Tell me the last time this happened to you: you pop into a slick boutique in a seriously posh part of town and walk out with the following: an item (or two) that firstly fit you as though it / they were bespoke, and you are safe in the knowledge that no other store this side of the Mediterranean or indeed the Atlantic, stocks said item(s).
This happened to me a couple of days ago. In Chelsea of all places! Strolling down the fabulous Draycott Avenue has, in the past, been a window-shopping experience. No more, no less. Whether an inferiority complex, a phobia with upmarket band pressure or just a few less zeros in the bank in true recessionista style, I rarely make a purchase in SW3.
You have to trust me on this. Make a special trip to Anca C. The owner, Anca, knows what women want and she makes no bones in telling you what works, and what doesn’t. She has a magical in-built formula that manages to recognise what works for a client. Her aim? Bringing out both her client’s feminine side and personality. It really is a frock shop – frocks fill the rails. Let her choose you a couple of pieces to start with and play, enjoy, strut your stuff in her boutique and more importantly, trust her (and her team). Anca does all the buying herself, often discovering American labels that are almost unknown here with a realistic range of sizes, up to 16 (rare in Chelsea!). She has developed and produced her own label collections, clients adore her structured dresses, maxi dresses and vibrant kaftan-esque numbers. Anca has her own cashmere collection, hand-made in Kathmandu.
The boutique will open late for her regulars who know they won’t make it out of the office in time, and if a visitor to London needs a fabulous dress at the last minute for a dinner, an appointment can be arranged at the hotel where they are staying.
An Anca C customer? Well-travelled, independent, sassy, aware of their femininity and doesn’t follow the pack who buy labels for labels’ sake.