This week we’re celebrating local, independent and family-run businesses, championing their efforts, throughout what has been a difficult year for many. Here our team members from Cardiff and Southampton have nominated their favourite local businesses, highlighting how they have evolved through lockdown.

2020 has certainly not been an easy year for many. Local businesses in Cardiff and Southampton had to shut their doors back in March and the future looked decidedly uncertain. However, the power of positivity has shone through these past few months and many businesses have adapted to the changing times, continuing to be there for customers, as well as helping others and giving back to the community.

Our teams in Cardiff and Southampton have nominated their favourite shops and businesses. We want to share their top picks with you, celebrating local businesses and all that they’ve done.


Delicious Monster Tea

From Eleanor Firth 

Run-by Claire, a hand-embroidery artist, Delicious Monster Tea sell hand-embroidered and personalised t-shirts with names, slogans or little flowers. They also sell embroidery kits and beautiful prints, putting sustainability at the centre of everything they do.

Celebrating Local Businesses Delicious Monster Tea

At the start of lockdown, business took a downturn however, Claire improvised and began creating DIY embroidery kits and tutorials for beginners. This area of the business blossomed as so many people turned to craft to help them pass the time, as well as looking after their mental health. The range of kits has grown and have provided a wonderful way for people to learn a new skill during lockdown.

Ripple Living

From Eleanor Firth 

Ripple Living is Cardiff’s first not-for-profit, zero waste shop that promotes an ethical lifestyle. They have an amazing groceries section where you can pick up anything from flour to lentils and even vegan pick & mix!

Celebrating Local Businesses Ripple

During lockdown, they began doing click and collect orders, which were a huge help for people looking to continue to support the zero waste journey. The wonderful lifestyle store is filled with sustainable and local brands. They’re now re-opened in line with government guidelines and are well worth a visit.


From Eleanor Firth 

Nest are a fabulous gift store in the heart of Rhiwbina. It’s a magical haven of homewares, beautiful gifts and accessories. Filled with gorgeous, inspiring and out-of-the-ordinary pieces, it’s perfect if you’re looking for something more unique.

Celebrating Local Businesses Nest

Like many businesses in lockdown, they began to focus on their online presence, updating and adding their favourite products to their website so that customers could continue to support them. Now that they are open again, in line with government guidelines, they’ve filled the shop with new and gorgeous products and have found that homewares are more popular than ever! They also have a range of garden games that are perfect for staycations this summer.



From Ibraham Kouyate

Zest has a fresh approach to events and catering, providing inspiring and delicious catering for corporate events, special occasions and private dining to name a few.

Celebrating Local Businesses Zest

With the closure of all venues that offer food and drink their ability to operate has been limited. However, they didn’t give in and focused on how they could adapt to the changing times and evolve as a business. They created ‘The Speakeasy’, an innovative concept where they could bring a fine dining experience to your home or private space. They can create bespoke food and drinks menus to accommodate any taste, bringing the atmosphere and buzz of a restaurant to the comfort and safety of your own home. As they say – the good times may need to change, but they do not need to end.

Thank you for joining us in celebrating local businesses, it is now more than important than ever to shop local and support these places that bring so much joy to the community. Let’s continue to champion them and enjoy all that they have to offer!



Visit your local Laings store in CARDIFF or SOUTHAMPTON.