Herb Lester's East London Companion

Here's another cartographical delight from Herb Lester. This time it's a comprehensive guide to the delights of east London from Old Street to Hackney Wick. There's a lovely map on one side and 99 things to do and see listed on the other.

Herb Lester's East London Companion

This is going to be so handy next time I'm down at the Newspaper Club HQ. It's available from the Herb Lester shop for £4. Their last release Where The Sidewalk Ends: How To Find Old New York is similarly wonderful.

Harris Tweet Tweed ipad case

If you like Harris tweed, you'll love Harris Tweet.

Thanks Katherine for the tip.

Tatty Devine and Belle and Sebastian Dog on Wheels brooch

New in, this Dog on Wheels brooch - a delightful collaboration between top tunesmiths Belle and Sebastian and fabulous jewellery makers Tatty Devine. Bless his little ears.

Belle and Sebastian / Lesley Barnes panto t-shirt

The brooch is available from Belle and Sebastian's online shop which holds many other treasures such as new Panto t-shirts from great Glasgow illustrator Lesley Barnes (of the previously mentioned Colonel Windpipe's Musical Brigade). This goes above and beyond the usual standard of band merch, I reckon.


These PorTables (get it?) tablemats featuring photos of vintage portable record players rock my world. A collaboration between soft furnishing designer Ella Doran and Kavel Rafferty (who is behind the great Record Envelope blog) there are 6 in the set. They are a little bit too gorgeous to eat off, but still.


Available from Ella Doran's online shop and her real shop in Cheshire St, London.

Nice biscuit ring by Victoria Mason from Lark

I like this Nice biscuit ring by Victoria Mason from Lark in Australia. Victoria specialises in using everyday objects as inspiration for her silver jewellery, including pencil sharpenings and toast.

This is just one of the lovely designer and handmade goodies available from Lark and they now ship internationally, hooray! I'm proud to see my cards and postcards in such amazing company in the paper goods section. Lovely work Allison! If you want to see more design treats check out the Lark blog too.

The Beat owl greeting card from Konnie Kapow Portrait Embroidery by Gentry Illustration No Place Like Home gocco print by HelloJenuine
Brownie Camera Keyring Bottle Opener by Cut Copy Create Leather bookmark from Lesley Barnes Tunnock's Teacake Owl Digital Print by Nikkimade

The idea of Folksy Fridays where you pick your favourite Folksy items for the week is really taking off, so here are some talented Scottish ladies (at least I think they are Scottish and ladies) who can be found on Folksy. From left to right: Konnie Kapow, Gentry Illustration, Hellojenuine, Cut Copy Create, Lesley Barnes and Nikki Made.

Gillian Kyle Creamola Foam bag

For readers of a certain age, Creamola Foam Foil Bag from Gillian Kyle on Folksy.

The Aardvark Manifesto 2010

The Aardvark Manifesto, produced by the Aardvark Tearoom and Gallery in St Leonard's was a regular seller on Folksy last year. It has been updated for 2010 and now shows its delightful instructions in a letterpress stylee.

Fail better

Aardvark have also added a new print with sage advice from Samuel Beckett. The prints are available in different colours from Aardvark on Sea on Folksy or their bricks and mortar shop, beautifully situated in (or under?) the amazing Marina Court on St Leonard's seafront.

Bungalow Cafe, Glasgow

Young people working with Fairbridge in Glasgow have created a Classic Cafe Calendar. It features some of my favourites haunts like Boni's, Tomasso's, The Bungalow Cafe, The Queen's Cafe, The Val D'Oro plus others I can't identify (Jaconelli's?). It was all done as part of a photography project, the results of which can also be seen on Flickr.

It costs £9.99 and is available here.

There's No Place Like Home by Jen Collins

Today I paid my first visit to Welcome Home, Partick's finest design emporium. Newly-opened at 19 Keith Street (tucked away off Dumbarton Road at the bottom of Hyndland Street) it stocks all manner of design loveliness - cushions, cards, prints, totes, purses etc. I'm also delighted to say that they're stocking my postcards, yay!

