ceramics and artisan

i am always looking for  beautiful ceramics – have a look at the delicate beakers and jugs by James and tilla waters. I love the bold designs of Silvia K. i also like the simplicity of the creamer jug from another country.  love the colourful blue jugs by reiko kaneko  – jugs are something i can’t resist and i have jugs in all sizes and colours, some old, some new!

jug_0080 jugs_0075 jugs_0071

another of my favourite ceramicists is Jacqui Roche,  who makes lovely cream porcelain ware, including this lovely porcelain rose.  Jacqui also runs workshops for adults and children, learning to use the wheel and glazing pots – she’s inspirational.  Fliff Carr is also a brilliant ceramics and teacher – her fine delicate pieces make lovely gifts. 

there seem to be very few artisan shops left in london, i find that its essential to touch and feel the things that i want to buy and especially the scale – you lose all the beauty in a photograph online.  fortunately there are a few shops remaining that still show interesting hand made ceramics – my favourites are listed.

My new discovery is Kobo in a little alley in Norwich, beautifully presented, and more rustic and earthy coloured pots, you can’t leave without purchasing something. mint is an inspiring shop selling beautiful ceramics and artisan products.    egg is another source of inspiration,  no website, but worth the journey.  igigi in brighton is another favourite place of mine – and definitely makes going to brighton worth it. merci in paris is another shop worth all the travelling to – its got to be a must on your list of paris shopping – merci also gives its profits to charity.Eclectic is typically japanese , very white, minimal, very delicate in style but like a breath of fresh air, it stands out amongst the usual chain shops around town.  of course there is frank in whitstable,  abigail aherne in islington has an unusual choice of ceramics.  native and co have lovely selection of Japanese gifts and homewares and momosan near London Fields also is a lovely shop to visit for gifts. 

my favourite independent shops

i always prefer to buy from independent retailers – support the individual, buy something that hundreds won’t have;  but increasingly there are fewer of these shops around and sadly as they close, the multiple chains start to replace them.  here are a few of my favourite shops, some are out of london, but they are always on my list when i visit these places.  whenever i go to visit my mother, i always pop into moth in didsbury manchester;  the new general store tidy street in brighton has become a fave as well as workshop.   vanil in woodbridge has a lovely selection of gifts and homewares (including my book),   frank in whitstable has always been a firm favourite for artists works and gifts, cornercopia in brixton has great kitchen stuff, candles and other gifts.  choosing keeping in columbia road fulfils my passion for stationary and paper items – its something i have always collected – they make lovely gifts for just about anyone. also on columbia road is mason and painter, an interesting mix of vintage and new; native and co is a  japanese shop based in portobello selling beautiful tableware and gifts;  and of course my longtime favourite  shop is  summer hill and bishop,  there is the kitchen shop, plus tablecloths dyed to beautiful colours.  here in spain my favourite shop is el antiguo correo,  which sells handicrafts from all around the world and the ajonjoli that sells moroccan flat bread and sweet pastries.  and of course i still love and support all the market stalls that pop up .  happy shopping! i picked these roses from my garden – roses are so beautiful, romantic, nature’s wonder…..

whitstable oyster festival

missing my fisherman’s college in whitstable, its just over 3 years now since i sold it and have only managed to get there once since then.  i remember that this time of year is when the whitstable oyster festival is on.  with  all the wonderful food stores and vans whitstable is definitely the destination for  speciality  good local food.    its a great time for a day visit, and especially if the weather is good – you may be lucky and can go in the sea!   take a walk from the harbour down towards seasalter – its a lovely walk and gets much quieter.  the festival commences in the next week.

there are usually lots of pop up shops, gift and vintage;  what i always loved about whitstable are the independent shops and the village type atmosphere. frank is my favourite shop – with its lovely choice of craft and art gifts, its what every place needs.

 

ceramics and artisan

i am always looking for  beautiful ceramics – have a look at the delicate beakers and jugs by James and tilla waters. i also like the simplicity of the creamer jug from another country.  love this colourful blue jug by reiko kaneko  – jugs are something i can’t resist and i have jugs in all sizes and colours, some old, some new!

jug_0080 jugs_0075 jugs_0071

another of my favourite ceramicists is Jacqui Roche,  who makes lovely cream porcelain ware, including this lovely porcelain rose.  Jacqui also runs workshops for adults and children, learning to use the wheel and glazing pots – she’s inspirational.

there seem to be very few artisan shops left in london, i find that its essential to touch and feel the things that i want to buy and especially the scale – you lose all the beauty in a photograph online.  fortunately there are a few shops remaining that still show interesting hand made ceramics – my favourites are listed.

mint is an inspiring shop selling beautiful ceramics and artisan products.    egg is another source of inspiration,  no website, but worth the journey.  igigi in brighton is another favourite place of mine – and definitely makes going to brighton worth it. merci in paris is another shop worth all the travelling to – its got to be a must on your list of paris shopping – merci also gives its profits to charity.Eclectic is typically japanese , very white, minimal, very delicate in style but like a breath of fresh air, it stands out amongst the usual chain shops around town.  of course there is frank in whitstable,  abigail aherne in islington has an unusual choice of ceramics, including this very cute vessel with a face on it, perfect for an odd stem o flower.

abigail  also runs one day workshops on how to practically style, dress and create the coolest seasonal home – her unique, but covetable style provides a wonderful, fun and inspirational day full of tips and innovative ideas.

frank

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.