39 Park Road Crouch End London N8 8TE
Every few weeks the charming Parisian owner of this shop, Hélène Allen, crosses the Channel with her little black book of small ateliers and antiques dealers and returns with whatever has caught her eye. The result is a little corner of French cool in N8. At the front are handmade scarves and gloves, unique jewellery pieces and pretty French notebooks, bed linen, cushions and candles, all displayed with casual elegance among post-war industrial metal furnishings and lights. A rear showroom provides a treasure hunt for cheaper furnishings and quirky bric-a-brac, such as vintage educational posters and rustic French scales. Of course, le cool doesn’t come cheap, but there’s a good reason why many interior designers would prefer to keep this little place under their chapeaux.