Monday, 28 April 2014

It's here! Norwich Gift Emporium opening.

On Good Friday 18th April at 10am, Norwich Gift Emporium opened the doors to a stream of eager Easter shoppers.

The crowd gathers for the grand opening...
Party poppers at the ready!
The newly opened Emporium is the result of a huge amount of work by Steve Pugh, Charis Brown and the many helpers who have put in time and effort to help Charis get the shop looking so great. The Emporium brings together many local artisans, and there is a huge, and very diverse range of products on the shelves, which are starting to get nicely full.

The ground floor - with lots of lovely cushions on the shelves from Cushion Cottage and Luffly Stuff
First floor
First floor gallery area
Spread over two floors, Friday was the first time I had seen quite how many lovely things are available all together. I shall attempt to include as many as possible in this blog, but it really won't do it justice and if you are reading, a visit to the Emporium is very much warranted.

A packed Norwich Gift Emporium
The shop was busy for most of Friday with people spotting the newcomer to the Norwich Lanes. I have always loved the Lanes for the range of places to shop, and the interesting things you can find in every place. There is something for everyone, and it's so nice to have something totally different to the mall shopping experience. I really think Norwich is growing and growing as a place to shop. It has a couple of great malls of course, for those that like everything in one place, then there is Norwich Market with its unique character, and then the wonderful Lanes. From what I can see, the Emporium fits in nicely to the Lanes, and is very well placed next to The Giggly Goat, which has a lovely range of handmade arts and crafts from all over the UK.

Charis introducing the shoppers of Norwich to the Emporium
Shoppers to the Emporium get a friendly welcome
A young shopper admires the daffodils - one of the beautiful photos by SeaHaze Photography
If you came in on Friday, you may have been lucky enough to meet some of the crafters, who came along to see how things were going and celebrate being part of this exciting new venture.

Peter Young, with his lovely paintings
Su Mose of Wayward Rose and Steve Pugh
Mel Forrer of Mel's Nimble Thimble with one of her beautiful creations
One of the things I like about becoming a part of the Norwich Gift Emporium is the support all the artists give each other. It is like a little family and I think this will be really important in making it a success. I've already been able to recommend several fellow crafters work, and I've fallen in love with some of the work on show.

Bob and John knitwear
Pendants by Jabbawocky
Wattlefield Pottery

Nutty Crafts Candles

Paper Story

Just a small selection of the things available from Ella Goodwin Illustration and Design
DT Steampunk
Jewellery by Belinda
Emma's Candles

Handmade by Toots

Cushion by Luffly Stuff

Bags of Style
Beads and Braiding - Jewellery by Jayne
South of the Border by Lisa Bowles
Absolute Bliss
Elias Frank
Shirley Giles jewellery. In the cabinet next to this one is Jewellery by SK
A few of the Mosaic Memories by Carolyn Ash

House of Mouse
Lupie Loo
Primrose Cottage bears
Bags on the left by Off the Pegg, bags on the right by Wayward Rose
As you can see, there is a lot of great stuff here!

Some shelves are still available to rent by contacting the Norwich Gift Emporium, but I don't expect they will be available for long. Contact Charis to find out more by calling 01603 624333 or via the Facebook page

The shop is open 10:00 to 17:00 Monday to Saturday.

All work shown with kind permission of the artists.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Norwich Gift Emporium - coming soon!

Yesterday I spent the afternoon at what will soon be the sparkly new Norwich Gift Emporium. Currently undergoing a complete makeover, the former Capricorn Cameras shop will be another exciting addition to the famous Norwich Lanes. 

Really, really good things are coming soon...

The Gift Emporium sells handmade, local arts and crafts and is the brainchild of Steve Pugh, who is a crafter himself at DT Steampunk. It began last year with the opening of the Swaffham Gift Emporium in the summer, bringing together work from over 50 artisans. The shop is well and truly holding its own in the market town, bringing plenty of original and lovingly produced arts and crafts to suit every budget, and proving a popular addition to the town centre shopping experience. It has also attracted great interest from O2 and Microsoft, who have featured the shop in their advertising (join the other 340,000 people who have watched the ad here!).

This will all be built on at the Norwich Gift Emporium, where Charis Brown has been taking the reigns to prepare for the grand opening. Charis is another well known crafter in the area, producing a variety of handmade items at Luffly Stuff. She has spent weeks helping Steve to find the perfect location for the shop, designing the shop layout and decorating - which I can say is looking great so far. There is still lots to do before the grand opening on Good Friday, but with Charis in charge everything will go to plan.

Norwich Lanes
Several crafters from the Swaffham Gift Emporium are also taking shelves at The Norwich Emporium, and have been popping in to help Charis scrub, clean, decorate and build stuff. Yesterday Andrea and Peter were also on hand to put up shelves, and did a fine job (Andrea is a potter and runs Wattlefield Pottery, Peter does oil paintings and frames them himself).

Andrea and Peter hard at work with the shelves

I was mainly helping build Billy shelving units yesterday and admiring the building, with it's lovely natural light and unique angles and textures. The ground floor is mostly there with the major renovation works, as is the landing and much painting has also been done. All the display units are nearly there, and the place has a very homely and welcoming feel to it already.

So, please do get along to the opening of the Norwich Gift Emporium, which is taking place this coming Friday 18th April, at 10am. You can find the shop at 22 Lower Goat Lane, Norwich and there will be celebrations galore on the opening day.
If you are a crafter and would like to have your fine work in the shop, please do contact the shop by calling 01603 624333 or via the Facebook page

You can find my photos in both the Swaffham Gift Emporium and Norwich Gift Emporium.