In the West End of London, amidst
theaterland, clubs, cafes, and shops, lurk the females of Soho and Covent
Though their winter attire appears at the outset to be quite
similar to the Sloane Ranger, their style tends toward the slightly more
casual—a shift from Posh to Sporty Spice. Instead of the square toed
leather loafer, she wears trainers under her overly long flared black
trousers, but she is more practical than the Camden female, and her shoes
keep her much closer to the ground. Instead of the double breasted wool
overcoat, she wears padded and quilted flight jackets in shiny gray and
silver, reaching to either her waist or ankles.
Despite the 40 year gap in time, girls wearing mod haircuts still browse Ben Sherman clothing in stores along Soho’s Carnaby Street, though their overgrown locks are kept in control with multiple brightly coloured butterfly clips. Where the flower-sellers once stood under the awnings of Covent Garden in corsets and bustles, now this London girl stands watching buskers working the crowds, while wearing sheer skirts layered over dark trousers, and keeps warm under down-filled ski vests.
And no outfit is complete for this girl without a multi-zippered backpack that goes across one shoulder with a handy pocket in front for her tube pass.
No matter what area of London these city girls associate themselves with, there is one common accessory they all share. Practical for all, and fitting with the images of Camden, Chelsea, Covent Garden, Soho, and Kensington, mobile phones match, mismatch, clash and complement every possible clothing combination. The universal accessory that binds them: the mobile makes a London girl.
Aly Wolff-Mills is a clothing designer currently living in London. We featured Aly's work in 1999 in an article titled "Post Fallout Glam." To see it, click here.
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