its only 2 months since i sold the cottage and already i am missing it – despite moaning about the work and maintenance of another property;  whitstable is famed for its oysters and sea food restaurants – but also for its independent gift and craft shops;  walking down harbour street from the fish market end, you pass an array of interesting independent shops,  from Frank with its beautiful crafts and artists works – you can never leave without buying a little something  and this month frank are hosting a collective of works by the artist buddug – i love the enamelled copper plates with their delightful drawings and quotations – to the cheesebox with its selection of  british cheeses, wine, cupcakes from whats up cupcake, sweets from  a really traditional sweet shop, brilliant selection of books from harbour books,  flowers in a tin can from jane at graham greener, great deli food from david brown to traditional haberdashery at the fabric shop – all within a short 10 minute walk of each other.  its one of the few towns with a shopping street that not only still has all the amenities that you need everyday, a butchers, fishmongers, fruit and veg shops, but also unusual gift shops, framers and art galleries – all without having to get into your car!  whats so great is that you can take the train direct from victoria to whitstable and its only 10 mins walk to the town centre – there is no need for a car at all!

another place to pick up retro style gifts is taking the plunge.  there are lots of crafts pieces as well as vintage postcards and cute little gifts.

sunday morning at the fish market is not to be missed – get a mackerel in a bun for breakfast;  i love that the harbour is a working fishing place – the ropes and net cast by the side are just beautiful.

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