Sponsored post in partnership with American Express®
I love finding new places to eat and shop – places I feel comfortable in, or that offer great, individual, unique products or services. There are so many great options, near every village, town and city that we sometimes overlook them, either because we don’t know they exist, or they’re located slightly off the beaten track.
They often offer unique signature products or services, providing that special something, which keeps me going back. It’s nice to walk into a salon where they know your name and make you feel at home, or a restaurant where they know the meal you love, or even where you like to sit. All these things can really give you a sense of belonging to your city/town/village. I think it’s so important to support small businesses.It’s great that we are given choices because of these people and the services they want to provide for us.
We’re coming up to Small Business Saturday this week, a day when people across the country are encouraged to get out support their local small business. That’s why I’m working with American Express – founder and ongoing supporter of the initiative – to bring you a few of my favourite independent businesses in Cardiff.
Best friend’s dog grooming
Established for nearly eight years, and run by two highly trained groomers, you and your dog will always get a warm welcome here. They offer animal holistic therapy, which great choice if you have a particularly nervous dog. It’s such a great way of keeping your dog looking its best and it’s a lovely experience for them too.
Chef Stephen Gomes is renowned for his pioneering take on traditional Indian recipes, experimenting with food science in his dishes. A love of liquid nitrogen alone ensures that diners can expect vapours and clouds of spices. The Chicken Bang Bang is a Goan Xacutti recipe of 21 ingredients together with peri-peri devilled sauce and Trinidad scorpion or Naga chillies. Indian food is one of my favourite cuisines, full of spice and flavour.
Belle Toujours is a unique hair and beauty concept that boasts an exclusive hair studio, barber shop, beauty salon and spa. Arranged over three floors, the elegant surroundings will transport you away from the hustle and bustle of the city, offering the very best in all-round sensory indulgence. Their Top-to-Toe treatment is a great way to get ready for an evening out and includes a four step hair treatment, blow dry, gel manicure and a pedi shape and polish. I’ve already booked my next session.
Steak of the Art
The restaurant has an ever changing gallery of art combined with a menu that stands out from the herd, delivering a unique dining experience in an electric and artistic atmosphere. The locally sourced Welsh black fillet steak is one of my favourites. I love that the chef works closely with local butchers and breeders to offer me good food that supports local farmers.
Bunch of Grapes
The creative chefs at this restaurant make the most of local produce. Their meats are sourced from farms within a 30-mile radius, vegetables are either grown in their own kitchen garden or for them on a farm in nearby Abercynon, fish is line caught from sustainable sources off the coasts of Wales and Cornwall and bread is baked fresh every day. Don’t miss the signature Fish & Chips.
Wyndham Arcade has been home to small businesses since it opened in 1887 and Servini’s is proud to have been part of that legacy for over fifty years. They serve freshly cooked food, amazing coffee and offer a cosy, comfortable environment to enjoy it all in. Their Welsh cakes are the stuff of legends! Grab one, sit outside in the vintage arcade, and watch the world go by.
deAO toys is an established local company with a vast array of their own-brand toys. Their most popular items are their range of remote control cars; they even have a digger – a great idea for a gift. This shop is packed full of great products that provide hours of fun.
Bear Strength is a Cardiff based sportswear company that makes all of its clothing here in the UK. They go to great lengths to provide a personal shopping experience that stays with you. I love their hoodies – great for exercise or just wearing about town!
Building up a selection of places I enjoy visiting makes life easier and so much more fun. Supporting small businesses is important to me and means they get to keep giving us unique options and lovely life experiences.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about some of my favourite small shops. If this has inspired you, visit amexshopsmall.co.ukto find out more about ‘shopping small’ and get some more ideas for your Christmas shopping.
What’s more, if you’re an American Express Cardmember you could be rewarded for supporting your local high street. When you spend £10 or more in a single transaction using your American Express Card, at participating small business during the campaign period (3 to 18 December 2016) you will receive a £5 statement credit There is no limit to the number of participating businesses you can receive your £5 statement credit – however, you can only claim it once at each small business., terms apply.
