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Oxford Street: Marble Arch to Bond Street

Time Out's guide to Oxford Street shops between Marble Arch and Bond Street


This is the less frenetic third of Oxford Street, with the glamorous Selfridges providing a shoppers’ paradise of must-see labels, pop up shops and chic refreshment areas, and slightly quieter flagship branches for high street brands like River Island. That is until you get to the positively gigantic Primark store – the Marble Arch monster of cheap clothing, where sometimes the crowds make it difficult to even get in the door.

Forever 21

Shopping Womenswear Oxford Street
360 Oxford Street, W1C 1AB

This US chainstore arrived in Oxford Street in 2011, hoping to give Topshop a run for its money. The bright white lighting and tightly-packed rails of cheap and cheerful clothing mean it’s aimed squarely at the late teens/early twenties market (no-one else looks good in polyester under a fluorescent light). While competition for those monthly allowances is stiff on Oxford Street (Topshop, H&M, Miss Selfridge already do a good job of servicing the young with skinny jeans and R&B) Forever 21 has been a hit.

Marks & Spencer

Shopping Home decor Oxford Street
Oxford Street, London, W1C 1AP

This Marble Arch flagship M&S is the store's largest outlet in the country. It is Marks and Spencer shopping at its best, and showcases the shopping vision drawn out by former Chairman Stuart Rose – each type of customer has been assigned their own range, from Limited Edition, for the fast fashion consumer with one eye on the catwalk and the other on their wallet, to Autograph, for the more classic but still style-conscious dresser, to Per Una, for the mumsy dresser who likes a frill or a flourish.

New Look

Shopping Womenswear Soho
Oxford Street, London, W1D 2LE

Like Primark, New Look made its name selling cheap, trend-led fashion and accessories. There's a lot of tat in-store, with polyester and nylon abounding, but there are also great bargains to be found if you rummage. This is the London flagship, and it is well laid out with plenty of space to browse. It also has the capital's best selection of New Look shoes – a secret favourite of Elle staffers (who used to have an office nearby).


Shopping Home decor Mayfair
499-517 Oxford Street, London, W1K 7DA

Set over three cavernous floors, Primark Marble Arch opened in 2007, and offers 70,000 sq ft of unbelievably cheap clothing and accessories. You get what you pay for in terms of shopping experience – the queues are long, the staff indifferent, the rails chaotic and demand for changing rooms so high that people try on clothes on the shop floor. But there aren’t many shops where you can fill enormous paper bags full of clothes and leave with change from a £50 note. Jeans come for under a tenner, ballet pumps can set you back as little as £4.

River Island

Shopping Womenswear Oxford Street
Oxford Street, London, W1C 2DN

River Island has been a high street mainstay since being launched in 1948. It has had many makeovers over the years, and now sits alongside New Look and H&M as a slightly cheaper pretender to the Topshop throne – with skinny jeans for £30, party dresses for around £35. While much of its offering is firmly in the 'fast fashion' vein, it offers a surprisingly consistent shoe line, laddish menswear, and well cut leather jackets. In 2010 it introduced a childrenswear line, offering fashionable kids' clothes at pocket-friendly prices.

Russell & Bromley

Shopping Shoes London
Oxford Street, London, W1CJ 2JY

Although the smart-but-spare shop layout may not be much to write home about, at Russell & Bromley's stores the shoes speak for themselves. Simple, well-made and high quality: as well as beautiful flats for men and women there are extremely comfortable heels and classic leather bags. Our tip? Head to the High Street Kensington store on a quiet afternoon to browse in peace – or take advantage of their brilliant fitting service for children.


Shopping Bakeries Oxford Street
400 Oxford Street, London, W1C 1JS

Selfridges – one of Time Out's favourite department stores – celebrated its centenary in 2009. With its concession boutiques, store-wide themed events and collections from the hottest new brands, it's a first port-of-call for stylish one-stop shopping, while useful floor plans make navigating the store easy-peasy. The basement is chock-full of hip home accessories and stylish but practical kitchen equipment (think Alessi, Le Creuset and Marco Pierre White for Russell Hobbs),while on the ground floor the Wonder Room – 19,000sq ft of luxury brands – goes from strength to strength.

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