Bridstow Store White Cross Farm, Bridstow, Ross-on-Wye, HR9 6JU, UK
- Rural farm buildings transformed into inspiring interiors.
- Vintage, repurposed, and up-cycled homeware and garden goods.
- Selection of new homeware by artisans and makers.
White Cross Farm
WHAT WE LOVE
Several rustic farm buildings and barns house an ever-changing collection of vintage, homewares, household hardware, stationery, cookware, food, clothing, lighting, antiques and textiles. Award-winning retailers and authors of several best-selling interior design books, Mark and Sally Bailey, have created a loyal following over the years and a retail destination that people travel long distances to visit.
"Opening the shop was a natural progression from our architectural antiques business, where we worked with brass and metal founders, and metal spinners in the Midlands. We felt that it was time for a change, away from Far East importing and mass production, to a well made, considered and honest approach."
Baileys Home occupies a series of various listed farm buildings and barns just outside the market town of Ross-on-Wye in Herefordshire. When they were purchased from the Duchy of Cornwall estate by Mark and Sally Bailey they were in a very poor condition. They decided to restore them with minimal impact and maximum environmental consideration, keeping the finishes simple throughout, using a mix of materials such as rough lime plaster, raw concrete and uncoated steel.
Mark and Sally would describe their business as a general store, stocking an ever-changing collection of homewares, household hardware, stationery, cookware, food, clothing, lighting, antiques and textiles. Their bestselling products range from their craftsman-made linen sofas, to soya wax candle jars.
Theirs is a philosophy of plain, simple, and useful. As well as working with wood turners, potters, glass blowers, and brush makers etc., Mark and Sally also have their our own workshops at the farm, and work with small family run factories and makers throughout Britain and Europe.
Who or what inspires you? Travel, art, fashion, and music.
Before we were shopkeepers… We trained in design, but both come from families of shopkeepers.
The hardest lesson learned in starting a business? Perseverance and restraint!
What tasks do you like to delegate? Bookkeeping.
The best lesson you have learned opening a shop? Tolerance!
What would be your advice for anyone wanting to open a shop? Fortitude.
What is your perfect day off? Walking in the black mountains.
"At the time it was virtually impossible to buy honestly made utility wares. We like to think that we stock items that are different to those on the high street. We have worked really hard over the years producing homewares that we have designed ourselves and had made for us, which we like to mix with antique furniture and fixtures."
WHAT THE SHOPKEEPERS LOVE
ON THE FUTURE OF RETAIL
"We do find the future of independent retailing worrying, seeing lots of empty shops and independents being driven out by high rents and rates. However, there is still plenty of room for optimism. We’re really busy with both our over the counter and online sales, and work really hard to always make our store interesting, fresh and different. There is a lot of truth in ‘if you build it, they will come."
Words by Stephanie Bateman Sweet The Lifestyle Editor
Photos: Mark Bailey & Debi Treloar
Mark & Sally Bailey portrait by Paul Massey