Best Independent Boutiques in Amsterdam
From bohemian areas of East London and Hackney, we now bring you to highly creative and innovative Amsterdam. With an equally bohemian spirit, the Dutch capital boasts a dynamic shopping scene. Many unique fashion boutiques exist alongside global brands in areas like Waterlooplein and Nine Streets, catering for every taste.
Here is our list of the top 5 independent boutiques in Amsterdam:
1) X Bank
Located in W Hotel Amsterdam, this hip concept store, which claims to be the ‘epicentre of Dutch design’, is more than a fashion boutique: it is a destination for the artistically minded. Featuring all types of objet d’art ranging from fashion, jewellery to artwork from local Dutch designers and artists, X Bank also hosts an art gallery and workshop space. Up-and-coming Dutch designers that are stocked at X Bank include Roderick Vos, Lola & Lou and Ink Inklusive Denim.
2) OU Boutique Stories
Curated specially by owners Val and Rose Adam, OU (French for where or where did you get that) brings all manner of texture, prints and sparkles into clothing, bags and jewellery. As the OU woman is bright, cheerful and feminine, but not afraid wear statement prints and colours, the boutique adopts tongue-in-cheek approach to make classic fashion too pretty and hard to resist.
Check out their Instagram here: OU Boutique Stories.
What makes Hutspot unique in the Amsterdam boutique scene is its lifestyle offering for young sustainable creatives. Brands sold at this boutique emphasise the use of sustainable materials and practices to ensure dignified treatment of the workers that produce their garments. After a long day of shopping and browsing, Hutspot also offers you the opportunity to kick back and relax and have a cup of coffee. Who wouldn’t like that?
Based in West Amsterdam, T.I.T.S stands for ‘This is the s***!’ and its name definitely lives up to the shopping experience. In here, you’ll be able to find funky and unique fashion pieces ranging Brixton Hats to stylish knuckledusters at affordable prices. Brands carried include indie label Mannish and Frisur and well-known Stussy and Lazy Oaf. Also, in mandatory Amsterdam fashion, coffee is served at the back of the store if you ever need a caffeine pick-me-up.
A posterchild of Tumblr’s sleek, minimalistic and white interiors, Cottoncake feels very open and spacious despite being shaped like a pijpela (a long and narrow pipe drawer). Run by owners Tessa and Jorinde, the store only stocks items that they really love and pick up during their travels. Labels you could expect to see are Storm & Marie, Samoe & Samoe, and jewellery brands Mimi et Toi and Monocraft. Things are constantly changing however, as the owners bring in new upcoming designers, so don’t forget to pop in and check it out!
Create Your Own Signature Style
As each fashion season comes to play, it’s easy to be swayed into the ‘new trends’ bandwagon, when those frivolous and stylish new collections are let loose. And if you have those extra coins to spare, we understand completely, we all need a little retail therapy every so often!
However, if you find yourself buying designs that you never wore in the past and still can’t wear today, it basically means one thing. You are yet to find that signature style of yours.
For many women, a signature style came accidently, formed out of their unique and personal tastes. For others, it evolved over the years, through trial, error and many years of abandoned items piling up in the closet. One thing that surely comes with a signature style is its ability to define your personality, character, face and body shape.
Classic Style or Trend Chaser?
Whether you are a classic kind of chic with the ‘Jackie O’ factor, that is after trendier wardrobe - regardless, you can diversify your look and still feel comfortable.
Style is about confidence, comfort and efficiency. To put it simply, that favourite pair of sunglasses you bought 5 years ago, always makes you feel like comfortable right?
Sometimes you even forget you still have it on, way past the sunset hours, your feet will be up on your living room sofa with your glasses still glued on your head.
Likewise, the next new pair of sunglasses, can be trendier, sassier, with the classic look and still comfortably wrap its arms around your face, just like the last one did.
This winter white Bower sunglasses by Byrogue perfectly fills that gap between classic and trendy.
Benefits of Having a Signature Style
The benefits of having a signature style is that you will forever feel comfortably you in any item of clothing you through on last minute! You will save time planning tomorrow’s outfit as you will be well versed in what suits you beautifully. More importantly, you will be recognised for your style and uniqueness and create a branded image for yourself. No more turning up at the house party wearing the same latest Topshop dress as six other mates.
If signature is what you are after, don’t sweat because you can create your own signature style with ease. Simply identify a colour you’re drawn to, which compliments your skin tone
and face shape. Then begin adding some quality pieces that are versatile, comfortable and wearable.
Some Signature Styles We Love
Want a little inspiration for your own personal creations? Then check out our two favourite style and talent icons.
You can’t not love anything about Jorja Smith, our favourite addition to the UK stream of upcoming vocalists. Her style encompasses an eclectic blend of 1960s classic with 90s urban wear, which really compliments her vocal style and production. How does she do it? As always, its confidence that carries it off so well.
Follow Jorja here
Known for her experimental street style and bondage inspired, stage costumes. Sports lux at its best this cute wide eyed, talented and courageous chic FKA TWIGS.
Byrogue Designs Playlist 20/04/17 for your ears with love....
