London’s Air Ambulance, helping to extend the reach of their lifesaving missions across London. The London Helicopter will match your donation to double its impact.

css.php