Sticky Fingers has a unique contribution to Ashbourne’s High Street. With a pretty frontage on Church Street it is actually three strong offerings in one, has something to offer for all ages and is a great refuge regardless of the weather.
Owner Mandy showed me round as children were arriving for a pot-painting party. This is what many people may think the shop is all about – a traditional place for children to paint pots. It is a great venue for it. Mandy has a large selection of items that can be painted and, with Father’s Day approaching two very popular items are the garden gnomes (we have one sat happily in our garden and I can vouch its a great personalised gift) and cufflinks (ditto). As well as plates and mugs, Sticky Fingers has Decopatch (you can cover templates with patches of materials) and mosaic. Although there are children’s parties there is plenty of opportunity for adults too to create gifts or items to decorate their home.
The caddy in the shape of a dustbin caught my eye as the new recycling caddies for the kitchen are not the most attractive option. I think part of this part of the shop as an ideal location for tourists on holiday with the kids who want an alternative bit of entertainment or an ideal rainy day destination. There are even Sticky Fingers logo’d aprons as a souvenir of the visit. Give it a go yourself – it’s very therapeutic and you can end up with some really unique end-products. If you really have no artistic or creative bent, Mandy does also take commissions for items so if you want a piggy bank painting for the children…
Sticky Fingers is also a really nice cafe. The coffee is excellent, service is from smartly dressed and well-trained staff, and the cakes are always home-baked and delicious. This is another great contribution to the pot painting experience.
The final part of the Sticky Fingers offering to the Ashbourne High Street is the Design-led shop. Sticky Fingers is another of those shops that many people will have assumed they know and will never have stepped through the door yet hundreds of tourists know and love it. Mandy has a good eye for design and the displays are eye-catching. She stocks a good range of local and UK-manufactured items which would make great gifts. I liked the map-based products which can be made to order. There is also a good range of candles and tableware.
The window displays are often eye-catching. There is a trend at the moment for stags heads which has evolved in a range of different directions. Sticky Fingers is currently stocking a range of stuffed felt ones which come in the form of rhinoceros, cows, unicorns and dinosaurs. And that sums up the charm of the shop – a constantly changing range which rewards investigation. If you are looking for inspiration for a gift go in and look around, and talk to Mandy or one of her team who will lead you to something appropriate. With Fathers Day approaching I was shown cufflinks which can be personalised with children’s handprints in miniature.
As with some of the other places I have visited, a price comparison is irrelevant. Much of the stock is made by local designers and you won’t find it at out-of-town locations or on Amazon. The children’s parties do seem good value starting at £10 per head and accompanying party tea starting at £3 per person. This can also be held at your own home or school.
Go and investigate the shop for all seasons!