Sunday, 10 November 2013

Just a few of my favourite shops around Northern England

Brit Boutique loves to support independent boutiques and British craftsmanship.

In this blog post I am going to focus on my favourite shops that I have found on my travels around the North of England and The Scottish Borders.

The Mole House, Kelso, Roxburghshire sells a variety of products from candles to pottery from Poland and jewellery by  Orkney based jewellery designer Sheila Fleet. On my first visit to The Mole House I purchased a star mug, two candle tapers and a Sheila Fleet Rowan Tree necklace. The owner of The Mole House was very welcoming and informative about the ranges she sells in particular the Sheila Fleet jewellery range.

Just Plum, Kelso, Roxburghshire is more of a lifestyle shop which sells soaps, jewellery, scarves and some things for the home. They sell soaps by British companies The Highland Soap Co and Olive Tree, both of which smell wonderful. They also sell Branche d'Olive soaps and Heyland and Whittle. They sell pashminas which are handmade in Nepal and candles by Isle of Skye candle company which are made from natural soya wax.

Sorella, Hexham, Northumberland  Moira and Liz are lovely and source their products from around the world. They sell things for the home, jewellery, bags, scarves, candles and bath products. The ranges are so varied that you will be sure to come out with something. The bath products they sell are Abahna and they stock the fragrances and candles too. They sell reed diffusers from Italy, pottery from Portugal and jewellery by Kazuri.

- Louise

Brit Boutique and Made in China Update

I have decided to update this post as a lot of things have changed since posting. I contacted a couple of designer ranges to get their view on where manufacture takes place. Many have said that most of their items are made in Italy but because finishing takes place in China, the made in label must state China. Just like my very first post I made on here regarding How Luxury Lost its Lustre.

So since writing this post a lot has changed. I have decided that unless it says made in Britain, England, The British Isles, The United Kingdom, Scotland, Wales or Ireland I am not purchasing it. There are a few fair-trade companies who also make accessories that I would like to support to. So my recent acquisitions have been returned unless they were made in the UK or were fair trade.

Will I ever purchase designer goods? The answer to that is a resounding NO! Why? The way I feel about designer goods is that you are simply paying for a name to be stamped, stitched or glued on. There are many issues regarding the quality control of said designer goods that I am not prepared to pay the prices they are charging. Another thing you are paying for is their ad campaigns in all the glossy magazines. The celebrities we see with the designer goods were probably gifted to them in order to boost the sales of the companies.

I would rather support smaller companies who are are trying to bring back artisan goods to the United Kingdom. One thing that annoys me about Britain is most of the things we now import were originally manufactured here before manufacturing was sent overseas. I so wish we could bring back those things to Britain. Imagine the jobs it would create.

So if you would like to support British Manufacture here are some handbag and accessory companies still manufacturing their goods in Britain.

Mimi Berry
Miller and Jeeves
Rachel Orme
Susannah Hunter
Sophia and Matt - perfect for travel or Mum's to be
Poppy Treffry

If you come across any yourself please do contact me. I would love to know about them.

- Louise