Sarah Shotton’s perfect weekend in London

The creative director of Agent Provocateur has steered the label’s style evolution since 2010, infusing its lingerie, swimwear and nightwear with a sultry, modern glamour

Image: Trent McMinn

I grew up in a village in County Durham, and Stoke Newington – where we live in a Victorian cottage off Church Street – is the closest to I could get to that in London. It’s right in the middle of the hustle and bustle.

My life is all glamour during the week, but at the weekends it’s very much about family. George, five, and Roisin, two, wake up early on Saturdays and we go to my fiancé Patrick’s climbing centre, the Stronghold, while it’s empty, so the children can run wild. At 11am I have my “retro aerobics” class at Frankie Friday’s studio; it is accompanied by all the music I grew up with and is great fun. Then the children and I have a late breakfast of baked eggs and homemade sausages at Andi’s, a pretty café near home with a delicious menu of local produce.

If I’m not cooking at the weekend, I love taking time over comfort food. Luca in Clerkenwell is another favourite. It has a beautiful interior with gorgeous wooden banquettes – it feels opulent but very relaxed – and does incredible Parmesan fries and pumpkin agnolotti with chestnut sauce, which I’ll sometimes have with a glass of red for lunch. Then we’ll go up to Clissold Park, a huge estate with goats and fallow deer milling around, which the kids love; or we’ll head to Woodberry Wetlands, an incredibly diverse wildlife reserve that opened last year after a huge regeneration scheme.

If I have time, I’ll pop into Strut, a brilliant vintage shop on Church Street that sells Azzedine Alaïa, Vivienne Westwood and Ossie Clark. I’ve bought many pieces there, including a bright-pink Thierry Mugler minidress that I can barely breathe in; it’s very 1980s Jerry Hall – I love that power-dressing era. I also enjoy Bolt, a garage and store near us with biker accessories and beautiful motorcycles. It’s a bit rock ’n’ roll, and that inspires me.

The theatre is a big feature of Saturday evenings. We recently saw The Ferryman, directed by Sam Mendes, at the Gielgud, which was exceptional. It had such incredible attention to detail and amazing dialogue that I didn’t want it to end.


I like to get to places as they open, so on Sunday we’ll be at the Royal Academy for 10am. On the way we’ll grab breakfast at the Danish café Ole & Steen: cinnamon buns for the children, rye bread and coffee for me. I love it when we have the galleries to ourselves and can look properly.

After that we will go to Dover Street Market, which always blows me away with its sense of theatre and is such a great place to pick up gifts. I am a big fan of the jewellery collections and the collaborations they showcase there, such as this season’s Sacai x The North Face range. We always look at Molly Goddard’s dresses too – they are pure fantasy; my daughter is in awe of them.

I spent so much time in Soho when I was at college and when I started working for Agent Provocateur, and I always feel nostalgic walking around there – especially at this time of year. I am a bauble obsessive, so when I’m shopping in the area I’ll find my way up Carnaby Street to go to the Christmas section in Liberty – although you can find me there as soon as it opens in late summer too; I buy some decorations each time I go.

If Patrick and I go out for a late lunch, it’ll be at Westerns Laundry, which has an industrial style that uses lots of reclaimed materials. They do small sharing plates of delicious seafood – I love the squid pasta – and have an interesting organic wine list. I also love their enormous “sharing baba”, which is packed with rum and feels so decadent.

I’m always inspired by the moving image, so a perfect Sunday evening for me is watching something like Game of Thrones, and then getting a good night’s sleep for the week ahead.


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