Last year The Tannery celebrated its 10 Year Anniversary of trading in Norfolk, and recently the shop moved to larger premises in the Norwich Lanes, so to celebrate we chatted to the company’s directors, Ian and Lindsay Furniss, about the shop’s amazing evolution and the adventure that sourcing their wonderful stock takes their buyers on.
From a small beginning in Holt (North Norfolk), opening in 2006 and selling mainly men’s briefcases and only experimenting with handbags, to opening in Norwich (2010, in The Royal Arcade) and now opening in Woodbridge (Suffolk), the shop has really evolved over the years. Their Norwich store is now situated in a newly fitted out, larger (and, we must say, beautifully presented) shop on Exchange Street. With this expansion, their collection has also grown so that they now offer a huge range of handbags and leather goods in many different colours, and their own brand of shoes too!
It all began when Ian and Lindsay Furniss (Directors) had been visiting Italy for many years, to stay with friends, and the combination of their experiences and Ian needing to find a briefcase made them realise that the opportunity was there to open an Italian-inspired specialist leather goods shop in Holt, Norfolk, where they lived. The original concept, which they still stand by today, was to find family run Italian factories and select stylish, practical leather goods, which they were able to offer at a fair price.
The thing that customers to the shop comment on most often is about the wonderful smell of leather that greets them, and this scent is something the staff never tires of either! This wonderful aroma can be attributed solely to the carefully chosen and traditional products that they have in stock. One such collection is Boldrini, which The Tannery began to sell in 2011 because the love for these products was instantaneous; they embodied everything that their ethos was and still is. Boldrini’s factory is located in a small town in Tuscany, where the scent of generations of leather hangs in the air, inviting you, pulling you in for a closer look. Master leatherworkers have been designing and manufacturing Boldrini bags since the factory’s foundation in 1955 and not only has the factory itself been passed down from father to son but, in many cases, the craftsmen and women are from a long line of leather workers. You can feel the quality and see it in the careful details of the pieces, created from the knowledge which has been handed down through generations.
Next time you're walking by Exchange Street, come and discover Boldrini for yourself - take a moment to inhale the quality and feel a piece of Italian tradition and craftsmanship in the heart of Norwich (it will save you money on a trip to Italy!)
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