Rhinestones, glitter, lace and tulle: Victoria’s Secret has landed in London and it’s poised and ready to camp up your underwear drawer.
The Bond Street store is 40,386 square foot of glossy, girly seduction, with glittering glass perfume bottles nestled enticingly within backlit cabinets, lacy knickers spread out on smooth black marble and shards of flattering mirror catching your reflection as you gaze, starry-eyed, at America’s favourite underwear.
The store is divided carefully into sections to ease you into the tricky process of underwear-buying. Knickers are helpfully sectioned into rows of styles so that everyone’s favourite is represented, from a full-cut cotton brief to the teeniest of slippery seamless thongs.
Under the watchful eyes of the world’s most genetically-impossible supermodels – their perfect bodies projected onto three storey high screens to remind you why you need to buy the Bombshell bra (‘adds two sizes for instant hourglass oomph’) – peruse bras, babydolls, skin-buffers and marabou-feather teddies, all designed to give you your very own helping of the American boudoir dream.
Despite the fact that the bra sizes at VS are different to normal UK sizes meaning – disappointingly – you’ll have to drop a cup size to get the right fit, confusion can be kept at bay. A phalanx of sleek attendants dressed head to toe in black are ready to lavish you with All-American service as soon as you so much as raise an eyebrow.
Downstairs assistants are dressed in sportier attire, as they work in the PINK section of the store which has – due to its own cult following – its own separate entrance. Yoga gear, sparkly t-shirts and cute cotton loungewear will appeal to a younger market.
And there’s more. Rise up again past walls of cosmetics, past the bridal fantasies, the dazzling show costumes and the saccharine pink dressing rooms, and on the top floor you’ll find a self-contained apartment designed to fit out the most elite of underwear-wearers. With its own private garden and champagne on tap, this bijoux little enclosure is where you’ll find Rihanna and Kate Moss decking themselves out in silken ribbons and cleverly concealed chicken fillets.
It’s by invitation only – to remind yourself that the real deal Angel dream remains tantalisingly close, and yet, so very far away.