Alena and I decided to work together inspired by our combined love of travelling and discovering new and exciting places, people and products. We realised that we had a shared passion when coming back from one of our funniest trips aboard.

Let me take you back to our first sourcing mission. Helping Alena with her new house we were looking for tiles for her kitchen when her sister suggested a place outside Budapest. Off we set with our toothbrushes in our handbags.

The tiles we duly found in the middle of nowhere but how we were to get them back to London was the part of the mission we hadn’t thought through. The combined weight of sufficient tiles was just shy of 80kgs. When trying to ask the non English speaking Hungarian sales assistant about possible courier arrangements – she shrugged her shoulders which made us quickly realise this was our problem not hers. So what else to do but take the bull by the horns. We bought the tiles and to popped them into the back of a cab, back with us to our hotel in the centre of town and go from there.

After endless and unsuccessful negotiations with UPS, Fedex and DPD, during which the price of our tiles slowly increased from an incredible bargain to prohibitively expensive, we needed another solution fast.

2 glasses of wine, endless procrastination and a sudden eureka moment later, we decided to take matters literally into our own hands. Off we went to purchase enough small suitcases to fill with tiles, making sure each case didn’t exceed the weight restriction of 23kg. 4 dinky tile-filled suitcases eventually made their way with us to the airport. Here the check in assistant thought we were taking the Micky when we could hardly lift one suitcase between us onto her scales. On the plane ride home, long and loud laughter about this trip, cemented our eagerness and hunger for many more adventures like this. One thing led to another and The Collective was born. 

2 years and many more sourcing trips later, we are excited to introduce our first collection. We are bringing to you a carefully chosen, and much loved selection of lifestyle products. Each and every one has its own story to tell. Follow us as we share our tales.