Brighton is a proudly independent city and the same can be said for it’s shops. If you’re visiting for the weekend, or a full time Brightonian, trailing around the laines is one of the best ways to spend a day in the city. But, with this vast a selection, time can slip away and you can end up missing the top shops, so we thought we’d decipher which 9 independent boutiques really are the best of the best.
Whether its cards from California or sustainable shoes from London - Our Daily Edit’s stock has one thing in common: being lovingly selected by co-owners (and husband and wife) Marc and Ella. ODE are about to celebrate their 5th birthday and it’s this formula that’s gotten them this far. A delicate and intimate approach characterises the whole business (plus they sell delicate intimates!). Everything’s sustainable and green, and they give a platform for rising young British designers. It’s this ethically conscious, forward-thinking approach that’s built a crowd of devoted
Resident really are Brighton heroes. The staff are an eclectic crew who’ll put their hands to the slab of vinyl you’re searching within a heartbeat, and will probably be able to tell you where it was recorded and what the artist’s preferred breakfast cereal is. Think of them as a physical discogs within a human brain. And they don’t stop at records: in-stores, gig tickets, books, everything the true music nerd could love.
Wolf & Gypsy is the middleperson between markets, warehouses and the shop floor, with an international range carefully collated by the owner, Laura. Pieces that need a little bit of extra love get reworked and upcycled, and newer lifestyle, fashion, jewellery and beauty treats line every rail and floor space.
If you’re stuck on what to wear, the gals working there will most likely be demonstrating how you definitely wish you’d always been dressing: kitted out in the vintage rig and chunky hoops of decades past.
Tucked away in Dukes Lane, stumbling across Thread Menswear is an unexpected treat. Their obscure-but-brilliant mix of Mancunian-based/Scandinavian-inspired menswear is translated into their own brand, Afield. It’s classy and original and you really won’t find it anywhere else. Under the loving gaze of Buttersworth (the deer mounted above the register) customers scope the range of globally inspired and top-of-the-line men’s garments. Recently they’ve branched out and included a number of unisex lines – prepare those wallets, ladies...
If knowledge is power, then these guys must be invincible...
The walls of City Books are towers of books that threaten to topple any minute. Adorning the road that marks the division between Brighton and Hove – Western Road – City Books seems somewhat out of place on such a busy street. Yet it maintains its own mellow and private atmosphere and there’s a sense of magic throughout. Just like all the best book shops.
Check out there events scattered all over the city too.
‘The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable’ - Kurt Vonnegut. As wise as you are, Kurt, it’s not necessarily true for all– by stocking local artists, Family Store gives them a chance to get themselves known and also make a bit of money.
Family Store is the gateway to local Brighton artists, and beyond. They stock zines, prints, tees, badges, patches, vinyl and whatever else your little crafty heart desires.
There’s more, too: within the last year, they’ve now opened up their gallery space. Recent shows included Wes Anderson inspired works, which kicked off Wes Fest. They’re embedded deep in our community and that’s where we’d like them to stay.
Dowse is the creation of one lovely lady with heaps of style and talent: Susannah Dowse. The beauty of her prints, jewellery, homeware and earthware is more than skin deep (or ceramic deep, whatever...), as she makes sure they all come from fairly paid, fairly treated sources. Nothing is mass produced and everything is lovingly created by independent artists from around the world. It’s a dream!
Owners Jade, Daniel and lovely spaniel KiKi are your first stop at Tidy Print (on, unsurprisingly, Tidy Street). We mean: pups and prints? What’s not to love. You can make your own print, browse the professional’s work, or purchase a pin. They also run regular printing workshops, if you’re wanting to become more than a spectator.
This plant shop lives above the vintage clothing haven, Waiste Vintage. Plants and vintage gear in tandem – what a pair! – and all under one roof. The lovely Alice is there to guide you in the plant-buying process and, if you’re a neglectful plant parent (guilty) they’ll happily advise on your new bubba’s aftercare too.