Catherine, the owner of Granny’s Attic, gives a new lease of life to pre-loved furniture! Whilst she stocks a small selection of upcycled furniture on her online shop, she mainly takes commissions to restore second-hand or inherited items, giving them some love and creating something truly bespoke. This includes transforming woodwork by varnishing or painting and by renewing upholstery. This means that furniture that may otherwise end up in landfill is given a second chance, so that it can continue to be used for many years to come!
The name of her business came from her original plan to repair furniture in her attic (lugging heavy furnitu
re up into the attic proved to be far less practical than she’d hoped!), and being inspired by her Granny, who was from the make-do-and-mend era. What started out as a favour for a friend to upcycle some dining chairs, led to her pursuing furniture restoration as a business!
We asked Catherine some questions:
What do you need to consider to ensure your business is as sustainable as possible?
- I offer recycled textiles, and recycle any offcuts of fabric, where possible
- I order bespoke cut foam for seat cushions to avoid waste
- I encourage use of naturally fire-retardant fabrics (like wool), to avoid use of chemicals (note that there are fire regulations in place to protect fabrics, so protective chemicals are often required); natural fabrics also biodegradable
What do you love about running your business?
“I love working on furniture that has sentimental value, and items that have wonderful memories associated with them. I also love work with the customer to capture the essence of the original piece, but that suits their taste and style.”
And finally, what do you love about Birmingham?
“I love that Birmingham is a vibrant and friendly city, with a real sense of community!”