Scene: Where to Eat, Shop And Gaze


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Ge­orge Bam­ford has opened his first stand-alone store, a men's groom­ing hub called Bam­ford Groom­ing Depart­ment in Lon­don's Royal Ex­change. The store is the fruit of a col­lab­o­ra­tion with his mother, Ca­role Bam­ford, founder of the Dayles­ford Or­ganic Farmshops and Bam­ford brands.

Housed in a for­mer cigar shop, the store's walls have been stripped and dis­tressed. Orig­i­nal fea­tures such as the par­quet floor­ing and the green wall tiles sit along­side the sleek, min­i­mal­ist fix­tures and fit­tings.

“I just love that rus­tic vibe with a mod­ern twist,” said Bam­ford, whose store sells Bam­ford men's groom­ing prod­ucts, ac­ces­sories such as head­phones and sta­tionery. He's also added his fine watch cus­tomiza­tion ser­vice into the mix.

Bam­ford has a well-es­tab­lished busi­ness work­ing with brands such as Bul­gari, Tag

Heuer and Zenith, and help­ing cus­tomers de­sign their own watches. He of­fers that par­tic­u­lar ser­vice to cus­tomers ev­ery Thurs­day.

“I love the idea of re­tail: Peo­ple keep on say­ing that re­tail's dead — but it's not dead. This is dis­cov­er­able re­tail. We all have to be a lit­tle bit dif­fer­ent with how we're do­ing re­tail — and how we're do­ing any­thing,” he said dur­ing a walk­through.

The store spans two floors. The first floor is ded­i­cated to sales, while the lower ground is for one-to-one ap­point­ments and pop-up part­ner­ships.

“I want peo­ple to say, ‘I dis­cov­ered this.' I want them to see this as a dif­fer­ent type of con­cept store. I sell the things I like, and I hope peo­ple come into this world and say they like them, too. I see my­self as a cus­tomer of my own prod­uct.”

The store stocks the full range of Bam­ford's groom­ing prod­ucts — such as sham­poos, body washes and colognes — in­spired by his own needs. “I wanted a mas­cu­line prod­uct for me, some­thing that felt like if I was grab­bing it out of the shower I would know that it's mine.”

Bam­ford said he plans to re­lease fur­ther prod­ucts, in­clud­ing sun­glasses, within the year. Asked if he plans to open more groom­ing shops he said: “It's got to be the right space. You can't find an­other shop just any­where.” — SA­MUEL BURNS


More than 60 of Azze­dine Alaïa's great­est hits have gone on dis­play at the De­sign Mu­seum in Hol­land Park in the first show of the de­signer's work in Lon­don. Alaïa, who died in Novem­ber, had worked closely on the show with his old friend Mark Wil­son, chief cu­ra­tor of the Groninger Mu­seum in the Nether­lands.

Wil­son said the point was to high­light cut, seam­ing and all of the de­tails that went into a dress made by Alaïa, who Wil­son refers to as “the mas­ter per­fec­tion­ist. This is an op­por­tu­nity to see all the vari­a­tion in how he re­fined and re­fined and re­fined." He added that there was never any ques­tion that the show would go on fol­low­ing Alaïa's death.

Looks in­clude the spi­ral­ing zip­per dress, the but­tery leather pieces with metal grom­mets, and time­less dresses with fine knife pleats and gos­samer knots. The hand of the de­signer is ev­ery­where, from the spare and sculp­tural sil­hou­ettes to the so­phis­ti­cated engineering right down to the el­e­gant cus­tom-made man­nequins.

The show runs un­til Oct. 7, and for Alaïa fans there is more to come: Carla Soz­zani, a close friend of the late de­signer and the co­founder of the Azze­dine Alaïa As­so­ci­a­tion (soon to be a foun­da­tion) has an­other ex­hi­bi­tion planned in July to co­in­cide with the cou­ture shows in Paris.

The ti­tle of that show will be "The Alchemy of a Col­lec­tion." It will spot­light the 12 months of work ahead of a col­lec­tion launch. Like “Azze­dine Alaïa: Je suis cou­turier,” which opened in Jan­uary, it will take place at 18 Rue de la Ver­rerie, the gallery ad­join­ing the de­signer's stu­dio and his­toric bou­tique.

