Saturday, September 4, 2010

You can forget Fifth Avenue... Oxford Street leads the world

Revitalised Oxford Street now boasts the world's greatest range of “affordable” fashion stores, according to a global poll.
Kate Moss Oxford Street
Top of the shops: Oxford Street teems with customers, drawn by flagship stores such as Topshop and designers including Kate Moss

Europe's busiest high street easily beat off competition from New York's Fifth Avenue, the Champs-Elysées in Paris,Milan's Via Torino and Tokyo's Omotesando.
Oxford Street won on attributes such as number of brands, affordability, “translating catwalk to shop floor”, and designer collaborations.
An extraordinary 89 per cent of the 50,000 fashion professionals polled by industry magazine Drapers said Oxford Street was best overall. The accolade comes beforeLondon's second high-street fashion week, which runs from next Monday to Friday.
A decade-long campaign to overhaul what was once seen as a tatty shopping boulevard has attracted dozens of international stores and transformed Oxford Street's tired image.
It now has 67 flagship outlets for brands such as Nike, Gap and Uniqlo, with 2.6 million shoppers a week and £6 billion a year spent. The renaissance was symbolised by the opening of the pedestrian “X-crossing” at Oxford Circus last November.
Jace Tyrrell of the New West End company, which represents traders on the strip, said: “Over the next few years Oxford Street is set to see an additional 250,000 square feet of space, making this the largest influx of retail over the past 50 years.”
Stores and fashion experts said the West End's unique mix of edginess and luxury gave Oxford Street an advantage over rivalson the Continent and North America. Jessica Price Brown, editor of Drapers, said: “For a fashion company to be taken seriously on the global stage it really must have a presence in London. Some 50 million international tourists shop Oxford Street, so it truly is a shop window to the world.”
Harriet Quick, fashion features editor of Vogue, said: “It continues to be the Babylon of fashion, with revolving megastores and brands popping up its length and breadth.”
Topshop is arguably the street's best-known flagship — and has had the best-known celebrity designer in Kate Moss, who quit this week after collaborating with the brand for three years. Her final range is launched in October.
Mayor Boris Johnson said: “It's no surprise to me that Oxford Street is top of the pile. Where else can you find impossibly elegant designer wear from across the globe mixing with vibrant high street fashion?”
Britain's favourite clothes stores will be honoured at the Glammys during High Street Fashion Week. Hosted by T4 presenter Jameela Jamil at the Mayfair Hotel on Monday, it will feature awards including excellence in ethical and green fashion, best dressing rooms and most creative window displays.

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