Homes and gardens

Opened by Fred Holdsworth in 1956 ‘with minimal stock and maximum enthusiasm’, this is one of the best known independent bookshops in Cumbria.

Soft, sumptuous and sustainable are the defining characteristics of Laura Rosenzweig’s lovely own-designed range of scarves, throws and comforting blankets, all inspired by the natural tapestry of the Howgill Fells in Cumbria’s Yorkshire Dales. ‘Our goal is to create beautiful items in simple, classy designs that show off the wool at its very best,’ she says.

Few company names capture the essence of a business quite so succinctly or wittily as Chimney Sheep. Founded in 2012 by Sally Phillips, its major product is a draught excluder - made from the wool of Lakeland’s iconic breed of sheep, the Herdwick - which is placed in a chimney and then easily removed when the fire is lit. 

‘Great craftsmanship’ and ‘beautiful furniture’ should be two short phrases that spring to mind when you pull off the A66 at Braithwaite and head down the lane to the workshop and showroom of MJ Cabinetmakers, the workshop officially opened by Prince Charles in 2005. 

Where else in Cumbria but at Parma Violet can you find Tintin T-shirts, space hoppers and Emma Bridgewater pottery rubbing shoulders - on the shelves - with cashmere scarves, playing cards and rubber ducks? 

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