Your 'Hell No It's Not September' To Do List
Written by: Sophie Taylor
ARGH IT’S SEPTEMBER ALREADY WHAT AM I DOING WITH MY LIFE? Calm down, put those worries in a box and slide ’em under your bed. We’ve got September covered. Well the first half anyway. Check back mid month for another handy list of suggestions won’t you.
Walk on water and catch a fish
Basically get all blasphemous and try to be Jesus in Camden. On Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th September you are cordially invited to sneak a peek at the bottom of Camden’s secret lock chamber. Hey hey, don’t mind if I do you saucy minx. It’s Camden Lock’s special open day weekend. This is your rare opportunity to get up close and personal with Hampstead Road Lock 1A and see all the repair work that’s been going on behind closed doors.
Walk along original 200 year old brickwork and learn about ‘one of the finest examples of working heritage in the world’ without all that pesky canal water getting in the way. You can then get your silent groove on in one of the locks with 40 others for half an hour, if that’s the sort of thing you’d like to do on a Saturday night. Between 7-9pm you’ll be part of the first ever silent disco to be held in a lock chamber.
But if that’s not enough hushed celebration for you, register for a free fishing starter kit and let a licensed Level Two coach show you the ropes on the water (and by ropes I obviously mean fishing line). “Why?” You ask quietly.
“Because it’s National Fishing Month, okay?”
Camden Lock Open Weekend. Free, first come first served from 10am
I remember the first time I saw someone playing the spoons. It changed my life. I looked my Dad in the eye and said, that is all I want to do in life. I quit school, borrowed some teaspoons and found out I didn’t have a knack for it. If you’ve never had the honour of watching someone whack out a tasty rhythm on a pair of humble soup shovelers, you just simply haven’t lived. This Saturday could change all that. It’s the annual London Folk Festival at Cecil Sharp House in Camden from 11am September 3rd. Throughout the day there will be workshops and singarounds, as well as award-winning local and national acts well established on the folk and acoustic scene from the likes of Faustus and The Foxglove Trio. But get this: one of the events is a spoon workshop ? ? Jo May will be providing an assortment of metal, wooden, plastic and joined-up spoons for the less dexterous amongst us. I’ll be there, banging a ladle against my leg if nothing else.
Tickets available here
Satisfy your night munchies
Launching on the 3rd September, Islington Green Night Market will be opening from 5-9pm every Saturday evening. Expect a variety of chow from flavour saviours like Comfort Kitchen, Tico’s, Guasacaca, Chunky Buddha and Cheeky Burger. Just waltz straight in, they’re waiting for you and that rumbling belly of yours.
Islington Green Upper St N1, every Saturday 5-9pm
I’m a canoe, I’m a canoe, how do you do?
The next day, just up the road from Islington Green it’s the Angel Canal Festival. Relive your terrifying childhood experience of Punch & Judy acts (do they still do the whole domestic violence thing? What was that all about? And why was that crocodile’s mouth so loud) then catch some live music before climbing aboard an actual canoe on the canal. I can’t tell you what happens next as I make these sort of activities look like something you’d film for Jeremy Beadle (RIP). But I imagine you get a wooden stick thing and have to actually do some arm work to get upstream. Reward yourself afterwards with a treat from one of over eighty stalls selling food, bric-a-brac and canalware. Again, don’t ask me what that means – I’m not well versed in water based activities and their ‘wares’.
It’s free to swing by and feel like you’ve done something with your Sunday, from 11am – 5pm, 4th September Angel Canal.
Tie dye the right way
Be safe, not sorry. Try a Japanese Shibori workshop in Finsbury Park. You too can swan about with a patterned tote bag if you head down to the Pretty Shiny Shop on Stroud Green Road this September 10th. Expert instructor Rob Jones will be there to show you the Japanese art of stitched and bound resist (fabric knotting and dying). Bring along a plain tea towel, pair of Converse (other plain, cotton shoes are available. From Primark usually. Much cheaper but not as long wearing you know?) Or even a lampshade, why not?
I once bought a six foot lamp from a charity shop and had to take it home on the bus and it really wasn’t that big of an ordeal so if you forget to remove the shade from the lamp and end up bringing the whole thing, who cares in the grand scheme of things.
Style it out, quite literally, at the Shibori (tie dye) workshop from 10am and learn the spider web, the wood grain and the running stitch. Yes it does sound like a dance lesson, good one Barbara. Your £40 ticket also includes some secret insider knowledge from our Rob and the white cotton bag itself.
Tickets available here.
Get your TV fix at the Theatre
If you liked House of Cards or Homeland, peel yourself off your sofa and waddle down to the Park Theatre, Finsbury Park. Wishbone Films, in association with Park Theatre and Oliver Taheri Productions, are presenting the world premiere of The American Wife by Stephen Fife and Ralph Pezzullo. A political thriller throwing one woman’s trust into the balance as her husband is accused of being a terrorist. Let’s face it, a night at the Park Theatre beats Netflix and you can grab a pre show dinner at Yard Sale Pizza round the corner and really feel like you’ve got out of the house. If you’re seriously attached to your screens you’ll find some familiar TV faces in the cast, who are a rather handsome line up of talented beasts.
Park Theatre are showing The American Wife until 1st October. Tickets are available here.
Harvest your potential
You know how Noel Edmonds believes in the power of universe? Ask and you shall receive a never ending job as a host of a TV show about boxes? Well, the other day I was randomly thinking about hog roast and cider. Then I thought about some live blues (and sort of accidentally-on-purpose some gypsy jazz) and a bonfire. Then I pushed my luck and thought, all this for free, near me. Well guess what Blobby Appreciators? Noel knows what he’s talking about. On September 16th The Urban Orchard Project are hosting their annual Harvest Festival Party at Alara Warehouse in Camden where you’ll find all of the above dreams made manifest, as well as an apple pie bake off competition. Which means if you’ve been flouring up recently and asking for your own personal Paul Hollywood / Mary Berry scenario, the Universe was listening my little pastry fancier.
It’s all in the name of supporting Camley Street Neighbourhood and raising awareness for sustainability. So just remember to show your appreciation to the powers that be with a small (or big) donation to The Urban Orchard Project and get stuck in to that spit roast, guilt free.
Urban Orchard Project Harvest Festival, September 16th at Alara Wholefoods Warehouse, 110-112 Camley St, London N1C 4PF. Free entry, donations welcome
Pub Pub Pub
If you’d rather spend your September weekends drinking pints and moaning then we are by no means stopping you. Check out some of our pub recommendations:
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 loath 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.
God bless the Queen... of Hoxton. Or, more specifically, their rooftop - which happens to be one of our favourites in this here city of London. These guys are well known for creating beautiful, seasonal pop-ups which have included the Nordic Viking themed 'Skye Halla' and the Neverland inspired 'Bangarang'. This winter make way for 'The Moroccan Medina', a sky high hideaway inspired by the romanticism of the beguiling ancient city of Marrakesh.
Next time you need a caffeine hit why not take it from a cup brewed from Jamaican beans grown under a canopy of rainforest-preserving trees, whilst eating a home made vegan banana bread as you sit among an array of sweetly scented blooms. Welcome to Mento, Finsbury Park.
Pilgrim, the newest kid to Hackney's pop-up scene, is a unique dining experience inspired by the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage. This six course tasting menu includes regional dishes with a contemporary twist not yet seen before in London.