Fitzrovia Shopping Guide.
In our latest shopping guide, I enlisted the help of Revival Retro doyenne, Rowena Howie to take me for a tour around her favourite shopping spots in the neighbourhood which she has chosen to call home for her gorgeous vintage clothing store. I first enlisted Rowena’s help when I needed some vintage inspired clothing for this year’s Goodwood Revival (which you can read all about here), but this time around I tapped into her innate sense of style to find some hidden treasures in trendy Fitzrovia. If you haven’t happened upon Fitzrovia before, it’s a bustling little community of independent shops and stores nestled just north of Oxford Street and west of Tottenham Court Road. It nudges into artsy Bloomsbury to its right and borrows a bit of Marylebone to its left, but once you discover it, it definitely has a vibe all of its own.
We started our tour on Store Street and popped into Orchidya, a divine florist chock full of floral delights from exotic orchids right through to hand tied bouquets to snap up and whisk home.
Orchidya Flower Shop, 42 Store Street, WC1E
Right next door at 41 Store Street is Footes Music, a music store run by musicians for musicians and displays the largest selection of drums, percussion and string instruments in Central London.
From there we popped into Store Street Espresso, a bustling cafe serving up Rowena’s favourite brew and a regular stop for a caffeine fix in her daily routine.
Store Street Espresso, 40 Store Street, WC1E
We then walked on towards Windmill Street passing The Building Centre (26 Store Street), an architectural centre which hosts revolving exhibitions, celebrating all things innovative in the built environment. A short hop, skip and jump across Tottenham Court Road had us arriving at Rowena’s shop Revival Retro (30 Windmill Street, W1T 2JL) which is where I found inspiration for my Goodwood Revival visit this year and stocks a plentiful array of vintage-inspired and reproduction pieces, giving you all the glamour of the era but none of the mothballs.
Just around the corner in Whitfield Street, we found Lewis Leathers, a store so full of classic biker jackets that the aroma of leather greets you with a welcome at the door.
Vintage biker jackets on display at Lewis Leathers (3-5 Whitfield Street)
We returned to Windmill Street, passing by the Curwen Gallery (34 Windmill Street) which was busy with art lovers scoping out the latest exhibition, and headed into specialist men’s store Rivet and Hide. Boasting rare denim it offers raw selvedge cuts in classic retro styles which are built to last and certainly look pretty damn good at the same time.
Rivet and Hide, 5 Windmill Street.
At the end of the street lies the Charlotte Street Hotel (part of the fab Firmdale Hotel group), where Rowena often heads with her team for cocktails at Oscar’s bar.
Charlotte Street Hotel, 15-17 Charlotte Street.
Trendy Sushi and Japanese eatery Roka sits just up the road at 37 Charlotte Street, but the place where Rowena loves to stop and grab some brunch is down the smaller pedestrian Charlotte Place at the Lantana Cafe (13 Charlotte Place). From there we headed to Cleveland Street to pop into the teeniest gem of a store Taylors Buttons, crammed with every kind of button you could imagine. Once the home of Charles Dickens, the button shop supplies gorgeous hand-covered fabric buttons for anything from wedding dresses to upholstery.
Taylors Buttons, 22 Cleveland Street.
We then headed down Newman Street to our final stop on Rathbone Place, where we found Aperture Photographic, specialising in second-hand camera equipment.
So that’s Rowena’s take on stores to add to your list when cruising Fitzrovia… let us know if you have any more finds to add in the comment section below, and don’t forget to take a peek at our other shopping guides here. Also good to note that this Saturday, December 3rd is Small Business Saturday, so make sure you support your local stores.
With thanks to Rowena for showing me around, and special thanks to Cicely Creswell for another of her awesome shopping guide illustrations. You can catch more of Cicely’s artsy take on life over on her Instagram here.