Out & About in Kent · shop local

Shop Local and Independent in Staplehurst with Made by Kent

This Spring, some exciting news came to Staplehurst, the village where I live. An opportunity arose for our seasonal pop up shop, known as Kentish Made and run by Katie Higgins, to become a permanent fixture in the high street!

Made by Kent gift shop Staplehurst Kent

Katie, of Marmaduke Scarlet and her team of hard working helpers soon had the shop (formerly the old bakers), looking great and ready to fill with lots of handmade goodies.

There’s a great community of independent designers, makers and businesses in Staplehurst and it’s so exciting to see them all under one roof, all year round!

Local baker Claire’s Bread supplies freshly baked bread daily and weekly sausage rolls too! Made by Kent gift shop Kentish Honey Staplehurst Kent 3

As well as delicious brownies and biscuits, every Friday there’s a cake of the week, all baked by Rebecca of Vallance and sons from her home bakery. Rebecca also makes gluten and diary free bakes, which is great for me, having to be gluten free. A lovely treat for the weekend to look forward to!

 

vallance and sons cake of the week
Rebecca’s fabulous cakes!

There’s something for everyone, with a wealth of handmade goodies to choose from!

 

I’m thrilled to have a selection of my handmade jewellery available to buy at Made by Kent and I’m so pleased with the support I’ve received so far!

The Little Red Hen Jewellery handmade silver, copper jewellery
My Silver and copper handmade jewellery AND my jewellery bust Maud, looking very happy in her new home!

So if you’re local or passing through this part of Kent, do pop in and have a browse, you won’t be disappointed!

To find out what’s new in the shop and for more information on the makers, please take a look at the Made by Kent Facebook page!

Out & About in Kent

Kent Bloggers’ Day -Park Mall, Ashford

Last Friday I attended a Kent bloggers’ day event at Park Mall in Ashford. The event was organised by the lovely Kate from Happy & Glorious one of the new independent gift shops in Park Mall.

Processed with VSCO
The invite

It’s been several weeks since I’ve finished showcasing my jewellery with Made in Ashford and I was interested to catch up with my fellow creatives and see what’s new!

As a designer maker myself, it’s so encouraging to see a town regeneration project that encourages small, independent businesses. I’m also a fan of unique, handmade gifts, so I was really looking forward to discovering what Ashford’s newest indie shops had to offer.

The first stop was Kate’s shop Happy & Glorious a gorgeous, beautifully displayed space, packed full of British made goodies. Happy & Glorious are a small, family-run company,which prides itself on supporting British home-grown talent, design and manufacturing. They’ve been trading online since their beginning in 2012 and have found a bricks and mortar home at Park Mall since late last year!

Some of the product lines Kate designs and creates herself, including some very pretty gift cards and mirrors. There are lots of yummy scented, handmade soaps and candles on offer, but my favourite gifts are the cute succulents!

As a special treat, I’m able to share with you some discount vouchers, to be spent in store or online at www.happyglorious.co.uk

  • £5 off £25 with code BLOG25
  • 15% off with code BD2016

Valid until 31st May 2016

Just around the corner is Fabric Heaven or Emporia Fabric and Craft  a truly wonderful shop filled with a great selection of modern fabrics, trimmings, wool, haberdashery and every thing you could possible need if you’re handy with a needle and thread!

Processed with VSCO
Emporia Fabric have the most fabulous window displays!

Don’t worry if you’re a sewing novice, Emporia Fabric runs regular sewing classes and workshops, just check out their website for details.

The trail of balloons led me along the Mall to Made in Ashford a great collective of Kent-based designer makers and creatives. I’ve been lucky enough to sell my jewellery here and as the shop duties are shared between the makers, it’s a great way to gain retail experience, get customer feedback and make new friends.

Below is just a selection of handmade gifts on offer, I really recommend you pop in and take a look for yourself!

There really is something for everyone on offer at Made in Ashford and if you’re a local maker who’s interested in selling with them, please email: madeinashford@outlook.com

There was just enough time to meet up with fellow Kent blogger and local friend, Lydia from Polly had a Dolly and have a coffee & cake at new independent cafe Stag Coffee This smart new cafe had only just opened and I was impressed by the modern decor, friendly staff and excellent coffee. I was pleased to see it was child-friendly too, always a bonus to a busy mum!

We then went our separate ways, with me heading towards GlamRUs Accessories

An Aladdin’s cave of scarves, purses, bags and accessories. Very tempting to a scarf-a -holic like me! So I  treated myself to a lovely silver scarf using their voucher code which you can use online too: –

  • 20% off your first online order with code GLAM20

 

Just opposite is the Creative Collective a thriving gallery, exhibition and community space for local artists. They offer an affordable art scheme and even host film and poetry nights. Yet another reason to visit Park Mall if you’re out and about in Ashford.

So if you’re looking for somewhere new to shop, somewhere that supports local independent businesses, check out Park Mall in Ashford!

 

 

Uncategorized

Made in Ashford – Supporting Local Businesses

wp-1460491804108.jpeg

For the last five months I have been showcasing my handmade jewellery in the Independent shop, Made in Ashford, in Ashford Kent. The shop started life as a pop -up shop and since January has become a permanent fixture. The shop is a great place to support local creative businesses.

The lovely folk at Love Ashford ( the town’s regeneration team) wanted to interview me about my time at the shop and you can read about it here:

https://www.loveashford.com/read/the-little-red-hen-talks-made-in-ashford

If you’re a Kent based designer/maker and are interested in being involved with Made in Ashford, please get in touch by e-mailing madeinashford@outlook.com