Notting Hill Carnival

8/29/2012 11:01:00 AM

Notting Hill Carnival

For those of you who havent been to the Notting Hill Carnival - to Londoner’s it’s just ‘Carnival’ - Venice this ain’t. This is when the Leon Max store along with its other neighbours on Westbourne Grove gets boarded up as West London prepares to have a lot of fun at Europe’s biggest street carnival. In fact as the boards go up a strange quiet descends across this swathe of the Royal Borough, it does feel akin to the eve of a war that is about to begin.

Maybe that’s an appropriate analogy. Stretching over Sunday and Monday this is when the Carribean community fill the streets, the police dance with the performers and everyone has a very jolly - if noisy - good time.

Back on its famous corner on the All Saints Road was Rampage, the stage that in past years has always seemed the most - hell - ‘crazee’. But for the West London sophisticats there’s only one stage - Gaz’s Rockin Blues (it’s a night in Soho) which is a slightly trendier version of a posh drinks party. Except with a lot whistles and Red Stripe beer and jerk chicken wafting around. Even though it’s Carnival there is still alot of airkissing and a rock star’s child is always on the decks. Whose though - of course, no one can remember the next day.

So what trends were out for the party? It was occasion-appropriate with cute florals and skirts cut to the thigh polished off with boots or flats so nothing would get in the way of the dancing. Singer Rita Ora kept things cool with a net top when she performed. And is the bandana making a come-back? Oh, maybe that was just us.

Contributing Editor: Richard Dennen

Photo Credit: Getty Images