When people ask me what my favourite thing about Glasgow is (and it happens frequently!), I always say this: Glasgow is never boring. There’s always something exciting and unique, just waiting to be discovered – and, last weekend, I found that The Hidden Lane is the perfect example of that.
If you’ve never heard of The Hidden Lane, let me bring you up to speed! Tucked behind the main streets of Finnieston, this hub of creativity is home to over 100 (!) independent businesses. Artists, shops, cafes, workshops and more occupy the brightly coloured buildings and quirky studio spaces.
But when there’s so much happening in the one place, where do you even begin? You call in the experts! For us, that was Mhairi, the fabulous ladyboss behind Bonnie Bling, who very kindly invited us along for a tour of the lane.
We started with hot drinks and festive themed treats at The Hidden Lane Tearoom (the chocolate ganache was to die for!) before hitting the cobbles and checking out the curiosities and treasures at Tart’s antique store. They had a VINTAGE DISNEY POSTER in Spanish, you guys. We left and headed over to the super adorable Uptown Squirrel designs just in time – and my bank balance remained intact.
As well as visiting some awesome stores (such as Decadent Riot, Cloud Nine Candles and Studio Number One), we also got a peek into some of the studios where the design magic happens. No room was off-limits! It was almost like an episode of Cribs – in fact, the only thing missing was Mariah Carey working out in a pair of ridiculous heels…
Seeing the Bonnie Bling HQ with pieces of iconic Scottish jewellery coming hot off the laser cutter was a huge highlight (you know my love for the Bling goes way back!), as was getting a decorative bauble demo from Libby Walker in her bright studio.
Visiting Vanilla Ink’s metal workshop space was a lot of fun, and I even had a go at making my own keyring! Gary took a sharp breath and stepped back when I was handed the hammer – and I think he was as surprised as me to see that I managed to come away with one keyring and zero injuries. Maybe I’m good with a hammer? Am I Thor now?
After a few more visits, we finished up the tour at New Hellfire Club record store, before hitting Lean Factory for some lunch and fruit smoothies. Lean Factory is a fairly new addition to The Hidden Lane, and their pastel coloured cafe is the perfect place for a pit stop!
Fancy exploring The Hidden Lane yourself? Get your diary ready…
On Saturday 25th November, The Hidden Lane are throwing a festive daytime event to launch their Hidden Christmas shopping extravaganza. There’ll be over 20 open shops and studios to explore, competitions, sweet treats, pop-ups, live music and you can even have a go at making your own keyring at Vanilla Ink.
The fun starts at 12pm – though if you want to go along a little early to get a cuppa at the Hidden Lane Tearoom I fully support that plan!
Over the course of December, The Hidden Lane’s retailers will also be revealing special offers on their social media advent calendar – so keep your eyes peeled to @hiddenlanefinnieston on Instagram for more details…
Whether you fancy getting a start on your Christmas shopping, or want to discover some amazing local businesses and creatives, The Hidden Lane is the perfect place to start!