From Africa to antiques, Studio Seven is Newnham Street’s newest indie addition

Studio Seven is tucked away on Newnham Street, perfect for some off-the-beaten-track bargain hunting. Image: Studio Seven

After a soft launch over the summer, one of Bedford’s newest independent shops is now fully open and welcoming customers to its quirky, off-the-beaten-track showroom.

Studio Seven is the brainchild of Beth Parkinson, a Bedford native who moved abroad in 2012 and has returned after living in – and soaking up the style and culture of – Zimbabwe, Ukraine and Uganda.

Her interior and product design background is evident from the array of colourful, bespoke, vintage and classic products that she has curated for the studio shop at 22A Newnham Street, alongside the former auction rooms.

The shop and studio shares the street with other independent favourites including Cibo, the Capuccino Bar, GCH Fishmongers, Santaniello’s and Lingers Butchers

Passionate about working with Bedford’s creative community, Beth stocks new finds from local artists and makers including Circle Square Ceramics, Tabitha Mary, Katie Allen and Nothing Hidden Co.

Their products effortlessly rub shoulders with artisan products from Uganda, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Zimbabwe and Ukraine, creating a unique and joyful product mix that is sure to prove popular with customers.

Clanger what's on banner

“I’m so excited that the studio shop is now fully open,” said Beth.

“It’s been wonderful to meet new customers over the summer and I’m looking forward to sharing our products with even more people now we’re officially open for business.

“I’m changing and updating the stock all the time, so there will always be something new to see and buy. The studio combines an African and vintage aesthetic, but local is at the heart of it all.”

Beth is passionate about working with local creatives and worked closely with artisans and makers in Zimbabwe, Ukraine and Uganda to develop some of the products that she is selling in Studio Seven.

She says she’s looking forward to collaborating on new products with members of Bedford’s thriving artist community.

“The Studio brings together a diverse selection of handmade homeware and lifestyle products including collaborative partnerships with artisans from around the world,” said Beth.

“The studio’s unique blend of vintage glassware and mid-century ceramic sets not only adds character to your space but also connects you to different cultures and histories, both globally and within our community.

“I hope you’ll come and visit our joyful space for special products, art, and gifts, and be inspired to create and curate your own spaces.”

Studio Seven is open Wednesday – Friday 10am-3pm and Saturdays 10am – 1pm. There are two parking bays available and although the studio is on the first floor, Beth will try her best to overcome any accessibility issues and is happy to bring products down to the ground floor for customers unable to access the stairs.

Prize giveaway

To be in with a chance to win a basket of your choice from the Sanyu Rising range (worth £40) simply answer the following question:

Name one of the three countries Beth has lived in since leaving Bedford in 2012.

Email your answer to by midnight on Friday, 22 September 2023. A winner will be picked at random and notified on Saturday, 23 September 2023.

You can read all our competition terms and conditions here.