I launched the Creative Collective gifts and lifestyle pop up shop in Berkhamsted in November 2019, to offer an opportunity for my own and other small sustainable brands & start-ups to have a presence on the High Street. We have a lovely shop in the middle of town, which is home to an exclusive selection of 45 sustainable makers, artists and curators right now. We’re also back in our original pop up shop in Harpenden, opposite Waitrose, from the 22nd of November for two weeks.
It’s an exciting time of year for Creative Collective Pop Ups. What’s the atmosphere like in the shop at the moment?
I love this time of year and the shop looks like a twinkling Christmas grotto! We have an amazing team, all of us staffing the shop as part of our collective presence and all loving the increasing excitement as we get closer to ‘the Big Day’! We’ve noticed many people are shopping earlier this year, so there’s already a festive feel in the shop. Our customers are really loving what we’re doing, with fabulous feedback every day, like that the shop is ’Like a Mary Poppins Bag – it keeps on giving’ and that it’s ‘So Lovely’, ‘Restoring’ and ‘My favourite shop in town’. We’re very thankful and rely totally on our lovely community’s support, custom and encouragement.
What sort of products and makers can we expect to find in the shop in the run up to Xmas?
We’re passionate about supporting brands that provide great quality & sustainable products and all our makers and curators fit that ethos. We’ve got lots of seasonal products just perfect for home décor, gifting and treating yourself. You’ll also find art, cards, glassware, Christmas decorations, jewellery, artisan & designer vintage fashion, natural & organic products, home fragrances and vintage furniture & collectables to boot!
What are your top picks for unique Xmas gifts this year?
It’s hard to choose because I want to buy everything in the shop! Hot picks right now include fun wall art, textiles and baubles from Lucky Lobster, French organic and handcrafted gifts from Made In Provence and handmade & sustainable homewares from 12th Tree and Aimee Hocking. Our luxury artisan loungewear and handmade jewellery from my small brand Hot Haveli is gratefully, always popular. We also have a range of eco-friendly crafting kits to make your own Christmas angels, baubles, crackers and more!
What tips would you give to anyone wanting to have a handmade, vintage or artisan Xmas?
This year more than ever is about sustainable living and shopping: if you’re looking to buy home décor, a Christmas outfit, or gifts for friends and family, please consider shopping locally from independent brands. Our Creative Collective is all about offering handmade, natural and artisan pieces (particularly good for that ‘hard-to-buy-for’ person that we all have!). We’re also conscious about reducing plastic usage and everyone has moved to recycled and compostable packaging. We all love a sequin and something shiny at Christmas, but we now know about the impact on the environment. So, if you’re looking for something sparkly, stylish and eco-friendly to wear, I think you’ll love our exclusive range of designer festive fashions from vintage specialist Inkahra.
What’s your favourite Xmas tradition?
I love working with the collective to decorate the shop windows for everyone to enjoy. We like to change them up regularly, so there’s always something new for customers to see. Last year we were closed in November because of Covid, so we’re going all out this year to make this an extra special time. We’re getting amazing feedback already on our new Christmas window, with the sustainable gifts and wares, all for sale! At home, you’ll find us snuggled up with our dogs, watching Christmas TV, films and enjoying a festive treat or two!
Thank you for reading, we hope to welcome you soon.
Best festive wishes,
from Sinéad and everyone here! x
WHERE TO FIND US:
Berkhamsted Shop: 246, High Street, Berkhamsted, HP4 1AG
Opening hours: 7 Days : Monday – Saturday 9.30am – 5.30pm, Sunday 10.30am – 4.30pm
Harpenden Shop: 8&, 8 Leyton Road, Harpenden, AL5 2TL, opposite Waitrose
Opening hours: Monday 22nd Nov to Sunday 5th Dec – Saturday 9.30am – 5.30pm, Sunday 9.30am to 3.30pm
Find Creative Collective on our #SHOPLOCAL Directory here