17-18 Dover Street, London, W1S 4LT
Number 2 in the full list
Anyone with a really serious interest in fashion should hotfoot it directly to DSM, whether they’re wearing ten-inch brothel creeper platforms or not. This multi-brand, multi-floored fashion house is the baby of Rei Kawakubo, the Comme des Garcons visionary. She curated a selection of the world’s greatest fashion labels, and awarded them each one of the shops-in-a-shop that feature in-store. While every style brand of note is present, from Lanvin to Haider Ackermann, they form a blend that’s not at all intimidating, especially as it’s peppered with weird and wonderful stock from up and coming labels and punky limited editions. To further take the edge off the sharp fashion, there’s a scrumptious Rose Bakery present to reassure you that this is by no means a typical fashion experience, or a conventional London shop. Read more about Dover Street Market
Recommended by: Charlie Casely-Hayford, Billie and Sam Faiers, Stephen Jones, Sharmadean Reid, Melanie Rickey, Johnnie Sapong, Danielle Scutt, Yasmin Sewell and Brix Smith-Start.
18 Shacklewell Lane, London, E8 2EZ
Number 4 in the full list
The Late Night Chameleon Café is a fantastical art-installation-cum-fashion-boutique; its every aspect is unexpected. The location – a Dalston basement. The stock – a mix of truly avant-garde fashion (Dries Van Noten, Maison Martin Margiela, Ann Demeulemeester, Rick Owens), rare books and music. The interior – beautiful, and zoned like The Crystal Maze, designed by art director Gary Card. Oh, and it’s first and foremost an online store – the Dalston shop is officially a showroom that customers can book to view, and are left to explore after a brief guided tour. High concept fashion shopping like this can often seem a little soulless, but LN-CC is oddly intimate. Shoppers can break down the experience into a series of small gallery visits, browse books and mags, or discover new music. Garment hangers each have a friendship bracelet attached – a delightfully whimsical and New Age-y touch to LN-CC’s hard-edged design. Read more about LN-CC
Recommended by: Matthew Williamson.
46 Ledbury Road, London, W11 2AB
Number 6 in the full list
Brothers Henry and George Graham opened Wolf & Badger in 2010. Its Ledbury Road location, hyper-modern interior and slick window displays somewhat belie the stock – there are no obvious luxury brands here, but a glittering collective of emerging designers. There are about 70 brands in the store at any one time with new creatives renting small units within the space. The brothers offer their fledgling designers business advice and product development as well and are responsible for introducing any number of labels to the capital. It’s a focused business, sure, but we think Wolf & Badger genuinely nurtures new fashion talent. More London shops like this, please. Read more about Wolf & Badger
Recommended by: Jackie Dixon.
41 Coronet Street, London, N1 6HD
Number 7 in the full list
Jo Sindle and Kyle Stewart’s purely contemporary Hoxton boutique has a simple premise: offer an unfailingly cool edit of clothes, accessories, homeware and art in a slick environment with great service, exclusive, in-house fashion lines – and cartoony branding that underlines the owners’ sense of humour. The international mix of labels – from Opening Ceremony and Surface to Air to Quoddy footwear and east London fashion brand Antipodium – sits well with Kyle and Jo’s brilliantly realised Goodhood-branded goods. Street level is devoted to women’s brands, downstairs there is a men’s denim-based department and in 2011 the store co-created Galleries Goldstein, an art space across the cobbles on Coronet Street. All boutiques should be like this. Read more about Goodhood
Recommended by: Geoffrey J Finch and Dan Jones.
Savile Row, London, W1S 3PR
Number 9 in the full list
Handsome store managers Matthew Murphy and Kirk Beattie have created a huge success of their boutique b Store – from its first baby steps as a shoe shop on Conduit Street to the post-puberty bravado of a major fashion boutique on Savile Row, which also houses their own collection b Clothing. Championing the avant-garde, b Store isn’t shy of stocking the weird alongside the wonderful – and plenty of exclusives from the likes of Opening Ceremony as well as b Store’s fantastic own brand of footwear. Read more about b store
Recommended by: Peter Jensen.
