It was the shoes that lured me into The Elfie Boutique on
Chilworth Street. Wizard of Oz-type Mary-Jane's in red sequins.
Magic things happen when you wear those kind of shoes.
But sadly Elfie shoes aren't for grown-up feet. This divine
children's shop opened just last month. It's a 3-D incarnation of
the popular website that launched just four years ago when sisters
Rafaela van der Heyden and Victoria Roper Curzon decided they
wanted to create a business together.
Rafaela had worked in the art world. While Victoria had studied
tailoring at London College of Fashion and then got busy having her
family of three (Elfie, Ned and Mabel). Victoria couldn't find the
kind of spirited but hardy wear to clothe her brood. So
childrenswear became the business; clothes with an old fashioned
backbone - think double breasted wool coat, corduroy dress, Fair
Isle knit - with a hit of British whimsy - a sparkly cape, a
woollen hat with ears and of course those sequin shoes. While
Victoria designs, Rafaela runs the business side. After a faltering
start with a stall on Portobello Road, ("A fantasy," explains
Rafaela, "But the reality is cold and miserable,") the pair
launched Elfie online. Soon Selfridges and Bobo Kids in Chelsea
began stocking the collections. And now the duo have their very own
west London flash. The clothes hang from tree-branch rails, there
are baskets of toys and the walls are covered in 1950s fairy tale
And despite my Ugly Sister attempts at squeezing my foot in the
shoe, they're for littl'uns alone. So it'll have to be the grown up
Valentino version for me, then…
P.S. Look out for the new Elfie/Alex Eagle Collaboration that
includes a perfect white shirt, reversible dungarees and a jolly
red rain coat.
The Elfie Boutique, 27 Chilworth Street, London W2 3HA
Tel: 0207 706 3495
Elfie offers all Vanity Fair A-List members the chance
to win an Elfie child's outfit (worth £150).
Don't miss out on future offers, sign up
to the A-List.