The Bishy Weigh
One of the reasons I opened The Bishy Weigh was because I was frustrated at how difficult it was to avoid plastic food packaging. I decided to put my skill-set and experience to good use in opening a shop that would make plastic-free shopping more accessible in my local community.
I feel strongly that what the world needs now is not a small minority of people striving for an ethically or environmentally perfect life; we need for everyone to just do what they can within their means. Even one small lifestyle change takes us one more step towards a more sustainable future.
That is why at The Bishy Weigh we aim to offer as many plastic-free ingredients and products as we can, and work with neighbouring shops to the same ends, to help customers find the plastic-free swaps that work for their lifestyles and budgets.
The French House
As if you needed more reasons to source vintage and antiques, not only are they often beautiful and stylish, never go out of fashion, and create a uniqueness, but they are also one of the lowest carbon footprint ways to shop, furnish and decorate your home. As consumers, we are much more aware about sustainability when shopping for food and fashion, but now this awareness has hit interiors too. What more ethical way to style a space than to reuse gorgeous timbers into a bespoke table, or take that 200-year-old tatty armchair and transform it into something contemporary that reflects your personality?
Unique furniture for the home, whether they’re antiques, retro or one-off designed pieces, have always been popular, but people’s attitude towards their impact on the environment has changed. Therefore, the appeal to buy antiques is growing, as nothing needs to be produced, maybe just restored; this in turn is providing traditional trades like upholstery, cabinet makers, metal workers and artists an opportunity to keep these highly skilled industries going.
The French House in York have been upcycling beautiful pieces since we began trading 25 years ago. We are a family business that boasts one of the largest ranges of French antiques in the UK, ranging from the 17th to 20th Century; sourcing the hard to find, restoring the past its best. There is a workshop, upholstery service, bespoke pieces, and restoration of painted items by local York artists; we employ more than a dozen local tradespeople to restore and renovate.
People enjoy hearing the history of their purchases, enabling the story to be passed on. A late 19th century cupboard comes out of a textile factory office in France and is transformed into a kitchen cupboard. A late 1800’s pillow armchair arrives from France a little bit ‘cat attacked’ and is turned by a customer’s vision into sumptuous red. The upholsterer uses traditional methods to strengthen the frame, re-spring, stuff and recover. Many pieces are displayed in their original condition, so that customers can determine how much pieces are upcycled or not. These are all methods of providing more ethical and sustainable ways of shopping.