It was hairdresser Tom Kjørsvik who came up with the idea of completely renewing this previously quiet and rather dull street, Øvre Holmegate. Kjørvik's vision was to pump some new and much-needed life into the street, a process that proved to be a lengthy one; it lasted more than four years. The artist Craig Flannagan created the colour scheme for the painting of the houses and the plan had to be approved by landlords and the city council, a process not necessarily done in a flash. The new colours did eventually come into place though, and it truly livened up the street.
From overlooked to a tourist icon
At first, many people were sceptical of the bright colour palette when the project was finally approved by the council. However, scepticism quickly turned to enthusiasm once the finished project was a fact. Øvre Holmegate is now one of the major attractions in Stavanger. Locals call the street Fargegaten (the street of colours). The street was further closed to car traffic in 2005, and it has since been a pedestrian street with life and vibrance. Cafes, bars and shops were established over the years, providing a draw for visitors.
Niche shopping, cordial pubs, a hairdresser and a barbershop
In Fargegaten, you get to act like a typical tourist with your selfie stick if you please; the street is probably one of the most Instagram-friendly places in Stavanger. However, exploring doesn't end there. Fittingly, there are colourful shops here with colourful people; such as dress shops Den Syvende Himmel or Kjoledamen. Or do you like to sew? There is even a sewing shop. You can furthermore fix your hair at a hairdresser or maybe have your hipster beard shaved in a real barbershop. If you are a little more fearless, you may get a tattoo as well. All possible in the colourful street. After your credit cards are all maxed out, you can sit down and just enjoy life at one of the cosy, pleasant cafes or bars. A mug of coffee or tea, a glass of a local brew or a good vintage wine. #fargegaten here we come!