Archive for the ‘Arts’ Category

Art Shop Histories In The Uk}

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

Submitted by: Peter Lee Greenspan

Art shops have a long, distinguished and proud history in the United Kingdom, with an unusually large number of independent, family run high street retailers surviving into the twenty-first century unlike many other high street retail sectors such as pharmacies, newsagents and hardware shops. So we want to celebrate this longevity and tell you a little about the history of our favourite art shops:Hobby Craft (HobbyCraft Group Ltd)Established 1995 Dorset, United Kingdom

Hobby craft are perhaps the largest UK art retailer with 50 stores across the UK (as of October 2010), and are perhaps the only chain of their kind, with most competing art shops traditionally being family run, small, single owner art shops.

It was started by the Haskins group, a nursery and garden supplier in Dorset in 1995, and was recently Bridgepoint (an investment group). They hold an annual national arts and crafts competition for children and adults.

London Graphics CentreEstablished 1973 London, United Kingdom

London Graphics Centre were formed in 1973. It now has three stores in Tottenham, Clerkenwell, and its flagship store in Covent Garden. Their Putney branch closed down in early 2010.

Studio ArtsEstablished 1972, Lancaster, United Kingdom

Studio Arts (branded StudioArtShop online) is a family run business, established in 1972 by Ann Dodgson who initially started Studio Arts from a converted room in her house, selling a small range of art materials, such as paint and brushes before retiring from the business in the 1990s.

Studio Arts now also include the Studio Arts Gallery to display and sell the works of local artists and limited edition prints, and are a ‘Daler-Rowney Master Stockist’, a ‘Winsor & Newton Premier Art Centre’ and Faber Castell main supplier.

The Art Shop (Darlington) Established 1960s Darlington, United Kingdom

The Art Shop is a large Darlington town centre store (established over 50 years), comprising of 3 shops, and currently without an online shopping portal.

Lawrence (T N Lawrence & Son Ltd) Established 1859 Sussex, United Kingdom

Lawrence is based in Hove, Sussex and is incredibly still owned by the Lawrence family with Martin Lawrence being the seventh generation of Lawrences to run the company having joined in 1984.

Pullingers Art Shop/Pullingers StationersEstablished 1850 Surrey, United Kingdom

Pullingers was established in 1850 under the name, Pullingers Stationers and is reported to be the oldest retailer in Farnham, Surrey to have been consistently trading from start to finish.

The last of the Pullinger family to own the art shop sold it to The Farnham Castle Newspaper Group (owners of the Farnham Herald local newspaper) in 1979 upon his retirement. The business was then sold again to the Watson family in 1993 and has remained under their ownership till the present day.

Millers Creativity Shop

Established 1834 Glasgow, United Kingdom

Millers Art Shop opened in Glasgow in 1834 and is run by the sixth generation of Millers; Paul Miller and his sister Suzanne Miller.

Millers flagship shop in the centre of Glasgow opened in 1996 which is a Winsor & Newton Premier Art Centre, and main Daler-Rowney stockist.

About the Author: Peter Lee Greenspan is an art author covering publications the fine arts, graphic design and art history, now focusing on the history of

art shops


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