Best places for Indie Designers and Artists to live post Brexit PT.2
The Brexit bullshit still giving and depressing many of Britain’s diverse art, fashion and design communities. The open, tolerant and diverse attitudes coming in sharp contrast to the nativism and xenophobia of the result. This has forced many to consider relocating for the sake of their own individuality and their artistic creativity. Pack your sunglasses, its time to explore the cultural beauty, aesthetic delight and spiritual inspiration that comes from Tulum, Mexico.
Mexico is slowly starting to move away from heavy industry-based inward investment and migration in favour of a more creative solution to its own economic needs. The Mexican Government has provided accessible work visas for British and EU citizens looking to relocate. The new VISA will help creative individuals relocate as freelancers and small business owners to Mexico.
Tulum is my dream location, friendly, colourful, huge amounts character, soft sand, clear blue sea, beautiful landscape with plenty of natural wonders to enjoy. Tulum is diverse and authentic, a world away from the Miami tinged Cancun, it attracts a certain type of creative traveller. The textiles, colours and embroidery are as inspiring as the tequila.
Where to live?
For those looking for uniqueness and open space, Tulum provides both. The artistic populace, especially those not from moneyed backgrounds, tend live around the Zama district in Tulum. The properties are priced accordingly. US Dollar are accepted by private landlords over the Peso. In US dollar terms, you can rent a studio with pool access for USD$ 550 a month and a full one bedroom beachside hut for USD$ 1,200. There are diverse types of properties to suit individual needs. We noticed loads of new build apartments to buy, seaside 1 beds for $100, 000 upwards.
Where to eat?
Despite being warned not to, we indulged in plenty of street food, from a couple of cooks with a trolley on the corners serving 3 tacos for 10 pesos to cool food huts on the beach dishing up ceviche they caught that morning, all beyond fresh and like nothing I had tasted before. Those looking for the best tacos fast head to Taqueria el Carboncito, for seafood El Capitan. This isn’t about designer Michelin-starred food, but about authenticity which tastes much better.
The Papaya Playa Project an incredible beach club and hotel committed to sustainability and are well on the way to achieving their mission of becoming a zero emissions and zero contamination community by 2018. The food and cold press drinks are as equally committed to clean, served with dramatic sea views, a flash tropical storm over lunch all set in a responsibly constructed resort using 93% of the original jungle, the experience was unforgettable.
Where to exhibit?
Any artist or designer looking for unique, curated or non-curated space, that can provide the contrasting urban setting with quintessential artistic minimalism should explore the Residencia Gorila a space providing unique creative solutions. The space can be for solo or commercial events and the team can help individuals through the installation and post-installation stages.
Where’s the fashion and style inspiration?
Everywhere. Art, design and history all interweave throughout Tulum. The mural artistry of the communities in Tulum are a symbol of this interactivity between different communities and artistic styles. Those looking for inspiration should explore the mural delights of Tulum. The Zamas Hotel provides the backdrop and space for these murals in public spaces. The murals follow the route throughout the city and distil the history and change that has occurred. For those looking for bespoke fashion, from unique sunglasses to locally produced jewellery, need to explore the unique and niche fashion boutique Caravana Montaecristo. This indy space provides an experience of the caravana of old with a modern twist of seascapes and Mexican cultural uniqueness.
Tulum is a design and cultural mecca and it can provide individuals with the right creative space to help improve their own artistic thinking and creativity.
The right sunnies top off any look, tipping it to the next level of polished cool. Praise be to the artists who are wearing them well and inspiring us today
The Californian -Sixties -Jazz queen style has her wearing big, beyond glamour frames, statement in size and colours, bold baby pastels and light tinted lenses to showcase those huge eyes and long lashes.
2. ZEBRA KATZ
Ten steps ahead dark, sleek, allblackeverything are a few ways to describe Zebra Katz’ style. The New York artist and underground icon wears black often and well.
For this look go for the androgynous Byrogue BUTLER in Black and Gold.
3. Amber Rose
Hip – Hop honey Amber Rose wears pink well. Large fun frames, multi coloured, bold shapes suit her incredible complextion and features. A sunglasses fan with her own collection we love the brave statements she makes with every outfit, showing inspiring confidence.
To step out Amber style be bold and try PUSSPUSS in Pink
Best places for Indie Designers and Artists to live post Brexit PT.1
The post-Brexit environment has created a negative subtext for UK and European indie designers, musicians and artists wanting to live and work in an open and free country. The Brexit vote, with its nativist wickedness, has helped people living in the UK contemplate a life in more open pastures – Europe and other global cities and continents. This article will explore the ‘capital of Europe’, the great city of Berlin.
A Berlin Senator has even called for British creative individuals to come to the city of design and culture. One senator noted, “Britain’s vote to leave the European Union will severely affect your business.” (great call leavers, smart moves.). However, the senator also articulated a more nuanced reason and that is openness and self-enlightenment from a capital of diversity, of inspiration and or generosity. The red carpet is out. For those brave intrepid artists and designers wanting a new, open and more tolerant space to create, Berlin could be the best choice?
