Family run furniture up-cycling shop Pretty Shabby 101 moves to new Blyth town centre home

Vintage furniture restoration shop Pretty Shabby 101 has relocated to a new town centre shop in Blyth.
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The shop, now on Bridge Street, sells refurbished furniture and home accessories, as well as accepting commissions to collect, restore, and return customers’ own items.

Claire Goodwill, who owns Pretty Shabby with her husband Michael Harriott, said the business was “ready to take the next step.”

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She said: “It is very rewarding but like any business you work seven days a week to make it work.

Pretty Shabby 101's new location on Bridge Street. (Photo by Pretty Shabby 101)Pretty Shabby 101's new location on Bridge Street. (Photo by Pretty Shabby 101)
Pretty Shabby 101's new location on Bridge Street. (Photo by Pretty Shabby 101)

“We are very much people people, so it is nice to have customers come in.

“It is nice to have that interaction with people and turn something that is a bit old and tired into something that is having a second life.”

In 2017 Claire up-cycled some chairs in the garden with her daughter and the hobby “just kind of spiralled.”

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The 48-year-old said: “We started with little projects that we tried to put on Facebook and build up from there.

“During lockdown things went quite crazy because obviously a lot of shops were shut. We were doing drop offs and pickups from people's front doors.”

The family relocated around this time, and renovating their new Blyth home and acquiring their own new furniture helped Claire, a former school leader, to hone her skills.

She said: “Once lockdown was over we thought we were ready to make the next steps, so we bought a van.

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“We stopped doing it in our house because the house was finished by then and it seemed such a shame to be moving furniture around and painting in the house.”

Pretty Shabby opened a shop on Stanley Street, where its growth over the past 18 months soon justified moving onto the main road.

Thanks to the new shop, they will be able to conduct workshops to teach people the skills they need to up-cycle, which Claire says is “using my teacher skills in a different way.”

Claire hopes they are bringing something positive that will improve Blyth’s town centre.

She said: “I feel like we are bucking the trend a little bit but I hope that things are on the turn, from being a Blyth citizen myself all my life.”

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