Upstairs there's currently a brilliant exhibition of prints, with work from Gemma Correll, Anthony Zoninos, Natalie Tweedie, Cut Copy Create and many many more. There's also an online shop with lots of prints under £20 so it's great for Christmas presents. More info on their website and blog.

Tinyment by Finch and Fouracre

Tinyments are tiny, perfect models of Glasgow tenements, made by Finch and Fouracre. Made from nickel silver, they're supplied flat, ready to be clicked into place.

Tenement model kits by Finch and Fouracre

They also make red and blonde sandstone tenements kits which require a bit more assembly. You can get them from the Finch and Fouracre shop or from their Etsy store. My only complaint is that there's only one variety. It would be great to see them in different shapes and sizes, just like the real ones, so you could build a wee Glasgow street.


I've just sent this out to the mailing list (there is a mailing list) and thought it might be worth repeating. If you're looking for Christmas gift ideas there's a round-up of lovely things that have been featured here at www.ilike.org.uk/shopping and a whole mini-bookshop full of interesting books in the I like Amazon astore.

I've also been picking all the featured items at Folksy - all handmade in the UK. There are great things there for all ages and all pockets. The photo above is a Christmas sprout from Sew Sew. The last one has just sold but hopefully there are more. Never have sprouts been so popular.

I like postcards - set 3

Due to popular demand, there's a new set of 8 I like postcards. Just in time for Christmas. They're not Christmassy at all, more like an end of year best of. So we've got:

17: Dodgems, Barry Island
18: Lighthouse, Dungeness
19: Tunnock's cyclist, Uddingston
20: Tub of chips, Barry Island
21: Salt and vinegar, Elgin
22: Blackpool Model Village
23: Rock face, Eastbourne
24: Super, Great Yarmouth

This is the third set of postcards. The first set is sold out, and the second is still available in the shop. Either set costs £3 + 50p P+P in the UK. Thanks as always to davidthedesigner for making them look so fantastic.

Buy some today!

[This isn't the best product photo, btw. Very tricky taking photos indoors in the winter. They look much better than that in real life.]

Rubber stamp necklace by Niche Handmade

I've been admiring these necklaces made from vintage illustrations by Niche Handmade on Folksy. The rubber stamp necklace is a particular favourite, along with the Little City necklace. These paper mache birds are also really cute. Nice work!

Arts Tower stand-up calendar from We Live Here

Loving these Brutalist standee calendars from Sheffield's ever excellent We Live Here.

Get Carter Car Park stand-up calendar from We Live Here

Available in Get Carter Car Park, Trellick Tower, Park Hill and Arts Tower flavours.

Vision On poster

Readers of a certain age will remember the delight that was Vision On. Presented by avuncular art legend Tony Hart who died last year, it ran from 1964-1976 on the BBC and showcased art and animation from artists and kids alike.

Two of the most memorable things about it are The Gallery theme and the great Vision On logo, designed by Tony Hart himself. Happily Trunk Records are selling Vision On prints and t-shirts. Tony Hart's estate get some of the proceeds and they're selling out fast, so get in there. (Thanks Andrew for the tip).

Scarlet Ivy by Tim Irving

I've been picking some autumnal goodies for the featured items on Folksy. Scarlet Ivy, a photographic print by Tim Irving captures this season's colours perfectly.

Lambswool pencil scarf from Sara Carr on Folksy

I'm secretly glad at the sight of autumn. Can't wait to get my winter woollies on. So, added to the wishlist is this Lambswool pencil scarf by Sara Carr who has a Folksy shop full of fab woollens.

Cassette Necklace by Hello Sunshine on Folksy

I've been working away at Folksy for a few weeks now and keep finding things to covet, so I thought I'd post them here. First up, here's a jolly cassette tape necklace from Hello Sunshine.

I live here

I Live Here is a new service from We Live Here (Sheffield-based artist Jonathan Wilkinson) that lets anyone have their house or favourite building reproduced in inimitable We Live Here style. I've bought a few of his ready-made prints already (Get Carter Car Park, Billy Liar House, Tinsley Cooling Towers) and they're really great. Worth keeping in mind for Christmas...

