Bond Street? No. Hatton Garden? Yes.

In a non-techie change of pace, we whimsically went wandering around Bond Street yesterday. It’s my birthday in less than a week and we were looking for some nice non-high street jewelry. Nothing too pricey (I mean, come on. We just bought a projector TV) but something special.

I, for one, don’t spend a lot of time on Bond Street. It’s all insanely priced and although I’m a big sucker for handbags, I often find shops there too stuffy for my tastes. They’re not window shopping friendly, which annoys me. Nonetheless, we did wander around, just for fun and to see what was out there, and I noticed that some shops were worse than others. So I now present you with

Beth’s Far From Comprehensive Bond Street Roundup

  • Asprey: Very nice salesman. Non-intimidating. Non-pushy. Not condescending. Very respectful. Fabulous jewelry. By far, my favourite of the bunch.
  • Cartier: Crowded. Everything too pricey (like very little under £10,000). Non-intimidating.
  • Graff: We didn’t go in here. We were blinded by the glare of the diamonds in the window. I felt that if the sun had been out and shining on them, they were sparkly enough to have intensified the light so much that I’d have gotten a tan.
  • Jimmy Choo: Nice staff. Non-intimidating. Made me wonder what was wrong with my social life that I had nowhere to wear any of this stuff.
  • Mikimoto: Oh my God fabulous pearls. The staff were… decidedly middle aged women. Which is not the norm around there. We found a £40,000 strand of pearls. Oh well, in my next life maybe.
  • Nicole Farhi: They carry four sizes of clothing: 8-14. I have no idea if this is standard across designer clothes as I’ve never looked at designer clothes before, but I found this sort of ridiculous. I guess the sentiment is if you can afford this stuff, then you can afford a personal trainer. Nice enough staff.
  • Prada: Condescending to the point that they’re annoyed that you’re in their store.
  • Tiffany: Needlessly snobby salesstaff. Condescending. EUGH. I’m never going in there again. Ever.

Naturally, it didn’t take us long to get annoyed with Bond Street. By this time we’d decided that this isn’t where we needed to be going for anything but a ripoff. So, we hopped a taxi and ended up in Hatton Garden and oh my what a breath of fresh air that was.

There were a number of jewelry shops along the street and they were all independent and in most cases the jewelry was designed in the shop. In our case, the jewelry was designed by the man who sold it to us. With places like that, if you don’t like what they have out, you can get them to make you something you do like. It was competitively priced and the guy was really nice and didn’t push too hard to sell us anything and it was such a pleasant experience, it was a huge relief. The shop was Krystle and I’d recommend it to anyone.

6 Comments so far

  1. Sean (unregistered) on February 20th, 2005 @ 5:29 pm

    I’d beg to differ on Tiffany’s where they were ever so helpful in getting my wedding band resized at no fee, somehting to do with it being the first time. Maybe the staff were having a bad day, or worse still thought you were a tourist! ;-)


  2. Beth (unregistered) on February 20th, 2005 @ 5:40 pm

    I do admit it is possible. Or maybe they’re just nicer to people who are buying wedding bands there (mine is from Tiffany’s too!). Or maybe it was the chick that was ‘helping’ me.

    I may well have been mistaken for a tourist, as I was walking around in jeans and a tee-shirt and do have that telling American accent. Though… Tiffany’s is an American company so they should be nice regardless.


  3. Sean (unregistered) on February 20th, 2005 @ 5:46 pm

    True. We bought ours in Taipei though the store has now moved to the mall in the world’s tallest building Taipei 101.


  4. Beth (unregistered) on February 20th, 2005 @ 6:06 pm

    Maybe it’s just the London Tiffany’s.

    Incidentally, there was an interesting blurb in The Economist recently about Tiffany’s and how the brand had been damaged by the recent surge in popularity of the downmarket silver jewelry they’ve been selling. It seems that snobby rich people don’t feel the brand is prestigious enough now that everyone and his brother has a ‘Return to Tiffany’ necklace and bracelet. Which is perhaps part of the reason we weren’t treated with respect? The lady might have thought we should be upstairs with the other less posh people? If that’s the case, it’s bullshit. :)

    Further to that, there’s a show on chavs coming up on some channel that looks really interesting. I don’t remember the channel now, though. Doh.


  5. pfc (unregistered) on February 21st, 2005 @ 8:54 pm

    Sky 1 at 9.00pm

    now, how did you know I’d know that???


  6. Beth (unregistered) on February 21st, 2005 @ 9:41 pm

    We actually just turned the programme off. We felt that the presenter was doing more harm to her cause than good and that she was ruining her credibility as a journalist.

    That has to be the worst documentaries I’ve seen in a long time. It was supposed to be pro-chav, but the chick made me dislike them, if anything, and I had previously had no opinion at all. :P



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