I promise to stop harping on about the #EtsyBloggerSleepover soon, but not until I've shared some of the amazing places they took us to in good old Brighton. Us Internetty sort are easy to please if you know how. Give us well-presented food, quirky hotel rooms and gift shops that sell things you didn't know you needed and we're happy. It just so happened that a lot of the most Instagram-able places (I promise to cut down on saying this) fit in with the Etsy values, recycling, supporting independents and just general Brooklyn vibes. You seriously need to pop to some of these places next time you're in town, you won't want to leave!
I can't really pinpoint when I started to get obsessed with those little bits that make a room look extra special, but now I've got a pile of prints to put up, candles aplenty and a crazy cushion mountain on the bed. Brighton seems to have so many of these places per square mile and DOWSEDesign suits my aesthetic perfectly. Even though most concept/gift shops can get a little repetitive, I managed to find a few bits I'd never seen before like the perfectly designed city guides by Herb Lester. I guess I rely on these sorts of places to scout out the things I manage to miss on blogs and the fact that everything is from an independent British or European designer just shows the breadth of work out there. Definitely a good starting point if you're bored with the usual High Street stuff.
I seem to have a list of restaurants in Brighton that's as long as my arm and I still haven't made much of a dent in it, due to all of the new places popping up. I'm not too sure how long Silo's been around but their 'zero waste' principles are interesting, I drank lemonade made from 'rescued lemons' through a metal straw for goodness sake. They try to keep everything in its purest form, so expect plenty of locally sourced ingredients (the salmon was heavenly). Any scraps get composted and thus the cycle starts again. If only more places did this!
I do love me a hotel with some individual rooms. I lucked out at Artist Residence with a bijou, book-themed suite with all of those Midcentury touches I love. Lucy had Picasso-esque graffiti adorning the walls and Carrie had a bit of a nautical affair (complete with sea views). Even if you aren't able to stay here, it's worth brunching at the restaurant or trying some of the seriously tasty tipples at The Cocktail Shack, just to get a sense of the place. They also have branches in London and Cornwall too.
The New Club
Handily situated around the corner from the hotel, we all piled into The New Club a little merrily thanks to the aforementioned cocktails. There were so many interesting concoctions on the menu and even though my BBQ lamb rump was decent, I still had a little bit of FOMO at the classic fried chicken that Hannah had. Fried chicken every time. Luckily I could console myself in the side of mac n' cheese I (sort of) shared with Liv.
I've been into this treasure trove of a shop many a time, but still hadn't ventured upstairs to Snoopers Attic, where all of the vintage garms sit. Even though it's pretty rare that I have that love-at-first-sight feeling with anything pre-owned, it's still nice to browse nonetheless and even do a bit of personal shopping for others. Liv managed to find an amazing Florence Welch style dress and I was quite happy to live vicariously through her.
Wow. I thought Eat Naked was just a good option for healthy food but after browsing the founder Stacie Stewart's site, I'm in awe. Undoubtedly an entrepreneur, she's also a cook, baker, published author, DJ (how's that for versatility) and opened her clean-eating deli a few months ago. Even though I eat pretty much everything, it's great to see what's out there in terms of vegan and gluten free fare. I didn't miss the meat at all with my tasty salad box (hummus is always a good idea) and it's a great break for your belly if you've over-indulged a little.
Make sure you check out my vlog which includes some of these places, plus I'd love to know if you've discovered anywhere nice in Brighton recently!