Man About Town: London needs a new place to party

 

Once upon a time, all a brand had to do to give itself credibility was to hold a party in Shoreditch. This enclave of London’s East End, represented the new, the different and (as media types are generally inward-looking types), the unknown.

The fun of an illicit-feeling party in an old factory was balanced with a slight risk. You could, as I once did, find yourself followed by an aggressive man screaming at you for wearing a suit (not a pinstripe banker’s thing, but a light blue fashionable- looking outfit. I’m not going to convince you either, am I?).

But in came the members’ clubs and the expensively converted “loftstyle”flats, while the City’s skyscrapers crept ever closer and people started talking of its demise.

But there is still a trend for holding parties in Shoreditch, and on Thursday night I found myself at three.

The launch party of the Lacoste Lookbook with a fashionable DJ (Ghostprophet) had a feel of the old place, while the E4 party represented the new (they had ferried the cast of Made In Chelsea to the East End). The last was the launch of a new book, Shoreditch Unbound, which focuses on the art and artists of the area.

Of course, “projects”are still “softlaunched”in “spaces”. But the area is changing. To look the part, many parties practically bus in hipsterlooking kids from other, more edgy places. You’ll recognise the sort – they often sport two, competing haircuts on the same head, wear the same jeans, shirts and shoes as their friends while simultaneously telling people that they aspire to originality.

Any fashionable place in any big city will struggle when faced with the realities of desirability and commercial success. By the time estate agents are prefacing an area with the word “trendy”, the moment has usually long passed.

Property prices start rising, forcing the bright young things to look elsewhere for homes. The original or one-off restaurants, shops and bars either become chains or are swallowed up by the sort that believe all you need to make it in a fashionable area is to contrast exposed brickwork with white tiles.

Of course, gentrification means nice things too. It’s easier both to buy organic milk and to walk down the street in a suit without fear of being screamed at. But that’s no good if you want to look like you’re at the very sharpest cutting edge. Pretty soon London is going to have to find a new place to party.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: Office Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Have you been doing a brilliant job in an admi...

Surrey County Council: Senior Project Officer (Fixed Term to Feb 2019)

£26,498 - £31,556: Surrey County Council: We are looking for an outgoing, conf...

Recruitment Genius: Interim Head of HR

£50000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you an innovative, senior H...

Recruitment Genius: Human Resources and Payroll Administrator

£20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client, a very well respect...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn