We may already be halfway through the month but did you know it was second-hand September – an Oxfam campaign to ask people to shop secondhand for the whole month to prevent some of the 13 million clothing items that end up in landfill every week. Shall we pause and read that again. Thirteen.Million.Every.Week. Now while this, is obviously a place for furniture not clothes, I have long banged the drum for vintage furniture and set up the Do Less Harm Directory last year to champion brands who are taking steps to reduce their impact on the planet. Earlier this year I wrote a post on 10 Reasons Why You Need To Bring Brown Furniture into Your Home and today, armed with that knowledge, I thought we’d have a look around some places where you can buy lovely old things. Of course, the nature of a post like this means that by the time you get to it the thing I highlighted may have gone but there will be others. And while I’m on the subject I also wrote 10 Tips for Buying Vintage Furniture so now you really are all set.
One shop I have recently discovered is Ceraudo, founded in 2016 by sisters Emily and Victoria Ceraudo, who sell a mix of vintage and contemporary furniture. They recently launched their own collection, which has gone down a storm with the glossy magazine posse (quite rightly imho) including painted furniture and chairs. I have included this picture of the Livia bedside table because a) it’s pretty and b) the vintage pictures are cut outs (see below). And I appreciate that’s not part of the second hand September but sometimes you gotta have a good image. Current delights from their vintage collection include coloured glass – dressing table sets, canape sets and lots of vases as well as tables, French storage tins and some really good vintage prints.
I have long been a fan of The Peanut Vendor who often tend to have things you don’t see elsewhere and seriously these Joe Columbo chairs are a brilliant investment (£450 a chair). I would rather love them in my pink kitchen but I bought some mid century wooden chairs only last year so I can’t change again. Yet.
AU Bespoke is run by interiors stylist Anna Unwin (so you can trust she has a eye for a good piece) who has gathered a collection of antique, mid-century and vintage (that’s roughly in age order for you). It’s very tightly curated so if you like this look then it’s one to bookmark as the chances are you will like all of it but, equally, if you are looking for a pair of red Joe Columbo chairs this is not the place. For ease of wandering round the site – no price means it’s been sold/out of stock so no need to click. If you’re looking for something special to really bring (tasteful) character this is a good place to come. I featured Anna’s house last year when it was on the market.
Another old favourite is Lisa from Design Vintage, who also sells a mix of old and new. She buys these vintage cupboards from a family in Hungary who restore and paint them for her. You could take a leaf from the Ceraudo playbook and replace the glass with curtains for a more maximalist feel and if you’re looking for vintage fabrics try Etsy as often you might not need very much so it can be a good place to look for remnants or small amounts.
If you’re looking for mid-century seating and lighting then Lovely & Co is always a good place to start. There are always fibre glass Eames chairs, often a bit of Ercol or Robin Day, Tolix and Herman Miller to name a few. Lighting treasures include Anglepoise and Jielde and I spotted a Guzzino Faro the other day.
Talking of lighting Rob Laurie makes lovely lamps for Laurie Lamps often using vintage bases that he sources as well as taking commission. Below is a pair made from vintage biscuit tins, which would go rather well with the Joe Columbo chairs above….
Finally, and this may be stretching the secondhand slightly, I have just come across a new company called Print Sisters run by (sisters) Alex and Claudia Clinton-Kennedy who own a collection of vintage archive prints and fabrics dating back to the 1800s (one of the largest privately owned collections of textile design artworks). They have curated a collection of artworks celebrating craftsmanship throughout the decades and each piece has been reworked and revived and limited to 50 editions per design/ colourway. And it’s all printed on 100 per cent recycled and sustainable paper. Prices start at £45 for A3 (£35 for A4) and it’s such a good way to find something affordable, original and different for your walls, which is something else I wrote about recently (this is turning into a second hand blog post!) in a piece called Where Do You Buy Your Art. And they are offering 10 per cent off any purchases with the code M.A.T.H – do let me know if you buy any. I love this magic beans one below.