Indie Retail Month, My Close to Home Favourites
Still sticking with the Indie Retail Month theme, but this time heading just a little over the hill into Hanover - and London Road, because I just couldn't resist. I'm fortunate enough to live amongst the colourful houses, quirky pubs and truly brilliant community. Speaking of which, after a desperate plea for the return of my stolen watering can (the blog photo), I've managed to acquire a replacement can and some flowers, purely through the good of my neighbour's hearts. Anyway, without further ado, onto the good bit, my favourite 'close to home' indie retailers.
On top of the world, or at least at the top of Queen's Park, this tucked away cafe/deli is a real little gem. If you happen to have specific dietary requirements amongst your lunching buddies then Wild Cherry is guaranteed to be able to cater for everyone. Make your way right to the back of the cafe and you'll come to a quiet and cosy seating area, perfect for whiling away an hour or so trying their amazing speciality snacks.
The Village is great, because a) its practically next door and b) it's open all the time! A cafe in the mornings, the cute little terrace is the perfect place for breakfast and sunshine. In the evenings it becomes a pub again, with proper 'village pub' decor and the option of ordering in your own takeaway. What's not to like?
The Open Market is probably the place I shop the most. Instead of the mad dash around Aldi, followed by an agonising queue, I can actually enjoy my Sunday morning food shopping. I get the bulk of my bits from Mears. Their bowl for a pound deal is great and ever changing, so heritage tomatoes and fresh beetroot one week, to little sweet peppers and tubs of strawberries the next. 18 Grocery is another favourite of mine, its a cornucopia of Asian food and really reasonably priced. The ready to go dim sum on the counter is an all too frequent indulgence.
As well as food, the market is home to so many brilliant indie retailers. Miniature and moss make beautiful terrariums and hold workshops. The Market Florist sells cut flowers and plants and gives brilliant advice on how to look after them once you get them home. I will never go to anywhere other than Buttons & Bows for my haberdashery - they also sell packets of blunt needles, perfect for mattress stitching, you can thank me later knitters!
ONCA is a great charity run gallery. I love them for the diversity and frequency of their exhibitions. One of Laine's wonderful guest designers had a beautiful exhibition of her woven textiles there entitled The Selkie. Just the other week I popped in to see a stunning photography exhibition focusing entirely on seven trees over the past few years. At the moment HOAX is taking over the gallery space with an installation focusing on our changing planet and a play centring on climate change.
Glazed will forever have a place in my heart for staying true to what they do best - coffee and donuts. All of the donuts are made fresh by the owner, usually appear around midday and invariably disappear before close. The peanut butter glaze is a personal favourite and is great with a homemade rooibos iced tea in this weather. Did I mention its all vegan?!