Question: What do cheerful dancing skeletons, beautifully decorated skulls and artist Frida Kahlo have in common?

Answer: They all appear on Gosh! & Absolutely’s gorgeous range of Mexican ‘Day of the Dead’ inspired lampshades, cushions and accessories!

Day of the Dead’ (‘Día de los Muertos’) is a Mexican holiday where people come together to celebrate the lives of deceased family members and friends. It falls on 31st Oct to 2nd Nov, and the Day of the Dead is technically the third day of the celebrations.  The occasion isn’t sombre or depressing; people gather at gravesides to reminisce, share fun memories and pray for their loved ones. They also leave offerings of food, candles and sugar skulls. Frida Kahlo was a hugely popular Mexican artist who is celebrated during this holiday. Sugar skull representations of Kahlo feature her famous mono-brow.

You could be forgiven for thinking that the ‘Day of the Dead’ directly relates to Halloween, given the time of year that it falls, and because recently it has become a popular costume choice for parties and trick-or-treating. However, it is believed that the celebration is Aztec in origin, possibly dating back 3000 years! It has evolved over time, like many celebrations throughout the world, to become the occasion it is today.

Although our Day of the Dead ranges will feature in our Halloween shop window this October, customers enjoy our lampshades, cushions and lanterns all year round. Our most popular seller by far is our ‘Baile de Muertos’ cushion featuring Alexander Henry ‘Baile De Calaveros’ and ‘Las Golondrinas’ fabric in Tea and Eggplant (aubergine to us Brits!). My own favourite is our new range of lanterns with gorgeous Calavera Sugar Skulls fabric by David Textiles.

Pop along to the shop later in October to see our fabulous display!


Well, it has certainly been an exciting few weeks for Gosh! & Absolutely. We have been busy rewiring, stitching, sticking and generally crafting because on Friday 19th August we opened a shop! Much as we love doing craft fairs there comes a point when the appeal of running a hobby business in this way wears a little thin (that point is when you are literally hanging on to your gazebo in a howling gale and don’t have enough spare hands to catch your falling stock). We will still be doing the odd fair because of course we want to spread the ‘ban the beige’ message far and wide (or at least across East Cornwall and West Devon).

Our new shop is based in The House that Jack Built, an arcade of independent businesses in Plymouth’s historic Barbican area. The House that Jack Built has been around since the 1980s and many Plymothians have fond memories of the fairytale scenes in the corridors between the shops. We are situated towards the rear of the arcade facing The Parade and are just a stone’s throw from Sutton Harbour – dangerously close to all the ice-cream parlours, fudge retailers and fish and chip shops the area has to offer.

Anyway, many lovely people came to join us for the opening and we were touched by the messages of support we received – not least from all our neighbours in The House that Jack Built.

We hope many of you will be able to visit us soon.

Opening times:

Monday – Closed
Tuesday – Closed
Wednesday – 10:30-16:30
Thursday – 10:30-16:30
Friday – 10:30-16:30
Saturday – 10:30-16:30
Sunday – 11:00-16:00