Oh Darling ~ Let me introduce you!

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Oh Darling

I would like to introduce you to not only ‘Oh Darling’ but Ali who owns this lovely boutique shop that we have in East Sheen, London. (contact details can be found at the bottom of this post)

083Most of you will have seen Ali in her shop, I myself have always wanted to find out a little about her (that might sound weird but isn’t, promise!).

To me, Ali with her looks always had a certain ‘je ne said qoui’ and as such I was intrigued to get to know her a little better.  She however informs me that she really is quite ordinary and has no story to tell, but we ‘all’ have some kind of story to tell don’t we?

So we met up, to talk about ‘Oh Darling,’ it’s creation and also a bit about this lovely lady who wishes to make sure the residents of East Sheen have intriguing gifts, chique clothes, pretty ornaments and more to adorn our homes and  to wear.

Some Background History

Ali started of her working life as a ‘nursery nurse’ through the Government sector which she thoroughly enjoyed, however through policy changes and red tape, it ate away at the job satisfaction she felt and eventually she found herself taking on a career change.

Going in to the retail sector was through family ties, starting off in Fulham helping out relatives running perhaps a slightly less Boutique version of what ‘Oh Darling’ is now.

Luckily for us she eventually moved to East Sheen, taking over the property she is in now, but utilizing the ground floor only.  Slowly over the years she established her ‘look’ for the shop and a confident range of furnishing for us East Sheeners to enjoy!

However six years ago an informal conversation took place between Ali and two of the beauty therapists she frequented.  A suggestion was made to make a beauty salon out of her basement, everyone agreed and the idea was developed and it is now a thriving business.

Oh Darling Beauty Salon

Oh Darling reception area

Clean and elegant reception area

The salon downstairs comprises of two rooms and two full time therapists which Ali has known for a long time.

I have visited Martha, one of the therapists, quite a lot and having been a ‘holistic therapist,’ trained staff and ran clinics for over 20 years in the past I can confidently say that she is a great aesthieticienne.

Having a pedicure by Martha is like watching a creation of art being made, she treats ones feet like a sculpture being lovingly tended bit by bit until perfection is achieved.

Oh Darling Beauty very much concentrates on a core availability of treatments, the ones that we really cannot do without, leaving specialist, more costly treatments to be covered by other salons.

A basic summary of what is provided can be found below:

  • Facials
  • Body Treatments
  • Body Bronzing
  • Purifying Back Facial
  • Eye Tinting
  • Hand and Foot Treatments
  • Waxing
  • Men’s Treatments

There are some additional treatments provided over and above the standard menu, by other practitioners, these being…

  • Merz Aesthetics, Belotero which is a dermal filler by Gilham
  • RevitaLash by Justyna
  • Restylane
  • Suti by Suzanne

Opening Hours

Monday – Thursday 9.30- 6pm

Friday 9.30 – 6pm

Saturday 9.00 – 6pm

Using Local Artisans and Craftsmen

Love Art by Local Artist Mandy Belmokhtar

Love Art by Local Artist Mandy Belmokhtar

Ali makes a point of trying to use local craftsmen where possible, above you will find a painting by Mandy Belmokhtar and she also sells butterflies sourced ethically, framed and presented by another local resident called Ruth Yardy.

Below you will see a brief selection throughout the post of items sourced by Ali.

Whilst talking to her and finding out about how and where she gets her merchandise from I could see an almost tangible concern that she really takes on a lot of emotional responsibility for ensuring that she provides a variety of well made interesting pieces that her customers really will want and be interested in, in the vein more of being a service of satisfaction than just retailing, which is rare and lovely to see.

Range of Products

For a small space that is not cluttered there is a remarkably wide range of items available.  There is clothing from the Great Plains range which I have used before finding them to be of great quality and simple yet chique in appearance.  There is china, glassware, cards, kids toys, jewellery, ornaments, smellies, picture frames, the list is endless.

Ali has long time friend Jo helping her out who now goes on shopping trips to scout for interesting and new items. You will always find friendly chatter and a wrapping service no matter the time of year.

 

Being a nosy person of course I moved on to Ali’s tattoos and her dogs.

It is quite obvious that they are utterly adored and getting the chance to cuddle six month old Mabel, a mini dutchaund was a real treat and actually made me feel broody which was pretty scary!  Her dog menagerie started off with George who is a cavalier at the grand age of 13 years old, then Monty who is another mini dutchaund yet not quite so mini, he is five years old and now Mabel. The trio of musketeers sometimes making an appearance altogether if you are lucky!

