April 9, 2012

Trade Roots – Victoria, BC

There is another great reason to head down to Victoria’s Design District! Trade Roots, is an industrial antique furniture and decor store located at 545 Herald Street featuring one of a kind pieces you are sure to love.  Local owners, Carla and Christos Koulas, are breaking through the existing French, English and mid-century antique market in Victoria and tapping into the cities love of local, eco-friendly design and the exceedingly popular industrial furniture trend.

Designers and homeowners can find select pieces on UsedVictoria.com and everyone is encouraged to walk through the showroom and experience the interesting variety of steel multi-drawer cabinets, Indian and Chinese antique chests and a cool selection of artifacts and decor pieces to suit almost any interior. You might even be greeted by their dachshund Daisy if you’re lucky.


Trade Roots is committed to local sustainable design and they work with local craftsmen and artists to refurbish antiques and up-cycle old materials into something new.  Their handmade vintage light fixtures are a great example of this; using old metal baskets and industrial salvage they are creating affordable pendants filled with character you just can’t buy anywhere else.

The store operates on the premise that people put their principles first and they have set the bar high for themselves to lead by example and promote what they call “the wonderful world of old”. Indeed, the old world antique furniture found in the store arrives as a result of a partnership with a Vancouver antique dealer who travels the world in search of unique treasures directly from manufacturers.  The fact that Trade Roots is not far removed from the manufacturing of these imported pieces is an important feature in their overall commitment to eco-friendly and fair trade business practices.


I sat down with the lovely Carla Koulas and asked her a few questions about the store.

N: In a few words how would you describe your store and the furniture and decor items you sell?

C: Functional, Cool and Funky

N: Who would you say is responding most to the aesthetic of the pieces you carry?

C: I would say that most of our customers are focused on quality and appreciate the unique one of a kind character of the pieces.  At least once a week I hear somebody tell us that they are slowly weeding out their IKEA furniture in favour of one of our pieces that are meant to last.

N: Where do you find all these great pieces you have in the shop?

C: We have some amazing connections and that is the key. Believe it or not we have not had to really seek out pieces yet because there are so many people who have interesting things that are finding us!

N: Your store has a mix of creative reproductions and up-cycling as well as antiques. What are your favourite created and antique pieces?

C: We recently received some antique nautical artifacts and I am in love with a stunning solid bronze yacht compass.  My favourite creative piece so far is a mid-century maple and brass tripod style surveyor’s lamp.

N: What is the direction of the store? Is there anything customers should know about?

C: We will be having our 1st anniversary in August 2012 and we will plan some kind of celebration for that.  Last year we held a charity auction which we would love to do again and we are talking about an event to get to know the local design community.

Check Out Trade Roots!

545 Herald

Tuesday to Saturday 10am – 5pm, Sunday 11am to 4pm and closed Mondays.

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April 9, 2012


Nicole Scott