The world-famous Edinburgh International Festival is upon us, and a particularly special event it is too this year. The hugely anticipated event – a three-week period in August (5 – 29 August 2022) has reopened after a hiatus and is a whopping 75 years old this year. A celebration of three quarters of a century of out-of-this-world fabulous theatre, music, dance, opera and street artists!
Performers and visitors make the pilgrimage from the far corners of the globe to be part of this once-a-year spectacle that plays out on the ancient cobbled streets of the Scottish capital. People from all nations in the world gather here – some are regulars and others newbies – to be part of the frenetic action in multiple venues that spill out onto the streets. As ever, locals will good-heartedly bemoan the descent of all the world on their patch and businesses will make the most all the buzz on their doorstep. The pavements are bustling and alive with the gloriously colourful, the spectacularly vibrant, the fabulously artsy and the madcap theatrical. Fashion, food, music, magic and comedy are oozing out of every crevice in town and will surround you for at least three action-packed weeks if you’re lucky enough to be there
But dear oh dear, where to start this almost overwhelming journey? Apart from all the action on the streets there are hosts of quintessential additional Edinburgh experiences not to be missed – shopping, dining, art and the outdoors – before you leave. It’s true there aren’t enough hours in the day to fit it all in, but don’t despair, we’ve taken the tiresome legwork out of the equation and are presenting you with your own …
Mini Shopping, Art and Lifestyle Guide to the Best of All that Glorious Edinburgh has in Store!
It’s a hand-picked, highly curated selection of the indie makers and shakers in town and we’re happy to let you in on the locals’ best-kept secrets. Drag yourself away from all the bewitching madness and experience these incredible jaunts for yourself … and as if by magic a parallel world to the Edinburgh International Festival will open up to you.
And if you’re not one of those fortunate to physically be at the festival, use our stockists’ details throughout to contact these fabulous local treats online.
To give you a flavour of the history of the world famous festival and to whet your appetite for all the marvels awaiting, watch this short clip:
HOT, HAUTE FASHION
2 Jeffrey’s St Edinburgh EH1 1DT
This is the original couture destination in Edinburgh and multiple UK Designer Store of the Year (est. in 1975) awardee with hand-picked designers exclusive to the store, including the likes of avant-garde tartan aficionados Vivienne Westwood and Yohji Yamamoto. A friendly ambience and a handsome hound will welcome you to cutting-edge Corniche in the heart of Edinburgh’s atmospheric Old Town.
45-47 Barclay Pl, Edinburgh EH10 4HW
A friendly local team creates unique tailored pieces by hand in their cosy Edinburgh boutique/studio. These made-to-measure and off-the-peg beauties can be shipped to you wherever you are in the world.
20 Thistle St, Edinburgh EH2 1EN
For designer accessories, stunning jewellery and unique handbags, look no further than this gem on Thistle Street right in the heart of the city.
52 Thistle St, Edinburgh EH2 1EN
Visit this Edinburgh high fashion institution for exclusive-to-Edinburgh designer brands like Isabel Marant, Dries Van Noten, The Vampire’s Wife and Queene & Belle on fashionable Thistle Street.
JUDY R CLARK
Abbeymount Techbase, West Norton Place, Edinburgh, EH7 5AN
Craving a super special, authentic Scottish ensemble (but with an avant-garde twist)? Look no further, visit award-winning fashion designer Judy R Clark at her design studio in Edinburgh for a bespoke gem. Best to make an appointment.
9 West Port, Edinburgh EH1 2JA
Close to Edinburgh Castle awaits this charming gallery-style boutique for vintage and made-to-measure clothing. You’ll find a host of divine independent designer fashion there too.
54 Broughton St, Edinburgh EH1 3SA
The ultimate punk-inspired recycling store – shoes, belts, jackets, skirts and now furniture too, get the unique Joey D tweed, leather, vinyl, canvas and patchwork treat. Visit this emporium on buzzy Broughton Street for more than just a clothing experience.
