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.

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.

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Indo-Portuguese tray stars at Chorley’s country house auction with items from the former home of Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts

26 July 2018

An Indo-Portuguese mother-of-pearl and tortoiseshell tray surpassed expectations to become the top lot at Chorley’s two-day country house sale (buyer’s premium 24%) in Gloucestershire this week.

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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Essex sale brings many happy returns

16 July 2018

Celebrating 10 years of sales at Sworders’ (23% buyer’s premium) custom-built auction house (the firm has actually been going since 1782), chairman Guy Schooling was in a justifiably buoyant mood.

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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.

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Previews: £30,000 plus

09 July 2018

Our weekly selection from salerooms and dealerships.

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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Salvo organiser keeps busy

02 July 2018

Thornton Kay, long-time organiser of the annual Salvo fair, has been in touch to say what he’s been doing on his year’s sabbatical from organising the event.

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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.

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New clients boost Petworth Park Antiques Fair

25 June 2018

A c.1715 Queen Anne burr walnut secretaire kneehole desk was among the highlight sales at the recent 'Petworth Park Antiques Fair'.

marble chimneypiece auction

Renowned salvage dealer’s collection raises £90,000 at Cheffins auction

19 June 2018

The final sale of stock from a once renowned architectural antiques business in Fulham raised more than £90,000 at Cambridge saleroom Cheffins.

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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Paavo Tynell trips the light fantastic

18 June 2018

The specialist Finnish lighting designer Paavo Tynell proved to be the strong suit in a 111-lot Scandinavian design sale held by Artcurial (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) in Paris.

ATG letter: Furniture price squeeze has helped auction fees rise

18 June 2018

MADAM – Like David Carter (ATG No 2345) I can remember the time when we auctioneers could make a living with only seller’s commission of 10%.

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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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