I recently went on vacation to Europe and while I held myself back in Bruges and Amsterdam from buying All The Stationery, I just couldn’t help myself at a beautiful little shop called Life Story in Edinburgh, Scotland…
I found out about Life Story from the Instagram account/blog Exploring Edinburgh by Shawna Law. (If you’re going to Edinburgh, or just want to pretend you live in Scotland’s gloomy-beautiful capitol, I highly recommend her blog for recommendations and beautiful writing and photography! Most of our favorite spots on our trip, I found through her blog. Be warned, though, it’ll make you want to move to Edinburgh…)
How beautiful is this shop!? Oh my goodness. I am obsessed. I want to live there! It doesn’t hurt that the owner, Susan Doherty, is extremely sweet. After I browsed the store for a good 30 minutes silently reminding myself I did not have room in my suitcase for all of the kitchen items, blankets, trays, and pillows that I wanted, Susan processed my modest stationery purchases and we chatted a little bit about the store’s Instagram. I can be pretty shy in person and wished I could have talked with her further (not to mention brought home more goodies!).
You can read a really great interview with her here. Of the store, she says, “My inspiration was to establish that kind of ‘destination’ store that I seek out when abroad; an inspiring place where coffee and design sit side by side. A space where you feel as at home with a flat white flicking through a magazine, as you do shopping for a unique gift.” I can attest as a traveler that is exactly what I was looking for and was so happy to find the store in my research for my trip! Living in New York, you really do have pretty much everything at your fingertips, but still there is not a store like this in the city (that I know of, anyway), so it was so exciting to visit it while I was in Scotland.
On to my purchases: I kept myself to just a small purchase and bought some tapes and stickers I hadn’t seen anywhere else. Goodness knows I have plenty of notebooks (which I don’t use) and don’t really have much need for clips or scissors, much as I wanted them. We also have plenty of Hay stockists in New York City, so I held myself back from all the trays!
The metallic tapes are so deliciously shiny and molten, so I had to pick up a set of those. I also went for some stickers. Both are by a Scandinavian brand called House Doctor that I’d never heard of before. The stickers come in a little roll and the gold ones are two-in-one (a full gold circle with a half-circle cut out). I can’t wait to use my Uni-Posca paint pens on them, I think they’ll look so sharp. If you’re in the UK you can buy the gold stickers here.
I also got a little non-stationery item: a ring holder! I’d been looking for something like this for a while but hadn’t seen anything that was minimal enough for me. Most ring trees/holders are so girly and frilly and that’s just not me, plus I don’t wear much jewelry at all anyway so I wasn’t going to work up to something with multiple rungs and whatnot. This one is perfect, so minimal and the “dalmatian” pattern reminds me of marble (sigh, my favorite), and takes up only a little bit of space on my shelf.
If you’re curious, the teeny little rings I wear (every day!) that are pictured here are from GLDN, a site I love so much. I literally never wore jewelry before discovering their site but I am so glad I did. Everything is handmade, great quality, and very reasonably priced. The rings I have are the Aire rings in sterling silver, in both the hammered and smooth styles.
In sum, I could have done so much more damage had I not brought a carry-on suitcase, but I’m impressed by my restraint! In the meantime, I’ll be dreaming of fall weather and grey misty days, which, along with this shop, were some of my favorite parts of Edinburgh… and for now, back to steamy humidity in good old New York City.