If Paris is the capital of couture, than London is premier in pret-a-porter. I was impressed by the amount of affordable shops London has to offer: much more variety and quantity than Paris. The only killer is the exchange rateâ€”currently, one Pound is about $1.90 â€” yikes!
As I was on a trip for the weekend, I did not have time to properly explore all of London’s shopping districts. However, I did investigate (and did â€œtangibleâ€? research by making a few purchases!) into a London shopping staple, Oxford Street. Oxford Street is one of the largest shopping areas in London, which means that it tends to get crowded on the weekends (its Parisian equivalent would be Rue de Rivoli). You can find anything and everything on here, from bookstores to department stores to Costa Coffee (be sure to get a cup of the best coffee in London!).
Oxford Street Highlights:
Top Shop Underground stop: Oxford Circus
My new favorite store in Europe, this location is the headquarters on the Top Shops in London, complete with three packed floors of merchandise ranging from mod mini-dresses to practical knitted gloves to funky patterned tights. This location includes a manicure bar and a tasty restaurant in the basement (a good place to drop off the husband for an hour or two while you explore the store!). It is easily one of the most affordable, trendiest shops in London and a â€œmust shopâ€? on your next trip to London.
Selfridges Underground stop: Bond Street
A fabulous department that simply cannot be missed. There is something for everyone â€” women’s, men’s children’s, home, hardware, food – can be found here and the prices are reasonable (ranging from moderate to expensive). The unique boutique style set up distinguishes this cool department store, dividing the different labels (from Pucci to French Connection) into an easily navigable space. Great displays, great music, great atmosphere to shop!
Debenhams Underground stop: Bond Street
Still on Oxford Street this department storei s also an inspiring place to shop. They have an excellent selection of women’s wear and make-up at affordable prices. Check out the collections by FrostFrench and Ben de Lisi.
Christmas arrived early on Oxford Street. The lights and decorations (whose illumination was inaugurated on Thursday, November 9) provided a charming atmosphere which was a delight to shop, despite the massive crowds.