We made the move to Ludlow for a few reasons, but not least is the magic of Ludlow that is its unique blend of rural and contemporary, old and new, innovation and tradition.
Daisy and I didn’t ship much ‘stuff’ from Kenya, so once we found a small house it was time to kit it out and off we went.
Ludlow and environs have a multitude of independent stores stocking all kinds of household objects both antique and new; our first stop was 55 Mill Street. This is a fabulous Aladdin’s Cave of goodies, stocked and run by a group of collectors resulting in a diverse choice of vintage and antique furniture, objets d’art, knick knacks and more.
We found a gorgeous Ercol coffee table, which seemed perfect but I asked them to hold it for 24 hours while I considered it. I returned rather more than 24 hours later ready to make the purchase and was dismayed to see a 'Sold' sign on the table, but on closer inspection it said ‘Sold to JD and Daisy’ – perfect!
Delighted with this find it felt all the more exciting to then go on and find some fabulous lighting in La Lumiere (Corve Street) – Juliana, the proprietor, has a very good eye for lighting design, and I found some very stylish lights and lamps.
The Silver Pear is without doubt Ludlow’s ‘go to’ gift shop – the owner, Janet, has an endless array of all things beautiful for home and self, and virtually everything you could want in the home in terms of china and glass, soft furnishings and more.
Daisy and I then trotted over to Ludlow Homecare for some more practical homeware – another treasure trove but of a very different style. You can find just about everything here for your practical needs for every room in your home: from the fanciest bath to the rubber duck for said bath and paint for the walls; the full range of kitchen equipment from large appliances to a pepper pot!
Being of the opinion that shopping locally is important I thought I’d strike a deal to buy all my ‘white goods’ from there, which was appreciated by David, the owner.
Daisy is an avid fan of Homecare and enjoys browsing in the garden section, which seems to have a lot of interesting smells, together with an enormous range of plants/trees and garden equipment.
We took a drive out just past Ashford Bowdler (on the A49) to Froggatts Tea Rooms & Vintage Shop. What a charming place, full of vintage and retro china, glass, small furniture, and a delicious lunch to boot! Was enchanted with all that I found, including a simply perfect corner shelving unit. Had to restrain myself from stocking up on vintage china and chairs! Daisy was warmly welcomed and immediately and thoughtfully provided with cool water, much appreciated on a hot day. We are looking forward to a return trip to try our hand at a bit of fishing and pottering around the ponds.
Gallery 131 offers up another truly great collection of eclectic pieces, wonderful art work, delightful furniture, and many smaller objets of interest. Will definitely return there too, I see that they have a good eye for style.
We must not forget to mention Rickards of Ludlow, a traditional hardware and ironmongers established in 1864, which is top for a look that suggests 'taking a step back in time', yet you can buy plenty of contemporary things there, including an Aga! Another angel of a site that offers quite stylish items and specialist purveyor of items for the period home is design emporium Holloways of Ludlow also on Corve Street.
Ludlow also has a Furniture Scheme which is a charity that collects and spruces up furniture for resale – Renaissance (the resale outlet) has a great selection of pre-loved pieces and the bonus is that you are donating (by virtue of your purchase) to this worthwhile charity.
Last, but not least is the world famous Ludlow market, still in the same spot for over 900 years! Alongside regular market days, there are specialist days including antique fairs. Daisy got a gorgeous sheepskin rug which kept her warm through the winter! I’ve bought silver cutlery and vases amongst delicious fresh fruit and vegetables. There are several regulars to look out for, such as Anna Wharton who has great vintage pieces for the home.
There you have it, when it comes to outfitting our home, Daisy and I have found Ludlow and its surrounding areas a bounty of fun, funky and functional goodies to suit a range of tastes.