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Shopper’s Diary: Salt House Mercantile on Bainbridge Island, Washington

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Shopper’s Diary: Salt House Mercantile on Bainbridge Island, Washington

November 29, 2017

My younger sister (always eager to represent the Pacific Northwest) recently clued me in to Salt House Mercantile—a shop on Bainbridge Island, Washington, a short ferry ride from Seattle. It’s the brainchild of Carrie Schei, a part-time interior designer who tried her hand at retail first in 2012 when she opened a small antiques shop called Salt & Sea Vintage in downtown Winslow, on Bainbridge. Two years on, she paused to rejigger her business model, and opened Salt House Mercantile across the street. Her new model is working: Late last year, Schei opened a second location in Seattle’s Madison Valley.

Though she still offers some vintage finds, Schei now stocks Salt House with homewares and giftable goods from the Northwest region and beyond, tucked in a bright white, shiplapped, nautical-inflected space. We visited the Bainbridge store this summer. Let’s take a look.

Photography by Ellie Lillstrom for Remodelista.

Among the Salt House offerings: handmade wire Korbo baskets, wooden trugs, and soaps from Formulary 55.
Above: Among the Salt House offerings: handmade wire Korbo baskets, wooden trugs, and soaps from Formulary 55.
The store offers a wide array of wares from Farmhouse Pottery based in Woodstock, Vermont.
Above: The store offers a wide array of wares from Farmhouse Pottery based in Woodstock, Vermont.
An antique photo of a shipbuilding scene sets the subtle nautical theme of the shop.
Above: An antique photo of a shipbuilding scene sets the subtle nautical theme of the shop.
A vintage farmhouse sink at the back of the store is used for watering flowers and rinsing the occasional dish.
Above: A vintage farmhouse sink at the back of the store is used for watering flowers and rinsing the occasional dish.
A vintage American flag hangs above the retail counter. It’s reminiscent of an item in the Salt House online shop: an American Flag Throw; $180.
Above: A vintage American flag hangs above the retail counter. It’s reminiscent of an item in the Salt House online shop: an American Flag Throw; $180.
Table linens by Couleur Nature are tied with twine on an antique bench.
Above: Table linens by Couleur Nature are tied with twine on an antique bench.
Flanking a trio of Couleur Nature marble serving boards: gifts from Bee Local in Portland, Oregon, and Inna Jam in Emeryville, California. The mortar and pestle is by Sir/Madam.
Above: Flanking a trio of Couleur Nature marble serving boards: gifts from Bee Local in Portland, Oregon, and Inna Jam in Emeryville, California. The mortar and pestle is by Sir/Madam.
In the cleaning section: an Izola laundry bag and three Hugo Guinness dog prints.
Above: In the cleaning section: an Izola laundry bag and three Hugo Guinness dog prints.
At the front of the store: a Haptic Lab quilt used as a wall hanging and a felt garland and character pillows by Kata Golda. Canvas shopping baskets stand at the ready.
Above: At the front of the store: a Haptic Lab quilt used as a wall hanging and a felt garland and character pillows by Kata Golda. Canvas shopping baskets stand at the ready.
Scattered throughout the store are locally inflected burlap tote bags from Apolis with the tag “Bainbridge Island, Washington.”
Above: Scattered throughout the store are locally inflected burlap tote bags from Apolis with the tag “Bainbridge Island, Washington.”
Salt House Mercantile is located at 119 Winslow Way East on Bainbridge Island.
Above: Salt House Mercantile is located at 119 Winslow Way East on Bainbridge Island.

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