Not long ago, I wore my favourite necklace – an orange, multi-strand beaded necklace – to work. I caught one of the strands against the door and gasped in horror as the beads scattered all over the floor. My colleagues assured me it could be fixed in Sham Shui Po, an outdoor market and shopping district in Kowloon. And so we set off one Saturday afternoon to this mecca for arts and crafts.
Pei Ho Street, 5 minutes’ walk from the MTR (take exit A2), did not disappoint. There were shops selling every conceivable style of beads: from glass, faux pearls to turquoise and coral, all for a fraction of the price one would normally pay for the finished piece, but better: you can pick your perfect length, colour and exact style.
Trademark East Accessories Company at 94A-B Pei Ho Street stocked lengths of fur, leather, suede, ribbon and lace in every colour. A few outlandish items caught my imagination: large feathers and sequinned velvet made me wish I had a knack for fashion design.
I spent a good hour at Accessory Republic Co, Ltd, which was right next to Trademark East. Everything here is DIY: once you’ve decided on the type of chain for your necklace or bracelet, ask the friendly shop assistant for a yard or two, and then take her advice on the clasps and hooks to create your own jewellery.
Although I couldn’t find a shop that would fix my beaded necklace (for a reasonable price!), I discovered the most fantastic place for haberdashery in Hong Kong. I’m wearing my own creations with pride now!