House Tour: The Pineapple Retro & Sophie’s Colourful Home
This week we are in the fabulous company of Sophie, owner of possibly the cutest online vintage store. The Pineapple Retro has a distinct visual online presence as Sophie’s product photography style is instantly recognisable … and just gorgeous! (In fact, I got completely lost in her store, mesmerised by all the loveliness, while looking for images for this post!).
Today she shares with us her stunning vibrant home, her love of happy orange … and her family roots in vintage collecting and selling.
How long have you been collecting vintage?
My parents were in the antique trade when I was growing up, so I’ve always been surrounded by old items I think? I wore vintage clothing at college and had vintage pieces of furniture at Uni (inherited from my mum).
Where does your love of vintage come from?
I spent a lot of time at my Grannies house growing up, and was fascinated by her classic 60s home. The vibrant turquoise carpet, G plan teak furniture and pieces of vibrant glassware. I think it was embedded in me without knowing.
How would you describe your own vintage style?
This would certainly describe my home as eclectic, Scandi space age I think? I couldn’t live true to one period, as love the random touches too much, but at the same time, I’m a big fan of crisp white with pops of colour and natural wood to warm it all up a bit?
What is your favourite era / maker?
I’d say 1960s. I love Kartell & Magistretti plastic furniture and Crayonne & Rosti for other plastic smalls.
You obviously have a passion for orange (and maybe yellow & green too?) … Can you tell us where that comes from, have you always had it and do you think you’d ever tire of it?
I think being in the vintage /retro trade we all probably have to have a love of orange? Mine appears to have exploded since getting my own home though. In the past I lived with someone who hated orange, so had a lot of repressed tangy-ness bubbling up I guess? I love the combinations, especially on a fresh white background, I can’t see myself ever going off the palette though, it’s far too happy.
Apart from colour, do you have any criteria for your own home? Or is it simply a gut reaction?
I love one off, quirky pieces, and maybe the unexpected? Giant advertising ice cream in the kitchen perhaps? I would hate to feel constrained to a style, so go with whatever makes me happy.
Do you have a favourite piece in your home?
I have a rediscovered love for my 1950s holiday camp sign (which I had professionally mounted onto an LED Lightbox) I’ve had it for years, but couldn’t find the right place in the house. It has just gone on the wall in the lounge in pride of place, so I can admire it when I sit on the sofa (even if Nigel the guinea pig did chew through the adapter cable yesterday, so once I’ve repaired that it will be shining bright again)!
When did you start The Pineapple Retro, and what was the impetus to do so?
Pineapple Retro (or Pineapple Ice Bucket Retro as it started) began in 2005. I had started selling my own vintage clothing on Ebay, then began going to jumble sales to look for more, then fabric, then homeware and furniture. My mum had an antique shop, and I had my own room within it to start with, and eventually a website. After a number of years, I took over the smaller shop next to my mums, and in the end, we swapped as I needed more space. Several website incarnations and a slight name change (dropped the PIB to become just PR) and it’s still going strong I’m proud to say.
You are obviously continuously sourcing items, is it difficult choose what to keep in your own home and what to sell in your shop?
It is hard as I try to never buy stock I don’t love myself (I like to genuinely be able to tell my customers how amazing an item is and be passionate), so inevitably I keep a lot. I do always try and have a swap around and move things on, albeit eventually.
What, if anything, has been your best or favourite find?
When I first started, and was still doing a lot of clothing and accessories, I remember going to our local car boot sale and finding a guy selling these this stack of brightly coloured high top trainers. They looked really 80s in style, but I didn't know for sure. They were all unused, with their boxes (also lurid flo pink and blue). The boxes said Art of Puma, but I wasn’t sure if they were genuine Puma or not? Well, I can’t remember what he had them up for, but with no other interest, I haggled and got I think 12 pairs of them for £100? a big gamble for me as a beginner. When I got them home, I discovered they were leather and genuine, dead stock from eh 80s! Needless to say, trainer collectors went a bit gooey and I was getting £100 a pair in the end.
Have you ever regretted selling something?
This is an easy one! I regret selling my huge Purple velvet sofa. It was Cadburys colour, long enough my toes couldn’t touch the end when I was laying down and in amazing condition, considering it was a genuine 1960s piece.
Is there a specific item that you would love to find but has so far eluded you?
I’d love some vintage plastic shelves - Umbo by Joe Colombo could do nicely!
Photo credits: All photos kindly provided by Sophie.