From Old to New: Repurposing at Mongers Market
Before we begin demolition on a house, we treasure hunt.
We search the house for items that can be salvaged, repurposed, or turned into something completely new. Some of our most eye-catching design features begin with something that was long forgotten, collecting dust in the corner of the basement.
So when we walked into Mongers Market in Bridgeport for the first time a few weeks ago, it’s no surprise that inspiration jumped out to us with every step.
From Bottle Collector to Antique Dealer
John Hiden became fascinated with bottles as young as 6 or 7 years old. He became an avid bottle collector, and soon his love for old bottles grew to all antiques.
John opened and ran Hiden Galleries, a fine antique shop in Stamford, for over 20 years. Because he leased the space, he continued to look for commercial properties, namely industrial centers, that he could purchase and move his multi-dealer antique store into permanently.
A Shift to Mongers Market
In 2012, John found the property where Mongers Market now sits. Part of the building was built as early as the 1940s. Over the years, the factory manufactured a variety of items, including piano parts, pots and pans, mechanical toys, and even screwdrivers.
Before opening, John was planning on moving his antique business to the new Bridgeport location. But then he changed gears.
“I started purchasing industrial and architectural objects – furniture and different items. It became the same model as my antique center, but with different inventory,” John explained.
Inventory and Vendors
John’s inventory, which he finds from auctions, demolition companies, real estate developers, and online, takes up one half of the 75,000 square foot building.
“It’s a lot of driving and online searching, tracking down sales and auctions. We also have a lot of people who come by with items we might buy,” stated John.
The other half of the building is filled with vendors. Some sell antiques, while others have their own industrial and architectural objects for sale. On Sundays, up to 40 vendors fill up half of Mongers Market. Customers easily spend hours at Mongers Market without seeing everything in the enormous space.
Repurpose and Repeat
Like us, people who visit Mongers Market like to think outside the box. People often repurpose doors, create unique floor lamps with industrial items, or make wall hangings out of objects they find.
Many are repeat customers, always eager to show John how their design project turned out at home.
“A lot of people come back and show me pictures of what they have done,” John said.
With the history of The Fish Flip House, you know we found many treasures inside the home. Coupled with our finds from Mongers Market, we are incorporating many unique elements to this house (you will have to come to the Reveal Party this August to see them for yourself!).