Because there’s no place quite like the Great British high street – from its niche independents, to seasonal Pop-Ups and those expansive yet elegant department stores – Because Magazine is on a mission to champion the bricks-and-mortar of London in all its glory. Each week, we’ll beeline to the rails of our favourite retailers to scope out the must-have pieces and in-store exclusives that are more than worth making an effort for. This week, we're at the Arddun Stores’ pop up in Harvey Nichols to find out more about the agencies first physical store.

Opening in the midst of the pandemic was never the plan for Joe Petchelco, founder of Arddun Stores, and yet, that is exactly what he found himself doing just last month. What began as a London based international wholesale agency in womenswear and lifestyle, has flourished into, Arddun Stores; the latest pop up poised on the 4th floor of the iconic retailer; Harvey Nichols. Already working with the department store, "the store came about because Harvey Nichols wanted to put four of our lifestyle brands in their store, and said to us, 'why don’t you put them in your own store?' So that’s exactly what we did" Joe explains.

Expect a narrative-driven experience, as Arddun Stores gravitates towards sustainably minded small businesses that use their brand to exist with a purpose. Stocking brands like Cesta Collective; based in New York, all their bags are hand woven in Rwanda and working with local women, where it can take up to three days to weave a bag. Or look towards Kankan; a beauty brand that sells cans of refillable product to minimise as much waste as possible in the industry. These are only snippets of the plethora of stories that this inspiring pop-up space holds.

While Arddun Stores hasn’t explicitly labeled themselves ‘sustainable’, it is clear through the brands they represent and sell, that this ideology is thoroughly intwined into their ethos. Joe explains that, “if you write sustainable on the first page of your document, we aren’t going to do it. It is not a fad. As a brand you need to be making a conscious decision to do the right thing”. With this mindset of extreme importance to the brand, we can thank Arddun Stores for offering us a curation of products that share the same ethical and sustainable beliefs as ourselves.

Excited to emerge ourselves in all of the worldly items throughout the store, we asked Joe to give us a guided tour, and select three of his favourite pieces.

What… Quilted Jacket by The Regular

Because… ‘The Regular is all hand made in the UK, and is run by two really lovely ladies who have worked in the industry for years and years, and set up this project as something they really wanted to do, something that they believed in. All garment are dyed; so they all start off as white and are over dyed to the seasonal colours of the collection. There is so much love and attention put into them, with each one being slightly different from the next. All their products are made in London, and as we go into Autumn they are beginning to pick up. The brand just started off with 'The Quilt Dress', and then went on to the coat, which is brand new. I love that it is oversized and comes with a belt so you can synch it in. The Regular generally only add one style a season and then just changes the colours, because they don’t want to do massive collections.'

What… Large Vase by Face Vessel

Because… ‘Based in the US and all hand made by Neal Drobnis, we found out about the business through a woman called Lindsey. She saw these and fell in love with them so started selling them at her own store, and has slowly started to distribute them throughout the world, but we are the only place in the UK that has them. When our store first opened this is the product that walked out in the first week: we sold every unit. People are obsessed with them, we have had pre-orders that are going out to Australia, Spain and lots around the UK. I had to quickly scramble and do a re-order - this is the first day we have got them back in store. I think people love them so much because every single one is just unique. Now we have so many we can’t specify which one you will get if you order it online, which I think makes it far more exciting.’

What… Tropica Eau De Parfum by Maya Njie

Because… ‘Maya is based in East London and blends everything by hand herself, in her studio. She takes memories and pictures as her starting point for all of her perfumes. So all of the pictures here, are all images from her childhood in some capacity. She grew up in Sweden, but also has West African roots, and all of her perfumes reference that in one way shape or form. They are all so beautiful and nostalgic, I absolutely love them. She uses incredibly high quality ingredients that normal perfumes just don’t have, because they are such volume driven brands.’

Visit the Arddun Stores pop up on the 4th floor at Harvey Nichols, 109-125 Knightsbridge, Belgravia, London SW1X 7RJ - which will be running for the next year

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