There are some things that simply must be done if you live within 100 miles of London. A trip to Sell-fridges of course (though strangely it seems that's the only thing they don't sell!), taking in a show or a visit to the gallery is also recommended, but for a real lesson in history the best place to go would be Fortnum and Masons, the first lady of Shopping Centres. I'm ashamed to say that until recently I had never set foot inside however this was a travesty that the middle sister's patronage finally put right on my latest birthday.
Turning up uncharicteristally late (I was 4 days early for my own first birthday for goodness sake!) I found him all suited up by the front doors and I was then glad I'd thrown my 'posh security blanket' (the classic black Louboutins) in my bag before I left home this morning.
I knew it was to be an opulent place to visit as I had recognised the area as one that Mark Francis (Made in Chelsea twat who is always in a velvet green jacket) and Amber (that annoying one that you want to smack in the face with a shovel) frequented, though was pleseantly surprised by price of some items available. Fortnums charm is in its ability to place ridiculous extravagance next to relative affordability. You want a birthday card? they range from £3.00 to £22.00 (strangely these both looked pretty similar to me, but hey, I'm not a card expert or anything!)and jewellery seemed to start at around 40 quid and went up to the approximate cost of your first born child (but that Westwood woman always was a bit strange!)
From the 1920's designed manniquins (a decade which is going to be drawn on heavily for fashion this year) to the spiral staircase, Fortnums has a museum like quality (but better cos you can touch things!) and though I can't speak for pre-christmas shopping, post our Lord's birthday the experience was rather more tranqual than expected.
The perfume bottles screamed elegance (if such a thing was possible) and though their appearance along was almost enough for me to want one, their scent revealed the targeted audience was more old lady (lavendar and gone off milk) but you can't have everything can you?
Food At F & M's is aristocratic as well. Call me a peasant if you will but the fact that each beverage comes with the cutest ice cream cone and a minniscule scoop of ice cream, tasty enough to rival the ones sold in Rome is class itself. This wildly classy world is continued in the food hall, the choice of jams alone (Kir Royal flavour anyone?) is mindboggling and of course who doesn't need a house for said jam to reside in?
And though the only item I bought was a Christmas decoration, the experience, service and fact that Fortnum & Masons house champange is less expensive than a bottle of Moet but harvested from the same orchard as Cristal will stay with my forever. And I could always venture back should the memory fade, or if I were in the need for a pick me up, or awoke on a day with the letter Y in it...