24 & 25 JANUARY 2018 | OLD TRUMAN BREWERY

The Blog

11 December 2014

Jacket Required Presents x The Cottage Shop


The Cottage Shop
170 Wulumuqi Road
Jing’an
Shanghai
China


 
Following on from our chat with Ian Paley of Couverture & The Garbstore fame, the Jacket Required team set its sights further afield to present the next instalment in its series of store visits. Heading East to Shanghai, the largest Chinese city by population, which is currently experiencing one of the fastest economic expansions the world has seen.

Hidden away in the labyrinth that is the streets of Shanghai's French Concession lies The Cottage Shop - a cave of wonders amid a foray of fruit stands and metropolis of mini-marts. Old Mike is the jam-packed store's diamond in the deluge, nick-named so perhaps for his admiration of the old, rather than the years under his belt. A banker-turned-store owner, Old Mike started out on his mission to set up shop two years ago. His menswear offer includes AAPE, Scotch and Soda, VANS - some new, some vintage, his own-label shoes and unisex bags crafted from leathers and canvas. Alongside sit antiques collected on his travels across the globe - including pieces from Germany, America, many belongings from very old times in China, Mao era goods and pieces of war memorabilia. Everything carefully selected, and everything for sale.

Just like his emporium, Old Mike is curious in character. With four visits to his
Wulumuqi Road store in the space of a week, his personality proved as magnetic and captivating as The Cottage Shop itself. Swept away in a wave of nostalgia, Jacket Required brings you conversations from Shanghai, and an insight into the persona of Old Mike himself.





"Before The Cottage Shop started, I had a coffee shop where I would display the many things I collected. I ended up accumulating so much I had to rent storage space, and would sell a piece once a month to fund the storage. After two years, a lot of the stuff had gone just to pay the rent, which was pretty meaningless. And so, I decided to open a shop to share my collection with other people.
 
I began liking vintage things about five years ago before I even opened the coffee place. With my past career as a banker and through life working in the ministry, I travelled a lot and spent most of my weekends visiting flea markets in various different countries."





"I was brought up in Wuhan, China, where there was a British concession - so I ended up becoming quite familiar with the style and architecture. I liked these kinds of things and it influenced a lot of the projects I've designed in the past - from coffee shops to clinics. When I started in the business world six years ago, vintage was considered rare and shabby. But now - it's chic.
 
I see more value in all things vintage. Classic style rather than contemporary. Actually, I've really started to hate the word contemporary - it's just very... shallow. Contemporary things are usually related with items which aren't functional - they're cold, not warm enough.
 
My personal style is an amalgamation of everything, a mixture. There's nothing I particularly favour, but I've got several brands in the store like Scotch and Soda shirts. I really like casualwear."
 

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