A guide to seasonal vegetables

I'm always a sucker for a natty tea towel, so here's one that's useful and attractive - a guide to seasonal vegetables by Stuart Gardiner. Found on the excellent To Dry For, for all your tea towel needs. They have a good sale on at the moment with Mr PS and People Will Always Need Plates tea towels going cheap. I just bagged me a Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral one - mighty fine.

Himlayan poppies by Dee Beale

Lovely Gocco prints from British printmaker Dee Beale. I love the Himalayan poppies above, and the fab Nordic hares below. Dee also has a blog with some nice finds on it.

Red hare by Dee Beale


If I had my own office I would buy a set of Treaclezoo's crocheted biscuits for meetings. Everyone is on a diet anyway so it would be doing them all a favour. I love the detail on the custard cream and the inclusion of the controversial pink wafer. They come in a very pretty presentation box, available from Folksy or Etsy, where there is also some neat plush sushi and amazing tartlets for sale too.

Tunnock's Teacake bag from Gillian Kyle

I like this Tunnock's Teacake Shopper from Gillian Kyle, a textile designer from Glasgow who has a great range of products based on typical Scottish foods (and Scottie dogs). Also available as an apron.

Nice to see you Ink Posters print

Ink Posters is a collaboration between British designers Joff and Ollie and Zoot. They've got some lovely designs - very simple, but stylish and colourful. My favourite is the British comedy-inspired Nice To See You print above. Numbers are limited, so get in quick.

Sarey Poppins chick purse

Those of you looking for an alternative Easter gift might enjoy these lovely chick purses from Sarey Poppins. The fabric is adorable and they're really sturdy. Mine came crammed with golden mini-eggs - hooray!

Sarey Poppins blue chick purse

When not making fab purses, bags and lavender doggies Sarey Poppins is Sarah Martin from Belle & Sebastian, so they're a little piece of pop memorabilia too.

Get excited and make things

I stopped posting all the Keep Calm and Carry On variants because it was getting done to death, but I like this one by Matt Jones. Says it all really and the spanners in the crown really make it. Now available as a t-shirt from Howies.

Mr PS mugs

Mr PS (aka Megan Price from Manchester) takes her inspiration from "vintage signage, eating and drinking, and the great British seaside" - excellent work. She has a lovely line of products like mugs for tea lovers and delightful tea towels.

Cafe culture tea towel

I like this one in particular, with its reference to classic cafes of yore. Available from various stockists and the Mr PS shop.

Crazy food tubs

I couldn't help but buy these Funny Food tubs from Paperchase. They had me with the mushroom but there are 3 more bonus containers. Look - a happy apple! I only expected 3 and then out popped the cherries. It's part of a range, aimed at kids presumably, but why should they have all the fun?

I only went in for a notebook...

Wee miniatures of Sheffield

We Live Here (of the prints and greasy spoon mugs) have a nice new project. Wee Miniatures are tilt-shift postcards of Sheffield. £7.50 for 12. Nice, I like 'em.

How are you all doing with Christmas? Done your shopping? Waiting 'til Christmas Eve? Sick of the whole thing? I am almost done so normal non-Christmassy service should be resumed soon, but until then let's get down to the business of Christmas decorations.

RSPB glass birds

Above: Hand-painted bird Christmas decorations from the RSPB. £9.99 for six (via Wee Birdy).


Next up, felt Christmas pudding decorations from Lupin. $12.75 for 2.

Cross-stitched Christmas decoration

And finally, cross-stiched decorations from Fluffplanet, available in a few different designs. 3 for £2. Total bargain. I bought loads of these, they're great.

Floppy disk tags

From Feel Fuzzy (again), floppy disk gift tags. I bet Maurice Moss uses these for his Christmas presents.

Feel Fuzzy map tags

I was at Made in the Shade again yesterday and have a new favourite stall, Feel Fuzzy. They sell delightful things made from old children's books and games, plus some other bits and pieces (like very handy gift tags) made from vintage paper products. It reminded me of Lark and all their lovely things.

