Carnaby Street: London’s iconic promised land is celebrating its 50th birthday with live music while you shop, special offers galore – and hot-pink inflatable reindeer by JAMES DAY.
It’s 50 years since Carnaby Street, in Soho, central London, came to life, heralding the birth of the swinging ’60s and the explosion of the mod and hippie movements.
The Soho shopping mecca has shared a special relationship with music ever since The Beatles, The Small Faces, The Who and The Rolling Stones famously flitted between its unique boutiques and music bars.
Following in their footsteps are indie-pop outfit Elmor. who brought the street to a standstill last week as the only band to play on the opening day of Carnaby’s Christmas season.
The five-piece from Surrey were invited to play a live showcase by fashion label Henri-Lloyd, who have picked the boys to be the sound of their HL Jeans campaign. This might all sound painfully corporate but having some proper entertainment on hand while you’re procrastinating about presents is,well, groovy.
America’s Time Magazine summed things up with a cover story in April 1966. which read: ‘Nothing illustrates the new swinging London better than narrow, three-block-long Carnaby Street, which is crammed with a cluster of the “gear” boutiques where the girls and boys buy each other’s clothing.’ And it still remains one of London’s truly special shopping experiences. Even the Christmas decorations arc stylish and this year take on a psychedelic theme in keeping with the decade Carnaby Street was launched -watch out for the 6m-high, inflatable hot pink reindeers.
Shoppers can look forward to lots of treats in December. Every Sunday, homeware and interior design boutique Life style bazaar will hand out complimentary mince pics and mulled wine, while customers spending £150 or more will receive a £25 gift voucher.
Throughout the month. Savage London offers ten per cent off all purchases and beers and live music while you shop. At Twenty8twelve you will get a free limited-edition scarf designed by the famous Miller Sisters with every purchase. And there are even more store offers yet to be announced.
To top it all, there’s an exclusive Korean gift-wrapping service at Hurwundeki to ensure absolutely nothing interferes with your valuable shopping time.