Our weekend in photos. Vintage clothes, Vintage Cafe and Vintage cars…..
Dear mummy, what a chilled out weekend we had! We stayed local and explored our home town of Basingstoke. It’s a town in North Hampshire, England. Just like any town and city it can be a bit of a concrete jungle…however there is a pretty side to Basingstoke, we are blessed with rolling countryside and quaint villages surrounding the borough. The city centre has been regenerated with the help of Festival Place Shopping Centre and the Top of Town project. New stores are opening and lots of independent stores and boutiques are popping up in the town centre. One of our favourites is All Our Own Crafts.
This weekend we went to explore the top of town and visit some new shops.
First we visited VJ – Vintage Treasures, a vintage shop on Church Street in partnership with Basingstoke College of Technology (BCOT). It’s not just a clothes store, the owners help college students learn about running a business as well as helping them to source and make stock to sell as ‘student enterprise’ in the shop.
It’s a really quirky, fun store stocked full to the brim with vintage clothes, hats and handbags and other knick-knacks. We stopped to buy a dress for my mummy for a family wedding we are going to next week. What we love about this shop is that a lot of the items are one-offs. So no dress faux-pas at the wedding for my mummy and her unique dress.
The shop has been open 6 weeks now and there has been a great enthusiasm for it on Facebook. It makes a change from the high street clothes stores like Primark and Debenhams. Dresses range from £30-£60 and my mummy picked up a yellow spotty dress for a bargain £40…you wouldn’t find the same dress in Vivien of Holloway or Warehouse for that price! My mummy leaves the store very happy with herself. The staff are friendly and knowledgable and advise my mummy on the best fitting dress for her body shape. A real personal shopper experience. We’re so lucky to have an independent store like this in Basingstoke.
Another new enterprise is the The Kitschen Cafe just off an adjacent street called Wote Street, down Feathers Lane. What makes this cafe different from the rest of the cafes in the town is that it has a secret den downstairs in the basement for children to play in…it sounds a bit sinister.. 😉 But rest assured the space they have created is colourful and bright with lots of cool toys to play with and has a real ‘at home feel’ with large sofas and a ball pit! What a great space and such a novel idea!
The food isn’t bad either 🙂 they hand-make and locally source the majority of their food. The meat comes from Manydown Farm and the cakes are all home-made and look yummy. The interior design in the cafe area upstairs is eclectic with quirky mix-matched furniture, hanging tea cups from the ceiling and large mirrors.
It’s a really lovely environment. Perfect for mummies and families looking for a bit of time-out from all the hectic shopping. It’s off the beaten track and a real gem, there were no queues, plenty of seating and the price of food was reasonable compared to the over crowed Costa and Starbucks. They welcome breastfeeding mums and noisy toddlers too!
If you are ever in Basingstoke shopping and fancy checking out these two quirky independent businesses then we would highly recommend them.
The rest of the weekend was spent at Basingstoke’s Festival of Transport in the War Memorial Park. We went last year too! With hundreds of classic cars and emergency service vehicles in the large grassy field to look at we had great time milling around. My favourite vehicles were the large red double-decker buses and the police cars. We spent hours looking around and the event was FREE! We only paid for parking in the town centre.
Such a great weekend in our home town and it just goes to show that Basingstoke continues to thrive and surprise us.
We hope you like our weekend snapshot 🙂
Love Bella x