I also got a button bag from Asking for Trouble (for my niece, to keep her crafting things in), a notebook covered in vintage embroidery from Leah Halliday and some more of Clare Nicolson's lavender birdies because I can't resist them. Overall, I was a bit disappointed because some of the stalls I liked last time weren't there. Still, it's a grand day out and it's on again today from 12-5 at The Lighthouse.

Cassette purses by Librarian Barbarian

More from Made in the Shade. First up, this fantastic purse made from an old cassette tape by the stellar Librarian Barbarian. The tapes are split down the middle and turned into a sturdy purse. In the spirit of recycling, the tape is turned into brooches that are also for sale, as were some bags made from records. Lovely stuff.


Next, the wonderful work of Clare Nicolson who makes a number of delightful things, like cards, cushions and lavender birdies. I was going to buy one of these but got it free in my lucky bag. Result! It looks great and smells superb.

Knitted R2-D2

I went to Made in the Shade on Saturday, which is a showcase for local crafty types at The Lighthouse. I was hoping to do a bit of Christmas shopping but ending up buying more for myself. First up, little R2-D2 here, made by Ding Dong Designs. They specialise in knitted finger puppets and have a great selection of Muppets, Beatles, and cartoon characters. The Star Wars ones were the most popular and had sold out in around half and hour.

Barney the Owl

I also got this little fella, now called Barney but can't remember the name of the people who made it. Anyone? I'll blog the rest later in the week when hopefully my computer is behaving itself better than it is tonight.

Blackpool Rock

British Cream Tea make typical British foods out of felt. Their vanilla slice is a thing of beauty but it's this stick of rock that really won my heart. What's ever better is they're all custom made so you can have anything you like written through the middle (within reason). That's going straight on my Christmas list.

I love you more than mixtapes

Some of you might know Folksy already as the lovely chaps behind it have been appearing here and there for a while. It's now up and at 'em online, selling wonderful hand-made goods, like a Great British Etsy. There's some lovely stuff in there and it's in beta so they're looking for new buyers/sellers to test everything out. Might I recommend these fab 'I love you more than mix tapes' greetings cards from Lucy Player, Lupin's tea and cake-related felt wondrousness and Miso Funky's Emobroidery.

Dish of the day

Present & Correct who made the wonderful Alphabet of endangered species have done it again with a really smart set of classic cafe notecards. 4 different designs celebrate great British dishes in a fitting old-timey way. There are other items to coo over in their new shop.

The Billy Liar House

The Billy Liar House, from the 1963 film shot on the outskirts of Bradford is the subject of the latest print from We Live Here. This is a slight departure from their usual brutalist masterpieces but it's just as lovely and a steal at £20.

Teacup ride, Cromer Knickerbocker glory, Millport

The second set of I like postcards are ready. There's cafe action and seaside fun ahoy. It's like a little holiday in your hand. A thousand thanks to davidthedesigner for working his magic once again.

Order now for Christmas.

Flensted Santa Flensted Puffing Troll

Flensted have been making supercool mobiles since 1954. They've got various ranges: kids, Bauhaus and Calder-inspired abstract ones, even some styllsh Christmas decorations (including Santa, above). My favourites are the Danish ones, with vikings, viking ships and the delightfully mournful Puffing Troll (above right) who will take all your troubles away. They're lightweight and pack flat so make great gifts for kids overseas. Buy from Danish Design and shops worldwide.

Christmas Olga card

Clare Nicholson is a Glasgow-based designer specialising in vintage patterns and textiles. I like her matryoshka Christmas cards. She also does cushions, tea towels and lavender birdies. Available from her online shop, Miso Funky markets around Glasgow (there's one on Sunday in Sloan's) and soon, from Paperchase's Tottenham Court Road store.

George Square, Glasgow

More postcards, more George Square. Nothing To Write Home About is a collection of John Hinde postcards, put together by Susan Beale and Michelle Abadie. The messages on the back are included, so it's like dawdlr from 40 years ago. Designed as "a photographic album, a social record, an historical document, humorous tourism, a celebration of Britain, a trip down memory lane, it celebrates the exquistness of the everyday". Part of the proceeds go to Carers UK and there's a celebrity postcard auction at the start of December. Available from Amazon and other good bookshops.

