Arrowsmiths in Broadstairs
Anyone who has been reading my blog for a while will know that I am very pro supporting small, independent businesses on our High Streets, and Thanet is blessed with some wonderful examples of the kind of shops that you need to go into to find a unique gift or wonderful crafts rather than just scrolling down a page on a website.
In fact, whenever I think of independent shops, the first to spring to mind is one from Broadstairs that has been there for an incredible 36 years! Despite its longevity, Arrowsmiths has never dated and remains abreast of customer demands and has always been a wonderful place to while away some time, browsing the lovely products on display.
The staff obviously have an eye for detail as the displays themselves are so carefully and lovingly put together, they are almost too good to touch and it feels as though you’re stepping into an art display.
Some original features remain inside the shop, lending it a vintage feel and the raw decor adds to its quirkiness.
Since my gorgeous green satchel started to look a bit battered, I’ve been on the lookout for a new everyday bag and despite looking in all of the large stores had not found one I liked. I’m quite fussy about bags!
Then, last week, I was passing by Arrowsmiths in Broadstairs when I spotted a gorgeous bag in their window. It ticked all of the boxes – a unique design that would make it stand out from the sea of black and brown bags everywhere, a shoulder strap for hands-free portability and slightly larger than my makeshift bag but not too big to double as a baby change bag! On closer inspection, I couldn’t help but be swayed by the lovely dragonfly and butterfly design – after all, I have a “thing” for butterflies and dragonflies!
So I found some child-free time to go exploring in Arrowsmiths alone (this is definitely not a toddler space!) and had a good look round to see if there was anything else I wanted to treat myself to while I was there. Of course, there were lots and lots – I could easily buy the entire stock as it’s all so beautiful and I dream about having a house that is scattered with gorgeous designs and knick knacks.
In the end, I chose a lovely little case with a bunny print for the girls to keep their “jewellery” in, and in turn make their bedroom tidier, as well as the bag I’d been coveting and a fabric card wallet for the wife (her last was stolen from our car in November and she’s been making do with a cheap plastic freebie ever since).
When I asked if they took card payments, we had a good chat about how often they get asked that, there being an assumption that small, independent retailers prefer to only take cash payments. It is strange that we still associate card payments with the bigger nationals isn’t it?
If you’re ever visiting Broadstairs, do try to make some time to pop in and see the delights that Arrowsmiths has to offer.You will not be disappointed! And just around the corner from there is the wonderfully quirky hardware store called Harringtons that is said to have inspired the Two Ronnies’ Four Candles sketch. It is certainly like stepping back in time there! I do hope these places survive the changes to our buying habits!
Disclaimer: I was given a voucher to spend in an independent establishment of my choice in association with Barclaycard Freedom Rewards Card which, unlike other loyalty cards, earns points whenever and wherever you spend, but as always, my thoughts and opinions are all my own.