Where to buy boots in London
I will be visiting London next month (from the antipodes) and I'd like to buy my wife a pair of good quality, classically designed boots. While I don't mind paying for quality construction, design or materials, I do not want to pay designer label prices for something flimsy, badly made or anything that will be out of fashion by Christmas. What is coming up in the winter collections, and where do you recommend shopping in London? - Dave
Lucky Mrs Dave! Where's the man willing to buy me a new pair of boots? Designers and retailers seem to be adopting an 'anything goes' approach to boots, so you can get away with just about anything. I've come up with a list of some of my favourites, they suit all budgets and emcompass most of the key trends without being over the top, so hopefully there's something here that'll be perfect for your missus! Read on for more! (buckled boot, right, £95 Topshop).
Tobacco leather classic low-heel knee highs £335 Miu Miu
- You don't get much more classic than these. With their low heel and rounded toe, they're not the sexiest design on the market, but they're guaranteed to be comfy and practical, and will no doubt get worn to death. Miu Miu is the baby sister to Prada, so you're guaranteed some quality Italian leather and a well-made boot. These are available at Net-a-porter online, but there's also a Miu Miu boutique at 123 New Bond Street, or try Selfridges department store on Oxford Street.
'Peony' and 'Orchid' stiletto boots from Jimmy Choo (around £600)
- If it's something more sexy you're after, you can't beat Jimmy Choo. Their classic stiletto knee-high comes in a variety of colours of leather and suede, and in two heights. Peony (left) has a 3.5" heel, and Orchid (right) a killer 4" one. They're not the best for walking long distances but they definitely look the part. Keep them looked after (with frequent heel tip replacements and lots of polishing) and they'll last for ages. Jimmy Choo have boutiques on Sloane Street and New Bond Street, and are also stocked in Selfridges, Harrods and Harvey Nichols.
Butterfly by Matthew Williamson studded round-toe boots £135
- If you want designer style at high street prices, look no futher than the department store Debenhams (find it on Oxford Street). They've teamed up with a group of top designers to come up with the 'Designers at Debenhams' diffusion ranges. Brit boho designer Matthew Williamson's 'Butterfly' collection flies off the shelves (mainly due to me - I'm addicted!) and some pieces can fetch double their retail value on eBay because foreign fans are desperate to get their hands on these UK-only pieces. These round-toe boots have just enough 'trend' about them to look current, but they'll still look fresh next year.
Limited Collection wedge heel knee-high boot £69 Marks & Spencer
No visit to London is complete without a trip to oh-so-British high street giant Marks & Spencer. They're desperately trying to get rid of their stuffy image and appeal to a younger audience, and the result of that is some great catwalk copies that the masses haven't caught on to yet (in fact, a reader had to point these out to me!). Suede wedge boots are "soooo this season" and these ones are not unlike a pair spotted on Jennifer Aniston. And the good thing about M&S is that they don't scrimp on quality, so you can guarantee this is £69 well-spent. Stores can be found all over London, but the best is probably the Marble Arch flagship.
'Regent' suede calf-length boot with straps £65 Faith
- For affordable copies of catwalk trends, fashionistas know to head to high street shoe giants Faith. They are aimed at quite a young audience, but you can pick up some great boots in quality fabrics for under £100 if you don't mind fighting with teenagers for the last few pairs. These suede calf-length boots comes in six colours (including classic black) and are very similar to the boots currently being sold by Marc Jacobs. Faith stores are all over London, but the Oxford Street store and the concessions in Selfridges and Topshop have the best selection.
Lace-up calf boots with mid heels $159 Nine West
- One of the key trends for Autumn / Winter was inspired by all things Victorian, and along with high-necked lace blouses and the revival of tweed and herringbone, we've seen a lot of lace-up boots on the catwalk. It's been a long time since they've been stylish, but it looks like laces are back for good. US brand Nine West have come up with some of the best options - they're stocked in House of Fraser on Oxford Street. Expect to pay about £100 for boots like these.
Other places to shop for boots in London:
Gina (9 Old Bond St / 189 Sloane St): Sparkly, sexy designer creations. Loved by Kylie.
Topshop (Oxford Circus Flagship): Beloved of teenagers and fashion editors alike. THE trend emporium.
Kurt Geiger / KG (click here for stockists): Mid-priced designer boots. Trend-based.
Poste Mistress (Monmouth St): Avant-garde boutique stocking own-brand and designer.
Georgina Goodman (12/14 Shephard St) : Brit designer who uses amazing leathers & exotics.
Olivia Morris (Portobello Rd) : Great scarf-topped boots and classic round-toe styles.
Beyond Skin : Natalie Portman's favourite for vegan shoes and boots.
New Look (Marble Arch flagship store): Dirt-cheap disposable trends. Good suede boots!
Browns (South Molton St): Designer boutique. Stocks Marni, Marc Jacobs etc.
Shelly's (Oxford Circus): Trend-based high street retailer. Boots for around £60 - £100.
Selve (93 Jermyn St): 'The shoe individualiser' will customise from a range of designs.