March 22 2016 – Mercantile London
Of course we're biased but we love East London, the notorious history combined with a constant stream of pop/start ups and the noticeable resurgence of traditional crafts, creates an atmosphere of collaborative, high energy and creative inspiration unique to this little patch of London.
If you've never visited the east before and are lucky enough to be heading our way in the near future, we've put together our ideal day and a selection of the places we like to while away our hard earned rest in.
Start early with a fuel up from Department of Coffee and Social Affairs on Lamb Street and spend the next hour wandering the surrounding streets.
Most tourists head straight to Brick Lane but be sure to take in the warren of streets around Artillery Lane as well as the more visited Fournier Street which housed the 18th century silk weavers. For street art take a walk to nearby Fashion and Princelet Street.
If you want more history, head back to Folgate street for the amazing experience that is the artist Dennis Severs house at number 18.
Carry on to Brick Lane to take a look through the stalls of the Sunday Upmarket, a brilliant platform for designer-makers of fashion and lifestyle products and a constantly expanding food market which caters for pretty much every street food trend. Be sure to look out for our very own Frankie and her 'second-life' leather bags.
Take a minute to cut across into Rough Trade East to browse the racks of independent music, books and more coffee if you need it.
If it happens to be a Sunday, head for Columbia Road market where the banter of the street traders competes with the spectacle of the flowers. Refuel at any number of the cafes that line the road or if it's a Saturday try from over 135 food stalls at Broadway Market.
While away the remainder of your afternoon in the dark at the Shoreditch outpost of the Electric Cinema or any of the events at our favourite place to lay our heads, The Ace Hotel which holds DJ sets and workshop sessions in their lobby along with a secret yoga club. If pushed for time just grab a farm fresh juice from their street facing window and work your way back to Spitalfields to finish your night with dinner in the garden of Blixen and a cheeky nightcap at our favourite authentic East end local The Golden Heart.
Blixens garden (image via Blixen)