How I nearly missed worlds of dried flowers, antique furniture and hand-crafted notebooks

I’ve never been a big fan of concept stores. They usually all look the same, regardless of the city you are in: Bare walls, a few racks of clothes from Urban Outfitters and some very original books, preferably called “The 25 coolest Polaroids.” Nope, thanks. So I initially wasn’t hooked when my friend dragged me into the first store in Barcelona and waited impatiently (what would I do without those grand social skills?) for her to finish browsing those extremely “unique” pieces. Well, that was until I opened my eyes properly.

But oh dear, these stores gave “concept” a whole new meaning: Handmade clothes, beautifully designed notebooks, and self-printed dish towels all over the place. One store felt like the cool version of a greenhouse, another one possibly contained the owner’s grandparents’ entire collection of antique nonsense. Beautiful! To fill your hungry minds with some inspiration, here are some names and photos.

The ones I stumbled upon were in Gracia (that neighbourhood apparently really impressed me): Matusalen on Carrer Ramon y Cajal, 29, La A on Carrer Torrent de l’Olla and Magnesia, opposite Lukumas, which I recommended in this post. My highlight though was watching (not to be mistaken with stalking) a colourful sketching and knitting class from outside… So if nothing else, today we’ve learned when to use the word unique without the quotation marks, right!?

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