Top 5 London Pop-Up Shops
Pop-up fever is sweeping London this season. Our friends at Groupon City Blog have been publishing series on the best pop-up restaurants, shops, art events and spectacular one-offs in town in honour of the phenomenon (bang on trend, them).
Groupon’s Pop-up cupcake shop. Truman Brewery’s Sunday UpMarket
Now, they’ve decided to give it a go themselves. This Sunday, Groupon will be running a pop-up shop in The Old Truman Brewery’s Sunday Upmarket, on Brick Lane. They’ll be selling cupcakes crafted by top London patisserie Betty Blythe Fine Food Pantry, at the very special discount price of £5.40 for a box of six for their members, and those whose sign up to their newsletters on the day. What’s more, you can pick up a voucher for 50% off all ready-to-go salads, sushi, soup and stews at Chop’d just round the corner – lunch sorted in one fell swoop! And if that wasn’t enough good bargain stuff, they’re offering £5 in Groupon credit to all Spoonfedblog.com fans who come and say hello. Just mention this post, tweet to say you’re at the stall, and £5 credit will wing it’s way to you!
To mark this marvellous collaboration, we’ve picked our favourite pop-ups from across the Groupon series, and serve them up for your delection with a trend-savvy smile below.
Best Pop-Up Restaurant: The Underground Restaurant
Run by photographer-turned chef/entrepreneur/blogger extraordinaire Ms Marmite Lover (you’ll love it or hate it), The Underground Restaurant launched in January 2009 as one of the UK’s first supper clubs. Running every Saturday in the inimitable Marmite’s own living room (an address kept firmly secret as the privileged knowledge of those lucky enough to join her 26-seater parties) Underground remains one of the most sought-after pop ups in the capital. A Five course, coffee and a cocktail are offered, with occasional wine tastings too. Dinners are themed along fantastical lines – past incarnations include the French Revolution, Halloween vampires and even a Latitudinal World-Wide Dinner – and upcoming Christmas events include suppers with stand-up comedians and an Underground Christmas Market. Again, in the living room. Ms. Marmite’s just been named by the Evening Standard as one of their 100 Most Influential Londoners. Definitely one worth watching!
Best Pop-Up Shop: Octavia Pop-Up Charity Shops
With 19 permanent charity shops spanning the length of West London, you’d think the Octavia Foundation would have their work cut out managing a network of conventional retail spaces. However, that hasn’t stopped them taking their uniquely fashion-forward venture on the road, embarking on a series of pop-up placements across the capital. Known for quirky one-offs and the occasional celebrity second-hand, Octavia have sparked a bit of a buzz – but always with charity at their core. Have a conscientious rummage at their pop-ups at Temple Fountain, Finchley between now and January, or at 7 The Quadrant in Richmond until just after Christmas.
Best Art and Design: House of Voltaire
Upstairs at Rupert Sanderson, 19 Bruton Place, Mayfair, London W1J 6LZ, until 4th December
Shoe fans may have notice something afoot above Rupert Sanderson’s Mayfair store. Bruton Place has gone (temporarily) bohemian, with not-for-profit art collective Studio Voltaire in residence until 4th December. House of Voltaire (there’s contender number two) will exhibit and sell edgy, contemporary works by artists supported by the Studio, and leading famous faces who back the scheme including Nicholas Bryne, Wolfgang Tillmans, Pam Hogg, and even Tracey Emin. With it’s Victorian Bond Street styling, the space alone is worth a look. Add prices starting at just £10, and a whisper that the names behind the stock will occasionally man the tills themselves, and House of Voltaire becomes unmissable.
Best One Off: The Icecreamists
Self-styled ‘Sex Pistols of ice-cream’, The Icecreamists have taken the daddy of all desserts and shaved it’s head, thrown it in a ripped leather jacket and told it to stick to fingers to the man. Crash landing in two still-secret Covent Garden sites this winter, these gelato renegades combine traditional Italian ice cream know-how with a whopping dose of rock and roll. Described as ‘one-part Vivienne Westwood, one-part Hard Rock Boutique and one-part Alice in Winter-Wonderland’, theirs ain’t no ordinary ice cream parlour. If their 2009 Selfridges pop-up is anything to go by – where live bands, cat walking models and fantastical mixology shows were the norm – then their latest frozen lovechild ‘Lick Your Addiction’ promises to be something very special. Expect sensory overload from this guerrilla ice cream installation, where addicts can self-medicate with treats tipped toward the spectacular. Apparently ‘nitro-shots, transfusions, syringes, flames, cold sweats and a baby’s bottle’ will all feature… Follow The Icecreamists on Facebook and Twitter for more information. Take our word for it: Not. To. Be. Missed.
Don’t forget to swing by the Groupon pop-up shop this Sunday, and see how they get on themselves!