Not since Japan have we had to hit up so many different spots to secure inventory. It’s not really a surprise given how large and dense London is – the larger the city, the more valuable the real estate. Stores have a smaller footprint and carry less inventory. Not necessarily less variety, they just don’t stock the quantity we need for the STMT Kits. Not ideal but no worries – we got game. We got the skillz to make it work.
The first store we entered stocked the item that for me MAKES the England Kit. A red memo book sporting a crest with “British Made” on the cover. I melted and ran down the aisles looking for Sam so I could share the major find. Hi-fiving and a fist pound, lots of oohing and ahhing… to the person standing next to us looking at us all crazy – yes, yes we do talk about lo-fi goods like they’re a baby rocking the illest outfit.
Walked around the shop some more and spotted notebooks with ruled sheets. I was feelin’ them since we haven’t done ruled in a while, but what really sealed the deal? The notebooks are made in the UK with sustainable resources. Love it!
Didn’t find anything for the Writing Instrument but something that caught my attention? “Wage” envelopes. We don’t have anything like these in the States. At least I haven’t seen anything like it. They’re square and have blank columns for deductions and details. Picked up a pack for my personal stash of goods and purchased a blank version for the kit’s badge. I instantly knew they’d be perfect!
Asked an employee about inventory and he informed us that the only way to secure the quantity we need was to hit up various locations all around London. What?! Spent the next 30 minutes with him marking our map with the various spots.
Finally out the door and three locations knocked out, we discovered a small independent office supply shop. They mostly carried the same brands, same stuff. I asked an employee about Writing Instruments – what pencil does she use? Stabilo. Any pencils from a UK company? Yup, Helix. I mention that I didn’t realize they were a British company and that I spotted the brand all over Trinidad. Her eyes got big and she explained that she’s from Trinidad! Forget office supplies – now we’re talkin’ shop about all things Trinidad! Bake ‘n Shark, Maracas Bay, Doubles… the golden hot sauce that I fell in love with!
Now back on track, we decide to go with the “Oxford” pencil. Love the rich navy-blue paint job and how dope it looks with the red memo books… so so British! AND Laura’s soon-to-be-last name (this month!!) is gonna be OXFORD! We took it as a sign that we had to go with this pencil. We are so feelin’ this kit!
Zig-zagging all across London from one side to the other with our marked-up map on a big 'ol scavenger hunt… our very own Olympics where the prize be super stylie, lo-fi goods.