Mr Birds: Digbeth’s Wonder Emporium

The Tab’s Emily Duffy and Claire Lynch went to check out one of the newest additions to the Digbeth’s fashion scene: Mr Birds Emporium.


We spoke to Sabina, the super-woman behind the whole thing, to find out what makes this store tick.

Tab: What inspired you to set up Mr Birds Emporium?

Sabina: My love of design and the lack of independent shops in Birmingham. I have always wanted to offer an affordable selling platform whilst having the support of a team; we like to think of it as the Mr Bird’s Collective

 What sets you apart from other vintage stores in Digbeth?

Although Vintage is an important element, it’s only part of what we offer. We’re showcasing local independent brands, artists, jewellery designers, hand makers and more. We offer permanent pitches, ‘a shop within a shop’, commission based wall space for artists and designers as well as good value flexible pitches at our Saturday flea market – The Custard Cream.

Do you offer any other services in your store?

Yes, Laura Keogh behind ‘Laura Loves’ will be setting up an ethical handmade workshop in February. ‘Rethink, Remake, Relove’ will also offer an affordable dressmaking and alteration service. We have also just opened ‘The Nail Lab’ which offers funky hand painted, on-trend nail art.

Do you have any more up-coming events?

‘Sneaks and Peaks’. It’s on April 6th and will be host to sneaker dealers from all across the UK as well as showcasing Birmingham’s emerging urban music talent & graffiti artists.

Do you hold any special events or offers for students?

Yes – we’re looking to put on a student lock in in mid Feb, date to be announced. We also now offer 10% throughout the store (other than walled art & Saturday traders) as long as you bring student I.D. We’re also in the process of planning free music & arts events throughout the spring & summer.

What is your vision for the future of Mr Birds Emporium?

We’d love Mr Bird’s & The Custard Factory to become Birmingham’s answer to Brick Lane – a true alternative to the high street.  So we need all the support & interest from local shoppers as well as the massive student community in the city.

And finally, what was the inspiration behind the name?

The Custard Factory got its name as it was the old ‘Bird’s Custard Factory’, so it’s a little homage to it’s founder and owner – Mr Alfred Bird.

Mr Bird’s is like nothing you’ve ever seen before and we see it becoming one of the hotspots of 2013. But don’t take our word for it, get on down to Gibb Street, Digbeth and check it out for yourself before the crowds come rolling in!