Since opening last year in June, the little bookshop is really blooming. Ann-Marie has created a lovely space for kids and adults alike and her well stocked shelves (at rather surprisingly competitive prices) are exciting to explore.
The children's nook in The Mad Hatter's Bookshop - image courtesy of EJ Daniel
Ann-Marie, amongst other things, is a talented artist and illustrator and painted the troupe l'ceil mural on the rear wall of the shop. A captivating image of rolling green hills, forests and a fairy castle which completes the children's reading nook and along with little log cushions, mushrooms and all sorts of forest friends, one could imagine one just might meet the Gruffalo, or a mouse at least...
Children delight in the space created for them - image courtesy of EJ Daniel
The Mad Hatter's Bookshop prides itself on its collection of books by local authors and illustrators, in fact when I popped in one morning I was thrilled to find our very own Michelle Worthington sitting behind the counter!
Local Author Michelle Worthington with one of her children's books - image courtesy of EJ Daniel
One of the most exciting offerings our new bookshop brings to the Bayside area are fabulous kid's activities and workshops. The bookshop took over the old yacht brokerage and now has an adjacent craft and activity room in which to hold classes. The first week of the Easter School Holiday Timetable is out now and every day has an activity to get along to. Cost varies from free up to $25, places are limited and fill up quickly, so don't hesitate!
Week 1 Easter School Holiday Timetable of Activities - image courtesy Ann Marie Finn
The bookshop is practically overflowing with great gifts ideas to suit any budget. There are all sorts of handmade cards, toys and useful knick knacks that can make last minute present buying a breeze. Not that I ever leave my gift buying to the last minute!
Toys and unique gift ideas abound - image courtesy EJ Daniel
The Mad Hatter's Bookshop has been beautifully appointed and provides a lovely shopping experience for almost anyone. Kids are well catered for and even the adults get a cosy chair to curl up in if they wish. It has become my go-to store for many of my presents now, not only for the peaceful shopping experience (my kids can play in the kid's corner while I browse), but for all the beautiful books and gifts available.
A little reading chair for adults as well - image courtesy of EJ Daniel
And so, what is the difference between a raven and a writing desk?
This is perhaps the most famous unanswered riddle in literary history, posed to Alice by the Mad Hatter himself and when Alice gives up he says he hasn't the slightest idea! Carroll eventually answered it in his nonsensical style in the preface to the 1896 edition, saying "Because it can produce a few notes, tho they are very flat; and it is never put with the wrong end in front!"