Where to live
The Kreuzberg district in Berlin is the most artistic, democratic and open-minded area of the capital. The mix of academia, artistic and cultural types create a collaborative community of like-minded individuals who together create the right vibes that have turned Kreuzberg into the artistic quarter of Berlin. The property prices are reasonable, in a European context. Furnished studio apartments are available from 750 euros whilst one bed apartments start from the 900 euro level.
Where to eat
For those looking to feed their cravings for artistic and culinary delights can do no worse than head to the East Side Gallery. The restaurant and café is part of a wider installation art experience. The food is cheap, the coffee is good, the company is great and the art is always on display. Get sustenance and inspiration from as little as ten euros.
For vegan or veggie try the wonderful Ryong beautifully creative dishes such as dragon egg where avocado, lemon grass, and soy-“meat” is rolled in a spinach-tempura coat can be found at Torstrasse 59, Mitte, everyday from 12:00.
Where to exhibit
Up and coming designers and artists looking for innovative space with curated and non-curated space available should contact the Isabella Bortolozzi Galerie in Berlin. This innovative and contemporary art space can help either by providing space or using their network of indie galleries to help find the right space for your specific needs. Berlin Fashion Week is making an international impact just as Berlin fast makes its name as cultural + liberal cool capital. Innovators and fashion design upsetters are looking to be part of this creative utopia.
Voo Kruezburg is one of my all-time favourite boutiques, stocking a number of jewellery, sunglasses and accessories heros including Acne Studios and Mykita as well as Sun buddies. Housed in a former locksmith shop in acourt-yard off of Oranienstrasse, you will find this industrial, warehouse style boutique stocking the best of indie and mainstream designers.
Where to get inspiration
Berlin has a network of creative centres and professional networking. The capital is known for its openness and diversity and this has allowed innovation and creativity in design and art to flourish. The design of buildings, the creative centres with niche experiences surrounding engineering to science along with fashion to video game development, all provide the right context for inspiration. This is further enhanced by the Berlin authorities providing free events and more for those looking for inspiration.
Byrogue’s Berlin based designers to look out for include SADAK – think, sheer tunics with tattoo badge, over-sized camo t-shirts, Mayan and Hawaiian prints and silky burkas- would look most at home on FKA TWIGS, Zebra Katz or GAIKA.
Indyanna is Voo owners Femmipunk womens wear label is brash and loud also check out DSTM hot BDSM inspired silk and satin dresses, floor length black robes, tassels, sheer wide leg trousers and bodysuits perfect for your “Welcome to Berlin, you are now free” sex party.
I have highlighted how Berlin is cost-effective, provides the right community ethos for designers and artists looking for inspiration and space to create. The availability of experimental restaurants, coffee shops, art events, museums and galleries – from indie to commercial – helps to make Berlin faultless. The people, the compassionate expressive and open attitude is what will make it the creative hearts home. If you are considering relocating, Berlin could be your perfect European city. Don’t come if you’re a bigot. Thanks
The Byrogue studio is a glow with the dulcet tones of the Grammy award winning KING! Get to know these beautiful vocalists. Join us and marvel at their talent….to us they sound like springThe Byrogue studio is a glow with the dulcet tones of the Grammy award winning KING! Get to know these beautiful vocalists. Join us and marvel at their talent….to us they sound like spring
PUSS PUSS on FINANCIAL TIMES how to spend it
The beautiful stylish and glamourous PUSSPUSS in cool mustard yellow have made an appearance today on the Financial...
A stylish summer shopping list just for you. Welcome.
Make sure, even in your smalls, you are still the most eye catching girl on the beach with bright, adventurous sunglasses that frame your face well, give the best in UV protection and compliment every poolside look.
PUSSPUSS BALLET PINK £140
Perfect for beach to bar transitioning, covering up the bits that make you feel most self -conscious and protecting your skin from the sun. Black is a little safe but great for when the sun goes down and the music turns up. Mes Demoiselles have it down with this beautiful white, tassel kaftan with gentle colour detail and soft charcoal trim, ideal summer attire for long beach days.
Mes Demoiselles Kaftan
A secret weapon in ultimate beach style topping, a definite if you are dedicated to conjuring up effortless but bold looks during your summer break. We love a panama or a fedora hat. Go one step further with bold prints and coloured hats to match your swimwear. Also perfect for hiding those sand incrusted, wave beaten locks.
Maison Michael Fedora
Hydrate, cleanse, exfoliate, moisturise, moisturise, moisturise & PROTECT.
The most attractive and confidence boosting asset any beach body has is beautiful well nourished skin, hydrate by drinking lots of water on those hot beach days, serve your skin from the inside. Cleanse gently and regularly, our fave part of beach life is using the natural textures of the sand to gently exfoliate, especially the feet and legs before a dip in the sea, moisturise liberally and generously and of course always remember your sunscreen.
For all that shit you carry around, hide it in style. Less is more on summer holiday. Sensi Studio have a summer Tote for every beach party.
Sensi Studio Totes
Go for something you know no one else will be wearing – go bold and individual, this takes some shopping around but worth it to be unique- we love this denim look bikini by Lisa Marie Fernandez.
Lisa Marie Fernandez