New research shows that while British fashion is riding high, it's brands like Mulberry and Alexander McQueen who are benefiting the most; independent boutiques are having a much harder time, with The Guardian reporting that in the first six months of this year alone almost 1,000 fashion independents closed down.
Team ELLE likes nothing better than a browse around a friendly fashion boutique – so here is a short celebration of our favourite small shops.
Visit them this weekend and buy something you love. Think of it as a public service…
Stacey Duguid, executive fashion editor: ‘I can recommend a new boutique in Cork, Ireland – it’s called Brocade & Lime and it’s a vintage-inspired shop which has all the best in Fifties and Sixties-inspired brands and even has its own beauty parlour, where you can go for a retro hair-do.
’Brocade & Lime, 4 Cornmarket Street, Cork 021 427 8882
Alice Wignall, features director: ‘If you find yourself in Brighton the Nola Boutique. It has a really great edit of interesting labels.’
Nola Boutique, 42 Gardner Street, Brighton BN1 1UN 01273 911006
Alannah Sparks, acting online shopping editor: ‘Oxygen Boutique is brilliant because they stock all these US labels you simply can’t get anywhere else. Oh, and the ladies who run it are fab too.'
Oxygen Boutique, 38 Eastcastle Street, Fitzrovia, London W1W 8DS 020 7636 6001
Alicia Waite, social media editor: ‘You can’t beat a good browse in the Village Bicycle. As well as all the clothes it has loads of lifestyle items, like phones shaped like lips and everything a fan of kitsch could desire.’
The Village Bicycle, 79-81 Ledbury Road, London W11 2AG 020 7313 9031
Alice Watt, online fashion assistant: ‘There’s a handful of independent boutiques I love in East London purely down to their crazy, bonkers interiors – Sick and Lik + Neon being my favourites. But Goodhood stands out by a mile. Simple and cool, there are no gimmicks, just an amazing edit. No other store stocks the same brands under one roof and there’s also a great mix of fashion, homewares and zines. I kind of want everything it stocks…‘
Goodhood Store, 41 Coronet Street Shoreditch, London, N1 6HD, 020 7729 3600
Naomi Attwood, online news writer: ‘There’s a brilliant little treasure trove of a vintage boutique on Endell St near Covent Garden called Blackout II. The lady who runs it is something of a legend and although everything they have is proper Forties, Fifties and Sixties – and other decades – the prices are still within reach. The best section is the accessories'
Blackout II, 51 Endell Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9AJ 020 7240 5006