When we started this Merchant & Found gig a few years ago, we were driven by our passion (polite way of saying obsession!) for some of the famous makers in the furniture and lighting world, principally the makers that were born at the turn of the Twentieth Century, the industrial pioneers. We had some knowledge but have been stunned and delighted to discover so many amazing makers we just didn’t know about. If you take bentwood chairs as an example, we knew Thonet and Ton really well, but we hadn’t heard of Baumann, Fischel or Luterma and uncovering this history has (along with meeting so many amazing customers and suppliers) been one of our greatest pleasures over the last few years. Google is a pretty useful tool but you have to dig deep and really unpick the history to put it all together, we are talking huge industrial producers who were major contributors to the development of the home interiors over the last one hundred or so years, yet their history is almost gone and forgotten. The list goes on, Benjamin lighting, Esavian, Strafor, Fibrocit or Evertaut, just to name a few. We have honed our mission, we want to champion these amazing makers, we want to sell their vintage products but we want to champion their history and provenance along side everything we sell. Why just buy a vintage chair, why not sit on a chair with history, a chair with a makers mark, a survivor of an incredible phase in our industrial history.
We have a romantic core so uncovering these old makers has definitely got a bit of an Indiana Jones vibe (we kid ourselves honestly) but it does feel like that, finding dusty old catalogues, crawling under piles of chairs to find the makers label and simply just hunting out this history. These makers made some incredible products and it just seems a travesty that this history might be lost so our simple mission is to do our best to authenticate pieces, to unearth the history, to record it and share it. We have a crazy romantic notion that one day we might put it all in a book, but one step at a time.
So what’s the ‘next phase’ we hear you ask? Simple, we love vintage but above and beyond that we love these makers and what they stand for and step by step we want to tell their wider story, not just the ones that have sadly stopped trading but (drum roll…) we want to start discussing the makers that have survived. So without further ado we are incredibly proud and excited to say we are now working with two amazing French makers that have survived and are still trading today, Tolix and Nicolle. Put simple we want to champion these brands, to tell the brand story, to be the best place to come and buy vintage Tolix and Nicolle but also to sell brand new (just made) genuine Tolix and Nicolle. Yes we love their vintage products but above all what we love is their incredible products, their history, their drive to survive and we want to be part of that. So from today, we are official distributors of these two incredible brands. We have a huge amount of work to do with our website but over the coming weeks and months we will be loading all the contemporary products that Tolix and Nicolle make today and you won’t be surprised to hear that of course they still produce their iconic classics but they also keep driving their brands forward working with new bold designers to keep creating great products for the next one hundred years.
Over the coming weeks and months we will share more insight in to these incredible makers, their history and their current product range but in the meantime if you want a Tolix or Nicolle product we can supply you both vintage products and anything from their current ranges. Until we have the full product ranges loaded on our website please contact us and we will do our best to help supply you with any product from these two incredible firstname.lastname@example.org
With best wishes
Merchant & Found