A Fashion-lover’s Guide to a Weekend in London
You know that feeling when things get too routine during the work week and you start scrolling through old vacation photos just to let your mind get some relief from the humdrum of life? Well that happened to me (again) and I ended up editing photos from my recent trip to the UK. I was really glad for the chance to visit London again although I could only afford one weekend there.
Now that’s barely enough time for such a vibrant city! But with some proper planning, you can make the most of your time to shop, visit, and snap your way around good ol’ London.
Fortunately, I did most of my touristy sightseeing in previous trips and could now put my limited 48 hours to a more intimate view of London. (Although I have to admit it was very very tempting to revisit landmarks such as Westminster and Buckingham.)
As millennials who are more well-travelled, I think we prefer experience travels to touristy travels. When you get to London, you want to experience her like a local does!
1. Ready, get set, SHOP AWAY
London is a fashion capital and there’s no way you are going home with your wallet as fat as it was when you arrived. It is a shopper’s paradise. Names that quickly come to mind are departmental stores Harrods, Liberty London, Selfridges, and The Royal Exchange
They are convenient one-stop shopping solutions that stock multiple luxury brands. Independent local brands also prove to be a delightful and more exclusive find in these stores, such as Aspinal of London that specialises in handcrafted luxury leather goods.
(Harrods illustration by me)
International fashion labels such as Alexander McQueen and Vivienne Westwood can be found in Harrods and Selfridges, while The Royal Exchange houses established perfumer Penhaligon’s among other luxury brands. My personal pick is Liberty for their exclusive in-house label. Intricately patterned ceramics and other beautiful homeware line the walls at their Regent Street flagship. A visit to the store is an instant hit of inspiration to glam up your house to the levels of those insta-worthy posts. Plus, all the stores boast lovely cafes for a nice afternoon tea to rest those tired shopping feet!
2. The BRITISH shopping experience
British labels get their own dedicated paragraph because they have always been known for their heritage, provenance, and ability to produce impeccable quality goods. The perks of being in London include the exclusive experience their flagship stores offer. A couple of my most favourite local brands are Jo Malone and Burberry.
A visit to the fragrance bar in Jo Malone’s Covent Garden store will give you your very own personalised scent. You get to customise a bottle engraved with your initials. A fragrance that belongs solely to you, made on the spot just for you! My inner independent woman just couldn’t resist this treat!
3. Classic London
As I mentioned earlier, it’s really hard to completely ignore landmarks such as the breathtaking architecture of the Palace of Westminster (with everyone’s favourite Big Ben!) and Buckingham Palace.
Take your obligatory “I’m here in London” shots! (Also they serve as a great backdrop to show off your OOTD from your new shopping haul.)
(Photo by me, shot on my Sony RX100V)
Plus, Sloane Street (Harrods) and Bond Street (Selfridges) are worth taking a stroll down for their architecture and the glorious window displays of the luxury boutiques that line the streets (plus they’re away from the crowd on Oxford Street!). The prestigious Victoria and Albert Museum for art and fashion aficionados is only a short distance away from Harrods as well!
4. Places for your ‘gram
Off the well-trodden touristy track, London has many beautiful streets that just make you feel like you’ve stepped into another world. St Luke’s Mews, Elm Row, and Dove Mews are all such quaint colourful streets, just to name a few.
I woke up early to explore the famed Nottinghill Street on Sunday morning. The streets were empty but oh so beautiful! You can’t believe how many more photographs I took in just that morning than the whole of Saturday! Rows and rows of houses had vibrant doors with so much personality and it never gets boring looking at them as you stroll down the street.
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Another place worth stopping for your insta-worthy pictures is Peggy Porschen with their quintessential pink façade. Even the food served is so pretty! Surely no one will blame you for stopping to take some (read: many) photos to share with your friends!
(Photo by me, shot on my Sony RX100V)
5. Flower shopping
As someone who works with flowers it pained me so much to leave London without visiting Colombia Road Flower Market. All sorts of bulbs and blooms are available along the Victorian street on Sundays.
So there you have it, my condensed weekend guide to London from one fashion-lover to another. Right now I’ve got to get back to work but fortunately this little mental trip to London has helped fuel my creative streak. Before I go, do share your stories/memories of this beautiful city with me!
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