As London Fashion Week approaches, the news that everyone is still talking about is the new venue location, Brewer Street Car Park. Moving from its home of over a decade, Somerset House, the location change to the heart of Soho fulfils the British Fashion Council’s (BFC) goal to host LFW in the West End.
Now in much closer proximity to major retail spaces, Oxford Street, Bond Street and Regent Street, the move has been heralded as a ‘brilliant development’ by Deputy Mayor for Education and Culture Munira Mirza. She explains; ‘With its position in Soho, it is at the heart of an area that has long been associated with fashion and creativity in general. I am sure the move will literally drive even more interest in one of the most important sectors for our economy.’
An iconic art deco building designed by architect JJ Joass, the Brewer Street Car Park dates back to 1929. Quickly becoming one of Soho’s most creative spaces it is home to a public programme of events and installations. Last season the BFC and British Council used the space to exhibit over 110 emerging fashion designers from nearly 30 countries as part of the International Fashion Showcase.
The Somerset House Trust housed LFW since 2009, a period in which the event has significantly evolved, and despite the BFC offices remaining there, the location move marks the next stage in the evolution of London Fashion Week.
The new central venue will span two floors of the Brewer Street Car Park and is set to play host to some of the world’s most exciting designer catwalk shows in the BFC Show Space. Over a hundred designers will exhibit their collection to an audience of UK and International press, buyers and stylists in the Designer Showrooms. This season’s LFW showrooms, catwalk and event schedule will be accompanied by an exciting programme of free talks open to the public to help drive city-wide support for this integral industry which employs nearly 80,000 people and is worth £26 billion to the UK GDP.
Dubbed as Brewer Street’s ‘Fashion Park’, the exciting new venue will add flexibility to designers who will be able to transform the show space to reflect their own aesthetics. Caroline Rush, Chief Executive of the BFC explained: ‘The long term growth of the UK’s designer fashion market is reflected geographically in this move that will see London Fashion Week designers showcasing collections in one of London’s most vibrant, diverse and creative hubs.’
The 62nd edition of LFW will run from 18-22 September; take a look at last season’s highlights and their influences on interiors in our A/W 15 round-up from earlier in the year.