Lou Dalton is a name heard increasingly often on the menswear circuit of late. Her smart, minimal designs are a highlight at the London Collections: Men shows each season and have been met with critical acclaim. She shares her London insider tips with Global Blue, from the places she loves to shop to her local pub that’s great for a bite to eat
‘As a city London embraces creativity. It’s inspiring, with its diverse cultural mix of colourful souls. I live very close to West Square, SE11, a beautiful conservation area. During the summer months it is tranquil and quiet enough to sit and read while basking in the late summer sun – when it’s not raining.
‘My favourite stores in London are Liberty – the first shop in London to stock Lou Dalton; Opening Ceremony – an amazing concept rolled out globally, which also stocks my brand; and Dover Street Market is inspiring as well as stocking Lou Dalton! The womenswear Lanvin store is like being in Aladdin’s cave – so many beautiful things and the store itself is a dream to go into.
Purdey & Sons will forever remind me of when I first started out making shooting breeches for a tailor in Shropshire that were being shipped down to Purdey & Sons in London. I never thought I'd get to see such a store. I’m most likely to found in Bernstock Speirs’ store. They are dear friends and fabulous milliners; Thelma is my inspiration. The shop is a five-minute walk from the studio so I often pop in for a cup of tea and a catch-up.
‘My favourite restaurants? St John Bread & Wine, it’s just around the corner from the studio and on a Sunday they produce custard-filled doughnuts which are beyond amazing. I’ll head to Rochelle School for lunch, a hidden gem – great food, great venue, great location. I love Scott’s for its old-school glamour.
‘The Charles Lamb is a public house that does amazing food. I used to have a studio just around the corner from it and I know the landlord and landlady very well – they are super hosts. I like to celebrate there or, otherwise, at the Nelson’s Head just off Columbia Road. I’m very much a creature of habit and tend to go to the same pub day in, day out, year in, year out.
‘My perfect walk in the city is from Westminster Bridge through to St James’s Park and up into Green Park, making my way down to Dover Street with a stop off for a wee coffee at Rose Bakery at Dover Street Market. Driving over Waterloo Bridge at night, the view is magical. London comes alive at night and this view in particular is spectacular. Not so local and not so secret – but Sir John Soane’s Museum is pretty special and not on everyone’s radar.
‘The best landmark in London is Monument, I pass it on the bus on my way home every night. It’s spectacular, this simple column with a gilded urn of fire, at the top – such a powerful landmark. My top tip for visitors is to around walk the city as much as possible and take public transport when it is only really necessary – you will see far more on foot.'