For BUSTy gals (and boys) in London Town there is one bar you simply must check out: Drink, Shop & Do in Kings Cross. Not only can you grab tea, cake and cocktails in this beautiful bright and airy space housed in a former bath house, there are daily craft workshops and events to join in with – from Modern Calligraphy and Tie Dye to Madonna Bra Making and Sass Your Sunnies.
This simply brilliant place is the brainchild of two school friends – Kristie Bishop and Coralie Sleap, who will be bringing a pop-up version of Drink, Shop & Do to the BUST London Summer Craftacular this Sunday, August 21. Coralie gives us the lowdown on this inspiring enterprise.
How did Drink, Shop & Do come about?
It started as a three-week pop-up in December 2009. The idea came out of one of those amazing pub-bench conversations where we discussed our ideal careers. Kirstie’s dream was to run a beautiful tea and sweet shop with amazing cocktails, and at the time I was having house parties where we would just make things – get drunk while making papier-mâché monsters. We started to think we could merge all of this into one amazing place. I lived in Kings Cross at the time and had a specific property in mind and the landlord just said, “Why don’t you give it a go.”
You’ve now launched a late-night bar and a coffee shop in the same building. How did the business grow?
It’s been a natural evolution. We were filling the upstairs to capacity and loved the idea of having a dance floor and DJs – a space with a “party, party” vibe. There was a sex shop downstairs and we were able to turn this into Drink, Shop & Dance in 2012, expanding into the coffee shop space shortly after. And lastly we’ve created a members’ club just across the road. The space sorted of landed in our laps, so we thought it would be silly to turn it down…
How do you and Kristie divide your time?
Everyone says you need defined roles when you start a business, but we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into so it took us a really long time to work out who did what what. We’ve naturally played to our strengths: Kristie is super-organized and can execute anything with detail and diligence, while I’m a bit of a creative day dreamer and love to think about a big strategy.
What are your favourite Drink, Shop & Do events?
Probably the ones we’ve been doing from the beginning, like Play with Clay, and Papier-Mâché Monster nights – and the Beyonce dance classes. After six years these are still going strong.
Do you have any new craft nights planned?
We are trying to put together cocktail crafting sessions, which will focus on the accessorising. We’ll teach you how to make a few simple cocktails at your table and then you can add some amazing garnishes – like edible gem stones and glitter – and do some crazy-arsed things with the design.
What are you excited to see at this Sunday’s BUST Craftacular?
We always enjoy working with Tatty Devine. When we first opened the bar they created a giant installation of necklaces for us. And we love all the sparkly colourful creation by Pup Tart; owner Hannah runs marbling workshops at Drink, Shop & Do.
BUST London Summer Craftacular
Sunday August 21, 11am-5pm
York Hall, 5 Old Ford Road, London E2 9P