140 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6JE
Number 12 in the full list
With half of medialand on its doorstep, Present does a brilliant trade in good quality low-key men’s fashion. In fact, everything it does, it does well – from the perfectly edited selection of check shirts and slim-fit denim to its little espresso bar, which knocks out a cup of coffee that Time Out once named the best in London. Read more about Present
Recommended by: Katie Dailey.
79-81 Ledbury Road, London, W11 2AG
Number 13 in the full list
Way too cool for a Portobello boutique, Village Bicycle sells exclusives such as Tripp jeans, plus naughty knickers, punky Kat Maconie shoes and a mix of edgy brands you wouldn’t expect to see in the Brora cashmere environs of Ledbury Road. If you’re still waiting for your trust fund to come through, there are affordable bits like books and penny sweets. Read more about Village Bicycle
52 Lamb's Conduit Street, London, WC1N 3LL
Number 15 in the full list
Observing the matt-black exterior and artful array of edgy looking homewares and avant-garde accessories, you’d be forgiven for thinking Darkroom is expensive and intimidating. It’s neither. While there’s the odd pricey (but not overpriced) piece of glassware or sculpture, there are also beautiful objects for every budget – and even the candleholders you can buy for £15 look like they belong in the Tate Modern rather than a London shop. With lots of interesting household items, statement jewellery and coffee-table books, it’s obviously great for gifts – but also for the missing piece in your own lounge or wardrobe. A work of art. Read more about Darkroom
Recommended by: Fred Butler and Katie Dailey.
1 Kingsland Road, London, E2 8AA
Number 18 in the full list
No-one is the retail arm of the Shoreditch empire that includes bar DreambagsJaguarShoes, pizzeria Due Sardi, and its own adjoining coffee house The Old Shoreditch Station. The stock ranges from exclusives by its own in-house creatives and edgy little labels you won’t find anywhere else – to tried and trusted hipster designers such as YMC and Karen Walker. Great for gifts for your slightly-cooler-than-you pals. Read more about No-one
Recommended by: Katie Dailey.
24-27 South Molton Street, London, W1K 5RD
Number 20 in the full list
Heard of Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Hussein Chalayan or John Galliano? Of course, but it’s due in no small part, to the eye of Joan Burstein, who gave all of these now world-famous designers their London retail debut in Browns. Burstein’s venerable store has reigned supreme over London’s boutiques for more than 35 years. Today, it dominates South Molton Street. Offering an unrivalled edit of everything from cult avant-garde to the eminently wearable, more than 100 designers now jostle for your attention over five interconnected stores. Read more about Browns
Recommended by: Katie Eary.
350 King's Road, London, SW3 5UU
Number 24 in the full list
This is the go-to-shop for the girly contingent in 'Made in Chelsea' when they're feeling a bit edgy. Essentially the King's Road's answer to Dover Street Market, the sprawling concept clothes shop also has a spa and seems to improve each season, adding Margaret Howell, Balenciaga and NAHM for Autumn Winter 2011. Owners John and Belle Robinson (the people behind Jigsaw and Kew) also present footwear, accessories, books, music and furniture in the 10,000 square foot space. Read more about Shop at Bluebird
Recommended by: Navaz Batliwalla.
42-44 Rivington Street, London, EC2A 3BN
Number 30 in the full list
The Fall guitarist-turned-TV-presenting-boutique-owning-pug-toting Brix Smith-Start is gradually taking over the nice bit of Shoreditch between Curtain Road and Great Eastern Street. First came her own fashion store, stashed with it-bags and labels from Acne to Preen. Next came her husband’s, Mr Start’s menswear shop. Now there’s a bespoke tailoring house to boot – all proffering stylish but pricey fashion with a Hoxton edge. Read more about Start
19 Fouberts Place, London, W1F 7QE
Number 32 in the full list
Art school outfitter Lazy Oaf has got its own particular brand of illustrated goods down to a fine art as you might expect after ten years in the biz. Graphic 1980s inspired designs and outsize cartoon faces grace the front of oversized sweatshirts, T-shirts, accessories and stationery, making you wish you were still at the age where you could get away with wearing a T-shirt with a giant face on. But then again, you might be… Read more about Lazy Oaf
Recommended by: Fred Butler.
