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BritsAbroad

Jennie circle - Brits abroad - Jennie and David

      Jennie McGuirk         

Creative Consultant, Global Citizen, Manc.

Topanga Canyon. California

jenniecreative.com

British design object you most desire

Anything by Stella McCartney; not only do I love her aesthetic, but I have always admired her quest to design as sustainably as possible. I was lucky to hear her speak at the game-changing Copenhagen Fashion Summit last year.

Your British cult hero living or dead?

British Sailor, Tracy Edwards. I was recently invited to a screening of Maiden, the documentary about how she successfully skippered the first ever all-female crew in the Whitbread round the world yacht race, in 1989. She faced adversity from so many different directions, yet triumphed in spite of it all.

Favourite British band?

I've always loved Massive Attack and will soon be seeing them for the second time in LA..

British album on your playlist right now?

The Stone Roses - you can take the girl out of Manchester...

Favourite place in Britain?

The Lake District, especially the Northern part. It's heaven on earth.

Where do you call home in Britain?

Manchester. I've always been a proud Mancunian, but the longer I am away, the more I love it and appreciate that it's not just a city but a culture in its own right.

What do you miss most about Britain?

My family and friends, although the communications technology boom over the last decade was perfectly timed. Other than my peeps, I miss the NHS (what's left of it) and really, really miss our sense of humour. The struggle is real! I regularly watch British telly to keep my levels topped up. 

Favourite pub/restaurant in Britain?

In the North, it's The Old Hall, an Elizabethan treasure in the Peak District. In the South, it's central London's Sketch, which is a treat for the eyes as well as the palette. Incidentally, Sketch was an early supporter of a magazine I was Development Manager for, back in the early 2000's. I never forget good creative partnerships.

What do you take back from Britain to California that you can't get there?

Certain skincare products, proper chocolate, our sense of humour....

How often do you get back home?

I try to get back twice a year. I have reverse culture shock when I come home these days and I have certainly never appreciated Britain as much as I do now.

If you had credit in SGB, what would you self-gift?

I have fallen in love with the Risdon & Risdon Full-Length Denim Apron.

What gift would you give to someone from SGB?

One of the With Love Project's books. They were put on my radar several years ago and I absolutely love their work.

Dave Spours circle - Brits abroad - Jennie and David

      David Spours         

Designer, Traveller, Toon Fan.

Dubai. U.A.E

 cucumberdesign.ae

British design object you most desire

What I would give for a classic, antique Chesterfield sofa.

Your British cult hero living or dead?

Kevin Keegan. A hero for England and Newcastle United and I still remember as a starry eyed 11 year old watching him play his last game for Newcastle before a helicopter landed and whizzed him away. Who does that?

Favourite British brand?

Paul Smith, quintessentially British.

British album on your playlist right now?

I’ve had the last Liam Gallagher album on since it came out, I love it. And it’s so much better than his brothers last album.

Favourite place in Britain?

As a kid I always wanted my parents to take me to Saltwell Park in Gateshead, a sprawling park with a maze, pond, boats and for some strange reason they had a small aeroplane you could go in. The plane has gone now but I always go for walks there when I’m back with my friends and family.

Where do you call home in Britain?

I’m from Gateshead, just across the river from Newcastle.

What do you miss most about Britain?

Friends and family firstly, but mainly lovely, chatty people who will talk to you for no reason at all in pubs, taxis, supermarkets etc. I don’t think this applies down south though.

Favourite pub/restaurant in Britain?

Back in 90s Newcastle, about a mile away from St James’ Park there was a pub called The Greyhound, owned by some of the local gangsters and not a place you’d like to visit. About 5 years ago it was bought by a local restauranteur who spent quite a bit doing it and it’s not a total hidden gem. It’s beautiful inside, quirky and comfy and upstairs they do fantastic food. It’s my new favourite hideout.

What do you take back from Britain to Dubai that you can't get there?

Radox, Bisto chicken gravy and Starburst. Don’t judge me.

How often do you get back home?

As I work for myself these days, and as long as I have my laptop and wifi I can work form anywhere, so I have started going home more often, and more importantly for longer. I’m currently doing a month in summer and pretty much all of December, and may even add a few more weeks in in the coming years.

If you had credit in SGB, what would you self-gift?

I’ve just noticed the book on ‘Remote Scottish Postboxes’. I can see myself flicking through that with a nice cup of tea.

What gift would you give to someone from SGB?

I think I’d treat my lovely girlfriend to the bloody gorgeous Hera leather satchel. Who wouldn’t love that?

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