Bluebells & Vintage at Columbia Rd Flower Market

Regular readers may remember this post I did for my 29th birthday on the 30 things I want to do before I turn 30. One of the points was to spend a weekend a month properly exploring London (I’ve lived here 3.5 years now and I still feel there are entire areas I’m yet to get to know) and more specifically, to make a trip East to the Columbia Road Flower Market which had been on my ‘To Do’ list since I first arrived here.

After seeing the post, some fashion friends emailed to say they wanted to help me work through my list and do this one with me (London exploration combined with a girl date is a big win in my book), so into the diary it went. Hurray!And so one Sunday a few weeks back, we all met at the foot of Columbia Road for a day of boutique-rummaging, eating and flower-buying. Undeterred by the rain, we wove our way up the length of the flower market, pausing to smell giant bunches of roses and giggle at the cockney cries of “10 for a fiver!” and “hello, gorgeous!”. We ducked into all the darling little boutiques (thankfully, this entire stretch is unblemished by boring chain stores so everything still feels unique and special) to buy stationery (at Supernice), sweets (at Suck and Chew, which felt like a magical retro sweet emporium) and vintage teacups (at Vintage Heaven), and hunted for the best coffee and poached eggs for brunch (at Campania Gastronomia, in case you were wondering).

Afterwards, I met another friend for more treasure-hunting (in between scumptious plum jam donuts at Lily Vanilli and cooing over papercut art at Rob Ryan’s Ryantown), before heading over to Brick Lane for hot bagels with cream cheese (thereby ticking off another item on my London list).

It really was the perfect London day, and it reminded me just how fun it is to play tourist in our own city. Wearing: Lover dress (from The Outnet), Whistles leather jacket, Mulberry ‘Lily’ bag (seen here), Michael Kors watch (similar style here), Mimco cuff (old), Jersey Pearl pearls.

So tell me, how you play tourist in your corner of the world?

Love, Miss B xx

Columbia Road Flower Market is on every Sunday, rain or shine (though the shops, cafes and boutiques are open every day). Arrive early for the best selection of flowers, or pick up a bargain (as in, 10 giant bunches of flowers for £5!) in the afternoon when the stallholders want to go home. Nearest tube: Old Street.


37 thoughts on “Bluebells & Vintage at Columbia Rd Flower Market

  1. Beautiful photos B! I have to say, the flowers you choose are always just so stunning. I love catching glimpses of them through your instagram pictures. Sounds like a perfect weekend

  2. Oh, I do love the Columbia Road flower market – it is one of my favourite things to do when I’m in London. Looks like you had a fabulous time 🙂 My favourite thing to do after a trip to the market is head to the Hackney City Farm (around the corner) for brunch/Sunday lunch – sooooo good!! xx

    • Ooh I haven’t actually made it there yet, so will put this on the list for the next visit. Thank you!

      B xx

    • One of my favourite things about moving to the other side of the world is that I get to experience my new home with fresh eyes, and still feel a bit like a tourist 3.5 years later!

      B xx

  3. How much fun! Those flowers are beautiful too! I have never been to London. (Well, I flew into Heathrow but had a connecting flight so that doesn’t really count!)



  4. What a wonderful day! I am so sad I never made it to the Colombia Road Flower Market when I lived in London, but it sounds like the perfect thing to include on my to-do list for my next trip!

    • Ooh do put it on your list for next time; it’s one of those wonderful spots of London that still feels undamaged by the mass market (which means it retains it quirky charm).

      B xx

    • Thanks Ella! Lover is one of my favourite brands, so when I won an Outnet gift voucher (their brilliant shoefriday competition), I knew this had to come and live with me!

      B xx

  5. So happy I stumbled upon your blog! This post is so lovely. Good for you for getting out and exploring your own back yard. I will be visiting London for the first time this summer and am really looking forward to it! xx

    Love from Canada,

  6. Oh what a lovely way to spend a Sunday!!! I would love to explore the markets and small boutiques, and eating donuts and bagels!!!!!!! How did you manage to squeeze in so many things in a day?!? remarkable=) I loveee those flowers and for a fiver?!?! that’s a good bargain!!!

    I think i should have a to do list for myself in HK too, hehehe


  7. Wow, this is beautiful and makes me want to head to your part of the world. I’ve lived in Sydney for a year now and still have barely explored anything. You have inspired me to make more of an effort!

  8. What a perfect Sunday! Flowers…shopping….jam donuts! There is nothing better. Especially when you are with friends! Thank you for sharing with all of us. You are lucky to live is such a beautiful place! Your pictures are lovely too : )

    Danielle xo

  9. Hey love! Glad you enjoyed Columbia Road – I’ve been going since I was a baby with my parents! Used to have a sneaky bacon sandwich and kit kat when I was little in a fab cafe (that is now the cupcake shop – it has changed a lot in the last 25 years!). Great idea to ‘find’ London, even I think I need to do that sometimes. Lots of love xxx

    South Molton St Style

  10. Briony, have someone already told you how beautiful you are? Not plastic model completely photoshop’d beautiful, but “real girl” beautiful ! You’re such a breath of fresh air and you inspire me to live such a better life. Thank you !

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