25 Jun 2012
Retail therapy in Belfast
The bump has certainly been curtailing some of my spending impulses, but there’s nothing to stop me browsing with an eye to the future – and even at five months pregnant on my trip to Belfast, there was plenty to tempt.
The Northern Irish capital has all the usual high street shops you’d expect, as well as plenty of choice under the glass dome in the Victoria Square shopping centre, but it’s the chic boutiques of Lisburn Road and quirky craft shops of the city centre, which set it apart. Here’s five of my favourites.
St George’s Market
Worth a visit to wander past the surprisingly enticing array of fish and fresh fruit and veg stalls, even if you’ve got willpower of steel and aren’t planning to buy anything. But with artwork, jewellery and clothing on sale, plus plenty of cupcake, coffee and crepe stalls to keep you refuelled as you wander, I’m willing to bet your resolve will waver. My favourite was Alice McGuinness’ beautiful glassware, including some fabulous rings, my favourite travel souvenir.
This vintage store on Botanic Avenue is perfect whether you’re looking for some retro thrift or collecting a one-off, with hand-picked pieces from the 1930s onwards, plus accessories galore. This time, the bump meant I was limited to looking. Next time though…
I could have spent hours wandering Lisburn Road, if only I’d had more time, and this boutique is almost as gorgeous as its stock, with boudoir-style hot pink furniture and chandeliers between the designer shoes, accessories and lingerie.
I love the kind of shop which has a bit of everything as you never quite know what you’ll discover. And this fab store mixes homewares, vintage clothing, jewellery and even furniture, so leave time to browse and you never know what treasures you’ll turn up.
Tucked away in the Fountain centre, SpaceCraft’s shop is set alongside a gallery and exhibition space, all showcasing emerging local designers. A great place to snap up unique jewellery, prints and other artwork.
Disclaimer: My trip to Belfast was arranged with the Northern Ireland tourist board.