A GL shopping trip
A GL shopping trip
As hot weather finally begins to make its presence felt, I, along with many other females become afflicted with that primal urge that is the desire to find an amazing outfit for summer. Having a coffee with a friend in Grey Lynn, I decided to make good on this urge and begin the search. The great thing about shopping in Grey Lynn is that as many other shopping destinations in Auckland have become more commercial and chaotic, Grey Lynn retains its quirky, boutiquish feel that renders shopping a more enjoyable experience. Well there’s that, and the fact that most of the shops in Grey Lynn are accompanied by some of the most amazing cafes in Auckland. So for this serious business of summer preparation (and yes, it is a serious business) I decided to pick three fashion locations in Grey Lynn and see what the day turned up.
La Madu – 196 Great North Road
My knowledge of La Madu was largely preceded by its very good reputation. Known to locals for years as the best place to go for holiday clothing or anything to decorate the home, it has become a bit of an institution. Located in the middle of the action on Great North Road, La Madu sits like a summery oasis amongst all the car dealers and other industrial trade sites. In fact, I did feel a little bit like I was on holiday the second I walked through the door. The staff are friendly and relaxed, the shop is spaciously laid out, and the quirky furniture and ornaments throughout means never a dull place to rest the eye.
The clothing is great for those classic pieces that you push to the back of your wardrobe over winter, but can thrash for countless summers. I remember picking up an amazing one-off flamenco inspired dress from there once, and this season they still have those exciting and unique pieces that have everyone asking ‘where did you get that from?’. One thing that I love about La Madu is the beautiful fabrics they use. A while ago I decided that for as much as I could, I would wear natural fibres such as silk, cotton, linen and so forth. There is no shortage of such here, in fact they make of point of using fabrics that are as breathable and light as possible. For tropical holidays and the hottest part of summer, this has always been my favourite store.
Jetset Bohemian –cnr Richmond Road and Surrey Crescent
A little bit further down the road, and deeper into the heart of Grey Lynn, Jetset Bohemian is situated over two shops on the corner of Richmond Road and Surrey Crescent right next to the popular Jafa Café. I found it to be a treasure trove of eclectic and unique finds with a jewellery collection that literally had me reaching for my EFTPOS card. The clothing is pretty spectacular as well.
But first, back to the jewellery. Jetset Bohemian has one of the best jewellery selections I have seen in Auckland. They have a fairly large collection that can effectively walk the tight line between outlandish costume jewellery and everyday classic pieces. That is, to be versatile enough to wear every day, while still remaining quirky and unique.
As for the clothing, the shop is full of beautiful fabrics and detailing and a style that, if you like me, have decided that Florence Welsh (of Florence + the machine) is your fashion inspiration for the summer, full of lustful potential purchases.
Covet – 168 Richmond Road
My day of exploring the shops in Grey Lynn concluded itself with a visit to this new boutique on Richmond road. My first impression was one of wonder. Is that a pair of glittery silver Christian Louboutin shoes I see? What is this place full of designers and vintage knick knacks? Covet is a store that by our terms of retail definition, is undefinable. Part art dealer, part designer fashion retailer, part curiosity store, I was easily lost amongst the racks of clothing and shelves of various items. After a conversation with Brigit, the owner, it became apparent how much love and attention had gone into the store. This made for a very warm and welcoming atmosphere.
The clothing is a mix between high and low end designers, all second hand and vintage so they come at very reasonable prices. Many of these designers are imported from the USA so be prepared for some never before seen in New Zealand finds.
After exploring this final store I sat down next door at the café Ripe for a well earned rest. Did I mention what a serious business shopping was? The Grey Lynn shops are full of surprises and a refreshing break from the hustle of the inner city. My favourite place to spend a leisurely summer day.
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