When you find yourself in a new city it takes time to find those shops that you can repeatedly rely on. You know what I mean, a place that won’t sell you something, for an elevated price, that is going to fall apart as soon as the delivery guy squeezes it through your front door.

When I was looking for a vintage dining table, and possibly some other bits and pieces to furnish my new flat, my cousin told me to head toward the Inner West. I didn’t want to head there unprepared or miss anything, so I did a bit of research and found addVintage.

Originating from a large store in Queensland this little Sydney outpost has got me raving to my friends. It’s a family owned and run business with a very serious focus on customer satisfaction. They specialise in sourcing Parker, Chiswell and other mid-century furniture, then restoring it to its former glory. Mid-century furniture can be easily adapted and mixed with modern furniture to suit the majority of Australian homes. 

I found a little slimline Parker table that they were yet to restore and I insisted on having it. They did warn me there was some water damage to the table and in fact when they began restoring it, found it to be much worse than expected. They bent over backward to search the country for another table. In the meantime they sent over my beautifully reupholstered Parker dining chairs, in the colour of my choice from Warwick fabrics, and a dining table. I was happy to wait for the right table but they were more than apologetic for my wait and kept me updated with weekly emails on their progress.

Since then I have visited a few times gathering glasses (another bad obsession of mine), an orange butter dish, depression green jugs and lolly jars, a 1956 FRS Clemente print of The Red Skirt, and my new pride and joy, a large Spanish bullfighting print.

I can’t recommend a visit highly enough. If you don’t see what you are looking for, speak to Christina, the owner, she will let you know if she can source it or not. Their prices are reasonable and they are open to negotiation, but it’s mostly unnecessary. I don’t think you will find more honestly priced vintage goods anywhere else in Sydney.

So my beautiful slimline round, extendable Parker table arrives next week. I already have my eye out for a small buffet table. I’m sure it won’t be long and more furniture from addVintage will be finding a home at my place. I just wish I had a bigger flat!


117 Parramatta Road,



Contact No: 02 9560 8883

Opening Hours: Monday- Friday 11am-530pm

                                Thursday 11am-7pm

                                 Saturday 10am-6pm

                                 Sunday 11am-4pm

Owner: Christina Jaucian-Alaalatoa

Quintessential DuckeggBLUE

You have to get to this shop. Trust me when I say this. GO.

Quintessential duckeggBLUE owner, Leanne Carter-Taylor, travels to the UK, Europe and the USA repeatedly during the year to source interesting pieces for her shop. She does little to bring them up to their best, maybe a little polish but that is it. No new knobs on old draws, no painting bright colours on sideboard doors (which I detest), just carefully chosen pieces as they are.

This lady definitely has an eye for beautiful, as she calls them, found industrial and antique objects. She really makes an effort to find something different. You step into her shop and your eyes are flooded with beauty, the French oak dining table made from reclaimed carriage wood, the 1920’s French art deco worn leather chairs, the pharmacist cabinet and the steel dentists draws. I want them all!

I don’t think I really need to say much, the pictures speak for themselves.

A few shops along there is also duckeggBLUE the fashion shop. The shops are an extension of the other with the shop fittings for duckeggBLUE coming from quintessential. Beautiful well sourced clothes from Paris, Copenhagen, LA and New York. You will find a mix of comfortable classics and quality everyday wear. Soft jersey t-shirts from Paris and edgy of-the-moment J Brand Houlihans from America.

If you live near Balmain, I’m sure you know the shop well. If you don’t, you had better get in your car and start driving.

497/489 Darling Street, Balmain, NSW. 2041

All photos are under copyright, used here with permission and sent to me by Leanne Carter-Taylor, owner of both duckeggBLUE and quintessential duckeggBLUE

Vintage Heaven and Cake Hole

Have you ever walked into a shop and thought you landed in Heaven??  Vintage Heaven is like that for me….

Piles and piles of vintage crockery, kitchenalia, linens and books. There is so much stock I find myself having to do several laps around the shop, just to be sure I haven’t missed something.  Apparently this is just the tip of the iceberg. They have a huge store in the basement of endless quirky little teacups, teapots, colourful vases, plates, napkins, and cutlery. Unfortunately you can’t go down there, probably just as well. Vintage Heaven rents out alot of stock for weddings, birthdays, and photoshoots too.  You pay a deposit (refunded when the goods are returned) with an additional 10% of the value of the goods which goes to a Tibetan charity.  They also supplied Nigella Lawson with crates full of stuff for her latest book, Kitchen.

Then when you manage to make your way to the back of the shop a little surprise awaits,  Cake Hole.Cake Hole is run by bubbly Louise.  It’s a family affair since her mother, Margaret, manages Vintage Heaven. The cafe has just had a new lick of paint, and some rearranging to open up the area, but it still has a comfy feeling about it. It serves great tea (from £1.50) and scones (£2.50 each) at a reasonable price.

They also serve simple sandwiches and cakes. Louise makes the cakes herself, they still need a bit of tweaking, but she is onto it, constantly changing recipes to get things just right.  Coffee is supplied by Monmouth and teas will be by The Drury Company. They also hire out the cafe for events such as baby showers.

So while your sitting having a pot of tea you can peruse the shelves of cups, saucers and teapots in the cafe, which are all for sale.  I was quite taken by all the vintage wall mirrors (gave me a few ideas of my own). Cake Hole is a cosy place to have a break from the heaving crowds of Columbia Rd Flower market on a Sunday. It is also open on Saturday, which is much quieter, as you can see.

I never leave Vintage Heaven without a rather large stash. I have heard husbands have banned their wives from the place! I will be impressed if you can come out empty handed.


Vintage Heaven and Cake Hole

82 Columbia Road,

London, E2 7BQ

Open Saturday from 1200-1800 and Sunday from o830-1700.