You only have to look at Pinterest or the shelves at your local newsagent to see how eclectic style and upcycling retro furniture and design have taken off over the last couple of years. Design devotees have been seeking and collecting items to add to their treasure trove for decades. I should know, my own family have been trading at antique fairs since the 1970s and my Mum is a wedding finder for those with a vintage theme. But where in Leeds can you pay homage to classic style in your homewares, not just your streetwear?
One new store in North Leeds has the answer. With a range of design expertise through their three founders, customers are guaranteed a whole host of vintage beauties – at prices to suit all pockets. Rather than trawling through bric-a-brac at your local carboot sale or charity shop (some people love it, but it’s not for everyone!) why not cut to the quick and visit Blackbird Vintage where all of your design dreams are answered?
We spoke to the owners about why they formed, how they choose their stock and what items await the people of our fair city…
Who are you and how did you get here?
We are a newly opened interiors shop in Moortown, offering an assortment of top quality vintage, retro, industrial and locally hand crafted furniture, homewares, and clothing.
Blackbird has been brought together by 3 of us. We’ve all got different skill sets and styles, but we’re united by a love of great design. There’s Cleveland Wilson Sewell, lover and collector of all things mid century modern, with an eye for art and an ear for jazz. Paul Williamson, a skilled designer carpenter, lover of all things industrial and salvaged, able to convert an old water tank into a stylish coffee table. And Heather Linnitt, a talented designer upholsterer. We decided to pool our talents to create an interior design store for people who appreciate good quality vintage and are looking for unique decorative pieces.
What do you offer that other places in Leeds don’t?
We have designed and curated our store very carefully to show the various styles of furniture, art and decorative accents off in their best light. We select only what we consider to be beautiful, well designed and quality vintage, so no kitsch or chintz allowed! We try to show our customers how to use vintage details in their home to add character and soul. We also offer a complete interior design package for people who love our style, having between us the skills to reimagine, redecorate, and reupholster.
What can customers expect from Blackbird Vintage?
Put simply, an ever changing collection of top quality, beautiful mid century furniture, art, ceramics, glass, industrial lighting, one off custom made armchairs and cushions, high end vintage clothing, and hand picked pieces by local designer makers.
What’s your favourite item in the shop at the moment?
A really stunning architect’s plan chest, a beautiful 1960s rosewood sideboard and a 1970s low, curvy modular chair reupholstered in a patchwork of tapestries. Just beautiful.
What do you think makes Leeds so awesome?
It’s got big city style, small city warmth and spirit.
Where in Leeds do you like to hang out?
We like to keep it local, so Chapel Allerton really has all we need. There’s The Mustard Pot, Seven Arts Centre, Further North and our new favourite The Woods!
Finally, describe Blackbird Vintage in three words…
Eclectic interior design.