September 02 2011
Topshop’s cavernous Oxford Circus flagship is not everyone’s favourite place to shop, but a focused visit to the ground floor could prove rewarding. From September 2 the ubiquitous brand’s own jewellery label, Freedom, opens an easy-to-find boutique area, The Jewellery Room, for costume jewellery by some of London’s coolest young designers. The range is higher priced than the chainstore’s usual but a top ticket of £250 still feels like a bargain. The boutique is starting with five bright young things and aims to add others about every three months.
The stock is a carefully curated selection of exclusive pieces that will not be available anywhere except the flagship store, and top-end items from the ranges of young jewellery designers. Milliner Piers Atkinson turns his talent to a specially designed collection of party headbands, some veiled, the best of which – the orchids (£200) are particularly luscious – would go to the grandest occasion, while the golden cherries (£180) add wit to glitz. Fred Butler has a growing clientele for her amazing 3-D geometric pieces made out of card and metal – her exclusive collection for Freedom goes up to £250.
Even the non-exclusive pieces exist only in small numbers, and each collection has a very distinct character. Henry Holland’s bold, faux pearl hoop earrings (£100) gently poke fun at current bourgeois fashion, while Zoe and Morgan’s silver- or gold-plated slogan, angel-wing or coiled cobra pieces have a more boho aesthetic - a cobra necklace (second picture) is £190. Anyone with a hint of the rock chick about them will love Maria Francesca Pepe’s fat metal coils that bristle with studs and yet are, like her cuff (first picture, £250), elegant enough to give a little edge to the plainest working dress.