We have yet another New Favourite Part of London, the area around Broadway Market in Hackney, where we went this week to visit The Dog and the Wardrobe, a props and furniture store tucked away in Regent Studios on Andrew's Road.
We'd heard a lot about this little store, which punches well above its weight in terms of influence. The shop and design studio is owned by Vishal Gohel and Jane Money (along with their eponymous dog Porto) , who as well as opening the store to the public on Saturdays and Sundays, run a design agency during the week creating interior space and finding props for many stylish retailers (Paul Smith is a fan).
We (as is usual when we discover a gem like this) wanted everything in the shop, which was a treasure box of collectables, ranging from old bus stop signs and vintage Union Jacks, a wall full of framed mirrors and glass cabinets of every size to glass jars and old painted toys. The furniture changes very swiftly due to Vishal's great eye at picking just what people want right now and the fact that prices are kept low-ish to ensure it keeps moving. The pair will also source specific furniture or prop requests from customers and will customise finds to make them more usable and modern.
Their sense of style means they are in great demand and they have just designed a lovely space for the restaurant and radio station Wiltons, north of London Fields. They are also part of a strong community of artists and designers who work in the area and who link up collaboratively at every opportunity. Jane told us that they put mutual clients WIlton's and the design studio No Days Off in touch and the result is a mini exhibition of screen prints in the restaurant starting this weekend.
The store is open Saturdays 10.00 - 5.00, Sundays 12.00 - 4.00 and by appointment (other work permitting) during the week.
Unit 3B Regent Studios, 8 Andrew's Road, London E8 4QN.