Hi, if you don’t know me, I’m Cathy, the creator, curator and owner of Bonny and Blithe. Bonny and Blithe was established in January 2014 and began trading at vintage fairs across the north west of England, selling beautiful vintage homewares. I’ve scoured the country, every week to bring you gorgeous vintage treasures and send them all over the world.
Over the last 8 years Bonny and Blithe has evolved with our customers’ needs many times, from opening our shop in leafy south Liverpool, to closing and selling purely online and selling on many different platforms; Etsy, Tictail, eBay, Facebook groups and finally here, with our beautiful website. More recently we have expanded our range to include vintage style cutlery and serve wares and delicious teas in stunning, vintage style caddies. We’ve had so many exciting times finding special pieces for you but the last few years, as for many small businesses, have been a rollercoaster to say the least.
First the UK left the EU following the Brexit referendum, this brought new regulations for us when selling to our customers in the EU and made it more difficult and costly for them to shop with us. Then the pandemic hit, which brought it’s own set of problems, with much of the country shut down for long periods and at times with travel banned, made it extremely difficult for us, as a vintage business to get out on the road to source treasures for you as normal. With much of international travel effectively banned, came planes grounded and airfreight options extremely limited. This led to fewer international shipping options for overseas customers, higher costs and longer timescales and although many of those issues are now resolved, the cost of international shipping has not returned to pre-pandemic levels. And now in 2022, we see a conflict in Europe that is having not only devastating impacts on the people directly affected but has also had economic repercussions around the globe. Costs rising in almost all sectors, significantly in energy and petrol and those costs are being felt by small businesses like mine.
The last few years for many small business owners have been mentally and emotionally exhausting and I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to take a step back for a little while. So what does that mean for Bonny and Blithe, will we be closing? Well, no is the short answer but there will be changes. With increased costs I’ve taken the decision to close our rented business premises and work from home and as my home is very small, this means I have less space to hold stock. With significantly increased petrol prices, this means travelling to source vintage stock is also significantly more expensive. Those two factors combined mean that going forward, for the time being at least, Bonny and Blithe will no longer be stocking vintage pieces or ceramics of any kind. We’ll continue to stock our pretty cutlery and lovely tea tins but once our current sale stock is sold, we will not add any more.
Our sale will continue into early July, I don’t have a fixed end date yet but we will move out of our business premises by the end of July and packing that up will take a couple of weeks. So now is the time to grab those sale items if you don’t want to miss out!
It’s been an incredible 8 years, culminating in a long-held dream to create my own made in England bone china collection, Princess. Will I ever return to selling ceramics? One thing I’ve learned over the last 8 years, is to never say never, opportunities often present themselves when you least expect them!
I want to say a huge thank you to so many of you who have enjoyed the journey with Bonny and Blithe over the last 8 years and I hope you’ll continue to enjoy whatever the future holds.
And now it’s time for a cup of tea.