Tag Archives: shop

An Edinburgh Institution

Vintage styles from fashion history, a great place for a little time travelling.

My latest #supportabusinesssketch is this beautiful shop front of Teviot Place, home to one of four W. Armstrong & Sons stores in the city.

I remember hanging out and meeting folk in the flagship Grassmarket store back in the 90s and with their four locations these vintage clothing stores will feature in many an Edinburgh dwellers story.

Do you remember visiting one of these stores in the past? If so do tell me below, I still love to pop in and see the amazing pieces they have on show.

Visit their website below to see all the locations and go say hello, let yourself drift into years gone by, and wonder which items from your wardrobe may be hanging in these stores one day!

W. Armstrong & Son website

So drop in if you are passing, and give a little back to the small businesses that are so important to Edinburgh. Also let me know by commenting below if you have a local trader who deserves a ‘sketch out’.

And if you would like to send a boost to your local independent business then make a sketch/drawing or painting and post it online with the hashtag #supportabusinesssketch

Flowers In Reflection

As rain falls in Edinburgh, and thoughts lie in the East, beautiful reflections of blue and yellow catch my eye.

My latest #supportabusinesssketch is this lovely independent flower shop which always catches my eye when passing by.

This is Lorraine Graham Flowers at 45 Causewayside, Newington, they create beautiful unique bouquets and deliver throughout Edinburgh.

After visiting #VanGoghAlive recently I am seeing sunflowers all over the city, and with the war in Ukraine the colours of blue and yellow are jumping out at me where ever I go.

It may be raining but I’m feeling very lucky right now. Enjoy the reflections everyone.

Giving thanks to the Barbers

I am giving a personal thanks to this barber for my latest #supportabusinesssketch.

As we begin to get back to a little normality we must thank all the barbers, and hairdressers for making us look more presentable!!
These guys helped my boy and I fix a diy cut recently so deserved a sketch!!

We had a good laugh and my boy James now looks very smart. Best of luck to the Gorgie Road Barbers (266 Gorgie Road) and all the businesses suddenly getting a lot busier, especially those who have to get up close and personal with their customers. It is much appreciated.

Let me know below if there’s a small independent business near you who have been a lifeline, keeping you going through the lockdown and maybe they’ll be next for one of my sketches.

Gorgie Road Barbers on FaceBook

Restored Stockbridge cafe

This beautiful cafe front is worth a visit to see the stunning restoration job whilst enjoying a delicious flat white 🙂

My latest #SupportABusinessSketch is for Cowan & Sons on Raeburn Place, Stockbridge. A beautiful shop front that always catches my eye, especially at this time of year when the lights are on and sun is going down.

Thanks to help from Edinburgh World Heritage the Cafe exterior has been restored to its former glory and is well worth a closer look, also their breakfasts are amazing, perfect for a mid walk, lazy days brunch!

Pop in and support a local business who are staying open to keep us going!

This is their Instagram page so give them a follow 🙂

Returning support shown

This is Aquila in Jeffrey Street, just off the Royal Mile.

Eve who runs this lovely shop was one of the first people to take my work and show it in their shop.

I remember being so happy, and thinking how maybe I could make a living out of drawing. It gave me such a boost to carry on.

Small independent shops are so important, not just to make our home towns unique and worth visiting, but also to encourage and support local artists, crafters and makers.

We need to support these special businesses this year more than ever, so please do pop in and say hello, have a browse and if you can buy something for that helps a local business and a local maker 😊👍


Filling the shelves at the Scottish Design Exchange

SDXshopphotoAfter a few days away relaxing with the family last week this last few days has seen me catching up in all directions.

Replying to new enquiries, sending out quotes and packing up merchandise orders is great, as is returning to a voice message from the Scottish Design Exchange in Ocean Terminal, asking for more stock as the shelves are running low!

I spent the morning refilling with new and established lines, well the first hour doing that and then the following two tweaking the display  until I was happy. Have a look in to see a whole range of Edinburgh Sketcher items including totes bags, wooden postcards, magnets, tea towels, mugs as well as mounted prints.

Working for yourself can definitely have its down side, it can be stressful and at times require long hours but the highs far outway the lows, especially when your work is selling 🙂


Thanks for all the support you have given to myself and Edinburgh Sketcher, I appreciate the chance to create and use my passion as my living.

Scottish Design Exchange website

A trip down memory lane, to the Ness shop on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile

Ness_RoyalMileTime for a look back to November 2011, and one of my first sketches as Edinburgh Sketcher.

Five years ago I worked at the bottom of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh and would spend spare moments wandering up and down the famous high street, taking in the wonderful multicultural sights and sounds as the city came to life with , talented street performers and proud locals telling tales of Edinburghs history.

Inspired by the sights and sounds I began sketching my surroundings and this website, and ultimately, and thankfully my current employment ‘Edinburgh Sketcher’ was created.

This sketch shows the colour and architecture of that famous centuries-old street, and remains one of my favourites to this day.

‘Ness’ are creators of modern womens wear and accessories. Find out more about them at the link below.

This sketch was created firstly in pencil (see pencil sketch HERE) and then inked in with pen and watercolour later. 

The Ness Shop website

My original post for this sketch

New Waverley Arches open on a sunny evening in May

TheArches_bannerMudoThe 19 newly renovated Victorian arches on East Market Street are now open and ready to serve, so I went for a stroll along Edinburgh’s newest shopping district.

TheArches_fromNorthBridgePart of the £150 million New Waverley development which is transforming part of the Old Town, the Arches have been opened up and filled with some fantastic independent businesses, each of which deserve to be discovered.

TheArches_fromJeffreyStreetI was invited to come along and sketch the launch party last week and these are my sketches from the evening. As you can see from the sketch above the lights from each arch can be seen from high up on North Bridge. If there descend the Scotsman Hotel steps onto Market Street and then head under the bridge to find the first of 19 Arches which increase in height the further down the cobbled street you venture.

The arches date back to 1875 and were traditionally used for storage areas and have never before been accessible to the public.

The retail outlets combine fashion, beauty, eating and drinking, as well as an art gallery where you can find some of my work. See my sketch below of some of the items I gathered on a walk about!


For more information follow @archesnw on twitter and visit East Market Street this weekend to meet the traders!


Sketches all drawn on location in ink and watercolour.


Introducing my latest stockist: Thread & Heather

ThreadandHeatherThread & Heather is a new craft showcase and haberdashery/craft supply shop in the Bruntsfield area of Edinburgh.

A tardis of a premises situated at 131 Gilmore Place, from the outside it looks tiny but head through the door and you will find a long tunnel of unusual and bespoke gifts. Keep walking to the rear of the store to find a bright room filled with craft tools and delightful details to aid your creating.


I could of spent plenty of time with the felt and fabrics, jewellery and beads, fancy papers, cutouts and sticky things making a right mess!


Feeling creative? Then pop along and buy some beautiful ingredients to make your own gift, or have look through the treasure trove of gifts made by local artists, there is something for everyone at Thread & Heather.


The sketch is in black ink with a watercolour wash.


Thread & Heather website


Apple picking time in Edinburgh

Apple_PrincesStreetOne week from now, at 10am on Saturday 18th October the Edinburgh Apple store will open on Princes Street.


Situated opposite The Balmoral Hotel at the East end of Princes Street, the prestigious shop will finally open its doors after being clad in branded boarding for the past few months.


Eagerly anticipated the opening is hoped to spark a retail boom in the city centre. Expect the queuing and camping around the entrance to begin soon.


Apple UK website