— SA­MAN­THA CONTI Azze­dine Alaïa: The Cou­turier runs un­til Oct. 7

The De­sign Mu­seum

224-238 Kens­ing­ton High Street Lon­don W8 6AG


The big con­ver­sa­tion in fash­ion right now is sus­tain­abil­ity, and the Vic­to­ria & Al­bert Mu­seum has chimed in with an ex­hi­bi­tion that ex­plores the long­time re­la­tion­ship be­tween fash­ion and na­ture, with ob­jects dat­ing back to the 1600s.

Cu­ra­tor Ed­wina Ehrman said she was in­trigued by how fash­ion has been in­spired by na­ture and said she wanted to cre­ate an ex­hi­bi­tion “that could be a fo­rum for de­bate and dis­cus­sion.”

There are more than 300 pieces on dis­play, in­clud­ing the Calvin Klein dress made from re­cy­cled plas­tic bot­tles that Emma Wat­son wore to the 2016 Met Gala as a part of the Green Car­pet Chal­lenge with Eco-Age and the flo­ral dress from Er­dem's Green Car­pet Chal­lenge col­lec­tion. There is also an up­cy­cled dress by Christo­pher Rae­burn.

The show spot­lights innovative ma­te­ri­als such as Fer­rag­amo's use of orange fiber, made from waste from the Ital­ian citrus in­dus­try, and an H&M Con­scious dress made from re­cy­cled plas­tic. The Cen­tre for Sus­tain­able Fash­ion at Lon­don Col­lege of Fash­ion and UAL have also cre­ated two in­stal­la­tions al­low­ing vis­i­tors to ex­pe­ri­ence the im­pact of fash­ion pro­duc­tion and sales on the nat­u­ral world. — LORELEI MARFIL

Fash­ioned from Na­ture runs un­til Jan. 27, 2019

Vic­to­ria & Al­bert Mu­seum Cromwell Road

Lon­don SW7 2RL


Soho House con­tin­ues to crop up across Lon­don, adding its flair for cozy hang­out spots, col­or­ful, mix-and-match in­te­ri­ors and sunny rooftops to land­mark lo­ca­tions across the city.

Af­ter the re­open­ing of the group's out­post on Soho's Greek Street, Nick Jones looked to

West Lon­don for his next project.

The re­sult is White City House, the new­est ad­di­tion to the clus­ter of Soho House mem­bers' clubs, which is lo­cated in­side the for­mer BBC Tele­vi­sion Cen­ter, one of the most rec­og­niz­able build­ings in the area.

The club stretches across two floors and in­cludes a rooftop pool and bar; a cin­ema; an events space; a 24,000-square­foot gym com­plete with an in­door pool, sauna and ham­mam, and, as per Soho House tra­di­tion, an ar­ray of laid-back spa­ces for mem­bers to work, eat and drink.

Jones said when it came to de­sign­ing the space, his fo­cus was on cel­e­brat­ing the build­ing's rich her­itage. “Each house is de­signed for the neigh­bor­hood it's in and there's so much his­tory in this site that we wanted to keep that alive and cel­e­brate it. The de­sign here is taken from the his­tory of the build­ing and its Fifties and Six­ties her­itage, with cues from the BBC hid­den all around,” said Jones, point­ing to cus­tom-made rugs in­spired by the BBC test card, a se­ries of art­works com­mis­sioned to honor the BBC tele­vi­sion artist Tony Hart and up­hol­stered fab­rics by the de­sign com­pany Ti­bor, which used to also cre­ate pat­terns for the BBC.

The build­ing in­cludes 45 rooms and a ground-floor restau­rant and bar, the Al­lis, that is open to the pub­lic, in line with the group's more demo­cratic ap­proach.

“White City House is for the lo­cal cre­ative com­mu­nity, we're in­clu­sive not ex­clu­sive. We want the House to rep­re­sent the neigh­bor­hood in our mem­ber­ship, de­sign, the food and drink and events — we're also go­ing to be of­fer­ing men­tor­ing and paid place­ments through our mem­bers for young peo­ple in the area,” added Jones.


White City House Tele­vi­sion Cen­tre

101 Wood Lane, White City Lon­don W12 7FR

In­side White City House. Bam­ford Groom­ing Depart­ment 33 The Royal Ex­change Thread­nee­dle Street EC2R 8AY

Bam­ford Groom­ing Depart­ment in the Royal Ex­change.

The “Fash­ioned From Na­ture” ex­hibit.

Haute cou­ture cre­ations by the late Azze­dine Alaïa are on dis­play as part of an ex­hi­bi­tion at Lon­don’s De­sign Mu­seum.

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