Nestled amongst the endless antique shops that occupy the narrow streets of Dorking, Surrey, sits a delightful gem that is Gorgeous Gerties.
A vintage emporium combining cream teas, an olde worlde sweet shop and creative workshops, Gerties is quite simply a treasure chest of loveliness – the perfect place to hold a surprise birthday party!
Arranging a date when friends are all free to meet can be tricky at the best of times, but when the offer of a delicious cream tea and a spot of retail therapy is thrown into the mix, the date seems surprisingly easy to sort out. However, keeping it a secret from the birthday girl, despite her interrogations was another matter!
The staff at Gertie’s are lovely and were incredibly helpful, offering to organise an area suitable for our party of nine, including room for a pram for our honorary boy – at just 18 days old he was more interested in sleeping than listening to all the girlie gossiping! On arrival we were greeted with a table set up with an eclectic mix of china cups and saucers, tea pots with homemade tea cosies (which you can buy) and beautiful flowers – it was a lovely to surprise to all of us, not least the birthday girl who was met with a sea of smiling faces, none of which she was expecting to see.
As the chatter got underway an impressive array of fresh, crustless sandwiches, slices of homemade cake (including lemon drizzle, chocolate, Victoria sponge and coffee and walnut) and homemade scones with cream and jam, were placed on the table, followed by a chorus of ooohs and aaahs – and lots of picture taking!
It’s fair to say that the food was nothing short of a culinary delight, but despite full bellies it was time for some retail therapy. Gerties is basically a 15th century tardis. Seemingly small and compact from the outside, it’s a joy to anyone visiting when they discover that it’s filled from floor to ceiling with an endless array of independent retailers. Selling anything from jewellery, clothes, arts, crafts, furniture and accessories (not to mention the sweet shop), Gerties is a modern day vintage department store!
Although we opted to sit back and relax (in-between cake consuming and shopping), Gerties also offers an array of creative workshops. From sewing, crochet and cake decorating to card making and furniture painting, there’s something for everyone.
This was the first time we had paid a visit to Gerties, but after such a fantastic afternoon we will definitely be going back. Big groups may need to book, but the staff welcome all visitors so there’s no excuse not to pop in, say hello, have a natter, enjoy some delicious cake and have a mooch amongst the gifts.
As my new favourite weekend haunt, I can recommend all to visit Gorgeous Gerties. I can guarantee you will leave smiling… if not a little full!