Promoter: American Express Services Europe Limited has its registered office at Belgrave House, 76 Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1W 9AX, United Kingdom. It is registered in England and Wales with Company Number 1833139 and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
It’s that time of year again.A chance to grab a bargain for the christmas shop. Beauty products, beautiful accessories ans more. I’ve added lots of lovely links here to make things a little easier for you. I’ve so many favourites. Fingers crossed I get a few for Christmas.
Happy shopping guys xx Dawn
I’ve been using this amazing hairdryer from ghd recently. I have to admit I’m a little lazy when it comes to styling my hair. I’ve little patience and time especially in the mornings when I’m busy with the kids etc. Having had curly hair growing up I never really learnt to straighten it myself. I would always wake up and leave it. If I did style it, it would be just a matter of leaving it dry to form it’s natural curl. Now though I love my hair smooth and rarely wear it curly.
Learning to straighten it has been a long process. As well as finding the right products it’s also been about using the right technology ie hairdryers and straighteners. I have to say since I was given this hair dryer my life has been made that much easier. Like I said I was never one for fancy hair products but this has definitely changed my opinion. I would never really invest in expensive hair dryers. My mum was always telling me too but I never listened. She’s been going on about using this hairdryer for ages, so I was very happy to be given such a fab product to review.
This is light and easy to use. It smoothes hair with minimum effort. I even got a lovely finish using it with no fancy brush or products- it’s that good. Control is fantastic – it doesn’t blast your hair. With it’s concentrated control you get a chance to work with your hair instead of it being blown everywhere. For someone like myself who struggles to be patient this hairdryer works quickly and with me rather then against. It enables the user to concentrate on sections of hair one at a time. Easy to handle with super sleek results. . My children even enjoy using it as it drys the hair quickly and without any over burning sensation. I even rough dry my daughters hair with it and her hair falls beautifully. Definitely a great hair dryer and also a great gift for christmas. xx Dawn
Summer beauty just got sorted. This fab bag of treats is available exclusively at Selfridges this thursday. Packed with goodies and summer essentials to help maintain and enhance. Perfect timing if your off on your hols or even if your back. Keeping up on summer skin care can be a big job, but if you get the right products you can keep skin soft and looking gorgeous ! I love using a fake tan, so this James read face tanner with an SPF is perfect for me. I try not to tan my face and usually wear a very high factor when on my holidays. Baring skin on the beach can be daunting for the first time in months. Coming out of winter where we’ve been under wraps and skin hasn’t seen the light of day can leave it looking dry and pale. I never like my skin the first few weeks of summer dressing. It takes time for the sun to do it’s job and for skin to look healthy and human again. I use a daily moisturiser on my legs and arms throughout the summer. There’s a great one in this pack by Clarins which I’m really looking forward to using. Also a moisturising grape water spray to use when travelling. A spray to help set your make up. Which I’ve never used but I’m hoping will do the job in the heat. I find it hard to keep my make up looking good on hot days. I’ve often given up on it and I go completely natural at the beach or pool. So it’s going to be fun trying these new pieces out for the first time. There’s lots in the bag so I’ve listed them below for reference.
Its valued at £176 but retailing for £40 so grab it whilst its available. It launches tomorrow and will be available to purchase online here.
Have a great summer pamper xx Dawn
James read face tan with SPF / Nails inc Polish / Nars lip gloss / clarins moisture cream / Starskin Peels x 2 / Rodial sculpting gel / Tangle teezer hair brush / Caudalie Grape water moisturiser / Urban Decay Make up setting spray / Eyeko London Liquid eye pen / Illamasqua Lipstick / I got 99 problems but the beach aint one toiletry bag / Bands
Dorothy Perkins have done a great study to see which City wears what dress. Cardiff, thats my City. Seem to like the body con dress. I don’t think I was completely surprised, as I know how popular it is here. I rarely wear them myself but I have to say now that I’ve tried this one by Dorothy Perkins I really like them. I think I’ve been converted. I love the colour and the fit. A comfortable dress for both day and night. I’m really happy to have tried this type of dress. I’m now on the hunt for more. So watch this space ….
Dorothy Perkins are helping to dress the nation. You can see my feature, find out more and enter the competition to win a years supply of dresses here.
You can also have a little fun by finding your Cities favourite style dress by checking out this Dress the nation map.