My fashionable week: Anita Barr

04 September 2009


Before the week comes to a close, we want to hear just how fashionable it was for the lovely Anita Barr, director of womenswear and childrenswear at Selfridges. Anita talks all things Helmut Lang, X Factor-obsessing and dressing up as a princess...

Best and worst moments of the week?
Next week, we are opening a new space in our Oxford Street store called 3rd Central. It’s our new location for denim and contemporary fashion, and we are working to make it a real destination. Getting ready for a big launch is nerve-racking and exhilarating at the same time. There are so many details that need to be perfect, so this week has been full of ups and downs.

Is there anything like an average day for you, and if so what does it look like?
It’s definitely true to say that every day is different. I have meetings with my buyers, who update me on ongoing projects and newness across womenswear and childrenswear. I meet with suppliers and designers to discuss opportunities we can work on together. During buying season, I am rarely in the office and travel to all the major fashion capitals for buying appointments, presentations and shows – it’s always an exciting time of the year, but I do miss London and my family when I’m away from home.

What's the most unexpected thing you did this week?
One of my best friends is getting married in September and the dress code for the day is 'Full-Length and Fabulous' – not my usual style at all! Luckily, I’ve had some help from some very kind designers who have offered to let me borrow a dress for the day – a real perk of the job. My daughters enjoyed dressing me up as a princess with matching tiara, which I think was as unexpected for them as it was for me.

How do you wind down at the end of the day?
Chilling out with my partner and catching up on his day; bedtime reading with my two daughters

Guiltiest pleasure of the week?
There’s lots of temptation when you work at Selfridges, shopping in store is a definite guilty pleasure of mine.

Last three things you bought?
Helmut Lang top, Helmut Lang leather trousers and Alexander McQueen ankle boots. I love Helmut Lang this season.

What are you lusting over this week?
Preen Line quilted wool jacket with detachable shearling collar (£840), great for work, the evening and the weekend.

What newspapers/magazines/websites do you look at each week?
Grazia, The Times and Sunday Times

Favourite outfit you wore this week?
My Helmut Lang outfit – there’s nothing like an early new season purchase as key pieces often sell out so quickly

What's your favourite day of the week and why?
I love Fridays, of course! On Friday morning we dance around the kitchen to celebrate our upcoming weekend together

What's your perfect day ever?
Getting away from it all, preferably building sandcastles on the beach with Sophia and Angelina, I love being a mum and seeing my daughters having fun.

Soundtrack of the week?
The whole buying team is trying to come up with 'Three' themed songs that we can play as a soundtrack for 3rd Central – at the moment my favourite is 3 Is The Magic Number by De La Soul.

Best restaurant/party/bar you hung out in?
I like hanging out with friends in the Paradise Bar in Kensal Green, near to home, as it’s relaxed, bohemian and not too 'fashion'. I’m also looking forward to eating at the Selfridges Pop Up roof-top restaurant, which opens in October.

TV programme you were obsessed with?
It’s got to be X Factor, which the girls love too!

What are you most looking forward to next week?
London Fashion Week and the launch of 3rd Central.

BlackBerry or iPhone and how addicted are you?
I have to admit I’m addicted to my BlackBerry and iPhone, as I travel so much having both gives me the right balance between work and play.


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