If the day to day urban onslaughts of city life become too much, take a train from London Marylebone, and go West, to the heart of the British countryside, where, just 45 minutes later, nestled discreetly amongst the rolling hills of Oxfordshire, lies Bicester Village, a veritable fashion folly offering hidden and bespoke gems for a fraction of the original price.
Slowly feel yourself unwind, as your train shuttles away from the 9 am city rush and frenzy, weaving its way through dew-dappled fields flashing past in a photographic reel of glistening autumnal colour. And there, in the time it takes to get from A to B, your daily commute, find amongst the foliage, thatched housing, crisp air and cobbled streets; Bicester Village.
An English dream. Designer shopping within the very heart of the countryside. Hop off and stroll through English garden flowers to the blue teal painted houses, bearing the grand names of Oscar de La Renta, Anya Hindmarch, Temperley London, Roland Mouret, Tory Burch, Marni, Mulberry, Smythson, The White Company, Golden Goose, Rapha and Belstaff. This folly of fashion offers your favourite designers and your favourite clothes for up to 60% off the recommended retail price.
British Fashion Council Designer Pop up, 1st November- 12th November
This year, the British Fashion Council (BFC) will house here an exclusive designer pop-up boutique. From the 1st of November, and for 11 days only, the pop-up will showcase some of Britain’s most exciting brands at incredible prices: Christopher Kane, Emilia Wickstead, Eudon Choi, Holly Fulton, Marques’Almeida, Mother of Pearl, Nicholas Kirkwood, Perfect Moment, Rokasanda, Sharon Wauchob, Teatum Jones and TEIJA.
The BFC, set up in 1983 to promote British fashion internationally, continues a longstanding commitment to British Designers with a two-year programme titled “Business of Retail”. Providing for alumni of the BFC’s owned charities, the BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund, the BFC Fashion trust as well as established British brands, they aim to provide exposure to these businesses and designers with a new retail space and landscape.
Bicester Village provides such a landscape, becoming a fashion temple for designers and customers alike. Combining designer shopping at affordable prices, art, music and retail theatre; find yourself immersed in a shopping arena like no other, with a tangible devotion to British culture and the accompanying scenes that surround it.
From the 1-11th of November celebrates the Designer Pop-Up store in Bicester Village in collaboration with The British Fashion Council. The designer pop-up was created in mind with the ‘business of retail’ two-year partnership between the BFC and Bicester Village, but the experience is above and beyond.
“The pool of design talent here in the UK is extraordinary. By working together with the British Fashion Council, it is our ambition to champion this creativity and arm designers with the skills and tools needed to build sustained commercial success. This BFC Designer Pop-up coupled with our ‘Business of Retail’ development programme represents our commitment to great British design and to the future of the British fashion industry as a powerful engine of economic growth.” – Desirée Bollier
On November the 1st we were all greeted by the BFC and the amazing team at Gabrielle Shaw PR, once handed our breakfast we made our way to the train to visit the Bicester Village. Sadly the weather was not in our favour, but in true British style (and with the help of Bicester umbrellas) nothing was going to stop us.
After strolling through the beautiful village of designer outlet stores we stumbled across a beautiful pastel pink store, the designer pop-up store, one that certainly can’t be missed. The pastel pink theme continued into the store where the best of British design was beautifully showcased. Designers from Christopher Kane, Mother of Pearl, Teatum Jones, Marques ‘Almeida, Eudon Choi and many, many more had there designs showcased within the store.
After browsing around the store, trying to work out which garments (or the whole store) we should buy we were then formally introduced to the event by Stepanie Phair:“Today we are launching the BFC Designer Pop-up store which is selling collections from 14 of our British brands… providing a platform for them to sell to a different customer base and gain fantastic retail experience. Bicester Village has supported the BFC for a number of years and this new ‘Business of Retail’ partnership will continue to help designers through a tailored programme of business mentorship and commercial opportunities.”
We then continued to make our way up and down the village, I think we popped into almost every shop. There are so many deals that you cannot miss. As well as the shops and the products inside them the village itself is breathtakingly beautiful, and with Christmas around the corner, the subtle decorations added even more to the magical feeling.Bicester Village is the perfect place for all your shopping needs, but alongside good clothes, there is also good food, we stopped into the amazing Café Wolseley for some lunch and then made our way to the Tate right at the very end of the village. Yeah, that’s right, the Tate., with its interactive feature! So the Bicester village really is the perfect day out for all.