From garden shed to shop - how couple’s upcycling business has grown

Shopping Local in Fakenham. Owners Tracey and Rob Beane in the House of Beane, part of R & T's Prelo

Shopping Local in Fakenham. Owners Tracey and Rob Beane in the House of Beane, part of R & T's Preloved Furniture. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2020

Everything from upcycled furniture to the “almost perfect” candle is now being sold online by a couple who started their business in a garden shed.

Shopping Local in Fakenham. R & T's Preloved Furniture, which also houses the House of Beane. Pictur

Shopping Local in Fakenham. R & T's Preloved Furniture, which also houses the House of Beane. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2020

Tracey and Rob Beane, who run R & T’s Preloved Furniture and ​More in The Drift, said they were glad they had developed a strong following on the web, as this year’s coronavirus lockdowns had made for tough trading conditions.

Mrs Beane said 75pc of their sales came from their Facebook page.

“We’ve been pushing it a lot more online so you feel like you’re getting relative success,” she said.

“It feels much better knowing that we can still trade, maybe not as fully as we were before, but people can still get our products.”

Shopping Local in Fakenham. R & T's Preloved Furniture co-owner Rob Beane. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Shopping Local in Fakenham. R & T's Preloved Furniture co-owner Rob Beane. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2020

Mr and Mrs Beane have run the shop for the past three years, selling recycled furniture. It is also a base for their other business, House of Beane, which sells gifts from local producers.

They began by selling second-hand products from their garden shed, before moving to a storage container on an industrial estate.

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They moved to a traditional shop when they needed more storage space.

Mrs Beane said furniture sales mostly took a back seat at this time of year, attention had now shifted to gift sales through the House of Beane.

Shopping Local in Fakenham. Tracey Beane, co-owner of the House of Beane, part of R & T's Preloved F

Shopping Local in Fakenham. Tracey Beane, co-owner of the House of Beane, part of R & T's Preloved Furniture. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2020

She started that side of the business five years ago, as she used to make candles and teacups herself.

Mrs Beane took a break from candle making, but found she had loads of empty candle pots after her wedding, so decided to take it up again.

The House of Beane is now a hub for other local crafters, who sell everything from crochet, glassware and home decor through the Facebook page.

Mrs Beane is still selling her own candles, having researched the best possible way to make them so she could compete with the big brands.

“Mine are eco​-friendly, they’re vegan, they are soy wax, they’re paraben-free oils, and a lot of research has gone into how to get the perfect burn on a candle,” she said.

The Shop Local campaign is a plea to shoppers to consider independent traders and businesses this Christmas and beyond in a bid to bolster our high streets and spark online spending.

Keeping money in Norfolk and Waveney is vital as the economy stalls in the Covid-19 pandemic.

• Know a great local independent in Fakenham you think deserves attention? Let us know by emailing reporter Aaron McMillan via aaron.mcmillan@archant.co.uk

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