The aim of lifestyle store, cafe and event space Bonds. Hackney is to foster the local creative community and, as the name suggests, build bonds.
Founded in 2017 by Niko Dafkos and Paul Firmin, Bonds sells a curated collection of homewares and gifts with a focus on championing local brands and craftspeople. The space – airy and industrial softened by lush greenery – is also home to the candle making studio of in house fragrance brand Earl of East London. Separated by a glass wall, customers can watch soy wax candles being hand poured by the team of candle makers ready to be sold in the store.
“The reason we started Earl of East was to feel a deeper sense of belonging to the community, and we are lucky in that we feel the business and the store has become part of people's London”QUOTE: Niko Dafkos, Bonds Hackney's Founder
As well as inviting customers to browse and have a coffee, Bonds also plays host to a calendar of creative workshops and events giving visitors the chance to meet local designers, makers and brands and learn more about the products in store.
‘We wanted to create a store that was neutral to our own brand, but that would provide a platform for us to celebrate the work of our friends and collaborators... we still very much believe in physical retail, but think there is a need to give people a more immersive shopping experience, presented in a meaningful way. We hope that when customers leave the store they feel inspired to learn something new or to find out the back story of the people behind the products they are buying.”QUOTE: Paul Firmin, Bonds Hackney's Founder