You graduated from restoration but are focused on the 1920s and 30s with your project Retrohome. What attracted you to this period?
The period of the 20s and 30s interested me mainly for its timelessness – for the shapes and materials used. During functionalism, designers attempted to emphasise the function of the furniture and to disencumber it from any embellishment, laths, and everything unnecessary that would be a burden when used every day. In the end, they managed to make furniture that is easily maintainable even after 80 years, and fits modern interiors as well as contemporary design products.

What is the renovation process like? What resources do you use to learn about the original appearance of the furniture?
Regarding renovation of wood, I act as its manufacturers did in the beginning. I give modern varnish a wide berth and I use only old time-proven methods, which are natural for wooden surfaces, are easily removable in the future and give wood the prettiest look (for instance shellac varnish and beeswax). In regards to upholstery, renovation is again based on old technologies that were perfect at the time, so there’s no need to change them. Contrarily, today most of the craftsmen don’t want to use them because they are very time-consuming and physically demanding. For fabrics I choose specialised companies that focus on patterns from the period.

Do your clients want you to bring the furniture into its original state or do they let you use your imagination?
It’s about half and half. There are customers who know exactly what they want, spend their time to get inspiration from various period photographs and then come to me with a vision that they consult with me, a specialist, and ask whether their vision is attainable or whether it will need a couple of adjustments. Then there are customers who have a certain piece at home after their parents or grandparents and let me design a variant (for renovation and visual aspects). This is, of course, after questioning them about what they like and what their home looks like.

What is your typical customer like? And their apartments?
I don’t think I have a typical customer. I’m always surprised by who addresses me. One of my customers is, for example, a 20-year-old man who wanted to buy a nice historical lamp of a high quality for reading, or it can be an older woman who has a couch from her childhood and wants to energise it because of her grandchildren. The same diversity goes for interiors where the furniture belongs. But personally I have to say that this furniture works best in old brick reconstructed flats or villas, with wooden floors and big windows that brighten up the spaces. The ideal place is Villa Tugendhat :)

How is your flat furnished?
I am still waiting for my dream house and if I get it one day, I will definitely get a couple of solitaires from this period. For now, I have a little bit of a mix from different periods but believe me; you won’t find a lot of new things without history at my place. Collecting and love for old things is almost like a disease of mine, that I am slowly recovering from. It’s best that I don’t look at containers on streets so I don’t drag anything home with me again.

Do you renovate any furniture that you stock so that customers can come to your workshop and have a look at it, or do you make everything to order?
I mainly focus on products and renovation for orders and this takes me more time. Nevertheless, I try at least once a month to put something new for sale on my website, according to my taste, and I believe it will only get better in the future.

(Tomáš Grund, owner of Retrohome)

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We could say that Boho is actually a luxury second hand, selection of the best of vintage housewares, clothing and jewelry. Which part prevails and which you enjoy the most?
Please, let's not call it a "second hand". It is very misleading, even though one could say, in narrow words, that in my shop you can find precise selection of very original old goods. Second hand refers to absolutely any used goods which are no longer in the original condition - therefore, not brand new. Vintage is a term for new or second hand garments originating from a previous era, produced from 1920’s to about 20 years back from present day. In a short description, vintage means authentic, original and very good quality goods which are at least 20 years old and in a good condition. That counts for clothing as well as for interior and decor. It's got to be a recognisable, authentic piece, honest and good craftmanship. That is what I like about it. These things were made to last and serve for a long time, and usually they have a certain history or a story to come along with. Unlike today's trends of commercial mass production. Saying this, if you like vintage then it doesn't mean you have to dress like your grandmother or have your apartment stocked-up with old furniture and other useless stuff which your neighbors threw out, or you just could. Entirely up to you. I like to use vintage to spice things up, to add that original touch to the obvious and predictable.

Your second shop is located next to Krymská - the street which is a community of young creative people and it is such a "Bohemian  neighborhood". You think old Vršovice somehow changed?
Not just this location in Prague is changing. I feel that people here are generally changing and finally waking up to the world trends, may I say without any offence. When I moved over here from London, I felt like Alice in a sleepy town, which can be nice, for a while. Then you realize that there is something missing, the genuine inspiration on the streets (in meaning of fashion), natural freedom and openness (in meaning of lifestyle). Thanks to a young generation, who has absorbed all this mainly by experiencing the other worlds and cultures, things are getting better now. They want it here, they are hungry for it and I am very happy that it is no longer staying hidden only in artists and other creative people communities, but it’s blending in with the rest of the residents.

Do you also go out  in Krymská?  Whether it should be for lunch or famous concerts in Cafe v lese?
It is our neighborhood and I do go to all places on Krymská and surrounding streets for good food, coffee, music, art and great people’s company. All that and plenty more to come, I hope.

Your customers are also foreigners and tourists. Where do they know about your shop from?
Tourists find my shop by a chance. What has helped a little was opening the shop next to a hostel. Foreigners and expats also know about Boho by a word of mouth, which still has, thankfully, a great power.

Do people in Prague have weakness for vintage goods?
For now, there are only a small number of those who have "the thing for vintage" over here. So I hope, there will be more people who realize that we should learn how to treasure certain things, be kind to the environment and to be true to ourselves, because it is about life, not just style.

What does the name Boho means?
Boho is an abbreviation of word Bohemian, which refers to a lifestyle. As for me, real Bohemian is someone who has the ability to appreciate beauty on a deep level, is a profound romantic, doesn't know any limits, whose world is their own creation, rather than living in a box. A Bohemian also means a resident of the former Kingdom of Bohemia.

(Patricia Madarová, Boho Vintage Concept Store owner)

 


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Spud. is an unconventional Prague city guide, that highlights its interesting spots and local businesses that are really worth visiting. With a Polaroid camera, we’re mapping four different areas: food and drinks, shops, workplaces of creative people and architecture. Spud. is focused on fresh places with unique atmosphere, cafés with the best coffee, shops with the finest goods, workshops and studios of the most skilled designers and architectural attractions with the greatest charm. Spud. is also mainly about people, who stand behind these projects. Without their invention and courage to fulfill their dreams Prague would be a much poorer place. That’s why we’re so grateful to all of them!
 
Tereza a Michal
info@spud.cz / 728 764 380



 
Price: 330 CZK

Cost of delivery: 70 CZK (in the Czech Republic)

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