Selling Antique Lighting
The third instalment in my series on our mission at Ashby Interiors – Buy, Restore, Sell.
When Ashby Interiors was born, we had our heart set on an online shop selling our restored antique lighting and aviation antiques. Some people advised that if we sold online, it may be difficult to show our lights to full effect. Others expressed what an absolute nightmare it would be to post fragile lighting.
These were both valid points! We ensure that each item we list in our online shop has photos showing the item from several different angles. So, a vintage Holophane light will have not just a photo of the full item but also one of the Holophane Gallery, showing the Holophane stamp and one of the profile of the light. Then the description will give more details plus the size and weight of the item. It is so important to give the size because it is tricky to gauge this from the photo alone and some styles of light come in several different sizes.
As far as safe packaging goes, we really do pride ourselves on careful packing following a system we have fine-tuned over the years. A delicate Art Deco white glass light will be cocooned safely inside a nest of bubble wrap and loose fill and protected by a strong box.
This year, with the dreadful Covid-19 pandemic, we have been able to return swiftly to online trading pretty much as normal. Theo Paphitis spoke on the news recently, saying that in his opinion, the pandemic has fast forwarded shopping practices by five years. Those who have previously chosen not to shop online have had their hand forced in some ways to give it a go…and they have liked it. Click and collect, previously an option, has now become mandatory in some shops.
Before the pandemic we would welcome customers to our
workshop by appointment. Some shoppers prefer
to see things at close hand and that is absolutely fine by us. We have such a large range of unrestored
stock that this can be ideal for those who aren’t sure what they want. You may love the Art Nouveau chandelier but
aren’t so sure about the glass shades which are shown on the online
listing. We can change these at request. We have a huge selection of vintage glass
shades and also hand blown glass shades in traditional Art Nouveau styles. Contact us to make an appointment if you want
to receive the personal shopper service!
We can of course do this same service via email and will send photos of
options for consideration.
Our new stock will often be showcased on Instagram and Facebook shortly before it is for sale. Check out Ashby_Interiors restored antique lighting on Instagram. We are happy to sell via this platform too and will reserve an item without obligation if you send a quick message.
Would I like a bricks and mortar shop? Of course I would! I often have a day-dream of having a shop in our local town of Melbourne, Derby and displaying our beautiful antique lighting in the window for everyone to see. Maybe one day we will do this. A pop-up shop is a definite possibility… but for now, we will continue to pour 100% of our heart and soul into our online shop and social media. This way we can take orders and talk to customers wherever we may happen to be in the world. Our online shop is open for business 24/7 365 days a year (no wonder I’m tired!)
For us, online selling doesn’t mean that we don’t connect with our customers. We love it when you pick up the phone or exchange emails on different lighting solutions we can offer.
Take a look at our new stock at www.ashbyinteriors.co.uk and give us a shout if you see anything you like.