My Favourite Independent Edinburgh Haunts

Thursday, April 25, 2013

I'm still completely unable to get any photos of my camera - which for a personal style blogger is causing some considerable problems. There is a plus side though, I'm having to dig deep and come up with some posts that are outside my comfort zone. I frequently talk about how much I love my city, but I've never really shared my favourite spots, there are so many it's proved quite difficult to cut them down but here's my list of essential places to visit in the city. 
Okay, I'm not sure how many of you are comic fans, but popping into Dead Head might change your mind. Featuring Scottish and International artists It can be a bit overwhelming walking in, but it won't take you long to get stuck in and find your new obsession.

I can't help but stop and gaze into Mr Wood's shop each time I walk by. Even if you aren't interested in fossils they are still amazingly beautiful, I've always promised myself I will buy one but at the moment I still just enjoying looking at them all. 

Filled to the brim with beautiful things, this shop on Candle Maker Row is a must see if you are in the city. Selling jewellry, bags, art and homewares from a variety of designers there is definitely something for everyone. I'm absolutely obsessed with their collection of brooches! 

Sandy Bells
A large selection of whiskey and live traditional music every day of the week makes Sandy Bells one of my must see venues for visitors, but it's great if you are a resident as well. Located on Forrest Road, it's even dog friendly - your furry pal can get his own bowl of water and a couple of biscuits if my two haven't been in there first and eaten them all. It can get pretty busy at night but if you want a quiet spot to have a dram during the day it is the place ot be.

You can tell I have a sweet tooth can't you? I just can't say no to artisan chocolate though, and The Chocolate Tree has the most amazing selection of organic, diabetic and bean to bar chocolates. Ali and Friederike make real efforts to ensure all their products are ethically sourced and were one of the first British companies to work directly with cacao farmers. Pop in and grab a bar or have a seat in their cafe and enjoy a hot chocolate on a rainy Edinburgh day. 

Pick your item, paint it then come back in a few days when the lovely people at Doodles have fired it. Perfect for kids or adults, you can even sit outside on sunny days. Your studio fee includes your item, paints, apron, juice or tea and firing and they also cater to groups.

Although most of my clothes are second hand Godiva is my go to place for when I need something fancy right now. There stock is a mix of independent designers, vintage or you can get a made to measure dress by their in-house designer, and the shop is a pleasure to be in. I absolutely love the refreshing change from Edinburgh's mass of high street stores.

Located on Argyle Place The New Leaf is owned and operated by the workers, who take a living wage and then funnel profits back into the shop and other co-operatives in the city. They have an amazing selection of organic, locally sourced and fairtrade products and not only do they have an amazing tea selections (and cheaper that at any of the local supermarkets) but you can also make your own peanut butter! Yum!

Who doesn't love a shop stuffed to the brim with sweets? If you're like me and have a bit of a sweet tooth you should definitely check out Canderson's on Leith Walk. They have an amazing selection, including my favourite - Flying Saucers. 

Enjoy a cup of tea and take part in a sewing workshop, or just go in and use the machines. Materialize is a lovely wee studio based on Lady Lawson Street and provides a beautiful wee spot to get your creativity on or learn a new skill.

A beautiful curated collection of homewares, clothing, toys and gifts Bohemia tempts me constantly. They are a little bit out of my price range but the shop is a bloggers dream with adorable satchels, pretty dresses and, currently, the most lovely collection of foxy pillows I have ever seen.

Until a few years ago based on Forrest Road, the Forest Cafe moved into it's new location on Lauriston Place last year to bring back it's own brand of inspiring art, tasty veggie treats and fun events. A haven for any arty or hippy types in Edinburgh it's become an insitution in it's own right and is a centre for social enterprise and activism in the city.,

Well, there you have it. Honestly I could have included so many other places, I keep thinking of them as I try and finish of my post. And of course if any of you are ever visiting Edinburgh get in touch! I'm happy to give people advice about places to visit!

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  1. A perfectly timed post - I'll be free from the shackles of my dissertation in a week's time and can't wait to start exploring Edinburgh. I'll be adding all of these to my to-see list :)

  2. I wish I'd had this list 2 years ago when I spent a night there! I'll have to bookmark this in case I ever get to travel overseas again. I did go to a vegetarian restaurant that I loved but I cannot remember the name of it...I don't think it was the one you mentioned, though.

    -Emma from little motley

  3. oranges_and_apples28 April 2013 at 09:42

    I only discovered materialize the other day! and I'm not sure which one that hannah zikari place is. My fave shop on candlemaker row is the print/poster one near the top

  4. Your making me want to open numerous shops in my town to be able to experience the awesomeness of Edinburgh, we have nothing like these xxx


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