The Return of the Boom Box (With Help from Henry Holland & Rita Ora)
It’s with a wry irony that I settle on such a title, given that I pretty much made my name in London’s social circles with my club night, BoomBox. It was a sad night when we closed the doors for the final time, after a particularly raucous New Year’s Eve almost six years ago. For those not au fait with the goings-on at BoomBox, it generally ran as follows: Doors opened promptly at 8 p.m. Sibling’s Cozette McCreery would play gatekeeper, and hundreds of flamboyantly dressed youths would fight for her attention (while being kept in orderly single file—this is England, after all). Once said night crawlers had crossed the threshold, chaos would ensue. BoomBox was a hedonist’s dream, where fashion students would kick their heels up on the dance floor with the likes of Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell, and Agyness Deyn would happily join you for a shot at the bar. For those outsiders looking in, this was the epitome of cool London. The guest list of young designers and stylists would today read like a who’s who of fashion, with notable regulars Henry Holland, Gareth Pugh, and Christopher Kane often taking to the decks. It was a real “scene,” and it seemed to dissipate somewhat after the club closed.
Fast-forward six years, and Henry Holland still sits comfortably at the top of London’s social scene. It’s a position that suits him, and only serves to increase the cachet of his already incredibly successful fashion empire. Last week, Holland played pied piper to a slew of young desirables at Glastonbury; I can only assume a table at Chiltern Firehouse was easier to come by that weekend.
Personally, I’m not one for a festival. I hate the mud, the majority of festivalgoers, and, to be really honest, the fashion. Festival chic never really won me over, though occasionally there are a few items that win me over. Ray-Bans were a trend I could have happily adopted, were my head not too fat for the small frames. Hunter Wellingtons were another winner, though being a man of six foot, six inches, my calves made the festival favorites practically airtight; a constant fear of deep vein thrombosis is never conducive to a good time. This year, though, I feel more than happy to jump on the bandwagon, as 2014′s festival must-have is the boom box! Well, the official line is the Beats Pill XL, but that’s by the by. Dress it up as you wish, it’s a boom box, and you couldn’t move at Glastonbury without seeing one.
Never one to miss a trick, Holland was all over this with his own HOH carry straps, which were quickly adopted by everyone from Alexa Chung and Noel Gallagher to Radio 1 presenter Nick Grimshaw. With his harem of celebrity friends (notably Rita Ora, above, Daisy Lowe, and Sam Smith), Henry Holland brought his own little touch of “boom box” magic to the muddy fields of Somerset.
Photos: Courtesy of Richard Mortimer