Get Your Hobby on!
Written by: Violet Myers
Are you reaching your full potential as a Londoner? Are you merely a human being ordo you dare to become a fantastical human doing? In a world where Netflix has become less of a source of entertainment and more like a full time occupation, the brave people of Finsbury Park are fighting back and breathing new life into the humble hobby.
Picture this: you’re attending a swish cocktail party, full to the brim with fabulous interesting people. Someone’s popped over after just swimming the Channel, there’s a civil servant who plays squash with Martin Clunes. Then the dreaded question comes up “tell me about you? What are you into?” Does planning a fictional wedding on Pinterest count as a hobby? No? How about being intolerant to gluten?
These people don’t just work, eat, sleep, repeat they’re getting involved in EXTRA CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES and their social media profiles look great because of it. It seems everyone’s at it – Barry from accounts is so much more than Barry from accounts, now he’s Barry from accounts who also plays ultimate frisby on the weekends. Your mum’s friend Jill has never felt better since she started her stealth yoga class and uncle Ken has taken his flower arranging to a whole other level. Well if you can’t beat ‘em, join ’em. It’s time to reclaim the early evening slump, turn off Making a Murderer (too far?) and get your hobby on!
Sewing Classes at The Stitching Academy (Harringay)
Taught by industry experts, The Stitching Academy offer a range of courses at different levels for budding fashion designers. You can commit to a 5 – 12 week course, or watch out for pop-up one offs.
Courses include; pattern cutting, basic sewing techniques and finishing techniques for the more advanced.
Rock Climbing at The Castle Climbing Centre (Finsbury Park)
Up for something a little more…death defying?
The Castle Climbing Centre offers a tonne of different sessions to match any ability including; one-to-one tuition, master classes and have-a-go sessions. These are perfect for those just starting out, everyone can get involved, even if you’re only experience of climbing is scaling the fence at Glastonbury that one time.
Capoeira Classes at The London School of Capoeira (Stroud Green)
So neither fashion design nor scaling walls really floats your boat? Maybe you’re less into climbing and more into kicking people stylishly. Well, you are in luck.
This Stroud Green based school does daily mid-week evening classes and has even started doing a Thursday morning class, just in case you can’t start the day without a good headstand flail kick (probably not a technical term).
Photo: Marie-Lan Nguyen
Swing Classes at Swing Patrol (Finsbury Park)
Maybe you’re a lover not a fighter, more of a Fred Astaire than a Bruce Lee. Well don’t worry your gentle little soul. Swing Patrol offer classes all over this great city of ours, but there are two N4 postcode venues to choose from, jolly good! Lessons are £8 per class, or £12 if you do both classes in the evening.
Photo: Neal Jackson
Flocking to Holloway Road on one of the many Sundays that we’ve spent at the Nag’s Head Car Boot Sale, we spotted a new Vietnamese place called Pho Hot getting ready to open up their doors. Being the nosy folks we are, we peeked inside and spotted a menu. Banh Mi was on it. It's a baguette, but not as you know it. Glory of all glories! It’s been far too long since I last consumed this distinctive sarnie and I'm happy as Larry that there's a new Banh Mi joint on my doorstep.
Baby, it’s getting cold outside, and what better way to aide our frostbitten noses than a chat to a professional skin person? We’re talking to Lee Garrett, founder of The Garrett Clinic, accomplished skincare specialist and heralded by many as the UK’s leading Skin Guru. Read on to find out his insider tips for surviving this winter season with your skin looking as radiant as the moon that breaks a stormy night.
Joined by over 50 other artists incorporating printmaking, painting, digital art, photography and small-scale sculpture, Tomorrow’s World presents us with utopias, dystopias, predictions, prophecies and visions of the future. We hit up the private view last Friday and it was pretty damn bleak, in the best sense of the word.
