With the help of Independent Cambridge - the definitive guide to ‘real’ Cambridge - Cambridge Network continues its weekly exploration of the best independent shops, cafés, restaurants, venues and events in Cambridge and the surrounding area. This week: the wonderfully quirky gift shop Podarok.
Explore Independent Cambridge: Podarok
Owner Andrey Pronin took over this quirky little gift shop in 2012, after graduating from Fitzwilliam College. The Russian-born entrepreneur decided to rename the shop Podarok, which is Russian for ‘gift’ and inject an element of fun and funkiness in to all they do.
Podarok now stocks an eclectic mix of everything from jewellery to lampshades, leather satchels to pocket money toys – so there’s a gift for everyone and every budget. Plus, it’s nice to know that Andrey goes to great lengths to ensure his stock is ethically sourced. For example, Podarok stocks Kenjo jewellery made from hand-painted Kazuri beads by a women’s collective in Nairobi.
The shop is also very supportive of British artists, stocking jewellery from Cambridge-based Harvey and Quinn and Heather Stowell from Ely and mugs from Stoke-on-Trent. Other artists and craftspeople frequently approach the store to display their designs as well.
There’s also exquisite jewellery from Michael Michaud plus beautiful hand-stitched buffalo hide satchels from Scaramanga of St Andrews and unique, colourful lampshades from Lush of Greenwich.
The other special thing about Podarok is the wonderful window displays – themes have included ‘under the sea’, ‘fairy woodland’ and ‘on the beach’. At Podarok you can find a gift for anyone and everyone, perhaps even a nice little something for yourself!
12 Bene’t Street
Cambridge CB2 3PT
Discover unique boutiques and boutique hotels mingled with communities of artists and craftspeople. Sample an award-winning restaurant or thriving little café tucked away in a back street – all easy to locate with the 200 page full-colour Independent Cambridge guide.
Handily presented with a map and an index at the beginning of each section, this book is the indispensable key to finding out what’s on offer from the independents of Cambridge. Get your copy from Waterstones, Heffers, many of the independent shops or online atwww.independent-cambridge.co.uk
A celebration of the city’s best independent traders, venues and events