Bay’s artistic hub offers creative gifts galore

Central Port Elizabeth is a beehive of creative industry with several chic little gift shops for pre- or post-Christmas sprees.

  • The Collection Studio opened in Raleigh Street last month, moving from its original premises in Walmer to the spot previously held by another popular gift store, Camden.
(Camden has not disappeared: it received so many requests from customers outside Port Elizabeth that it has now moved online, and you can find it at

Since it opened in June, the Collection Studio has attracted a discerning clientele who enjoy its clean lines and contemporary decor from local artisans.

Owner Dicey du Toit is the creative curator of the items sold at the Collection Studio, assisted by Carey Slater in the shop.

“The idea is that we have a collection of items – definitely gifting – and also home decor,” Slater said. “We keep almost everything.”

The small but airy store stocks pieces by Bay ceramic factory Pret a Pot, as well as vintage-styled lighting by Hoi P’loy.

It also has bags, other ceramics, clothing, cushions and kokedama (Japanese hanging moss balls) as well as a newly introduced range of furniture which Du Toit has designed.

The Collection Studio is open from 9am to 3.30pm on weekdays.

  •  Cupboard Love started in Richmond Hill, then moved across to Walmer and also now is back in this artistic hub.
Owner Carryn Gunston offers a gorgeous range of gifts that also include clothes, as well as a few festive season items.

Cupboard Love is now in Bain Street, nestled between delicious eateries in Stanley Street, so it’s a nice place to visit if you are lunching on “the strip”.

Gunston is generally on hand to explain where each piece comes from and, like the Collection Studio, also strives to boost local artists.

Pop in to browse its interesting selection of ceramics, glassware, linens and other textile products, jewellery, wall art, home decor, kitchenware, clothing, furniture and more.

  • The Victorian Veranda next to Savages restaurant in Park Drive is another pretty gift shop which also sells a few items of clothing such as summer shift dresses and blouses.
Plastic surgeon Dr Konrad Hoekstra and his wife, Cindy, have made sure the entire property has been tastefully restored, giving a graceful new face to the Victorian property that once was a school.

Once you’ve enjoyed the sophisticated bistro fare at the restaurant, take a peek at the adjoining Victorian Veranda. There is a corner for baby gifts, as well as for adults.

Most of the stock on sale here also is proudly South African, with an accent on promoting elegant and up-market decor items and home accessories.