There is a creative vibe to Forest Hill these days, with the live/work artist community of Havelock Walk, the renowned ED Comedy at The Hob, and the fashion businesses of Bunka, Mayo Maker and Blaqua. Forest Hill has recently exported that vibe to Carnaby Street as Blaqua is now selling its eye-catching designs in one of London’s hippest fashion quarters.
The launch event on August 13th involved dozens of Blaqua customers marching around Carnaby Street wearing their Blaqua creations accompanied by photographers, musicians and even a fire breathing male model. It certainly made an impact.
Blaqua is a true Forest Hill success story, having been established in 2005 by long term FH/HOP residents Simon Green and Debbie Jeffery, whose combined creative skills have resulted in a unique design style and lots of fans around the country and abroad. It is just the kind of unique and memorable business that makes a place like Forest Hill a destination for shoppers.
Previously called Oliver London, the shop offers bespoke tailoring, shirts, cufflinks, jewellery and even handmade leather shoes. The Forest Hill shop, located at the end of David’s Road, attracts local residents and curious drivers whose regular commute takes them past the ever-changing window display. The steady stream of customers convinced Simon and Debbie that the best future for their brand was to develop the retail side of the business and allow them to meet the customers in person.
They have set about expansion, keeping the Forest Hill shop but also taking their brand to the fashion elite, opening a second shop on Newburgh St. behind Carnaby Street itself.
It is exciting to see a Forest Hill business doing so well, and helping to put the area firmly on the map.
Read more about their exciting plans at: blog.blaqua.net