Before we talk about us, let’s talk about you.
Whether you’re country born and bred, or a confirmed townie who occasionally feels the need to gulp down some country, if you love great items inspired by the country life, By a Country Mile is designed by us for you.
Who is ‘us’? By a country mile has been set up by me, Mia Woodford, long-term country dweller and shopaholic, originally born and brought up in London, but spending every weekend I could visiting as much of the United Kingdom as possible, before settling in West Sussex at the foot of the South Downs.
Once ensconced in the country, with a busy family of 6 with ever-changing plans, the concept of the weekly supermarket shop no longer worked for me, and I began to shop for food on a daily basis, in my town’s high street, using the excellent butcher and grocer. It worked out cheaper – no wastage – and was much more fun, and started my addiction to, and huge love of, town and village high street shopping . Of course, our high street has the odd chain shop – Boots, and a mini Tesco’s – but it has also two highly individual and wonderful clothes shops, furniture shops, a fantastic book shop which sells vintage as well as new books. The queues are always for one-off quirky coffee shop, Café Verdi, and not Costas.
I spent happy hours at country fairs and market towns, and found some incredible and inventive gems of items amongst, inevitably, the piles of not-very-good ‘stuff for stuff’s sake’. Unearthing the genuinely useful items and truly talented people is really exciting. When I then started The Vintage Tack Room, I began to travel countrywide to visit customers, and so had the opportunity to explore even more towns shops, sales in barns, country markets and village hall events. It’s so exciting uncovering a brilliant idea that makes your horsey life so much easier (see the Haymate!) or a coastal designer that can evoke the wonder of the sea without just putting a wooden gull on a stick.
This, coupled With my love for riding, walking, cooking and eating outdoors, I decided to develop a bespoke market place for British country items – with the emphasis being on tradition or a modern take on tradition, always with creativity and craftsmanship.
In every market town or village, there is a wealth of innovative talent, producing wonderful items to truly add to your enjoyment of modern British country life. It’s these we have sought and curated on our site. To make sure every county and area represented, we have county reps scouring country high streets, school fairs, farmers’ markets and local shops to find wonderful things.
The site showcases British creativity and craft, making it easier to find and enjoy wonderful things with which to enjoy our unique British country life.