The Lifeline Shop in Gordon Street is sporting a new vintage department -“Revival”. Located in the middle bay of the store, you can find a well curated collection of kindly donated, beautiful vintage furniture, décor and fashion …
In August of 2014, the Lifeline Shop started off with a small vintage section just inside the front door. Under the watchful eye of Sue Harris, volunteer, and vintage lover and Shop Manager Helen Cornhill, the Lifeline Shop on Gordon Street has been slowly improving on and expanding their mix of quirky retro and vintage items, which forms part of the “retro department”.
Marketing Coordinator Lisa Willows and Business Manager Kurt Russell identified a rising demand for vintage goods with the ongoing expansion of culture and arts within the Hastings area and were happy to support the improved and expanded on section.
Shop manager Helen Cornhill and volunteer Sue Harris tell us more …
Hi Helen. What does your position as a store manager for Lifeline Mid Coast in the Gordon Street, Port Macquarie store involve?
Helen Cornhill: My main priority is the smooth day to day running of the store, from sorting the donations to sales at the front counter. I assist in the merchandising and purchasing of the new goods on offer in our stores, as well as the recruitment of our wonderful volunteers. Without our volunteers, our store could not function.
Introduce us to your volunteer helpers. How do your volunteers help to ensure the store runs smoothly?
I have approximately 45 volunteers, who all play a vital role in the running and success of the Gordon Street store. The volunteers are given a wide variety of roles and responsibilities, so that we can cater to each individual volunteer’s needs.
The vintage area was really the baby of volunteer Sue Harris. The area started out as one cabinet and with the hard work, dedication and persistence of Sue, it has grown into the wonderful vintage department we see today.
What do you most love about your role with Lifeline?
Lifeline is like a big, happy family, and I have made many friends for life through my role.
At the end of a busy and challenging day, it is really satisfying to reflect on how the money we earn goes towards saving Australian lives …that my position allows me to make a difference in our community, and therefore I have done something worthwhile.
Our shop funds the training of Telephone Crisis Supporters, which costs about $4,800 initially, then has ongoing costs around professional development and upskilling. It costs around $26 to answer one call to our 13 11 14 number.
Where exactly is the Gordon Street store located … and where is the closest parking for customers?
The Gordon Street store is located at 122 Gordon Street, Port Macquarie.
We have car parking available at the rear of the store, that can be accessed between our shop and Hastings Funeral Service. There is on street parking, and a parking lot next door to Domino’s Pizza.
Sue, the store has a rather special collection of vintage items and clothing. What are some of the things you have in stock at the moment that you absolutely love?
Sue Harris: At the moment we have a stunning display of vintage hats and handbags. It’s hard to pinpoint one particular collection, when we have such a variety of quality vintage goods. Our clothes racks are “one off” designs of a bygone era. Some are still in fashion today.
Helen: On any given day you can find preloved and vintage homewares, fashions, hi-fi, cameras, records and more. We get excitement out of creating a place where homewares and fashion lovers can connect with beautiful and stylish vintage items that embody enduring quality and craftsmanship – not forgetting the sustainability message in promoting beautiful vintage furniture, decor and fashion too. We get a thrill out of finding pieces of well-made furniture with quality that’s hard to match, which have years of life left in them.
Why do you feel “vintage” items have become so sought after/popular in recent times?
Helen: Besides being on trend, customers say that the vintage area is a walk down memory lane, reminding them of childhood memories of mums, aunties and visiting families. The stories you hear, whether they are purchasing or donating, are truly amazing and conjures up images of its past, wonderful life … Books from childhood readings, linen in different styles, crockery and jewellery all from times gone by. If an item comes with a story, it’s exciting to be able to tell the new owner of its origin (known as the “provenance”).
Sue: The quality and uniqueness of vintage clothing is simply unmatched by that of its contemporary counterparts. When you invest in a vintage garment, you can rest assured that you will never walk into a room and find another person wearing the same thing you are. The items are entirely unique and bursting with whimsical details that cannot be accurately reproduced; the prints, the pintucks, the buttons … there just isn’t anything like them. We get requests from buyers as far as Darwin, while groups from Sydney come to the shop and admire our work.
Is your store currently seeking the donation of items that can be sold? If so – what types of items are you looking for, and when/where can the dropped off?
Helen: We are always seeking good quality donations at our store. Items can be dropped to the store directly, or put in one of our donation bins around Port Macquarie or Wauchope, or you can phone us to arrange a free pick up.
What are the opening hours and contact number/s for the store?
Helen: The store is open from 9am to 4pm, Monday through Friday, and 9am – noon on Saturdays.
You can email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/portmacquarielifelineshops/
Or phone us: 6584 0200.
Thanks Helen and Sue.