5 Shops to Visit During London Design Week
No matter the time of day, no matter the season, London is always a good idea. But for all you design fiends out there, there’s no better time to make your way over to Samuel Johnson’s favourite city than London Design Week.
Always a riot of pattern, colour and style, London is at its best during this truly golden autumnal week. The world’s greatest thinkers, practitioners, retailers and educators swarm the city to discuss new trends, stalwart styles and, naturally, who has the best taste. And as lovers of interiors ourselves, we also can’t resist using this as the perfect opportunity to sniff around our very favourite shops in search of trinkets, treasures and true inspiration.
So, want to know where we’re headed this September 17-25? Check out our must-visit design shops – just don’t take snag those cushions we were eyeing before we get a chance to buy them. We’ll see you there!
A true titan of the design world, the late, great Robert Kime had undeniably great taste. The antiques dealer, textile collector and ELLE DECOR A-List interior designer held court from his London Ebury Street shop for years. If antiques tickle your fancy or patterning pleases you, this is certainly the place to go.
The Conran Shop
Another British classic, The Conran Shop has a special place in the hearts of many British aesthetes. Think of it as a department store but much, much chicer. You can get everything from wry greeting cards to intoxicating scented candles to iconic pieces of furniture here; The Conran Shop really is your oyster. Though the Chelsea location is the original, we’re partial to the Marylebone shop, as there are so many other lovely spots nearby to poke around in.
Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler
Founded in the 1930s, Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler is the longest-running interior decorating firm in the United Kingdom. But fret not, you needn’t be a client of this fabled decorator to take advantage of their good taste. Head to their Pimlico Road showroom to browse through their unparalleled selection of antiques and new designs. Everything is so perfectly curated that you’ll wish you’d hired them to do your whole house. Trust us.
An oldie (founded 147 years ago in 1875!) but a goodie, Liberty has to be just about the best department store in the world. While we love shopping for clothes here – they’ve got an incredible selection of emerging designers at (relatively) affordable prices – but the real goldmine is the fabric selection. Head up to the fourth floor and lose yourself in the stunning prints. You’ll suddenly realise your whole house is wrong and that you simply MUST put in new curtains. Bring along a rational friend to try and curb the damage.
Alex Eagle Studio
Tucked in an unassuming building on Soho’s Lexington Street, Alex Eagle Studio is anything but a wallflower. Everything cool, current and covetable can be found here. Sure, the clothes are great, but the homewares are what we’re after. Ettore Sottsass mirrors, Murano glass, Hotel Il Pelicano coffee table books. They’ve got it all!