2 Newburgh Street, London, W1F 7RD
Number 47 in the full list
Nearby Oxford and Carnaby Streets are swamped with the same high street names on repeat, so it’s good to see a W1 old timer still flying the flag for independent shopping. Tucked away on a back street, Beyond the Valley has become a bit of a destination shop for those seeking edgy, unusual female fashions in super-cool surrounds. Look out for the consistently excellent BTL in-house label. Read more about Beyond the Valley
Recommended by: Bethan Holt.
188 Kensington Park Road, London, W11 2ES
Number 48 in the full list
Cute double-decker boutique concept that is impossibly girly up top and appropriately manly down below. Husband-and-wife team Emily Dyson and Ian Paley opened up the shop in 2008 with Emily picking fashion clothing, accessories, kids’ items and the odd vintage buy for Couverture, while Garbstore sells Ian’s vintage-inspired line for men, plus bits and bobs from Folk, Wood Wood and more. Read more about Couverture & the Garbstore
Recommended by: Navaz Batliwalla.
Number 56 in the full list
, 49 & 88 Stoke Newington Church Street, London, N16 0AR & N16 0AP
Number 56 in the full list
Clothes shop Hub, and its men’s store over the road, has been keeping Stokey’s citizens in chinos and easy weekend wear for a few years now. The selection, if a bit obvious, is eminently tasteful – with Acne staples, Swedish Hasbeens and a great in-house label (Beth Graham) offering no-brainer wardrobe choices. The new Broadway Market outpost incorporates menswear and womenswear in one perfectly dressed whole. Read more about Hub
41-43 Redchurch Street, London, E2 7DL
Number 61 in the full list
Derelicte, the spoof line of clothing inspired by the homeless in the movie 'Zoolander' might well have been sold in Hostem – an artfully dishevelled gallery/men’s fashion boutique in the East End. Bare lightbulbs, mismatched reclaimed floorboards, and clothes rails made from hand-beaten iron set into concrete blocks combine to make a curiously inviting space for cutting-edge men’s fashion, where names like Rick Owens and Joe Casely Hayford serve to support the emergence of newer brands such as Japan’s Viridi-Anne and Odyn Vovk from LA. Read more about Hostem
Recommended by: Charlie Casely-Hayford and Nuno Mendes.
241 Portobello Road, London, W11 1LT
Number 64 in the full list
Unusually for a trendy threads shop, Supra has a masculine bias, with most of the store allocated to a great selection of menswear brands – with limited edition Nikes, Adidas originals and beautifully crisp denim shirts. That still leaves plenty of female options; the best bits of Sessun, YMC and Roxy Heart are handpicked for the womenswear rail. Look out for sale time, when discounts are generous and there are usually lots of your favourite bits left.
198 Brick Lane, London, E1 6SA
Number 68 in the full list
If the V&A gift shop and a Victorian cabinet of curiosities had a retail baby (unlikely, but go with it) then the child would grow up to be Luna & Curious. Bright and airy, with umbrellas for lampshades, a particularly fantastical selection of jewellery including gold baby skull earrings and a gallery space that plays host to offbeat events, this is shopping done the strange way. Read more about Luna & Curious
Recommended by: Gail Elliot and Yasmin Sewell.
85 Ebury Street, London, SW1W 9QU
Number 70 in the full list
Not a moth-eaten jumper or lonesome odd shoe in sight, this upmarket outpost of a most deserving institution is more ultra-rare vintage-clothing boutique than charity shop. Accordingly, the Chelsea British Red Cross has attracted something of a cult following, hooked on its superior selection of second-hand designer gear, couture and – occasionally – in-season it-bags at a fraction of the original cost. Read more about British Red Cross
177 Westbourne Grove, London, W11 2SB
Number 100 in the full list
The latest opening from Mary Portas's innovative Living & Giving concept – a charity boutique that sells pristine clothing, jewellery and footwear, donated by the likes of Clements Ribeiro and Margaret Howell, with homewear and gifts. Parson’s Green is the fourth Living & Giving shop to open – a British charity shop without the dust and must (or a battered version of the Da Vinci Code in sight). Read more about Mary's Living & Giving Shop For Save the Children
Recommended by: Jackie Dixon.