So I know there are thousands of subscription services out there and so many book or coffee themed ones; and though I’ve been wanting to try one for a while, I just couldn’t find the right fit. I wanted something at least a little personal and not a box in a “box” per-say 🙂 I found two that I was hopeful for, this is my unveiling of company number one Blue Spider’s Attic:
“The Magic of a Used Bookstore, Delivered.”
I am not a big fan of the name but I loved the concept of the company; used books, customized to you by taking a little questionnaire (about both coffee and books) choice of 1 or 3 books, fun themes! It feels personal and made me really excited for my box to come.
I was a little sad at first because my package was left in the rain and a few things got wet, but it did not ruin the overall excitement.
I do wish they would double package them though 😦
I love this quaint little sugar spoon!
“I have measured my life with coffee spoons” T.S. Eliot
A sample from this fun company that does soup themed from books and tea, great combo! This ones
A sample from this fun company that does soup themed from books and tea, great combo! This one smells delish!
Another little sample, whole bean medium roast, mmm mmm. Looking forward to brewing this one up.
*The Books! What could they be 😀
I had not heard of this book so I was excited to have this book be my first unveiled. Had some water damage 😦 but it will survive!
*This one I have of course heard of and do have a copy already but hey 2 out of 3 is pretty darn good 🙂
I love that there was a science fiction/ fantasy book, it shows that they really were catering the order to me.
Yay another treasure!
A cute little teacup necklace, LOVE it!
Well I must say that even despite the less than desirable name (I hate spiders,) and my first package arriving soaked and therefore getting one wet book, I still loved the experience. I thought the trinkety treasures were fun and relevant. I was also impressed with the books choices. Based on what I said I enjoyed it was spot on, general/historical fiction, Classic Literature, and Science Fiction/ Fantasy. It was also nice that the prices were really reasonable. Good Job Blue Spider Attic I will be giving you another try.
Have you every tried any relative subscription boxes? If so please
share about your experience!
More of the Tour de librairie! This list has been a joy to make, exploring the beautiful world of books and the many cultures that embrace their wonder.
Here is part II of the Worlds top Bookstores:
Rizzoli Bookstore (New York, NY)
Rizzoli is famed for its art books and foreign fashion magazines. After being forced out of there location by developers, Rizzoli has brought the character of its old space to the new one.
Lavishing the 1896 Beaux-Arts building with tables and chandeliers from the old store, and commissioning a sky-scape mural to run along the 18-foot ceilings.
The new building also has stunning new windows.
Vogue man-about-town André Leon Talley has fashioned them with Vivienne Westwood, Gucci and Manolo Blahnik clothes and shoes, surrounded by Damien Hirst and Jeff Koons art books.
Libreria Acqua Alta (Venice , Italy)
Luigi Frizzo, the eccentric manager speaks English and includes numerous English books in his collection. He has created a shop filled with
ambiance and culture,
if you have a boat, you can enter the bookshop from the Rio. The atmosphere is as quirky and friendly as the owner, and he has created a wonderful little shop. The name means “Library of High Water.”
When the local waterways rise they fill the store inches off the floor, which would normally destroy any stock. However, they have preserved this shop (and created it’s uniqueness) by keeping the books in various basins, boats, and bathtubs. This shop is simply exquisite in it’s in genuinely superb uniqueness.
Livraria Lello (Porto, Portugal)
Livraria Lello & Irmão, also known as Livraria Chardron or simply Livraria Lello is a bookstore located in central Porto, Portugal. Along with Bertrand in Lisbon, it is one of the oldest bookstores in Portugal. It is an exquisite store, with stained glass windows, wooden walls, and an elegant staircase. It is lavish and grand and a sight worth traveling to see, the beauty would stun any book lover.
Cafebreria El Pendulo
(Polanco, Mexico City)
Bookstore, Breakfast Spot, and Coffee Shop all in one. Of course I love a bookshop with a coffee shop in it, a happy combination. I adore the natural elements that drape this lovely store, I find it to be a beautiful book oasis. This is the kind of bookshop that could keep me entrapped and enchanted for days.
Word on the Water
(The canals of London)
A bookshop that floats on a boat just outside Paddington station. The shop started up in the spring of 2012, and survived despite the recession. Thanks to donations and sourcing this adorable little jewel offers quality second-hand books sold at unbelievable prices; £3 for paperbacks and £4 for hardbacks, new editions are also available. When the weather is good, the impressive covers lining the top deck will make even the least of book lovers want to browse and buy. They also feature ad hoc music nights, book launches, and readings. In the chilly winter’s season, they also offer lovely and affordible mulled wine. Need I say more.
Boekhandel Dominicanen (Maastricht, Netherlands)
A regal gem, this bookshop towers with stunning beauty. The cathedral air of this beautiful shop is due to its history as a church: the thirteenth-century Boekhandel Selexyz Dominicanen in Maastricht, Netherlands.
The Last Bookstore (Los Angeles)
This store is more like a magical portal, into the world of the stories and lives tucked in the adorning pages. This airy book & record store offers new & used items in a multilevel space dressed with local art.
