Thursday, 26 May 2011

Shopkeeper of the Week - Olive Loves Alfie

In a world where it's possible to buy an outfit for a child for under £5 it's important to offer an alternative, more ethical choice. Considering the origins of each piece, whilst remaining fun and exciting without being too expensive is not an easy thing to pull off, but children's lifestyle shop Olive Loves Alfie seem to do it with ease - and browsing their online shop is addictive.
It's a bit of a cliche to say 'I wish they did that in my size' but this is exactly what we scream when we look at the coral floral dress, dip-dyed vintage frock and butterfly leggings.

But have no fear, founder Ashlyn Gibson has responded to this desire and added a collection of adult sized Marimekko clothes - so now both mother and child will look equally wonderful!

We take a few moments out with Ashlyn to take quick peek into her world.

How would you describe your shop?

It's like my home, full of colour and print with an eclectic sense of style

Who/what are your biggest influences?

I have been collecting things for as long as i can remember and rarely go out without a camera so my influences are far and wide.
olive's quirky individual style (my 8 year old daughter) is a major influence on the children's clothing that I buy for my store.

What is your favourite item from your current collection?

The liberty print floral cushion from la cerise sur le gateau
and the new Plivi bag from Marimekko and the balloon dress from mini rodini.

Where is your favourite place(s) to visit for inspiration?

It could be one of so many places. Solitude and stillness play a valuable role in inspiration. Being able to free your mind and begin on something new with a blank canvas is incredibly valuable.

I love staying in my mums beach hut in The Hebrides where I feel humbled by the vastness of the sky and in awe of the ever changing sea. It is always the calm before a new project.

Do you have any new items/collections about to be launched?

Lucky boy Sunday...a wonderfully individual range of keepsake toys and homewares from Denmark.
Plus the Marimekko womenswear high summer collection.

What do you enjoy most about being one of the shops in The Secret Arcade?

it's a great endorsement for any independent retailer because it embraces individuality and acknowledges originality by selecting the very best of UK online retailers.

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