Previously part of the inimitable Concrete Wardrobe duo, Fiona MacIntosh is a stalwart textile designer whose fabulous creations are gracing the necks of many celebrities. Get in touch to pick out your very own fabric jewel.
STEWART CHRISTIE & CO
63 Queen St, Edinburgh EH2 4NA
Craving a bit of real history in your wardrobe? Visit the oldest men’s and ladies’ specialist tailors in Scotland for your bespoke tweed, wool and Highland Wear. Pick up Vixy Rae’s wonderful Tartan and Tweed coffee table books while you’re there, too!
49/50 High St, South Queensferry EH30 9HN
Joyce Paton dishes up colourful, cheery and individualistic clothing that will cheer up any dull day. Head down to stunning South Queensferry by the beach and pop in for a chat, wonderful service and unique styles.
21ST CENTURY KILTS
email@example.com for a city centre appointment
Wanting to join the 21ST Century Kilts clan of Russel Brand, Robbie Williams, Eddie Izzard, Mario Testino, Vin Diesel, Lenny Cravitz, Ozzy Osborn and Billy Connoly, to name but a few, who adore this mix of traditional and contemporary cut classic kilts? Get in touch!
13 Cowgatehead, Edinburgh EH1 1JY
For fabulous hand-made, one-off creations, pop into the iconic Fabhatrix in the Grassmarket. Felted or feathered, tartan or tweed, this milliner will have you sorted and chic before you can say ‘fab’, ‘hat’ or ‘trick’!
12 Raeburn Pl, Stockbridge, Edinburgh EH4 1HN
Established in 1995 in Edinburgh by a husband and wife team, Annie Smith is a delightful, reputable jewellery studio located in the sophisticated and bohemian Stockbridge area.
VINTAGE VIBES AND SUSTAINABLE OPTIONS
81-83 Grassmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2HJ
This landmark pre-owned clothing store established in 1840 is the original, the mother of all vintage stores, with vintage women’s and men’s sections sporting kilts, pre-loved cashmere, ballgowns, accessories, hats and much, much more.
151 West Port, Edinburgh EH3 9DP
Arguably the best vintage shop in Edinburgh, a shop with an international following for very good reason: each piece is carefully selected and curated to offer the most astonishing choice of labels you wouldn’t find anywhere else within this modest-size store in Edinburgh’s Old Town.
36 Howe St, Edinburgh EH3 6TH
Feel good when you buy a pre-loved luxe bag while at the same time handing in your own in exchange – this is sustainable glamour at its best. This store is filled with so many temptations you’re likely to leave with not just one.
104 Raeburn Pl, Stockbridge, Edinburgh EH4 1HH
For an astonishing array of pre-loved designer clothing, shoes, antiques, jewellery and books, make your way down to the quaint suburb of Stockbridge and support this charity while spoiling yourself with super affordable luxury. You’ll be amazed at what you’ll find in this little store!
LIFESTYLE & ARTFUL ADVENTURES
117-119 George St, Edinburgh EH2 4JN
Anta offers bold contemporary and timeless tartan patterns made in Scotland since 1984 across their stunning interiors, stoneware, textiles, furniture, food & fashion products. This brand oozes elegance and enduring quality.
Visit charming local Edinburgh artist Hatti Paterson in her studio and purchase a piece of bonny Scotland you’ll treasure forever. Get in touch!
THE OPEN EYE GALLERY
34 Abercromby Pl, Edinburgh EH3 6QE
This modern art gallery (est. 1982), in its bright, white Georgian space is famed for the work of iconic Scottish-Italian artist John Bellamy. With its sculpture, contemporary painting, printmaking and ceramic work it is one of Scotland’s leading private art galleries and definitely one not to be missed.
The Steadings, Bonnington House, Wilkieston, Edinburgh EH27 8BY
Jupiter Artland is a contemporary sculpture park and art gallery just outside Edinburgh city. It’s undoubtedly one of the best kept secrets in town. Book your tickets in advance, aim for a sunny day, take the family and you’ll have the artsy-outdoors experience of a lifetime.