While iblogfashion has been singing the praises of Pat Butcher, for me the style icon of Albert Square has always been Dot Cotton. She epitomises both London and granny chic like no other. Dot Cotton can be Cockney rhyming slang for rotten but when it comes to style, Dot is anything but. If we ignore the launderette pinny, she’s usually rocking a great floral dress and trench, accessorised with red lippie and a ciggie. Her house is also something to behold. No Cath Kidston florals here, this is the real deal.
The most interesting dressers I see on the street are usually, like Dot, well over 60 and there’s a lot we can learn from them. Finally there is a blog to document their sartorial triumphs - Advanced Style. One of my favourite chic grannies from home is simply referred to as "The Woman" by my sister and I. This just adds to her mystery and allure. Ok, she may talk to leaves on occasion, but damn, does she have a talent for accessorising - headscarf, parasol, little roll along suitcase. She also takes risks with colour– I’m sure she’s blissfully unaware that her combinations are v. Dries van Noten AW09- pink and orange, mustard and beige. In London, the best place to go for the Dot look is The East End Thrift Store – it’s a little out of the way, down a dodgy little alley in Stepney and way off the beaten track of Beyond Retro / Absolute etc but it’s worth the trek. Although “vintage” has come to mean "seriously over- priced" in many places, here almost everything is under £10. The stripped warehouse space is not the prettiest but all the stock is laid out neatly, with racks organised according to colour and style.