Hey Oxford residents! Do you want free Fair Trade chocolate?
It’s the prize for completing the Oxford Indie Easter Egg Hunt!
But more so than the chocolate – yes this is possible – I was excited to walk the trail to discover new independent shops and chat with their awesome owners (hello!). I love to shop independent for the carefully selected objects and the stories behind them – and who better to tell these stories than the shopkeepers who often hand-picked these things in the first place?
Besides personal preference, shopping local and indie is awesome for supporting local Oxford shops: for every £1 spent at a local independent business, 50-70p circulates back into the local economy (as opposed to only 5p if you shop online or out of town).
So off I went, and here are the first steps of my journey!
1. The Oxford Pantry, 3 Little Clarendon Street
Home to domestic brilliance, Oxford Pantry makes me yearn for my own kitchen even more than usual. It’s clear that the suppliers are handpicked with care, and it’s just the kind of place that, when I step inside, I think ahhh…
2. Oxford City Barbers, 21 Little Clarendon Street
Now, without the egg hunt I don’t think I would have ever gone inside. Simply put, it’s a barber shop and I’m a girl. But with map in hand, I had a lovely conversation with Oxford City Barbers’ Danny, and got to see the cool chairs the young men have the option to, uh, ride, during their haircuts!
3. Mumu’s Gelaterie Cafe, 22 Little Clarendon Street
Mumu’s offers an array of fabulously bright Italian gelato that is difficult to resist. I went in guiltily expecting to cheat on my sugar-free pre-half-marathon week, but was ever so pleased to find their two sugar-free options! Win!
4. Central, 33-35 Little Clarendon Street
Central has been one of my favourite shops in Oxford for years – home to not only funky furniture, but fun gifty things like Lego containers and bento box cook books. It is so worth a wander.
Check back next week for Part 2! If you’re in town, pick up your map from any of these stores. Everyone in the UK can check out the Independent Shops directory online too (how cool!).