 

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As for the creative artwork that adorns Ali’s body, for those of you as nosy as me for the story behind them, it all started in her 40′s on a trip to Bali where the first one was bought for her as a present.   I won’t tell you how many she has now, but suffice to say they are a work in progress especially the rose upon her derriere.

So if you have not been to ‘Oh Darling’ it is well worth a visit be it to shop or treat yourself to an essential wax or massage.  You will receive a warm welcome and friendly banter from all the staff.

I would like to thank Ali for letting me interview her it was a grand pleasure.

Contact Details Including Social Media

Facebook:

Oh Darling Beauty Salon

Oh Darling Beauty & Lifestyle Boutique

Twitter:

Oh Darling

Address: 226 Upper Richmond Road West,East Sheen, London, SW14 8AH

 Tel:

020 88767226 (Shop)

020 8876 5588 (Beauty Salon)

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Thank you as always for reading & viewing, Justine xx

© Justine @ LivinginEastSheen.co.uk

Sheen Living – my equivalent sweetie shop yet full of home & lifestyle furnishings

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Sheen Living – home & lifestyle shop

Do you ever have those sweetie shop moments like when you were a kid, but transfer this instead in to a shop you might stumble upon?  What a delight and surprise.

I was lucky enough to have one of these treats in the form of Sheen Living, located on 321 Upper Richmond Road in East Sheen.  It is owned by entrepreneurs Anita and Jackie, who are not new to East Sheen or retailing as they also own Sheen Uncovered and Ruby Blue (lingerie and women’s clothing retrospectively).

The window caught my eye whilst I was on the bus, a huge pair of what seem to be angel wings.  I thought to myself I must go to that shop.  I have since heard that many people ask to buy these wings, but alas it seems they are not for sale, but they certainly do the job of attracting ones attention and peeking ones interest.

A captivating sight!

A captivating sight!

Upon entering you are aware of the rustic woodwork adorning the floor, giving it a homely warm feeling, the festooning of delightful items upon shelves, gracing the floor and walls.

The ambiance of candlelight

The ambiance of candlelight

I stood there taking my time to look around the various sections of the shop, each part taking me to somewhere else in my mind, perhaps a French Chateaux, a British Farmhouse, a country pub or home.  My conscious prodded me constantly saying “oooh ahh, I like that, I’d like to have that!”

Makes an outstanding entrance

Makes an outstanding entrance

I exercised quite some self restraint considering and met the lovely Nicola, who I have taken to popping in to and chatting to.  It is nice to walk in to a shop and not have an assistant leap towards one asking if you need help.  She sat quietly, busying herself with I am sure the many jobs she has to do whilst I ambled within the small shop.  Upon approaching I got a gentle smile and conversation was then struck.

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I believe items are sourced from local artisans as well as maybe further afield.  There are two types of tags, one for vintage and one for more modern.  So for me being a vintage freak my taste buds were tickled in a visionary sense.

Bits & bobs

Bits & bobs

My first purchase was for a French Breakfast I put on for some of my neighbours, with a Christmas theme (yes I am going back in time but not too far).  I bought some lovely rustic pottery, apparently by a local lady, the name evades me, but there is I promise you some of her pottery left in the shop.  They are apparently soup mugs but my latte looks far more promising in there than minestrone in my mind.  Having done pottery myself I can appreciate how hard it is to produce each piece and in this instance each piece is different, giving it the character of the artist behind the wheel.

soup or latte?

soup or latte?

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I took some pictures in the naive dream that upon sending them to my husband who had not done his shopping he would perhaps buy me one or two things.  One can only hope.  I have to say in the whole shop, there was perhaps only one thing that though of fabulous quality did not fit my desires.  I of course did not take a picture of this.  However, men being men (I hear a tirade of angry male feet chasing me accusing me of feminism), he managed to in fact go in to this shop to purchase something, be it very near to Christmas.  Unfortunately all photographed items had gone and hey presto sods law he bought the one and only thing I did not like.

Being a pug lover, I suppose I am a bit fussy about in my own particular way of how I would like a pug to look, the idea of one with pink lipstick brought visions of a cross between a drag artist (not that there is anything wrong with drag artists!) and a trout pout and it really was not something I wished to perch my bottom on, besides the roof of the house is nearly exploding from an abundance of cushions.

I looked forward to seeing Nicola and recounting my story of a man’s Christmas shopping antics and she very kindly gave me a credit note for said item with a subtle grin adorning her lips.  The note is cherished lovingly in my purse and I am exercising self restraint not to use it yet, just to window shop and enjoy the visual delights on offer within this shop.

It's a pugs life

It’s a pugs life

(one of my favourite items, not bought yet last I looked!)

Stunning

Stunning

Really well worth a visit.

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