Profile // The Pigeon Hole


Name: The Pigeon Hole

Owners: Holly and George

Age: 2 years (approx.)

Location: Camberwell

Background: About 4 years ago, friends Holly and George decided to open a cafe. Both hailing from creative careers - Holly in arts education, George in prop and set design - the cafe was always going to be stylish, individual, and with a lot of handmade elements.

'The romantic idea of owning a small independent cafe that worked closely with the community we both lived in and provided us a space to design and build from scratch was something very appealing,' says Holly. 'We both already had a love for cooking but it was through the process of setting up the cafe that we became incredibly excited and passionate about all the local artisan produce that lay on our doorstep.' 

After a blindingly successful Kickstarter campaign and almost a year of searching for the perfect location, The Pigeon Hole opened in June 2014. It's since become a local favourite, serving a range of locally produced food and drink - think Volcano Coffee from West Norwood, pastries from Christopher's in Herne Hill, and sumptuous cakes from Smash Bang Dollop in Crystal Palace - as well as hosting film nights, jewellery workshops, life drawing classes, and guest chef supper clubs.

Why go there?: Aside from the delicious food, The Pigeon Hole has an incredibly relaxed atmosphere that makes any visit a pleasure. The decor is simple but memorable - exposed ply wood edging, second hand lamp shades, and a range of mid-century furniture, all of which is for sale. As Holly explains, 'the design of the cafe is and has always been a very important part of the its atmosphere and we try and subtly change the design of the space with the seasons, creating softer furnishings and cosier table placements in the colder months and cleaner lines and brighter colours in the warmer months.'

The cafe also supports local artists and makers with a rotating exhibition on the walls and hand crafted products to buy. With the newly pedestrianised area outside the cafe, The Pigeon Hole will be the place to relax this summer.

What they say: 'We wanted to achieve a space that people felt at home in.'

What we say: 'Home in. It's awesome.' 


You can find The Pigeon Hole online, on Instagram, and on Twitter. Visit the cafe at 2 Datchelor Place, Camberwell SE5 7AP.

Profile // The Turpentine


Name: The Turpentine

Owner(s): Jude, Alice & Amber

Age: 2 years

Location: Brixton

Background: The Turpentine began as a series of craft markets in south London. You might remember the excellent 'Turpentine Takeover' events held at Living and the Effra Social in Brixton - a cool mix of handmade design talent, workshops and music. When a shop on Coldharbour Lane became available, it was the perfect opportunity for co-founders Amber, Alice and Jude to put their creative mark on the area.

Why go there?: The shop is full of incredible design talent. From hand printed cards and prints to jewellery (including The Turpentine's own range of wood-metal necklaces and earrings), homeware, textiles, and accessories, it's the perfect place to find a gift, or to pick up a unique piece of design for yourself. You can also flex your inner creative at one of the many Turpentine workshops. There are one-off classes and longer courses to suit a variety of creative curiosities; painting, jewellery making, and the ever popular 'drink & draw' sessions are but a few of the available and constantly evolving options. Expect more in the way of collaborative classes in the future, held in tandem with UK designers like i am acrylic.

What they say: "[The Turpentine] is about celebrating creativity."

What we say: It's the turps. 


You can find The Turpentine online, on Instagram, and on Twitter. Or visit the shop at 433 Coldharbour Lane, Brixton SW9 8LN.