If you missed part 1, skip back to yesterday’s post.
After our catch up over cookies and iced tea /coffee at Vintage Bean off of Brick Lane, Stu from Inspiring City and I walked over to Forge & Co on Shoreditch High Street to meet up with the Foto Ruta Clue group for a brief before our treasure hunt. I already shared the photos that we submitted in this little game (including one of mine that won the best photo of the day!) and I wanted to carry on from yesterday’s posts with some more general photos from around the area that were taken during our walk.
Fist, we headed was over to Columbia Road Flower Market, a place that’s dead during the week but brilliant on a Sunday morning and afternoon. Some of the vendors selling plants and flowers along this road have been here for decades and the stalls have been passed through their families. You’ll often see kids working alongside a parent, learning the trade. They shout their discounts and deals in thick cockney accents, more so toward mid-afternoon when the market begins to close up for the week and they’re trying to shift stock.
We walked around the back of the main street (which, by the way, is full of fabulous independent shops selling everything from garden tools and home decor to cupcakes and tea) and then carried on a few streets over to pop into Lucy Sparrow’s Corner Shop. It’s nice to walk down a street that’s full of creatives rather than high street shops that are the same old everywhere.
We didn’t go inside this time because we were on a bit of a mission, but one of my favourite little shops along Columbia Road is Jessie Chorley and Buddug, run by two creative friends from Snowdonia who first set up as a stall in Broadway Market. They’ve been selling their crafts from this shop since 2008. They have greeting cards, decoupage picture frames and photo albums, embellished vintage clothing, engraved jewellery and plenty of other pretty things. Plus, they are lovely to chat with if get the chance!
From Columbia Road, we made our way back toward Brick Lane and wandered around there for a bit. I feel like every single time I walk down this street I discover something new. It’s forever fascinating. I can’t wait till Stu puts up a post with some of his photos because I know he got some good ones as well.
I’ve walked past this tea and cupcake shop called Pretty Cuppa a few times now. Seems I’ve always just eaten or have somewhere to be but one of these days I’d like to stop in for a little break, maybe look out the window for a while and just watch life streaming past. There’s also a black cab serving up coffee which I’d never seen before.
We still had some time before we had to head back to Forge & Co to meet the rest of the group, so we headed away from Brick Lane toward the little oasis that is Spitalfields City Farm. For all the braying, quacking and mooing, you would barely know you’re still in London apart from the fact that there’s street art and a re-purposed old London phone box.
I was very excited to see a little pumpkin growing on a tangle of vines. We’re heading into Autumn and this is a sure sign. London is a city of such contrasts. Five minutes before seeing a pumpkin growing from the ground, we’re twisting through a crowded street market with buskers playing music and the most unusual things on sale. Now, nature.
After the farm, it was just about time to head back, but Stu wanted to take me on a little detour to see this fantastic little row of hidden old cottages and then hit up the end of Hanbury Street where there was a new piece of street art waiting to be photographed.
It was only a short walk back but of course we were in store for a few more East London oddities along the way. What else but a burly looking man carrying a big flowery armchair and a dog casually sporting bright red sunglasses?
Endless amounts of entertainment over there. It’s like going on holiday within the same city. Thanks East London!