Guy and Nikki Pritchard are the owners of Strange & Co. an independent lifestyle shop located in Rhos on Sea, a quaint town located on North Wales’ Colwyn Bay. Taking ‘strange’ as their name in reference to an old family surname, they specialise in handmade goods, clothing and homeware. Lots of their products have a nod to the nautical, and the overall vibe is calm, muted and refreshing.
For the latest instalment of Fieldnotes, we spoke to Guy and Nikki about their town, their business and where Uskees fits with their ethos.
Your store has a very inviting feel. What design decisions did you make, and why are they important?
The shop is fitted with a mixture of antique and modern furniture and decorated with an assortment of unusual objects we have collected over the years. Our family says it is like we have recreated our home in shop form.
With our real 100 year old olive tree (she’s gorgeous!) in the centre of the store, customers are encouraged to come and enjoy browsing our eclectic pieces which have been carefully curated to ensure a natural flow between homeware, toys, wellbeing and fashion-forward clothing.
Strange & Co is very much a family affair, and our son Gabriel and daughter Clementine enjoy working in the shop on their days off from Uni.
We are huge dog-lovers - there’s always a fresh bowl of water and a treat for our four-legged furry friends and often feature a ‘Dog of the Day’ on our Instagram story. Our very own ‘dogs of the day’ are Boo the Affenpinscher and Fig, our newly re-homed Griffon Bruxellois.
How do you choose which products to stock in your store?
We are committed to sourcing stock from suppliers who are environmentally aware and strive to find products that are ethical and sustainable, so we were delighted when Uskees agreed to allow us to sell their amazing clothing range. Such a cool clothing brand and the polar opposite of fast fashion. Their style and concept embodies what we are trying to achieve with our little shop and our current favourite pieces are the coach jackets, the smocks and the sweatshirts.
Can you give us a sense of what it’s like in Rhos on Sea? Where should people come to visit?
Rhôs on Sea has recently undergone a major transformation on the beachfront, with a new promenade and a long sandy beach. New bars and eateries, together with an unusually high percentage of independent retailers make it a fantastic destination for tourists and day-trippers but also a much-loved daily shopping town for residents. To this end, we have tried our very best to create a store that caters for locals and visitors alike with things we have chosen because we love them ourselves.
Visitors to Rhos on Sea should definitely check out the Bryn Euryn nature reserve for stunning coastal views, and the beach of course. For food and drink, there are loads of quaint sea-front cafes. For something more substantial, definitely try out Elementary, a craft ale bar with a distinctly spooky, vintage feel. For spectacular views of the sea accompanied by fine dining at affordable prices, try the Orme View Training Restaurant, staffed by trainee staff learning their craft.