Furniture

Every piece of furniture has a practical purpose regardless of how simple or grand it is, even if some pieces were built more for display than function. Today, furniture remains one of the largest areas of the antiques market and items are categorised by type and period.

The term brown furniture refers to traditional pieces made from dark woods such as mahogany, while pieces made from native woods like oak and walnut are sometimes referred to as vernacular furniture.

Famous historical makers include Chippendale, Gillows, William Vile and John Cobb. More recent market trends have seen modern vintage pieces appearing in specialist design and ‘Interior’ auctions.


Morris & Co adjustable armchair

Why reclining Morris armchair proved a £7600 Victorian seat of power

17 August 2018

A Morris & Co adjustable armchair brought strong competition at a recent auction in Cumbria. In largely original condition despite some obvious signs of wear and tear, it was taken to 10 times its estimate at PFK Auctioneers before it was knocked down at £7600.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh cabinet

Charles Rennie Mackintosh cabinet made for Glasgow tea room entrepreneur makes £11,000

16 August 2018

A cabinet made by Scottish designer and architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868-1928) for a Victorian tea room businesswoman has sold for £11,000 at Willingham Auctions in Cambridge.

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Huanghali heads to high popularity

13 August 2018

Just as fine English mahogany is selling below par, Chinese furniture, particularly in the desirable huanghuali hardwood, is booming.

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Mayfair gallery keeps it simple with Deco desks

13 August 2018

Simplicity and geometry are key to the works of Eugène Printz, one of the Parisian practitioners of Art Deco design.

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Trade buyers shine in a heatwave

13 August 2018

Private bidders were overtaken as dealers found warmth in the best traditional furniture and chattels offered at auction.

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Charles Rennie Mackintosh's cabinet for ‘Miss Cranston’ goes under the hammer in Cambridge

08 August 2018

A cabinet made by Scottish designer and architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh for Catherine Cranston, a Victorian tea room entrepreneur, goes under the hammer at Willingham Auctions this week.

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Indo-Portuguese popularity surge

06 August 2018

Ivory frames to this 18th century wooden box, below, with tortoiseshell panels, did nothing to hold back bidding on currently hugely popular Indo-Portuguese material.

Dickens table

Government issues export bar for Charles Dickens’ table in hope of finding UK buyer

28 July 2018

A table used by novelist Charles Dickens is at risk of being exported from the UK unless a buyer can be found to match the asking price of £67,600.

William Morris pen

William Morris’ pen and paint brush sell for £2200 at Dorset auction

23 July 2018

A quill and paint brush belonging to William Morris drew significant interest at Duke’s latest Art and Design sale in Dorchester.

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Result for antique tables shows granny's wisdom

16 July 2018

“My granny used to say, if you get stuck sell the French table,” the vendor told Harrogate auctioneer Elizabeth Pepper-Darling.

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Cellarettes will stay together

16 July 2018

Entered from the same consignor, two c.1810 mahogany cellarettes were offered singly, rather than as a near pair by Mallams (20% buyer’s premium) at Abingdon. However, after two centuries, they will remain together after selling to the same private buyer on the phone.

Robert Copley of Christie's

“The market seems robust”: Christie’s specialist ahead of Thomas Chippendale auction – video

03 July 2018

Ahead of Christie’s dedicated sale this week of 20 lots of Thomas Chippendale furniture, ATG speaks to Christie’s international head of furniture Robert Copley about sourcing for the auction, the state of the market and the star lots.

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Hoffman clock strikes success in Rotterdam

02 July 2018

Unmistakably the work of the Viennese avant-garde, this gem-set silver plated table clock sold for €205,000 (£186,000) at a recent sale held by the Rotterdam auctioneer Vendu Notarishuis.

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Desk style back in favour

02 July 2018

An Edwardian Carlton House satinwood desk of the type which was once a best-seller at auction, but an early casualty of the furniture slump, was back in favour at the Hartleys (17.5% buyer’s premium) summer sale in Ilkley.

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George II-style mirror is good looker and good seller

02 July 2018

It was catalogued as 19th century, with a replaced plate, later back batons, small chips and wear, age cracks and the gilt painted surface was thick and not original.

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A Chinese chair to make bidders sit up

02 July 2018

Stuttgart auction house Nagel (33% buyer’s premium) held its summer sale of Asian art in Salzburg having acquired an impressive array of quality pieces from European and other collections.

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Horlicks’ Mouseman furniture comes to auction

25 June 2018

The Horlicks collection of Robert ‘Mouseman’ Thompson furniture will be sold at auction in Stansted Mountfitchet this autumn.

Partner's desk

Chippendale-period pieces on offer in Peterborough as dealership celebrates 60 years

18 June 2018

Windsor House Antiques is joining in the celebrations around Thomas Chippendale’s (1718-79) tercentenary and its own 60th anniversary offering a number of pieces from the furniture maker’s day.

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A box of export delights at Dawson's

18 June 2018

Catalogued as Anglo-Indian but probably Indo-Portuguese, this ivory, tortoiseshell and white metal casket, below, was a box of delight for the vendor.

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Charlotte Perriand's ‘Nuage’ bookcase performs at Paris auction

18 June 2018

The post-war industrial modernist designs of Jean Prouvé and Charlotte Perriand remain firm sellers. Pieces from their best-documented commissions, like the furnishings created in the 1950s for the student residences of the Cité Universitaire in Paris, are particularly strong.

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