The most eagerly anticipated date in our Anya Hindmarch diaries is finally upon us: the London Fashion Week circus is back in town, with a snazzy new venue (okay, it’s a car park, but still) and a stunning line-up of catwalk shows. From Friday, Soho will be awash with stylish events – and you don’t need to be a minor Kardashian or flamboyant fashion blogger to get in on the action.
Channel Ab Fab and knock back the cocktails
How do fashion people kill time in between shows? By getting drunk and dishing out brutally offensive insults, of course. The Riding House Café’s London Fashion Week cocktail menu neatly combines these two pastimes, offering up four concoctions christened after biting one-liners from fashion’s it-crowd. We've tried and tested each one, and you can read our progressively befuddled reviews here. Investigative journalism at its finest. Riding House Café, 43-51 Great Titchfield St, W1W 7PQ. Fri Sep 18 – Tue Sep 22. ridinghousecafe.co.uk. Oxford Circus. £8 each.
Learn from a fashion expert
It’s a fashion week first: the BFC has mined its enviable contact book to host a series of free talks for the public, touching on everything from fashion photography to career advice. Confirmed speakers include Peter Pilotto and Zandra Rhodes. The finer details remain under their chapeaux, but follow @BFC and @LondonFashionWk on Twitter for ticket announcements on Tuesday. Conde Nast College of Fashion and Design, 16-17 Greek St, W1D 4DR. Tube: Leicester Square. Fri Sept 18 – Tue Sep 22. Free.
Milk the in-store discounts and free stuff
Fashion Week itself isn’t exactly known for its affordable shopping opportunities – unless you’re an oligarch, or recently founded a successful social media platform. Thankfully, high street stores like to get in on the action by offering an enticing array of discounts and freebies for the duration of LFW. Make a beeline for Berwick Street (just a few moments from fashion’s premier car park) to nab 20 percent off niche trainers at Footpatrol, a free fizz cocktail at Ember Yard and cocktails at the recently opened Bleach salon. Up the road at Carnaby, there’s 20 percent off at party-dress purveyors AQ/AQ and a gift with purchase at Cheap Monday.
Catch a catwalk live-stream
Who needs a show ticket when you have super-fast broadband? This season, the BFC has rigged up its own outdoor cinema, featuring a live catwalk stream, fashion films and digital coverage from the likes of SHOWstudio and Vogue. You’ll also find a massive outdoor screen over on Carnaby Street, streaming shows from the likes of Sibling, Peter Pilotto and Gareth Pugh.