Continuing our homage to all things British this month, we’ve rounded up a few of our favourite (trust us we could go on for weeks about this) 'Made in Britain' finds in wellbeing, design, beauty and food. Read on and join us in celebrating the host of innovative and inspiring talent on our doorstep....
British Grown Quinoa: Direct from the fields of Essex, we’ll be enjoying farmer Peter Fairs British grown variety of quinoa all month long. Fairs has been growing quinoa for almost 25 years, but for much of that time only selling it as bird feed and as a cover up crop for game. It wasn’t until quinoa received recognition as a superfood gluten-free grain alternative that Fairs crops have become increasingly in demand as a local grown variety. Try it in Hodmedod’s Big British Box featuring an all British grown range of peas, beans and grains.Raw Sprouted Flours and Oats: You may have heard us waffling on about the importance of soaking and activating grains, nuts and legumes, so it will come as no surprise that we were super excited to learn of two new ranges of sprouted grains and flours, one yet to launch from Rude Health (you heard it here first!) and a range from Planet Organic that we can't wait to try out in our Christmas baking! Rude Health’s standouts include their sprouted and gluten-free oats and their sprouted buckwheat and spelt flours that we’ll be experimenting with to bake up festive fruity muffins (served with lashings of Raw Ecstasy Almond Butter of course), whilst the Planet Organic range features sprouted red quinoa, amaranth and brown rice that we’ll be using to bake up a nutty gluten free bread.
PureTaste Paleo Restaurant: The brain-child of nutritional therapist, chef and chemistry graduate Holly Redman, London’s first Paleo restaurant Pure Taste was inspired by the benefits Holly found from adopting a gluten-free, paleo diet. Embarking on a mission to change the way people see ‘free-from’ food and destroying the dogma that cites healthy plant-based food as uninspiring and restrictive, Holly has created a menu that features mouth-watering dishes minus the bloat and energy slumps eating out often ends in. Bookings are open now anticipating the launch on December 4th. www.puretasterestaurant.com
The Herball Bitters - Traditionally used to stimulate digestion and flavour ingredients in cooking and cocktails, these British blended bitters have been created from a combination of dried and fresh herbs, roots flowers and leaves. Michael Isted of The Herball creates the range with handpicked ingredients grown on small farms throughout the UK and are then macerates them in neutral grain alcohol for at least one whole cycle of the moon to ensure full extraction of constituents. All of The Herball bitters are blended and bottled with integrity, love and tradition in England. www.theherball.com
UK Based Distilleries: As the festive season is almost upon us, we do like to indulge in the odd tipple now and then, but as with all things, we like our drinks to be as botanical as possible. A couple of our UK favourites include:
Sacred Spirits Company: Made in Highgate, the Sacred Spirits Company sells some of the purest spirits in London infused with some of our favourite organically sourced botanicals such as fresh cut citrus, juniper, cardamom, nutmeg and a type of frankincense called Boswellia sacra. Our favourites from the range are the Sacred Gin that we’ve been enjoying in the odd cocktail or two and the Sacred Rosehip cup, a bitter aperitivo cordial featuring natural botanicals such as rosehip and rhubarb – yum! www.sacredspiritcompany.com
The Isle of Harris Distillery: Social distilling anyone? One to bookmark for 2015, this new venture for the Island of Harris has an ethos pervading the typical distillery which represents something completely new in the whiskey industry. Every bottle of The Hearach, the name given to Harris born whiskey, will be distilled, matured and bottled on the island. A combination of nature and nurture, the formulation of this unique whiskey utilises the islands natural resources in addition to the human intervention that takes place to distill, mature and cask this lovingly produced whiskey. www.harrisdistillery.com
Along with a new whisky, The Isle of Harris Distillery are working with one of our Great British Beauty makers Amanda Saurin from AS.AP to create a collection of products using Harris plants. Amanda recently visited the island to collect botanical's with a group of local women and their children who formed part of the foraging team. These have now been distilled, macerated, tinctured and generally admired and Amanda is now well underway with developing the range. It will be available only from the Isle of Harris Distillery from April 2015. One to watch! In the meantime the AS.AP Aromatic Waters can be added to your Christmas tipple. Get yours here.
