Dublin Store 5 Smock Alley Court, Essex Street West, Temple Bar, Dublin, IE
- Ceramics, textiles, and gifts by Irish designers and makers.
- Selection of International independent womenswear brands.
- Baby, home decor, apothecary, and stationery items.
5 Smock Alley Court, Essex Street West
WHAT WE LOVE
Wendy Crawford’s bright, bubbly energy fills Scout and it is easy to understand that her favourite role as a shopkeeper is meeting and chatting to her customers. Her passion for pattern, texture and colour is evident in the product that fills her lifestyle and fashion shop, Scout. After graduating from Art College her first retail venture was a market stall, which was followed by Bow, a co-op where Wendy honed her sourcing and styling skills creating an interesting mix of vintage clothing and accessories. With an established following, Wendy decided it was the right time to grow her business and so she opened Scout.
"Like most small independents we buy with particular customers in mind. We think about how they will be able to use a new piece alongside an older piece so they are adding value to their lives and wardrobe."
What year was Scout established? 2009
What makes Scout so unique? Like most small independents we buy with particular customers in mind. We think about how they will be able to use a new piece alongside an older piece so they are adding value to their lives and wardrobe. I think only small shops enjoy this type of customer intimacy.
Is there a story behind the shop name? It really is as simple as I enjoying finding beautiful things and I explored words associated with the act of finding. I came upon it quickly and liked it so I went with it!
What are Scout's “must-have” products? ARQ underwear is impossible to keep in stock. Sideline apparel is also really popular and we have a huge focus on textiles so our customers really enjoy all our blankets and soft furnishings. It's a very cosy shop!
What/who inspired you or why did you open your shop? I always wanted to own a shop. I loved the idea of being a shop keeper and seeing and chatting to people. Being surrounded by beautiful things is also a joy to me.
What is a highlight of having your shop? I have two of my best friends, Mark Grehan of The Garden and Doreen Kilfeather, because I have the shop. Mark and I met back in my Powerscourt days and Doreen was a customer. The shop is a wonderful way to meet people and at times it can feel a little like you are on display yourself, but the upsides are the really lovely relationships that have formed.
Wendy Crawford, shopkeeper at Scout
What inspires you? I love fabrics and textiles so I’m always inspired by cloth, especially cloth that is made in Ireland. We have such a beautiful rich tradition using linens and yarns so it's always lovely to see how designers and makers use them.
What did you do before Scout? I worked in retail on the high street as a personal stylist and also in Film in wardrobe.
Has the pandemic changed your POV on the future of retail? The pandemic made me realise you really don't know whats round the corner & it is a job where you will always need to be good at adapting and changing but the core of why you do it must remain the same for people to continue the journey with you.
What do you love most about shop life? Seeing and hearing people really engage with the products you've worked so hard to find and get to the shop. It's really rewarding to hear the positive feedback and see people so happy.
WHAT THE SHOPKEEPER LOVES
The Garden, Dublin
Joy Thorpe Antiques, Kilkenny
Indigo & Cloth, Dublin
Labour & Wait, London
ON THE FUTURE OF RETAIL
"I think there will always be a place for bricks and mortar retail, but it's up to people to get out and visit them and support them. The pandemic made people comfortable with ordering online but there has been a strong desire since for in store experience."
Photography by Doreen Kilfeather