With the end of February just around the corner (thank god 🥶), we thought that it was high time we suggested some queer businesses to support in honour of LGBTQ+ history month. As we're based in Scotland's beautiful capital, all (bar one) of our recommendations are businesses based in Edinburgh, however we are always keen to hear about our customer's favourites from further afield too!
Blunt Knife Co.
Opened by Marian (who loves translated fiction) and Emma (who can’t fold a fitted sheet), Blunt Knife Co. is a shop and event space just off Princes Street. The shop supports and promotes women and people of marginalised genders by selling printed works which tell their stories (which are often side lined in mainstream media). Blunt Knife Co. does this by selling art, zines, books and postcards created by independent artists, authors and organisations. In addition to their storefront, the company also regularly host events in the form of workshops, exhibitions and performance nights.
The Gull’s Grocery
Having just had their first birthday, it appears (thankfully) that The Gull’s Grocery is here to stay! Founded in 2021 by Em and Luna, The Gull's Grocery popped up in Leith and blessed locals with high quality, affordable produce. In a push to embody sustainable practices, The Gull’s Grocery enables you to purchase fruit and vegetables individually (so that you only buy what you need) and refill your own containers with dry-store items and cleaning supplies. Moreover, the company aims to prioritise long term jobs by ensuring that all staff, regardless of their title, receive the same wage.
Another shop in Leith (it's clearly the place to be) which has stolen our hearts is Logan Malloch. Run by partners (in the husband and business sense) Philip and Brian, Logan Malloch is a contemporary gift shop which opened in April 2019. After restoring the unit with their very own hands, the couple have carefully curated a selection of art, plants and homeware which will ensure that you do not go home empty handed. On top of this, the shop arguably has the best selection of cards to suit any occasion!
Paying homage to their location, Philip and Brian aim to source as many of their goods from the artistic community within Leith. And, after thoroughly rinsing Leith for everything it has to offer, the remainder of the goods on sale are from Edinburgh and the rest of Scotland.
Booyah Beauty Bar
Coming to Gorgie next month is Booyah Beauty Bar! After over two years of hard work and planning by owners Charlie Allan and Lauren Faulkner, the salon is very nearly ready to go. The pair have aimed to create a fun space whereby both clients and staff can express themselves freely. In addition to this, both Charlie and Lauren have worked towards making the space as accessible as possible, by asking wheelchair users how they could improve their design before finalising construction.
Although the services that Booyah Beauty Bar are offering have not been finalised, it seems that the space will function as: a nail salon; a barber shop; a makeup studio; and a space for nail and lash technicians.
Category is Books
If you're based in Glasgow, don't think that we've forgotten about you! For those of you who have read our blog before (thank you ❤️) it will be no surprise that we’re big fans of books here at Bon Accord. Category is Books is an independent queer bookshop on Glasgow's Southside. Opening in September 2019, the shop has been dedicated to queer literature, magazines, comics and arts from its inception.
The shop, which sells both new and second hand books, puts accessibility at the heart of everything they do. Wednesday is the store’s Autism friendly day, where the lights are dimmed, conversations are encouraged to be kept low, and white noise is played in place of music. And, in addition to this, Category is Books has a pay it forward system, meaning that those who are facing financial hardship still have access to all that this space has to offer.
If you’re Edinburgh based and are looking for a queer space to geek out about books, we highly suggest checking out the book club @getlitwithalez on Instagram! The group discuss books each month in the flesh (usually in Leith) over a few drinks. Although it is a predominantly queer space, anyone is welcome as long as they're respectful of the group's members ❤️