It is reminiscent of the enchanted rabbit hole that leads to a book wonderland. The shop is packed with cushiony comfort and beautifully decorated with the simple divinity of the books themselves.
This list was compiled based on research not experience, so of course there is room for error. I may find myself later wishing I had included others, or feeling like I did an injustice to an incredible store. It’s bound to happen considering how big and diverse our wonderful planet is, and I consider this a wonderful thing. If this list was not changeable or extendable it would make me very sad.
That being said, do you know of any other amazing bookstores?
There are so many wonderful and unique bookstores all over the world and I want to showcase the most amazing. It was hard to keep this to a reasonable list, so this is Part 1 of 2. Also, I focused on uniqueness, intrigue, and wow factors.
Here are my picks for the Top Bookstores in the World:
Powell’s City of Books
Powell’s is legendary;
The City of Books (headquarters) takes up an entire city block;
it has 68,000 square feet, nine (color-coded) rooms, three floors, and 3,500 sections. This Flagship location is the world’s largest used book store (carrying new and used, over 1 million books) and said to be the largest independent chain of bookstores on the planet.
They even provide a map for navigating the “city.” It is an amazing store, and one of my favorite places. I am a Portland local and adore this store, but although I am naturally biased, Powell’s reputation is renowned beyond local fans. National Geographic listed it in the top ten bookstores, and CNN listed it among the coolest bookstores in world. The inventory for its retail and online sales is over four million new, used, rare, and out-of-print books. Powell’s buys around 3,000 used books a day. Powell’s also holds many fun book related events; book tournaments, readings, story times for kids, and book groups.
If you ever find yourself in or around the Portland area, I urge you to experience Powell’s City of Books. It is located downtown at the corner of 10th and west Burnside, and opened 365 days a year. Just be sure to give yourself a couple of days to fully take it all in.
Books for Cooks (Melbourne, Australia)
Australia’s only retail store specializing exclusively in new and old books about wine, food and the culinary arts.
Books for Cooks opened in Wattletree Rd, Melbourne in 1983. They carry over 40,000 titles in stock; from the 1780’s to the latest releases.
This bookshop is located on the ground floor of a beautiful double fronted early Victorian two-story terrace in Fitzroy. The building dates back to the 1850’s and was allegedly used as a sly grog shop almost 100 years ago. If you look closely you can even see handmade bricks in the wall.
Shakespeare and Company (Paris, France)
Tourists, customers, dirty poems, a crowd of 40 or 50 mostly attentive listeners, Shakespeare and Company is notably one of the most famous bookshops in the world. It is the name of two independent bookstores that have existed on Paris’s Left Bank.
Bookstands surround an ornate drinking fountain, erected in the 19th century to service the area’s poor. Inside, there’s an extensive stock of second-hand books. Many famous writers have left their mark at Shakespeare’s; an estimated 30,000 aspiring writers bunked over the decades, sleeping on bug infested cots and benches scattered throughout the store in exchange for a couple of hours of work a day and a promise to spend at least some of their downtime reading and writing; a one-page autobiography is mandatory.
Atlantis Books (Santorini, Greece)
Atlantis’s bookshelves, which the staff built themselves, are filled with novels, poetry, short-story collections, biographies and philosophy tomes. The staff is happy to advise on their favorites. In the spring of 2002, Oliver and Craig spent a week on the island of Santorini. The land inspired them and there was no bookshop, so they drank some wine and decided to open one. Oliver named it Atlantis Books and the two laughed about how their children would run it someday. For a more detailed story on this beautiful shop: NY Times…
Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights (Bath, UK)
Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights is an independent bookshop in Bath. It was founded by former lawyer and derivatives trader Nic Bottomley. A charming bookshop full of friendly book-lovers and packed with quirky furniture. The shop also contains a reading booth for rent and free hot drinks. Mr. B’s specializes in great books, super fast customer orders, themed literary events, reading spas and reading year gifts.
A beautiful neo-classical building designed for the Royal Bank of Canada, in 1909 by Thomas Hooper, the architect of many of B.C.’s finest commercial and public buildings. Munro’s Books has been described by journalist Allan Fotheringham as “the most magnificent bookstore in Canada, possibly in North America.”
The store’s stock consisted almost entirely of paperbacks, at a time when many traditional booksellers considered anything other than hardback books to be beyond the pale, bordering on beneath contempt.
Located in a former underground parking garage and bomb shelter, Librairie Avant-Garde has been transformed into the most beautiful bookstore in China.
This bookshop features a cafe, pillars etched with famous verses and poems, sculptures, artwork, and one of the coolest features is a cashier counter built from thousands of old books. It is also adorned with tons of reading chairs, so you can get cozy, settle in, and forget the outside world.
This list was has been so fun to make, there are so many immensely interesting and amazing bookstores. I cannot wait to share with you the last 8 of The Top Bookstores in the World.
Which of these is your favorite? Stay tuned for Part II coming soon!
“What is this life if full of care we have no time to stand and stare.” W.H.`Davies