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Pre-loved homewares rise, vintage-sourcing services emerge

  • Written by Weekend Times

With environmental consciousness on the rise, and cost pf living pressures continuing, the popularity of second-hand homewares is increasing, with new online vintage and preloved homewares stores popping up. DarlingJames (www.darlingjames.com.au ) is one of these, with an online store offering a range of one-of-a-kind, sustainable, affordably priced, quality items - plus a personal buyer service to help locate unique and dream pieces to finish off your home, or as meaningful gifts for birthdays, anniversaries, and special occasions.

Founder of DarlingJames, Jess Darlington-Brown said: “Buying vintage and pre-loved homewares can help us achieve the unique and personal touch that we all strive for when decorating our homes, and it is much more eco-friendly – helping to lessen the amount of homewares going to landfill plus reducing the need for trees to be cut down and manufacturing to create brand new items.”

“Vintage homewares are often made with higher-quality materials too, which means they can stand the test of time and are more durable than modern pieces – which are often made with cheaper materials,” Jess added.

One study by Carbon Clear found that pre-loved furniture - vintage and antiques - has a carbon footprint 16 times lower than modern furniture.

Research from Statista shows furniture and household goods are the third most popular category of second-hand items purchased in Australia, after clothing, and bags and accessories. And a 2022 survey by Statista looking at Aussie’s online shopping habits found that 40 percent of respondents would consider buying second hand office furniture online, while 38 percent would consider buying second hand home décor or dining tables online, and 35 percent would consider buying antiques and collectibles online. 

Jess Darlington-Brown, started DarlingJames with a focus on inspiring and connecting people with pre-loved vintage wares, which are more sustainable, plus bring with them incredible unique style and their own story. As well as hunting items around Australia, Jess will spend four months in Europe each year – departing for London in July 2023 - scouting markets, bric-a-brac and vintage stores, as well as antiques dealerships, to find special pieces to add to the DarlingJames online collection, and to hunt down pieces sought by personal buying clients.

A silver antique toast and egg holder uncovered at the Portobello Road Markets in London, silver napkin rings discovered in a London antiques market, a stunning silver plated jug found at a vintage shop in Bathurst, copper goblets and bowls sourced from a beautiful antiques store in the Blue Mountains, crystal champagne glasses and buckets from an antiques sale in regional Victoria antiques, and original artworks and prints from the United Kingdom and France are just some of the incredible items in the range.

Framed vintage vinyls also available from DarlingJames, as well as a source-and-frame vinyl service making it easy to select your favourite vintage vinyl and have DarlingJames source it, professionally frame it, and ship it to your door – with Jess Darlington-Brown explaining that iconic album art brings with it a sense of nostalgia and transportation back in time.

Every item from DarlingJames online store has its own story, prices start from $30, and free shipping is offered Australia-wide for all orders over $150.

From mid-July to mid-November 2023, Jess will be based in the UK, firstly in London near Portobello Road Market then the Cotswolds while popping around markets throughout Britain, the UK and mainland Europe on buying trips.

Have you considered buying online vintage or preloved homewares?

Visit darlingjames.com.au or follow @darlingjameshome on Insta.