Flo Dixon

Brighton UK

Photography by Ruby Woodhouse

Featuring Flo Dixon

Fed up with the fast-consuming culture of her own generation and the local retail landscape, Flo Dixon, alongside her mother Claudia, decided to open Tidy Street Store in Brighton, as a way of encouraging  their community to support local artists and artisans that are making intentional and ethical products. Together with Claudia, Flo has created a retail experience that is intimate, inclusive and singular, beautifully echoing Flo’s own energy and charm.

What are your thoughts on style?
I don’t have one style icon. I admire lots of people who have the strength of character to wear what they want, especially in places where there is a lot of judgment.

Do you have any criteria for the brands you select for TSS? 
The items we sell in our shop are produced in small quantities by people who really care about what they do. We try and support local artisans and some objects are even made within a square mile radius of the store.
Others are made further afield, but we know we are having a positive impact. Our Maison Bengal bags are made by marginalized women in communities in Bangladesh, offering them a sustainable way out of poverty. Our selection ofjewelry is made in England, supporting traditional craftspeople and trades closer to home. We’re also really proud to stock a large proportion of items designed or made by women.

What does ‘community’ mean for you, and how do you experience this through your work?
For me, community is a collection of people working together and supporting each other. I’ve been awe struck by the support and companionship I’ve received from a lot of other independent stores in Brighton. We encourage each other in a way I’m not sure would be true of a bigger town or city. A good friend of mine, Laura, owns the shop Wolf and Gypsy just a street away, and there’s no competition or rivalry. I’m proud to belong to this little gang of strong females in Brighton. We’re doing something positive, and I hope our community continues to expand.

“The Yin Yang jacket is symbolic for me because I am a person of extremes, I can’t ever do anything by halves. So, therefore, the symbolism of the yin yang is a good reminder for me of the need for balance in my life. The jacket also works well stylistically for me because it’s cropped, so I can wear it with my high-waisted trousers or dresses.”

“Because I’m so tall, Milena offered to make the sleeves slightly longer for me. I love the way that this was possible; buying something direct from the artist means it can be tailored and made to fit perfectly. Sometimes I just look at my jacket and just admire its beauty: the way the circles are hand stitched, the different textures, the edging, I love it!”

A book -
Ballymaloe Cookery Course by Darina Allen.
When I was 18-years-old, I trained to be a cook on an organic farm in Ireland. Since then, I have amassed an enormous collection of cookery books. I received this one on graduating from the farm and it reminds me of the happiest time there, collecting raw milk from the cows in the morning and foraging for wild garlic

An artist -
Henry Moore

A plant -
Lemon Verbena. It is my favorite smell in the world, and also makes for the most delicious tea when added to boiling water. A reminder of how the simplest things can be the most perfect

A podcast -
Serial by This American Life. I found all three series fascinating

A song -
It Ain’t Me Babe by Bob Dylan. The song of my childhood, including memories of my dad and his friends on holiday playing their guitars while all of us sing along

A place - 
Where I live on the seafront, a little out of the center in Kemp Town: when I’m walking my dogs at dusk and the tide is out and the sky is pink and the sea is completely calm and there’s not another soul around

An item of clothing -
My red Caron Callahan jumpsuit from my store. The more I wear it the more I love it. Caron’s clothes are made for real women and for people who have normal lives. I have two dogs and spend a lot of time in the muddy, wet English countryside. I love my jumpsuit because I can wash it! I can wear it with trainers or make it smart. Pieces like this, I’ll treasure it forever, just like my MS jacket