#7 - Michael Albert / Blustons / 1960s - 2015
I knew Blustons from when I lived in Kentish town, briefly, in 2008 always admiring the display of dresses, jumpers and blouses on big bosomed wire mannequins with prices stuck to the chest. 'That Frock' - the red 1950s style polka-dot dress, which came to symbolise this shop and became something of a destination in its own right, was always displayed in the centre Art Deco window, with the skirt all spread out.
In March, I read about Blustons closing after 84 years of trading as a family business, and felt compelled to contact Michael Albert to see if he would be one of my Camden Encounters.
I called him on the last day the shop was officially open, and then met him and his wife Marilyn a couple of months later, on one of final days they were there, selling the last of the mannequins.
As we spoke, people came in to buy them and Michael showed me around the empty shelved shop, explaining how it was and describing some of his customers he had served over the past five decades.