#LoveIndieOxford: Week One

 In Inspiration

This month we are encouraging more people to get involved with their communities, and think about local indie alternatives to regular purchases, and avoid big online retailers.

The rules are:

  1. Explore local alternatives for regular purchases (e.g. veg boxes, farmers markets, bakeries and butchers instead of supermarkets)
  2. No purchases from large internet providers!
  3. Get to know the local businesses that make up your community.
  4. It’s not about the extra purchases, it’s about the everyday – e.g using a local indie gym, getting your coffee from an indie rather than a chain.
  5. Use #LoveIndieOxford to tell us how you’re getting on with the challenge!

Oxford local Sarah Quinn has taken up the challenge to see if she can incorporate more indies into her week. We caught up with Sarah to see how she got on in her first week! >>

Love Indie Oxford

I had an awesome time trying out the markets in Summertown and East Oxford, it was so good to speak to people that were so passionate about their products!

Saturday – East Oxford Farmer’s Market has a fabulous selection of veg, eggs, fruit, meats, bread, tea and the refillable station full of dry goods and things like soap and washing up liquid – you just need to bring your own container!!

Team Tea were there with an awesome selection of teas- unfortunately I have far too many in my cupboard to justify any more, but I will be back!

My friend was hosting a wine and cheese party and I thought what a perfect opportunity to showcase indie products!!! I felt the pickled radishes I bought from Cranston Pickles and the goats cheese – were a massive talking point- I mean how often can you tell people that the cheese came from a goat called Rachel and that I could let them know it was made using vegetarian rennet, and that if I took back the empty pickle jar she could reuse it and I could get a discount! Local and sustainable massive plus!

team tea oxford

Sunday – Summertown market was on the cards with Katy from The Best Vanilla.

First stop was for some indie coffee at Columbia Coffee Roasters and the biggest slice of banana bread topped with yogurt and fruit, needed after a small hangover!

Similar size to East Oxford Farmer’s Market but the vendors are from a bit further a field and had a varied product selection which was great!

We then wandered around North Parade which is always beautiful.

From there we headed into town to Modern Art Oxford, where we had a quick look in the gift shop and in the creative room as there was no exhibition today – but it will be on soon!

I popped on down to Tap Social – the beer is always epic there! They were holding a reggae night – so excellent music and food!!!

Tap Social Movement Oxford

Monday – Hamblin pop up pizza night was epic and definitely worth the wait! I hope they make this a more regular feature.

Wednesday – I had pole class with Oxford Arial Arts, Oxford has a massive range of indie fitness related things – something I can totally get on board with!!

Like the rest of the world I had to work long days. So meal prep was made with veg from the markets. Being a student I have loads of veggie freezer food (sausages, quorn and the like) and cupboard staples for curries and one pot dishes.

I did give in one night and buy some sliced bread for work and some chocolate pudding as I was having a craving and at 10 pm at night not much indie stuff is open!!

Hamblin Bread Oxford

The #loveindieoxford challenge is good for expanding my knowledge of indie shops, and I definitely found it easier for eating out and coffee etc. Generally I found prices weren’t much more and you can see the quality is better! I also found it stops you buying unnecessary things!

My challenge for next week is to find more everyday food items – wish me luck!

Thank you so much to Sarah for sharing her #loveindieoxford first week diary. There are some really useful tips for inspiring you to think local and support independent businesses. The idea of the challenge is to be conscious of local alternatives, and even a small change to our purchasing habits can have a big effect on our communities and help keep our neighbourhoods vibrant and exciting.

If you need some more indie inspiration, check out our directory page and follow is on Instagram.




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