Sunday, 2 September 2012

Shopping in York - a crafty guide!

York Minster
On Friday I visited York.
The main reason for going was to call at The Gift Gallery so I could re-stock them with lots of new season made by lolly goodies but frankly, who needs an excuse to visit York?!
Apart from the brilliant tourist attractions (of which there are many!), York is also a great place to go shopping if you are a lover of craft. As the city has so much to offer, I thought I would create a crafty shopping guide for York*
Looking for gift shops in York?

Your first visit of the day should always be The Gift Gallery situated on the historic street of the Shambles. Specialising in selling only handmade items from makers and artists in the UK and Ireland, you'll find an excellent selection of jewellery, cards, accessories, gifts, art-work and ceramics (including a large selection of new season stock from me!) The fact that all of the items have been handmade ensures the shop (and the items it sells) remains unique amongst everything that I have found in York!

The Gift Gallery and The Flax and Twine - both on The Shambles

Right next door is the newly opened The Flax and Twine This shop is full of lovely items for your home, with a focus on kitchenalia, homewares, haberdashery, crafts and gifts. They also sell a selection of vintage and antique furniture and collectibles, and have an on site cafe!
If you're into retro nostalgia items, then Give the Dog a Bone on Fossgate is the gift shop you're looking for. A stockist of Batman, Tintin and Marvel, they also stock Sass and Belle, Paper Plane and Rob Ryan.

Looking for haberdashery shops in York?
Did you know the famous Duttons for Buttons now has a shop in York? 32 Coppergate, is the place to go if you have a serious button fetish - but be warned, you will not be able to leave without purchasing something! An absolute treasure trove for button lovers, they have every size, shape and colour button you can think of - and with over 12,000 designs this button shop is sure to be some that you probably haven't thought of yet!
Gillies Fabrics found down Peter lane - a unpromising looking side road - is a proper old fashioned haberdashery shop. Selling sewing machines, fabric, buttons, ribbons, notions and tools this is an amazing resource for all sewing enthusiasts. I wish I had a shop like this near me!

Grace and Jacob is a working studio where Fiona Hirst, who is a felt maker and textile artist, has her studio. It also doubles as a shop. And although this shop is very small it is probably one of the best selections of feltmaking, spinning and textile supplies I have come across!
Tired out after all that shopping?
In need of some cake? 
Although tradition would dictate that you make a visit to Bettys, sometimes the idea of queueing for your cake just doesn't appeal. If you find yourself in that situation, I can heartily recommend both Cafe Concerto on High Petergate and Bullivant of York Ltd on Blake Street.

And if you're in need of a quick pit stop on a limited budget then it's well worth the walk down to Walmgate where Piccalilli's will give you a warm and friendly welcome as well a two cups of tea and two cakes for a fiver!
If you have any must-see crafty shopping recommendations then please feel free to leave a comment!
*Please note, I have not been sponsored, paid or bribed to write any of these reviews! All of the shops and businesses I mention are my personal recommendations, based entirely on my own experience of shopping in York


  1. Great post! I grew up in York but moved away 8 years ago, loved Give the Dig a Bone and Duttons when I was still there. It always seems there's somewhere new to go when I visit, I've been meaning to pay a visit to Grace and Jacob for a while now, I will make a special effort next time I go home!

  2. You're quite right, York is a great place for visiting. I went to school there in the 1970s (so long ago!)and managed to get my first job there after uni but then had to leave - working my way back though!
    Have you visited the Pyramid Gallery on Stonegate? that's another place to find handmade local artists - I always try to pop in and see what is there as they have changing exhibitions.

  3. I would love to go to York. I was offered a job in York many many years ago but left the company two weeks before the position started and I've never ever been there.
    Maybe I will drag The husband away for a weekend now you've reminded me how much I wanted to go.


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