If you’re on the lookout for an alternative crafty Christmas, Manchester icon Afflecks has got your back. The halls of Afflecks, located on Oldham Street, have been well and truly decked from head to toe for Christmas with sparkly decorations and baubles galore and the iconic shopping emporium has a sleigh-load of festive offerings.
With a special pop-up yuletide charity Christmas shop, a bumper crop of new traders joining the family, Christmas decks in full flow, festive food specials, extended opening hours and more, customers are sure to feel like a kid at Christmas. Housing an abundance of independent traders under one roof it’s only right that the Northern Quarter building hosts its very own Alternative Crafty Christmas, which will take place from 3 – 17 December.
With alternative festive crafts taking place across three floors of Afflecks, some of the building’s most legendary traders will be hosting a very special Afflecks take on the traditional Christmas workshop.
The festive workshops will kick off on Sunday 3 December with a dried flower bauble making session from Manchester’s gorgeous dried flower shop, Jamie’s Jungle. Attendees will have the chance to create three of their very own sustainable and completely individual festive dried flower baubles to take home and hang on the tree or to give as gifts. Taking place in the cosy and eccentric surrounds of Afflecks’ vintage ice cream parlour, Ginger’s Comfort Emporium, tickets for the workshop are just £11.50 and will entitle guests to a free hot drink.
The following Sunday (10 December), Afflecks’ famous cafe, Third Floor Rising, is hosting a ‘Design a Gingerbread Family Workshop‘. For just £8 per ticket, guests will receive an assortment of sweet treats to choose from to help beautify the homemade gingerbread people provided by the cafe, before taking their glorious creations home to enjoy with the family or provide a spectacular arrival gift for those visiting your home.
Afflecks fans will also have the chance to ‘Design Their Own Individualised Christmas Candle’ on Sunday 17 December. Hosted by Aaron of 369 Starz and his famous pet owl Aurora, it will be a chance to create vegan and organic candles with your own fair hand in the fabulous surroundings of the Animaid Cafe. Guests will be able to paint and decorate their own candle from a choice of designs – another opportunity to give a thoughtful, unique and sustainable gift this year. From the scent to the shape of the candle, attendees will have full control over their fabulously festive masterpiece for just £9.
More opportunities to buy completely unique, thoughtful and handmade gifts abound this Christmas at Afflecks as the young people from Manchester Youth Zone will be popping up with their very own ‘MYZ Festive Shop‘ on Saturday 9 December. Manchester Youth Zone is a youth centre in Harpurhey in North Manchester and the young people have been busy in the on-site makers studio creating some amazing products of their own. From 3D printed sculptures to jewellery and much more, the MYZ Festive Shop is a brilliant opportunity to shop local and support this wonderful children’s charity.
Afflecks will be providing further opportunities to give back to the local communities this Christmas time, taking part in The Wishing Tree campaign for the first time. The Wishing Tree encourages customers, colleagues, and local businesses to make a charitable donation towards Manchester Youth Zone and HideOut Youth Zone, which both provide safe, inspiring spaces for young people in disadvantaged communities.
The Wishing Tree will be located on the third floor of Afflecks, giving shoppers the opportunity to simply scan a QR code and send a donation straight to the charities. All the monies raised will go towards giving the young people some extra special experiences this Christmas and beyond.
Gorgeous home decor and plant store Urban Greenbank will also be expanding their offering to the third floor throughout the whole of December, and will also have a specially curated Christmas gifting area.
Third Floor Rising also has a number of festive foodie and drink specials on the menu all throughout December, including Gingerbread Hot Chocolates, virgin Mulled Wine, mince pie crumble slices, and festive paninis. Meanwhile, Desert Island Dumplings will be serving up their Salt & Pepper sprouts, Pigs in Cheezy Blankets, and Christmas Dinner dumplings.
Afflecks has, as usual, put its own spin on the festive decorations and the halls have also been well and truly decked this year with Skeleton Santa and a gigantic star flower arch at the Church Street entrance.
All of Afflecks’ fabulous traders will be open seven days a week all throughout December from 10:30am – 6pm on weekdays, 10am – 6pm on Saturdays, and 11am – 5pm on Sundays, giving the good people of Manchester ample time for lots of indie Christmas shopping. You can find booking details for all crafty Christmas events at Afflecks here.
If you’re looking for an independent Christmas not spent trudging around the festive markets – you could say it’s a Christmas miracle… right here on Oldham Street in Manchester.