Carouse founders Chris, Theo and Ben – the charming folk behind Kentish Town’s Rose and Crown – have a new venture afoot and we couldn’t be more bloody excited to see it. We’ve been creeping in their windows, peering through the paint and sneaking glimpses at builders’ bums for a few months now (okay, maybe not the last one), watching these guys transform this cosy corner of Crouch Hill into a rather cool little boozer. Now they’re opening and everyone is invited. Come one, come all, and try all 20 of their beers on tap with us.
Last month I decided to try clubbing again. I don’t quite know what came over me, but I actually (brace yourselves) enjoyed it. I went to Body Hammer’s monthly party in Manor House and I’m here to tell you to go too, whether you love clubbing, hate clubbing, or really couldn’t care either way. #notspon
Rich, fried, buttery, potato-y vessels loaded with flavor combinations that go down rather well with craft beer, late nights and good times. Ha, who am I kidding, EVERYTHING goes down well with beer. You heard that right buddy, loaded potato skins are back with a bang (and a generous portion of bacon) and are currently being served at Old Street's The Magic Roundabout by street food pop-up Skins and we could not be any happier. Well, unless they were to stuff it with, say, Mac and Cheese or risotto. Oh, that's exactly what they do? Well paint me green and call me a cucumber.
Magical gifts, wonderful gifts, marvellous gifts, beautiful gifts, gifts, glorious gifts glo-ri-ous giiiiiifts. Please Sir, I want some more. It’s that time of year again and whether you love it or loathe it gifts will be purchased and presented into expectant hands. Stroud Green's very own Pretty Shiny Shop have compiled a gift guide to help ease the shopping shock. Imagine only having to trot to your local gift shop and tick off your entire shopping list in one fell swoop. Done, finito, terminado! To make it that little sweeter, it's also all very affordable... so you won't even have to pick a pocket or two.
Alright guys, it’s happening. The frosty charm of December is, once again, being beaten to a pulp by the capitalists’ wet dream: Christmas. The hideous twinkling of artificial outdoor lighting is starting to appear, with tourists flocking from far and wide to watch D-list celebrities press a button. Invitations to Christmas parties flood in from your multiple part-time jobs, ensuring you make bad decisions bi-weekly til next year. Supermarkets are selling 12-day advent calendars containing confetti, cookie cutters and candles for a flawless £50. And oh, how the mulled wine flows.
Who doesn’t love a cheeky statistic, correctly sourced? You know we do. Well, did you know that for every £1 spent with a small business, 63p is re-spent in the local area, as opposed to a measly 40p in every £1 re-spent locally with larger businesses? An absolute travesty, am I right? That 23p has to mean something, right, guys?! Guys? Guys, where are you going? Wait, there’s freebies involved too!
By gum there are a lot of winter markets this year. Fueled by sickly sweet mulled wine and overpriced pulled pork sliders, we’ve managed to wade our way through the murky waters of winter markets and find some decent looking ones round this here part of town. Don’t let our Grinch-esq vibes put you off (I’m more of a Pancake Day person myself) because, if you’re into markets, you’ll probably like these. Read on, if you’re merrier than us.
Take a short walk along Finsbury Park’s own sunset strip and you’ll find MoseyHome, an interiors retailer and styling consultancy who have invited us to collaborate with them on an exciting new series titled 'Style My Shop', in which they invite some of London's most talented interiors experts to quite literally style their shop. Interiors porn at it's finest.
Why was the snowman sad? Because he had a meltdown. Much like us, every year, when winter comes. It’s cold, it’s dark, and we know Christmas is on its way. But hey, it’s not all bad – the events round this time of year can be pretty swell. So don your scarf-shawl-blanket and get your frolic on, it’s time for fairy lights, scarfing mulled wine and stuffing your face!
Touch, taste, smell, hear and create art. Smith & Sinclair, purveyors of the Edible Cocktail, presents The Flavour Gallery: a multi-sensory adventure that’ll seduce your senses and tickle your taste buds beyond all imagination. Ooh matron!
Brush the cobwebs off your sexy banana costume; it’s that time of year to make a tit of yourself in fancy dress again. We’ve rounded up the most spine-chilling Halloween happenings in North London and, trust us, they sound horrendous. Be afraid, be very afraid.