Thursday, August 29, 2013

Harmony and Liberation, 24th August

In about a week I will be going to Torture Garden for the first time. While I'm excited, I'm also a little nervous. What on earth can I wear? 

Well to be honest, I pretty much have my outfit sorted, but my friend had some last bits and pieces to get, which lead us to Soho's seedier side, and to me crossing a couple of things off my List.

Harmony

We'd tried to go to Breathless in King's Cross but it was shut while it relocated to Euston. So we headed into town to Harmony, the one near Peter Street. It's actually massive in there, complete with a downstairs bit and we spent ages getting sidetracked by all the weird and ermm... not so wonderful things in there. Upstairs there's underwear and some clothing bits and pieces where we quickly saw they didn't have the sort of pasties we were looking for. But we headed downstairs to have a look around anyway. The first thing you seem to come to is the men's 'self-help' section selling everything from cheaper 'pocket pussies' to full on, several-hundred-pounds' worth sex dolls. Or, rather, the sexual parts of the anatamoy - you could buy an ass and pussy, or you could buy a tits and pussy. And they were heavy! I guess all the better to hump against.

They had a huge selection of toys for women and couples, we marveled at some of the ingenious devices in terms of what they did and how they were designed. Some sleek glass-blown dildos caught my eye. They also had quite a few sexy outfits and minor S & M things like bondage tape, handcuffs and a few cat o'nine tails, spanking paddles.

There was honestly a lot more in there than I had expected and of rather good quality. I defintely know where to head should I be in the market for anything like that in the future.

Liberation

We had been unsuccessful at Harmony but we had a few other places to try such as Kiss Kiss (where the owner told us the government is STILL trying to rid Soho of its sex shops, something probably no one but they wants to happen) and Simply Pleasures where I saw the biggest inflatable penis I have ever seen. It was like an elephant's leg! (ok, maybe not that big, but still - is it supposed to go INSIDE someone??). Simply pleasures was also a little more expensive and playing abominable music so we didn't stay long. But nowhere had the pasties we needed. Our last stop was Liberation.

And of course, as logic permits, the last place we looked had the perfect thing. We rang the bell and the girl let us in. I can see why they have the doorbell, this isn't the sort of place they want any old pervert walking into. This is a boutique fetish/latex store, selling high quality items and some Victorian antique oddities. It's not seedy, or mainstream; it's a really interesting store to look around. We found the pasties immediately but still went downstairs to browse through their selection of latex outfits. Boys and girls are catered for so if you've got a spare couple of hundred quid, and you're in the market for a fetish outfit, I would definitely suggest heading here. They even had a latex version of a boys set of tails, polo shirts, a full suit. It was fantastic. Upstairs they had beautiful collars, cuffs and masks and two latex ties I was tempted to get.

At the back of the basement were some more curios - a sex swing, and an 18th century douche amongst others. Apparently the owner has a bit of a thing for Victoriana and collects things but sometimes puts the odd thing in the shop for sale - there were items in ivory and scrimshaw in the display cases as well.

The sales girls were fantastically friendly and chatty, giving us advice about how to put on the pasties and whether they'd go with the outfit my friend was putting together. If TG is a success and I want to invest some money in more outfits, I'll definitely head here. 

Obviously I didn't think taking pictures was the done thing to do, so go and explore the places for yourselves! Doesn't matter whether you're in a couple or not, they both had something for everyone.

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I work as an editor in educational publishing by day, and then spend most of my spare time discovering interesting things to do in London, and taking people there with my own Meetup.