RE, a hard-to-pin-down 'found object', vintage and recycled design company, first pricked my interest as they're based in the tiny, picturesque village of Corbridge, Northumberland, where my mum (and former Sunderland manager, Steve Bruce) is from.
Then, following their pop up in Liberty, my favourite department store, last year it was announced they would be opening a permanent 4th floor store-in-store space this March and I just had to find out more.
Their eclectic mix of products, sourced both locally and from around the world, reflects the personal tastes of RE's owners and former fashion designers Simon Young and Jenny Vaughan. Simon tells me, "We both love second hand things - stuff with a history that's had a life but still has a good future. I love Victorian etched glasses, disaster glasses and beer glasses and have a love of old religious artefacts, statues of Saints and other religious paraphernalia, but I also have lots of new things that we sell at home too - biblical plates & mugs, coloured French glasses etc. Jenny has a fabulous collection of vintage textiles, trimmings and embroidery and a big collection of Chippendale glass from the 1920's and 30's which we also sell online"
"We sell a lot of vintage pressed glass - cake stands, jugs and bowls. American green milk glass cake stands. And our own design REgd. plates and mugs. In the store we also sell a lot of larger pieces of furniture."
In addition to their Northumberland HQ, RE are set to open a London base with a permanent 700 sq ft store-in-store space on the 4th floor of prestigious department store Liberty this March. Simon explains, "We were approached by the fabulous furniture and homeware buyer at Liberty in early 2011 about running a pop up store from April to August that year. It was really exciting and gave us the opportunity to showcase our style and products - and luckily it was a huge success! Following on from the pop up, they approached us about having a permanent satellite store in Liberty and we open in March 2012. Obviously we are REally excited about working together again, not only are the team at Liberty great, the store is also a good fit with our design ethos. We will have our own dedicated space, and staff, so we can cREate our own RE environment within Liberty - a fabulous showcase for customers who can't make it up to our Northumberland store."
Aside from making the RE satellite store as interesting and exciting as their store up North, Simon says he and Jenny have a few more tricks up their sleeves, "We are also expanding our own REgd. product range more and more - creating and developing new products is very important for both of us and a great way to differentiate RE."
RE offer a host of amazingly cheap and reasonably priced unique homeware items and great gifts (my favs are the butterfly plates, Mexican Day of the Dead tealight holders and the vintage whiskey glasses all pictured above) and, of course, it's always nice to be able to support British business. You can visit the original RE store, which is only half an hour from Newcastle, at Bishops Yard, Main Street, Corbridge, Northumberland, NE45 5LA or check out the website at www.re-foundobjects.com.