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Folk has a new store!

Folk has a new store!


Go west.  Life is peaceful there.

Off the quieter end of Portobello Road, Notting Hill’s shiniest jewel, branches Golborne Road… a rougher diamond and one of London’s best-loved and lesser-known walks of life.  Eighty-somethings sip a curbside Turkish tea, seasoned dealers sell Finnish sideboards, spot the shiny new babes-in-arms, pick up the hum of conversation and clink of heavy glass on tables floating out the Portuguese pastelerías. 

As of this week, two new tunes weave into the street’s soundscape. A distant beat of subterranean hip-hop studio sounds and a newly installed vinyl player’s tunes drift out of the freshly painted door of no. 69.  Inside, there are bags, coats and clothes for men and women to live in.

What’s it like?  Here’s ten minutes of talking shop with Folk’s founder – and occasional painter-decorator when project needs be - Cathal McAteer. 


Why Golborne Road? 

25 years ago my friend took me to Lisboa (no. 57) where we started the day with a Galao & a Nata (strong milky coffee and a custard tart), after which we trotted on down “the golden gutter”, the name given to the road by the traders who would turn up and empty leftover wares on to the street. I was hooked, and have trotted that trot ever since buying records, door handles and walking sticks.

How did you house Folk there?

I have tried in vain to find somewhere for four years, and every time the space fell through.  My mate Louis Slipperz lives on the street and one week he called me with an idea.  The shop below his flat had come up for grabs. ‘Would you take it if I can get part of the basement to use as my recording studio? It would mean me walking through the store to get to the space… we can make it work, right?” And we have. Each day listening to his new shit is a joy and a welcomed layer to the store.

Who did it up?

Us, Folk Studios.  We got our hands real dirty. As ever, we sought the counsel of Paul Vanstone - we are old and great friends, plus, his materiality is just so! He’s made three beautiful, semi raw marble tables with brass legs. Other friends at Rise Projects came up with the greenhouse concept at the back of the store.


The plants are great.

Yes, we wanted the green to soften all the grey and marble; Olivia (Elias) worked with RoCo to get the right texture. We’re most pleased with the result.

Talk us through the art (by Chris Wilson, who came to painting during his time in a Californian prison).

We love and wanted more of his work, so chose three paintings that spoke to us and felt connected.  When Chris delivered them he pointed to Cafe Oporto - he had had morning a coffee there most mornings for 10 years.  He was really happy to know the paintings would be on the street.  

Who are your neighbours?

Phoenix next door at 67… they are wonderful and have been so kind.

The family who own Fez, the Moroccan bazaar in the other direction (no.71) have been also very nice to us.  

Café Oporto!

Also, the lentil soup from the guy opposite who has a street food van, is so so good.

Rough Trade opposite, the vinyl we’ve got in the store is courtesy of Ben there. 

The odd neighbour pops in and shrugs and asks for Ben, the guy who was in the store before us. They are sad to see that he left…. which is, of course, understandable as the street is tight knit and they look out for each other.  They’ve been really welcoming. I’ve loved this street for years. To now be trading here with my own store is pretty magic.
Welcome! Folk’s new shop is open for business.
Folk store, 69 Golborne Road, London, W10 5NP

Words by Charlotte Brook