Can you believe, I’ve been living in North London for four years! Previously I’d never considered living anywhere above Brixton (I’m originally from South East London), so it was quite a big step to move across the river. How could I desert the trains that only come four times an hour?!
Now I’ve been able to connect certain fuzzy areas together and having a Tube nearby is great when you need to ‘align your energy with your time’. I’ve also loved discovering the independent shops that add character to each area and suit all of my interior personalities.
If you do find yourself in these parts of zone 2 and 3 (don’t worry, it’s not as far out as you think), then here’s a few places that you should definitely stop by. Apologies for any spontaneous purchases that may happen.
Fancy a day trip? Here’s why you need to visit Whitstable this Summer.
Cassius and Coco in Crouch End
Although Crouch End is in one of those Tube-free parts of London (though the W7 and W3 will transport you from Finsbury Park), it’s well worth a visit if you like a High Street that isn’t completely cut and pasted.
Cassius & Coco is the kind of place where you can find woven baskets from Kenya, ceramic leaf platters from Portugal and paper lampshades from India. It’s a lifestyle store that brings together eclectic patterns and textures from all over the world and I’m always inspired by the perfectly arranged shelves.
These kinds of shops are my kryptonite and although you’ll spot a few familiar bits, there’s also a focus on one-of-a-kind items and brands that are doing things differently. Take this Slowdown Studio rug. A quick Google led me to their website, the artists they collaborate with and then their respective Instagram pages. I could quite easily lose a few hours on a trail of discovery.
I’m tempted to buy one of their colourful planters and see if it motivates me to keep my calathea alive!
Also in the area
Edith’s House – This is the granny-chic location of one of my recent insta snaps and it’s a bit like being in a house that’s stuck in the 70s. You can even eat your lunch within a pastel pink bathroom (it makes sense when you’re there) and there’s so much attention to detail.
Heron Hawker – OK this may technically be in Hornsey, but I had to include this plant shop that specialises in terrariums, cacti, aloes and succulents. If you have a abandoned pot sitting at home, then they can also advise on the best plant to suit your lifestyle and transplant it for free.
Future & Found in Tufnell Park
Tufnell Park would probably be one of my dream places to live if money were no object. There’s great transport links, open spaces nearby and plenty of independent businesses near the Tube. I quite like the fancy street names such as ‘Lady Somerset Road’ and you may even spot a few celebrities in the pub.
If you love clean fonts and geometric patterns with a pop of neon, then Future and Found is for you. It’s situated in an old piano factory and consists of an interior design studio, concept store and occasional cafe.
Although some of the larger pieces of furniture are out of reach for me (though it’s always worth checking out the sale), what I love about these places are all the little touches you can buy to personalise your home. This terrazzo board would look great on a bedside table.
Also in the area
Ruby Violet – Hello hot cross bun ice cream! This parlour uses quality ingredients to create unusual flavours and they try to keep waste to a minimum.
Diverse – A boutique after my own heart. It’s been running for over 30 years and has evolved to include brands like Ganni, Carven and Rixo.
Truffles Deli – Although this is a bit of a walk, I probably had one of my best pizzas from here before one of our weekly Drag Race sessions (they’re only available on Friday or Saturday nights). You can choose from any of their deli toppings and they’re served in a rather kitsch box.
Pup Tart in Wood Green
I’m less familiar with Wood Green (though it is handy if I need to get my Lidl fix) but one exciting place to visit this Summer is Blue House Yard. The colourful timber houses and bright blue building are actually a clever regeneration project, which transformed the old council offices and car park into a multidisciplinary space. The catch is that it’s only open for the next four years, but at least the creative studios, shops and courtyard will have time to make a big impact.
You may recognise Hannah’s marbled creations from our last Bloggers’ Market and I was so pleased to see that she opened her first store here last September. It’s great to see all of her sparkly bags, earrings and cushions in one place, plus she also stocks fellow indie brands Baked By Lou and Oh Squirrel.
If you follow along on Instagram, then you can find out all about her upcoming workshops (the marble plant pots look epic) and watch what goes on behind the scenes. I can’t wait to see which objects she gives the glitter treatment next.
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