"Yesterday I decided that eating breakfast was more important than going to university," writes a Yelp reviewer of Leila's Shop. "I'm fairly certain I made the right decision."
Located on Calvert Avenue just on the border of Shoreditch and Bethnal Green, Leila's Shop is an under-the-radar favorite with locals, design luminaries like Ilse Crawford, and fashiony types like Alexa Chung. Yelp fans describe Leila's as "a bit of an oddjob of a shop; packed with nice bits and pieces that instantly make you feel comfortable. The kitchen accessories hanging from the ceiling make it feel like a posh country kitchen—or an installation art piece."
To learn more about owner and local legend Leila McAlister, go to Shopper's Diary: Leila's Way with Fruit and Vegetables on Gardenista.
Above: The rustic exterior with baskets of organic apples. "All vegetables and fruits are strictly seasonal," Leila says. "This makes people think we are eccentric and quirky (because we don't sell tomatoes and raspberries in winter months), when in fact we are very considered."
Above: Straight-from-the farm offerings: "Our bread is from Bermondsey, Brixton, Wood Green, jams are made in Bermondsey and Hackney, salmon smoked in Stoke Newington, smoked mackerel from Essex (eggs, too)," Leila says.
Above: Vintage crockery adds a humble note.
Above: A Wolfy poster; image via Deer Wolf Wolf.
Above: During London Design Week a couple of years ago, Ilse Crawford debuted her new furniture line for De La Espada on the premises (see Seating for Eating).
Above: A collection of Ercol chairs provides seating; on one wall is a noise-baffling acoustic panel made from wine corks.