Merchant House provides those in Central Illinois with an opportunity to purchase European antiques and interior pieces, from even further afield such as Indonesia and Africa, right on their doorstep. Located in downtown Springfield we spoke to the store’s manager and buyer, Nicole Berg, who has traveled the world and brings her passion for design and planning to the team at Merchant House. With lots on offer, from small gifts to statement pieces, make sure you check out Merchant House next time you’re in downtown Springfield.
What is Merchant House?
Merchant House is home of European statement pieces as well as contemporary and vintage furnishings, art, lighting, and décor.
When was Merchant house established?
Merchant House, previously known as Widow at Windsor Antiques, was purchased a little over a year-and-a-half ago by Conn’s Hospitality Group and relocated the business to the corner of Monroe and 7th. Merchant House is a sister company to Obed & Isaacs, Wm Vans Coffee House, and Inn at 835. It was decided to not only specialize in the European antiques, but also bring in the contemporary furnishings and décor. Merchant House officially took its new form and new name in January 2016.
Where do your pieces come from?
Our curators at Merchant House find the majority of our unique antiques in Belgium, France, Asia, India, Africa, Indonesia and many other places in the world.
Do you offer registries?
Merchant House offers not only an interior designer’s program, but a bridal registry as well.
What are your most popular items to-date?
From the tiny vintage thimbles and porcelain house numbers to the beautiful hand-carved cabinets with original stained glass, our European antiques are the most sought after. When compared to classic Americana antiques, the craftsmanship and history of the pieces really speak for themselves. Merchant House also offers gift items including local, handmade soaps, and jewelry. The team at Merchant House is working to expand its merchandise with a dog accessory line. You will also, soon, be able to by Merchant House merchandise.
What trends are you currently seeing in interior design for the home and/or office?
Honestly… anything goes; from old to new and mixed metals to mixed patterns. The interior design world is full of wonder. Modern industrial meets Victorian, rustic barn style meets chic, and of course our favorite – vintage. From repurposing vintage furniture to using a vintage item in a new and creative way – whatever your style, mixing and matching can create a stunning home or office setting.
If people are nervous about purchasing antiques – what advice would you give them?
Antiques infuse a home with warmth and character. Search for the antique that speaks to your personal style. Antiques have tremendous character and charm. So enjoy the antique item in all its beauty - flaws and all.
If people are looking to accessorize their home what advice would you give them?
Decorate with what you love. Sure, there are dos and big don’ts in the design world, but those designers are journalists aren’t living in your space. Spend the money on a quality statement piece that sets the mood of the room and accessorize in coordinating materials, colors, or accents. The internet is a wonderful tool to help visualize and I am more than happy to find like-items to make each person’s design dream a reality.
If people want to get in touch how should they do so?