Are you living with antiques? Antiques range from the smallest teacup to the largest case good, or the most detailed period armchair. What do these three have in common? Each is functional and has aesthetic value. Antiques always have a story behind it, either who made it, who lived with it, and how it fared throughout its lifetime. Antiques have many categories from casegoods (armoires, book cases, linen presses, secretaries, and sideboards), seats (armchairs, side chairs, settees, tables, and sofas), to supporting elements (benches, ottomans, and stools just to name a few.
19th Century writing table courtesy of Knightsbridge Charleston, SC
Living with antiques not only means adding depth to an interior setting; many of them are functional. The writing table featured above has strong and masculine form, and constructed of one of the most beautiful woods available. This table would work well in the parlor, library, salon, study, bedroom, or foyer.
Finer antiques have lived more than 100 years with minimal damage:
- Mellowed Gilding to the Bole (pleasing to the eye)
- Original Hardware (always good)
- Elegant Patina (balanced or kept out of direct sunlight)
- Intact Veneer
- No Chips or Breaks in Glass
- Absence of Splitting (veneer and solid wood)
- None to Minimal Liquid Damage (careful owners)
Other antiques have lived more than 100 years and suffered damage:
- Loss of gilding (this can be attractive depending on the extent)
- Loss of Hardware (original hardware is best)
- Sunlight Fading (one sideboard was enhanced from sun fading)
- Broken legs/feet/glass (never good)
- Inappropriate Marriages
- Veneer Splitting (repairs are possible but choose wisely)
- Liquid Damage (repairable, see above)
- Unskilled Repairs
19th Century Regency chandelier courtesy of Spurgeon Lewis Antiques
Pictured above is an exquisite 19th Century crystal chandelier. The drops are finely chiseled and tone of the metal is in excellent condition; all original. This would work beautifully in most rooms that contain antiques and also in modern rooms.
19th Century Regency spoon chair courtesy of Klismos Gallery, NYC
Pictured above is a Recency Period (1811 - 1837) spoon-back chair. The general taste in furnishings during this period in England was that of refinement and elegance. Antiques of this late Georgian period featured mostly straight lines, dark woods, veneered decoration, and metal accents. The shape of this chair is appropriate for any modern interior space.
Finally, choosing to live with antiques is a wise investment. In today's marketplace there are all levels of quality so conduct enough research and buy from an reputable entity. I have purchased, sold, and traded with numerous companies over the years such as Grant Antiques, Knightsbridge Charleston, Hunters & Gatherers, Spurgeon Lewis, Sparrows French Antiques, and many more. The gallery shown above, located in New York City, is a wonderful resource for high-quality antiques. Make an appointment with the proprietor, Collier the next time you are in New York City (Brooklyn).
If you are in, near, or traveling to England, Lennox Cato Antiques & Works of Art is an excellent resource. "Lennox Cato Antiques and Works of Art was established in 1978 and has matured over the years to become one of the countries most recognised and leading antiques establishments. Always with a keen eye on quality and design, Lennox Cato has built up an international reputation with clients from around the world, selling to both private clients and interior decorators. And, as members of both the BADA (British Antiques Dealers Association) and LAPADA (The Association of Art and Antiques Dealers), clients know they can buy with confidence as a code of practice is abided by."
19th Century George III Side Cabinet, Courtesy of Lennox Cato, England
Pictured above is a c. 1810 George III rosewood break-fronted side cabinet. The color of the rosewood has mellowed into a glorious honey-colored surface and has excellent proportions for a creative design in flat, apartment, or small house.
Do you have a new design project on your mind and would like to incorporate high-quality antiques? If so book your Discovery Call with me and let's talk about it.