Hilary and Michael Kashdan are INDEFATIGABLE merchants on Portobello Road. Actually, Michael is a pewter and document specialist who offered rare pewter on Portobello Road for years. As times and tastes change, this amazing couple has had to re-invent themselves. I love these colorful people; they are real “antique” dealers in every sense of the word. But more than that, they are PASSIONATE merchants on PORTOBELLO ROAD. When I arrive in London, I arrange my schedule so I can spend as much time chatting with my friends on the street. I have my camera, and I lean on the fence and photograph Hilary as she now markets her vintage furs, She is a professional sales lady: totally into the scene, and passionately “in for the kill.” Retail merchandising is the blood in her veins. She is hilarious, and even her husband Michael stands back and grins from ear to ear. She is an actress, and the Market is her stage; and I am one of thousands of fans who clap for a curtain call. Her eyes tell it all; when a two-hour client can’t make up her mind, she rolls her eyes and exclaims: ”My husband appreciates me–I can make a decision very quickly.” The customer doesn’t quite get the message. Finally, Hilary suggests that they take a bit of a walk down the street and clear their thinking. If they decide they want to purchase the fur, “COME ALONG BACK AND BUY!” I have the huge pleasure to be behind the scene roaring with laughter. I hear her mumble: IT IS SO MUCH EASIER TO SELL PEWTER! Hilary helped a young lady try on 5,6,7, or 8 furs–she couldn’t make up her mind. Hilary finally suggested that if she can’t make up her mind, she is going to be very cold this winter. THAT DID IT! I lost it and couldn’t get my breath. She loves her clients and everyone comes back time and time again to chat with the famous HILARY on Portobello Road. Her fabulous husband Michael says living with Hilary is continuous entertainment, even when wife and daughters line up against him. Believe me, knowing Hilary and Michael is an important part of my London life. Go meet them; they will welcome you with open arms. Tell Hilary you saw her on the ANGLOPHILE blog, and you will get the biggest smile and flashing eyes you ever experienced. What a TRIP! For heavens sakes, don’t miss it.
The Kashdan’s daughter has added another dimension to their vintage fur business. She is offering high quality vintage leather purses–so beautiful and beautifully made. And she is a darling like her parents.
Thomas Moore email: TMooreSr@me.com Telephone: 801.791.9918