I spent a couple of days in London last week. I was mainly there to see The Cheapside Hoard: London's Lost Jewels at the Museum of London which was, hands down, the best exhibition I've ever seen in the UK in terms of the curation and presentation. It was also spectacularly beautiful.
The rest of my time in the capital was spent wandering about. On Tuesday morning I popped in to a couple of fabric shops - Cloth House and The Silk Society - to pick up some samples and supplies and then set off from Soho to find Arlington Street, which has popped up a few times in some letters I've been looking at for my PhD research. I went via Jermyn Street, which seems really familiar because it punctuated the work I did on nineteenth-century Shetland lace knitting a few years back (Edward Standen's 'Shetland Warehouse' was located at number 112), and it continues to surface now and again in the research I'm doing at the moment.
After finding Arlington Street, much of which is directly above The Ritz, and hunting around some of the lanes and squares nearby, my little jaunt took me straight down St James Street where I came across the hatters, Lock & Co. I remembered the shop from a lovely guidebook called The Traditional Shops and Restaurants of London: A Guide to Century-Old Establishments and New Classics by Eugenia Bell. The book is published by one of my favourites, The Little Bookroom, and was responsible for some of the highlights of a previous London visit. The little book on Paris I mentioned in my last post was also published by The Little Bookroom, so I have a lot to thank them for.
I recently wrote a little guide to Shetland for wool lovers that's due to be published in The Knitter shortly, so look out for that.