Everything You Need To Know About Common Ilke

Check out this incredible vintage menswear brand taking the North East by storm...
Common Ilke LARGE

Born out of a love for all things vintage and heritage, David Uddgren-Young left behind a 20-year career working in menswear fashion to follow a dream of opening his own store offering rare clothing that dates back generations.

Matthew Thomas takes a look at what makes Common Ilke such a prized asset to the North East.

 

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What is vintage clothing? Is your oversized, faded 90s Ralph Lauren jumper with a modicum of moth holes across the neckline now a rare collector’s item ready to be snapped up?

Like so many precious cultures that have gone before us, the conglomerates have identified ‘vintage’ as a niche market and tapped into the thinking of the younger generation to create a ‘culture’ so far away from the original ideology of sustainability, expressionism and uniqueness.

A ‘culture’ that is different to the one on offer at Common Ilke. Located in Unit 6 at Tynemouth Station, Common Ilke first opened back in October 2019 and has since collaborated with cult British designer Nigel Cabourn and consolidated itself into one of the north’s finest clothing parlours.

The name of the game at Common Ilke is simple; the clothes you see on the rails are all hand-picked by David before a restoration process is undertaken to get these bespoke items looking their best, ready for their next chapter.

If you’re after pristine, fresh out of the air-tight bag clothing, then think again. The bobbles, discolouration and frayed stitches are celebrated at Common Ilke. These features are history, they all contain someone’s life, memories and experiences.

They are stitches that last a lifetime. Perhaps your Tynemouth Market visit will bless you with a Woolrich Mackinaw hunting jacket from the 1960s, or your quest for a rare 70s Barbour jacket may come to an end. Or maybe you’ll discover a 50s Californian varsity wool cardigan.

That’s not to say that modern brands aren’t of interest at Common Ilke. David and the team work tirelessly to complement their vintage offering, and have since added high-end brands such as Red Wing, Filson, Sunspel and Le Mont St Michel to their in-store offering.

Yet, the emphasis still remains; Common Ilke is home to high-quality garments that can stand the test of time – twice over.

 

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Now firmly rooted within the North East community, David has begun collaborating with local designers to offer a platform for their designs, passion and products to be seen, loved and enjoyed.

This is evident with Newcastle-born designer, Connor Reilly. After perfecting his craft for a number of years, Connor teamed up with Common Ilke to produce a limited collection of watch caps that are produced from a small, family-run factory in the UK – working with nothing else other than wool grown in the country.

Trading with Common Ilke for just over three years now, Connor’s wool watch caps sell out in a flash, such is the quality, design and look of his product.

Not only has the Tynemouth store captured the attention of vintage enthusiasts, this indie parlour is attracting serious love from global fashion designer, Nigel Cabourn.

When the industry leader isn’t busy producing new lines for his eponymous label, you can often find him in-store, chatting with Dave and the team about CI’s latest arrivals, trying on new items and indulging in their shared passion.

It’s that shared passion for unique clothing that attracts the biggest names to their doors, and the tangible friendliness of the staff and unpretentious feeling in the store that brings customers from as far as Australia and Japan to Common Ilke.

A welcoming, friendly hub with its door ajar for those wanting to chat about a product, the history of a 60s Finnish military coat or the zip format on a US issued M-65 combat jacket.

Similar to how the North Sea presents precious trinkets from the deep blue from time to time, Common Ilke has a fabulous habit of unearthing precious items from across the globe – offering rare gems that are duly given a new lease of life.

Have a look for yourself, I’m sure you’ll have plenty in common with the people there.

commonilke.co.uk


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