Every Wednesday 'Indie of the week' celebrates the best independent stores around. These places sell interesting and varied collections of design-related things you don't see everywhere else. They may support young or local designers or be great at finding unique things from around the world. By thinking a little more creatively about what they stock they are fighting the bland homogenisation of so much of the high street. And since I'm down with the realities of modern life, online only stores count too, because a beautiful and easy to use website is just as delightful an encounter in cyberspace.
Do you you have a favourite store? I'd love to hear from you.
I stumbled across Solid ID at Design Junction last September when my eye was caught by the fabulous anchor light shown above. It just seemed a really fun and playful way to show what you can create through the re-use of materials and the re-imagining of what things could be. Perhaps I should have guessed there was a Dutchman behind it (I'm married to one) as they are known for their ebullient approach to design/life. Eelke Jan Bles is from The Netherlands, but now lives in Spitalfields, and Solid ID is his quirky shop on London's Fulham Road.
Who are you? Eelke Jan Bles of Solid ID.
How can we find you? 273 Fulham Road, London, SW10 9PZ, online Solid ID, or on Pinterest.
Describe your store in five words: Off-beat goods for the home.
What makes you different? We source and curate our collection of individually designed items with care and a quirky eye.
How you decide what makes the cut? The main proposition is: we only sell what we like and or would have in our own homes. As long as items sit well together, being old or new does not matter, they just need to talk the same language.
What were you doing before you did this? I started my professional career as an interiors and food photographer. I own bespoke floor company Solid Floor and I also work as an interior designer and am very passionate about contemporary art. Solid ID is a natural progression of what I have done previously.
If you were starting again what advice would you give yourself? To have more patience and to be bolder.
What are you most proud of? The bestselling items in the store have been those we have individually designed or re-worked ourselves: the flower cage lamp, the hand painted storage jars and the resin topped butcher tables. It’s really gratifying to see that these pieces have had such a resonance with our customers.
Do you have a favourite thing in the store right now? Vintage butcher tables with cool resin tops.
What's hot for 2013? Vintage re-invented with a bit of colour. Heritage pieces paint dipped and re-worked to suit a modern interior.