Renovating their Victorian home with vintage furnishings and homewares led to a new business idea for photographers Chloe Beattie and Dale Broome
Step inside the elegant five bedroom Victorian property owned by Chloe and her partner Dale and it’s clear to see just how much this creative duo love interiors.
As freelance photographers, they have an eye for design. Take the living room, with its 1950s style sofa, G-Plan coffee table, Hacker turntable and John Lennon print by Manchester artist Arthur Delaney. You’ll find a French vintage soda syphon from the 1930's in the dining room and the graphic tea cups on canvas is Chloe’s work, whilst the classic feel in the reception room is characterized by the antique Louis style Chesterfield.
The house is filled with an eclectic mix of mid-century/modern pieces – savvy finds that make strong style statements. “Working as photographers has given us the confidence to buy things we like without conforming to any given stereotype”, says Chloe.
Before the couple moved in, the property was anything but stylish. The three-storey Manchester house had been neglected and was shabby and dated. “Dale and I spent two months clearing rubbish, cleaning carpets and redecorating downstairs to make it livable before moving in during July 2010”,’ remembers Chloe.
Once installed, the couple gradually carried out the renovations. Dale re-sited the main bathroom to a more convenient location on the second floor and added a further en-suite to complete a guest bedroom. In time, original decorative features were reinstalled to help rekindle the period character, old rotting windows were replaced, walls re-plastered and a new Shaker kitchen installed.
“We’d ideally love to put back sash windows and have a Herringbone parquet floor throughout the downstairs, but this is a long term project, so we’re happy to wait”, enthuses Chloe.
In the meantime, Dale has also recently set up a new interiors venture called Raspberry Mash, which he runs alongside his photography work. And besides his childhood library of original Beano comics and die cast cars, their house is a temporary home to plenty more nostalgic purchases for his online retro, vintage and collectables store.
”My parents we’re avid collectors, my Dad specialized in military vehicles and memorabilia”, says Dale. “I’d visit car shows and vintage fairs with them, which is perhaps how I picked up the collecting bug!”
When they are not on location with photography clients, Chloe and Dale set up pop up stalls at local fairs and shows, both to sell and buy further stock. ”Luckily we’ve got similar tastes in furniture and furnishings and we’re both passionate about vintage”, says Dale.
Chloe agrees, “it’s so much more than a business – more a lifestyle – and a great way to indulge our combined design tastes. We can’t help falling in love with classic and collectable items that have their own stories to tell”.
Words by Vikki Elias, Photographs by Chloe Beattie and Dale Broome. Taken from the February 2014 Issue of Heart Home magazine.