A week of hand techniques and local tradition at The Hambledon. Queene and Belle breathes Scottish heritage, using luxury yarns spun in Scotland. Consisting of hand finished pieces, layered with authentic vintage dresses and decorated using Italian chandelier crystals, antique silver charms and vintage ribbons, this is a collection of heirloom treasures of really exquisite and delicate beauty.
Dancers love Bloch ballet pumps because they?re specially crafted to the curvature of the foot, offering protection and sustainability through hours of dance and movement. We love Bloch and Baby Bloch because they are super cute, super comfy and super versatile. And this season they come in a range of delicious sweetie colours.
Work together, love this world, be honourable and stay wonky - now if there are any words of wisdom we are trying to live by this year it has to be those of fabulously quirky print company Aardvark. We just love the cheery messages adorning the beautifully handcrafted prints and mugs we have here at The Hambledon.
The brainchild of artist and designers Lesley and Pea, the pair moved from London in 2008 to open the Aardvark Tea Room & Gallery in St. Leonards, East Sussex. As well as serving legendary soups and fabulous cakes the cafe showcased British art and crafts, including their own - which sold so well they were forced to pass the tea and cake baton over so as to concentrate on printmaking.
Today, the design duo are kept busy printmaking for such names as the V&A. Inspired by their love of "handmade signs, typography, village halls, fruit cake, tweed overcoats and twice-fried chips", their business champions the handmade and "skills and crafts such as typesetting and sign writing which seem to be on the edge of extinction."
The linocuts are lovingly carved and printed in their ramshackle studio while the broadsides are made with traditional wood and metal type and are printed on a vintage Heidelberg press at Adams of Rye - "the best old-school printshop in the world." It's no surprise then that when asked what they would do in their wildest dreams, the answer included taking over Adams to "continue the letterpress legacy"...as well as buying a piece of land near their favourite pub and keeping rescued lurchers and a donkey.
Spring 11 for Norse Projects, Copenhagen's coolest street wear brand, is all about 'barefooted beach days in the long and mystical Scandinavian summer light'. So says their press book. We think it's a great hybrid: still about reworking classic Nordic workwear with impeccable detailing but embracing a more Southern European nautical feel with even a touch of the American preppie. Their much lauded collaboration with French retailer Colette and Breton outfitters Armor Lux seems to have given them a taste of warmer climes.
This month The Hambledon came 7th out of a total 50 independent retailers from the UK and Republic of Ireland in Drapers Inspiring Independents 2011 list, voted for by readers and industry alike.
Needless to say we are all thrilled to be placed so highly amongst such dynamic and prestigious company! Here's just a taster of what they had to say about us:
'Over the past decade The Hambledon has grown from a sparsely filled retail space into an incredibly warm and welcoming emporium, which fuses beautiful antique décor with fashion offerings unrivalled'
Many thanks to Drapers and all the readers and industry professionals who voted for us!
The Universal Works story is as much about founder David Keyte, as the label's three years in business building a solid reputation for good, honest menswear. It's the kind of story we love, the sort to inspire the likes of anyone working in fashion who has ever thought "I can do this."
Twenty-five years ago Keyte was a Saturday shop boy working in a small fashion store. From there he went on to climb the industry rungs at Paul Smith before heading up Maharishi for five years. As he puts it, "I was always telling others how they were getting it wrong, and at some point you have to put your neck on the line." And in 2008, he did just that with Universal Works.
"Less interested in fashion and more in the function, fit and cut of garments" David placed these values at the heart of the Universal Works brand. Pioneering a distinctly British look, loosely based on traditional workwear, the focus is simplicity and craftsmanship rather than seasonal trends. As such, provenance is paramount and there's not a whiff of mass-produced to be had. Everything is made in small, highly skilled factories, many of which are here in the UK.
For all these reasons, we've been fans since the beginning and are pleased to bring the label's fourth collection to Hambledon menswear this Spring. Watch this space for a sneak preview.
Great to see our new menswear department getting a well deserved mention in our favourite mens glossy. Thank you Esquire for your lovely words - has made us all warm and happy on this very wintry day!
The Christmas countdown starts here at The Hambledon. Our festive pop-up shop is now open and brimming with baubles, bows, cards, crackers, and a bumper selection of stocking fillers. If you're yet to find that Christmas spirit, this corner of the shop has it in santa size sack load.
Our freshly painted and decorated pop-up shop has taken on a distinctly dated feel just now - but in nothing but a good way. Yes open for two weeks only we're hosting a special vintage pop-up in collaboration with Old Albion - the company responsible for sourcing and supplying us with interesting finds from days gone by. You may have spotted the odd piece around the store recently and now we have a whole corner dedicated to curious trinkets and treasures.
We're suckers for a bit of tradition so when we walked into D.R Harris's original apothecary on St. James Street we were seduced by this super old-school British brand. As one of London's oldest pharmacies it's been there since 1790 and has reams of impressive history serving the city gentry and Court of St. James.
Hanging on the wall is the 1938 Royal Warrant appointing D.R. Harris as Chemists to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. Today they are appointed Chemists to H.R.H the Prince of Wales.
Renowned for the quality of their products, this family-owned company has remained eternally faithful to its roots. The majority of their products are still produced by traditional methods, being hand-made and packed on the premises.
We couldn't resist bringing the classic gentlemen's Arlington range to our bath and beauty department. We have the cologne, shaving cream, shower gel, deodorant and our favourite - the oh so practical soap-on-a-rope.