Style city puts on a 48-hour fashion show
SHOPS from across the city have joined forces for the first time for a special event celebrating Nottingham's reputation for fashion and style.
The 48 Hours of Fashion event, which kicked off yesterday, has seen the city centre transformed, with catwalk shows, fashion advisers and a chance to have a go on a 3D full body scanner.
Virtually all the city's fashion retailers are taking part – from the quirky vintage shops of Hockley to the designer boutiques of Bridlesmith Gate.
Stores involved include independents such as Cow, in George Street and Braderie, in Pelham Street, as well as chains including John Lewis, in the Victoria Centre, and Thackerays, in St Peter's Gate.
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Organised by the Retail Business Improvement District (BID) – which was set up to attract more shoppers into the city – the event aims to boost retail and create a buzz around fashion.
Neil Fincham, director of the retail BID and centre manager of the Exchange Arcade, said: "Nottingham has an unrivalled reputation for the eclectic mix of its fashion retailers and we're keen to celebrate the fantastic choices we have here.
"It's strategic approaches like this that will strengthen Nottingham as the city of choice for shoppers in the region – driving spending, growth and ultimately a brighter economic future for the retail sector."
Corset maker Susi Henson, 34, of Mapperley, who runs the fashion brand Eternal Spirits in Lower Parliament Street, believes this kind of event is what is needed to reinforce people's view of Nottingham as a fashion city.
She said: "Our city is full of creative, talented people as well as fantastic independent stores and retail chains.
"This event is the perfect platform to highlight the best of what we have to offer and will help place Nottingham firmly on the fashion map."
Yesterday shoppers were invited to take part as a 3D full body scanner was unveiled at a "Style Hub" set up in the Upper Mall of the Victoria Centre.
The scanner uses digital white light to take images from 16 angles and takes more than 100 different measurements. Those measurements are then used to determine body shape - hourglass, rectangle, strawberry, pear-shaped or apple – and so help people choose the right clothes to suit them.
Fashion stylists were on hand at the hub to help those taking part. The hub also features outfit ideas and local hair and beauty retailers offering free mini-makeovers.
One of the first people to step in and give the body scanner a try was Rosie Stopher, 19, a part-time shop assistant of Edward Road, West Bridgford.
She was given a full rundown of her measurements to the tenth of an inch including her waist, hips, thighs, bust – and even her elbows, wrists and neck.
"I was a bit nervous but the scanner itself took no time at all and it wasn't intimidating," said Rosie, whose measurements showed she was an "hourglass".
"I think the measurements are slightly larger than my actual size, but generally they're helpful in picking out sizes using size guides. It's really helpful to see what shape I am and match clothes to suit it."
The body scanner – which is free – will be in the Victoria Centre until 5pm today and people can either book online at www.itsinnottingham.com or turn up and book a slot during the day.
More fashion shows are taking place at the Broadmarsh Centre today.
Al Booth, the centre's marketing manager, said: "This is such a creative city.
"With the current music scene really making people sit up and take notice, it's great to know that we are adding fashion to that list too."