Once upon a time, the Kings Road was known for being a hotbed of counter-culture; fertile ground for start ups, fresh thinkers and bright young creatives. For the last decade or so, I would argue, it has provided more of a stable environment to some local mainstays - places like Heals, Jack Wills, plenty of the Parisian fashion brands... even the feisty Ad Hoc has been around for a while.
Pop Up Kings Road is a concept store with a fantastic premise - every 2 weeks, for a whole year, 10 fresh new start ups move into the space and start trading. It's a great opportunity for new British talent to find a platform, get a leg up and make a name for themselves, and makes sure the shop is a real destination for a whole year, as you never know what you'll find there next.
When I visited this Saturday, the first batch of start ups had just taken residence, and I was really impressed with what I saw. The selection of brands was really well curated, each company complementing, rather than competing, with one another, and a really high standard of design and creativity. What's more, most of the brands were offering introductory discounts, so you can get your hands on future classics for fantastic prices
The highlight for me had to be Pinucci shoes, who had a selection of the world's coolest flats, and I couldn't resist their black leather, snakeskin and taupe suede Sloane sneakers, down from £150 to just £60. I also loved the selection of pretty trinkets, clothes and homewares from The Gorgeous Company, edgy shades from Couth and my boyfriend picked up a super cool slapband watch (90s children, remember snap bands?! Cool right?!) from Clicloc. Everything on offer was highly original, covetable and just a little bit different from most of what's on offer on the rest of the King's Road, breathing a fresher, younger lease of life into what is usually the slightly 'tired' end of the street.
A fresh batch of traders arrived in store today, and I'm sure I'll be checking in every few weeks throughout the whole year. I can't think of a better way to support talented young British entrepreneurs, and I love the fact that every time you visit, there will be new and exciting brands to shop. You'll see at least a few faces this year who make it big in 2014 and beyond, guaranteed.
Pop Up Kings Road
387 Kings Road
Pictures from Pop Up Britain and retailweek.