Much has been made about the fall of Notting Hill. Its “hip” status has been seriously affronted by the rise of Shoreditch, Hoxton, Dalton et al. In other words, the gritty, mean streets of East London. But some, including us and the newly opened Wolf & Badger, refuse to give up on the quaint neighborhood. Consider the shop Notting Hill's own Dover Street Market, with an edit that's as interesting as Rei Kawakubo’s, but different. While the words "concept shop" are getting to be as annoying as "pop up,"' we're okay with this one, which is an incubator of sorts. Talented and cash-strapped designers can rent a spot in the store for as little as £35 (about $55) a week, which buys them a black and white box to display their wares, and a Web site. The worries about retail space, marketing, sales and PR are left up to the duo behind the idea, Samir Ceric and Zoe Knight, who also mentor the designers.
The husband and wife team are fashion’s new fairy godparents. They've seen too many talented designers fall into obscurity by a lack of marketing know-how, and decided to do something about it. Since they announced the concept to London's design schools, over 1,000 applications have trickled in. A handful were picked for the opening late last week. Just in time for the roving editors heading this way for London Fashion Week.