The largest street party in Europe!
August Bank Holiday is synonymous with the festivities of The Notting Hill Carnival. What began as a local festival for the West Indian community has since evolved into an explosion of colour, music and sumptuous cuisine. This weekend the sun came out to play – and for fashionistas in the know it was all about keeping cool and comfy.
Amongst the favourites this year were cute frocks, short shorts and denim divine! Loads of revellers wore statement colours in stand-out fashion, perfectly in tune with the festivities. Jewellery was kept minimal but what lacked in trinkets was compensated by oversized handbags. There were a few brave stars tottering around on heels and an abundance of people with open-toe sandals. A definite no-no considering the crowds of people pushing past (ouch!) and the sticky-toe syndrome (yuk!). Ballet pumps were the clever choice, whilst trendy sneakers made several appearances too.
One of the major attractions at Carnival is the parade. Dancers line the streets in fabulous costumes: vibrant colours that accentuate their every move. Fabulous gear adorned their heads: long feathers and sparkling gems reaching for the sky. Many of these are made by professional costume designers, with participants from all around the world including South America. The streets were alive with shades of purple, blue, orange, green and gold. This is truly a spectacle that every fashion enthusiast should experience.
Once I’d feasted my eyes on the dazzling display in Ladbroke Grove, I headed for one of the hundred’s of stalls selling Caribbean delicacies like jerk chicken, dumplings and salt fish.
The music was fantastic too. There were over a dozen sound systems set up along the parameters. An eclectic mix of soulful house, dancehall, reggae, drum and bass and R & B ensured that everyone had a beat to fit their groove. The place to be was definitely Sancho Panza. Fabulous!
It soon became clear: those with street savvy came out tops. Take the lead from the likes of Sienna and Kate and mix high street with designer. Sensible shoes and gorgeous sunnies are key. And don’t be afraid to stamp your look with your own unique twist.
I loved every moment of it! Not only do you get to experience the spirit of Carnival – but you also get to check out what’s hot in street fashion. Never before have I encountered such an assortment of style.
After all, what really counts is how the public interprets what’s set loose on the runway…