Monday, April 5, 2010

Pop down to these Pop-up Shops

I visited Sketchbook Magazine's much discussed pop-up shop on Saturday in London's trendy Soho area. Since I printed out the wrong map to the location (of course), I had to ask around in various stores around the area (including one with a cute guy behind the counter "Hello you" *winks*) and after walking around like a headless chicken for 30 mins, I finally found my way to the shop on Newburgh Street.

I was a bit ruffled from the confusion but my spirits were quickly lifted when I stepped inside and I was engulfed by a wonderful mood of creativity and artistic expression. Covering the previously pristine whitewashed walls were gorgeous fashion illustrations in stylized marker-drawn picture frames as well as books, clothing, accessories and much more spilling out of every nook and cranny of the downstairs room.

A number of other fashion lovers soon arrived and we all took our seats for the upcoming event which was a lecture/discussion by prominent UK stylist, Rebekah Roy who took us through her journey of becoming a stylist which involved plenty of hard work, determination and even a few interesting career-propelling chance encounters with well-known fashion personalities. She was very warm and honest and eagerly dispensed a lot of helpful advice to the aspiring fashion stylists in the audience.

The Sketchbook Magazine Pop-Up Shop is located at 10 Newburgh Street, Carnaby, W1 and it will be hosting a variety of fashion and music-related workshops, lectures and other exciting activities from now until April 18, 2010.

For more information on the Sketchbook Pop-Up Shop, visit the Sketchbook Blog.

Another Soho area fashion attraction is the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF) White Gold Pop-Up Shop which I chanced upon during my search for the Sketchbook Mag's event.

Inside the store was the uplifting sight of colourful furnishings, cool clothing and tasty cookies and cupcakes - a winning combination.

Two friendly volunteers happily welcomed me inside the store and explained EJF's mission and the purpose this pop-up shop.

The EJF's 'Pick Your Cotton Carefully' campaign features T-shirts designed by Giles Deacon, Betty Jackson, Christian Lacroix, Luella among others, and the tees were photographed on popular models including Devon Aoki, Coco Rocha, Lily Cole and Irina Lazareanu.

The eco-friendly shirts are designed around the theme of "childhood, lost innocence and hope" and they highlight EJF's newly released and highly anticipated report called "Slave Nation" on their campaign to end forced child labour in the world's 3rd largest cotton exporter, Uzbekistan.

It's difficult to imagine that the reality for an estimated 1 million children, some as young as 10 years old, are forced to work in Uzbekistan's cotton fields day after day and are subjected squalid living conditions, paid very little to nothing and contract dangerous, sometimes fatal, illnesses.

EJF aims to provide an alternative to these terrible labour conditions by using organic, fairtrade Continental cotton from Turkey and printed with organic certified inks. Additionally, the money raised from the sale of the 'Pick Your Cotton Carefully' tees goes towards EJF's work to eradicate forced child labour and the use of dangerous pesticides in cotton production.

The EJF 'Pick Your Cotton Carefully' T-Shirts can be bought for just £30 at the Pop-Up shop itself, in selected stores worldwide and also online at The shop also showcases chic clothing and accessories by other ethical fashion labels which are also available for sale.

Go check out EJF's Pop-Up Shop on Carnaby Street, Monday to Saturday from 10am – 7pm and on Sunday from 12pm – 6pm to pick up some stylish, exclusively designed clothing and support a great cause at the same time.

Head over to for more information on the Environmental Justice Foundation.

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