little birdie

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RE-found objects, Corbridge

It's no secret that I love an interiors store. Especially if it's vintage orientated and teamed with unique finds. It's a style I love and how I envisage my home will come together - merging great collectable items with prints, textiles and lighting. A little bit boho, yet effortlessly simple too. I have been dreaming of visiting RE for quite some time. I've seen the beautiful homewares and eclectic finds turn up in many interiors magazines and blogs over the years and have previously made purchases from the website but I hadn't been to the actual store. As we were heading back to Yorkshire from our camping adventures, it wasn't too much of a detour to travel to the town of Corbridge and pop in.

Corbridge is a beautiful place with picturesque cottages and a thriving independent shopping scene. There are lots of handmade jewellery stores, ceramics, a stunning bakery (which of course we went into!), a lovely little greengrocers and a really cosy bookshop. (I actually looked in the estate agent windows as I quite fancy moving there, but the husband is not having it!). There are also lots of sweet little pavement cafes and the pubs were all decorated with huge floral hanging baskets. It's all very charming yet feels completely authentic.

The biggest challenge in Corbridge is finding RE. It's tucked away behind a petrol station down a narrow alleyway. We searched around for a while before declaring that we couldn't find it and asked in the bookshop. Two minutes later we were there. So my tip is, follow the sign for free parking if you are in the car. It's over the bridge with the traffic lights. Walk back to the town and at the top of the hill turn right, walk past the Angel Inn, and then you will see the A board sign for the store. RE is housed in an old converted industrial warehouse which feels down to earth and much like it's selling philosophy, it's a repurposed and completely unique environment. There are areas divided by screens and even sheds to mark out sections for kitchen, garden, china, toiletries, stationery and haberdashery. 

Simon and Jenny, the owners,  have created a shopping environment that's bold and inspiring.  There are hidden treasures around every corner and they have sourced amazing pieces from around the world. They search for items that are just that little bit different, big and small but all fit with the aesthetics of the store. The Mexican Day of the Dead products were one of my favourite things to photograph, especially those Papier Mache Skulls in the cabinet. There is a lot of kitschy religious iconography that I found fun too although I wouldn't bring it into my own home. 

I was especially taken with the lighting in the store - some seriously gorgeous clamp lamps like the ones above and that chrome floor lamp in the very top image. I could happily have taken them all home, yet have no where for them to go! And the vintage Welsh blankets - say no more. I wanted them all too. 

Kitchenalia sits happily amongst utility products. There is a gorgeous range of French cotton striped tea towels all neatly stacked in industrial pigeon hole shelving. Gorgeous little espresso cups in earthy colours left me drooling. I'm still kicking myself for not buying them. And the vintage chocolate moulds and madeleine tins were simply stunning. There are cookie cutters galore in all shapes and sizes, beautiful coloured glassware and dinner plates emblazoned with butterflies, flowers and even skeletons .  But alas, my kitchen is a mess after the new boiler was installed the other week and it now needs to be ripped out and replaced. So no buying any tableware or accessories until that happens!

In the garden section and outside the store there are some great vintage tools and flower pots to be had as well as packets of heritage seeds. Rusty metal numbers and letters make perfect interior or exterior decorations. There are more French stripes by way of deckchairs, stools and old stacking chairs. Seaside inspiration also comes from silk memento cushions with images of classic seaside resorts and sea salt soaps and hand creams. 

I don't think I've even covered half of what they have on display here. There is so much more than what I've shown - beautiful French soaps, cards, stationery, quirky accessories - you just have to go see for yourself. I spent a gorgeous hour browsing and photographing the store. I chatted to joint owners, Simon and Jenny about the history of RE, their philosophy and how they source their products. Both are so friendly and down to earth and clearly passionate about what they do and sell. Next week they head to Paris to find more new products for the store. I can't wait to see what they come up with. 

I came out with a wishlist as long as my arm. Although I did make a few little purchases including one of those baskets above. Well, it would have been rude not to, they are just so darned beautiful.