June 02 2010
Lucia van der Post
Fenwick of New Bond Street (and of Newcastle, Brent Cross, Canterbury, Tunbridge Wells, Leicester, York and Windsor, come to that) has long been a working woman’s great standby. It’s more democratic, less demonically given over to the latest must-have item than some of its high-end competitors and yet it has a happy knack of coming up with the cute headgear, the spot-on bit of knitwear, the snappy jacket.
The point of writing about it now is that the New Bond Street store in London has just had a tremendous makeover, and to celebrate, it is going to be selling some of my very favourite labels that haven’t been easy to get hold of before. First off (and exclusive to Fenwick of New Bond Street) is the first collection by Maria Luisa Poumaillou. whose namesake shop (Maria Luisa) is one of the first places I visit when in Paris. It’s long been a source of fashionable but wearable clothes that always have something that bit different about them.
Maria Luisa’s first own-label collection has been hotly awaited. It will be affordable (no piece at Fenwick, for instance, is more than £349, while prices start at £139) and each piece can be worn with lots of others. There are interesting twists on tops, some great studded jackets, slinky satin takes on T-shirts, good skirts and relaxed, easy-to-wear dresses (silk dress, pictured, £249).
Next up are two more labels that will be exclusive to the new Bond Street store – Rue du Mail by Martine Sitbon and Véronique Leroy’s very grown-up collection; I love her flattering, easy-to-wear grey skirt suit (skirt and jacket, £349 each). There will also be some exclusive lines, mostly stripey silks and tweeds, from MSGM, another very sophisticated label, from Italy.