Belle & Sebastian 2008 Glasgow calendar

Belle & Sebastian have made a great 2008 calendar featuring all their favourite places in Glasgow. They've chosen well - some of my favourite places are in there too, like the Queen's Cafe on Victoria Rd with its wonderful ice cream cone window display and that great little 1930s street in the Transport Museum. It's a picture of the real Glasgow, not the tourist version and brings together a great city and a great band. Yours for £10 from the B&S Shop.

Pete Fowler's little monsters

Pete Fowler, he of much sterling work for the Super Furry Animals, has made some lovely little pets. There are 8 different ones with an owner to look after them. Hard to tell who's the cutest. They're a very reasonable £8 per pair (in a pet food-style can) or £60 for the set. Order from Playbeast.

Bugs and fishes handmade cake and tea brooches

There's a bit of a tea/cake theme emerging with the Christmas shopping list. Bugs and fishes from Gloucerstershire makes wonderful felt brooches. Many are cake/biscuit-related but there are others like acorns and conkers for autumn and a fine array of felt moustaches. She also makes recycled stationery from old magazines and maps. All available on Etsy.

K8 phone box tea towels

More stylish gifts - K8 Telephone Box tea towels from The Twentieth Century Society. £12 the pair, plus a brief history of the phone box by Gavin Stamp. Order today! (PDF).

Bruce Martin’s K8 was the last red, cast iron telephone box ever to be constructed in the UK. As such it represents the final stage in the lineage of a design that has become nothing short of a global icon, a symbol of Britain. In the same manner that Gilbert Scott modernised his K2 for his 1936 K6 kiosk, so Bruce Martin reworked Scott’s classic K6 ‘Jubilee’ kiosk for a new era – responding to the most complex brief ever issued for a piece of street furniture.

Vandal-proof, weather-proof and easy to maintain– the K8 should have been the modern equivalent of the 1930’s K6. But when BT began de-commissioning boxes in 1984 – K8’s were the first in the firing line and at the time, were too young to be protected by English Heritage’s 30 year listing rule. - 60's icon faces extinction.

Proceeds help the K8 campaign to preserve the phone boxes, and develop the Twentieth Century Society's website. I was their web administrator for a while and can confirm that they're doing a difficult job on a shoestring. Phone box fiends may also enjoy Kiosk Korner.

Knitted paper chain

Every year, I peak too soon for Christmas. I get really excited around now (or October, usually), feel guilty because everyone's moaning about it coming earlier every year, don't do any shopping for fear of social stigma and then when it's a respectable (last minute) time to shop I don't feel like it. So I thought I'd start thinking at least, and tagging anything that catches my eye (with the word Shopping). This year I'd like to support small traders and independent shops, particularly British ones. If you can buy online, even better. I've got a few to mention but would like tips. Something lovely and unique please, and not too pricey.

So following on from Present & Correct and We Live Here comes All The Fun of The Fair based in London's Kingly Court. They make brilliant hand-knitted creations like the festive paper chain above, or supercute knitted cupcakes. The Knit Your Own Bunting kit is an all-year round festive must have.

Gateshead Get Carter car park

We Live Here from Sheffield make wonderful art prints, t-shirts and accoutrements featuring risky modern buildings. The prints feature Owen Luder's Get Carter car park in Gateshead, soon to be demolished apparently, Sheffield's Egg Box, New Roxy Disco and Cooling Towers, remaindered from a long gone power station. If you like these, wait 'til you see the memorial Sheffield Castle Market Greasy Spoon Mug.

Sheffield Castle Market greasy spoon mug

Deep joy. Thanks Simon James for the tip (via Creative Review blog).

An ABC of endangered species in the British Isles

Here's a lovely thing. An ABC of endangered species in the British Isles arranged in a very beautiful A2 wallchart. This is the handiwork of Present & Correct, a design company from Kentish Town. £1 for every one sold goes to The National Trust, for new hedges and dormice boxes.

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