Pinch Design - Celebrating simplicity of form and a stripped back aesthetic that favours the purity of a good shape and our emotional connection with the materials around us, we’re loving Pinch London, a Clapham based furniture store featuring an impressive array of ‘Made In Britain’ furniture. We’ve been lusting after their Twig Cubes, made using British sourced twigs here in the UK and the perfect surface for displaying our Colors Of Japonica Candles, and this Dorset made Dressing Table, the perfect size for all our essential organic beauty potions and perfumes. www.pinchdesign.com
Hampson Woods - A collaboration between woodworker Jonty Hampson and artist and designer Sascha Gravenstein, Hampson Woods is a small-batch design firm creating bespoke interiors and hand-made goods. We love the range of woody products which they source from aborists in and around London who specialise in clearing the fallen giants of the city. We’ve got our eyes on the porridge spoons, perfect for warming winter breakfasts. www.hampsonwoods.com
Minor Goods - This website just launched this month and sources a mix of vintage and small-batch accessories for you and your home. Our pick is the handwoven cotton linen tea towels and face mitts made here in the UK. Featuring a design based on the traditional Swedish twill block technique, these beautifully hand woven towels make for the perfect 'Made In Britain' Christmas present! www.minorgoods.com
The New Craftsmen - When not at Content, we can often be found admiring the beautiful things in Mayfair store The New Craftsman. Our most recent loves include these British designed and made swill hanging shelves, a decorative piece of rustic sculpture that we'll be placing these Irish made Glass Cylinders on and using to display our new May Lindstrom Gift Set. We've also been using this black dobin teapot designed by London based potter Akiko Hirai to brew our Content Skin Tea. www.thenewcraftsmen.com
Welsh Blankets - Our collection of vintage Welsh blankets is growing by the winter. We literally can’t go past one without stopping to contemplate another purchase, however, if you're struggling to come across the vintage variety, we've tracked down the best place to purchase a new one. Located in the remote woody valley of Pembrokeshire coast in Wales is Melin Tregwynt’s wool mill. There has been a mill on this site since the 17th century when local farmers would bring their fleeces to be spun into yarn and woven into fine Welsh wool blankets that the Tregwynt family has carried on since 1912. Currently we have our eyes on the Knot-Garden and Mondo styles, perfect for cosying up to as the weather cools down. www.melintregwynt.co.uk
The Acey - Whilst we’ve already mentioned our love of this London based online fashion boutique that features an innovative selection of consciously created clothing brands, as this month we’re focusing on all things British, we thought we’d highlight some of the 'Made In Britain' brands they stock. Handmade in Cleethorpes, UK, we love British brand Stella and Alf for their range of classic and understated basics. This month we've got our eyes on their handmade Tartan Trousers and this sustainably sourced Denim Shirt Dress by Beaumont Organic. www.the-acey.com
Anna Valentine Couture - Designing two collections a year from her atelier in London’s West End just around the corner from Content, Valentine believes in using only the very best materials sourced from both Britain and abroad. From the converted 19th century grain that is the brands residence, Valentine's team of designers, seamstresses, pattern cutters and fitters handcraft beautiful artisan, British-made fashion at its best. www.annavalentine.com
Toogood - Founded by British designers Erica and Faye, Toogood is a Made In Britain based fashion initiative who refuse to live by the fashion industry 'rules' of seasonal and gender biased collections, instead choosing to create only when and what they choose to create. Shunning trends, conventional aesthetics and the mainstream ideal of beauty, the duo behind this synonymous East London based brand have created a unisex outerwear collection that contains some coats we're already lusting over in the lead up to Winter. Our favourites? THE OILRIGGER and THE ROADSWEEPER. www.toogood.com
The Gentlewoman Running Club - Does a running club count as Made in Britain? We think this running club with a difference does. A weekly event, hosted by The Gentlewoman, it takes its contenders of both advanced and beginner status on runs to, around and from some of London’s best (Made in the UK) landmarks and picturesque routes ranging from 4.5–6KM. The last run of the series is on 25 November. thegentlewoman.co.uk
Mapology Guides - “How we tackle lifes little dilemmas says much about us. Some people throw darts at walls. Some draw straws. Some people charge at life like a rhino on the wrong end of a wasps’ nest.” Presenting an alternative way to tackle life decisions, printed here in London, Mapology Guides are maps (but not as we know them) to assist us with pet buying, gift giving (perfect for this time of year) and dealing with the stuff that really bugs us to name a few – we love! www.mapologyguides.com
School of Life - Designed by West Wales based designer Adam Buick, the Imperfection Pot is inspired by the Japanese tradition of wabi sabi, which finds beauty in the humble, imperfect and easily overlooked things in life. Designed with a traditional celadon glaze of greyish green, a colour that represents calm in buddhism, Buick constructs the Imperfection Pot using only one hand, a technique that has resulted in the appearance of subtle flaws, imperfections that are the key to this great shelf-fillers charm and a gentle reminder to embrace our own. www.theschooloflife.com/imperfection-pot