From daring catwalk shows to lively after parties, London Fashion Week is an exciting time for both fashionistas and curious observers alike. This year, in an interesting twist, the renowned invite-only event broke tradition and opened its doors to members of the public, inspiring all ticket-holding lovers of haute couture with the latest trends.
As fashion aficionados continue to ponder the ways in which they can emulate the newest designs, it needn’t be only their outfits that can be taken from day to night: a variety of unique venues across the capital are available for event hire into the early hours, providing ample space for one’s very own fashion show, dinner or cocktail party.
Here are four fabulous locations in which you can ‘walk the runway’ and celebrate in style:
Photo Credit: Matt Chung
Somerset House were delighted to host Uniqlo and their exhibition The Art and Science of LifeWear in the large and versatile Embankment Galleries during London Fashion Week this September - the perfect platform to showcase Uniqlo’s commitment to longevity, accessibility and sustainability.
This immersive and experiential event showcased the art, science and craftsmanship of Uniqlo’s LifeWear range, clothing designed with life’s needs in mind, setting new standards for what clothing can be, and delved into the boundary-pushing tech behind the Japanese fashion brand’s simple, yet high-quality clothing.
The Embankment Galleries are next available for private hire in April 2020. Spread over the lower-ground and mezzanine levels of the South Wing, they offer a truly versatile space, suitable for dinners (340 pax), receptions (800 pax), press days, product launches and exhibitions.
Read the full case study for The Art and Science of LifeWear at Somerset House here.
Photo Credit: By Lumiere
The Kensington Palace Pavilion is the perfect venue for fashion shows. The glass fronted building overlooks the palace’s famous Sunken Garden and East façade of the historic Georgian royal home. It boasts two main event spaces as well as a covered terrace, and has an impressive capacity of over 400 guests for a fashion show.
In 2018 Kensington Palace hosted a breath-taking fashion show with The Wedding Gallery, showcasing dresses by designers including Suzanne Neville, J. Andreatta and Inbal Dror. Interspersed in the central gold catwalk were 8ft tall floral mountains, which the models meandered through to a show-stopping effect.
Clients booking events in the Kensington Palace Pavilion contribute to Historic Royal Palaces’ charitable cause, as income raised is reinvested in conservation, public access and educational activities to ensure the palace continues to be well maintained and open for all to enjoy.
When it comes to London Fashion Week, one venue sees more famous faces than any other. Madame Tussauds is an original yet fitting venue for catwalk shows thanks to its stylish, star-studded residency. The iconic venue guarantees an A-List roster of attendees for every fashion-line debut it plays host to.
With a number of fashion superstars already in-house including Cara Delevigne, Kendal Jenner and the recent addition of Zendaya, who else could be more fitting to debut the latest trends in front of? Figures at Madame Tussauds are constantly being updated too so the biggest celebs will always be in attendance at your runway event or collection launch.
The iconic venue can welcome up to 150 guests exclusively for fashionable occasions. The dedicated in-house events team know the venue like the back of their hand and are there to take care of the whole project from start to finish. With an entire exhibition dedicated to Fashion Week too there’s even a catwalk ready in place!
Further, the World Stage room offers a wonderfully suitable space for fashion shows as the shape and size of the room makes it perfectly suited for strutting your stuff, while making sure guests have a great view from their front-row seats. When it comes to couture, there really is no other venue quite like Madame Tussauds.
The Royal College of Physicians recently transformed its public space for a Paul Smith fashion show and created a catwalk for the British fashion designer on its iconic floating staircase.
Confidently embracing the codes first embodied by Paul’s designs in the '70s and '80s, the show paid homage to the idea of the handsome woman and drew on the wardrobe of Paul’s wife Pauline Denyer Smith.
The designer chose the Royal College of Physicians venue, designed by Sir Denys Lasdun in 1964, as a celebration of the modern architecture that possessed the mind of a young Paul. Turning normal into new is a concept innate to Paul’s early work, when he would elevate the standard materials to which he had access by applying intricate decoration and surprise elements.
The Royal College of Physicians’ Grade 1 Listed modernist architecture with a selection of traditional and contemporary rooms is perfect for fashion designers looking for a space to bring their designs to life.