June 14, 2013
Franco Albini Ottoman 1951
I generally associate wicker with dated conservatory furniture so I ate my words when I came across this delightful piece. Handwoven & designed by Franco Albini in 1951 for Vittorio Bonacina, this one is so cool that it forms part of the permanent collection at the MOMA, New York! Its made from bent rattan and is a great way to add a natural touch to a modern space. Plus I’ve discovered that it doubles up nicely as a coffee table, not bad for the handsome price of £7!
April 27, 2013
1950s Alfred Cox Chest of Drawers
British manufacturer Alfred Cox produced high quality designs which retailed in Heals throughout the 1950s & 60s. I’ve generally considered their furniture to be out of my league so I was pretty excited when this striking chest of drawers came my way! Made from veneered walnut panels and sat on wonderful angular legs it screams glamour. Unfortunately the one I have looks like it has been through a warzone, and I’ve never worked with walnut so its restoration should be interesting (aka, long & hardwork, urgh!)
February 23, 2013
‘Astro’ Coffee Table
This is the most collectable coffee table in G Plan’s back catalogue. The popular design dates from 1969 & is attributed to V B Wilkins. We were given one by my husband’s relatives when we moved into our first home – it single handedly started my ‘teak’ love affair and has taken pride of place in our living spaces ever since!
January 26, 2013
1960s Ercol Grandfather Rocker
This is Ercol rocking chair is super sized for super comfort. Made using solid elm planks & beech wood spindles it really is quite splendid! The seat pad is low & very generous allowing you to tuck right into it – perfect for rocking in front of the fire on a cold winter night. I managed to pick up two of these old relic’s in a nearby junkshop, and even got a discount for buying both! Getting them home in our little car was a bit eventful – we stuffed one in the back & the other took up my spot in the passenger seat leaving me to walk home in the snow! Sold**
January 20, 2013
1966 G Plan ‘Fresco’ Chairs
This handsome pair are from the popular ‘Fresco’ range and were designed for G Plan by VB Wilkins. The circular seat pad & curved, padded back rest makes for arguably one of G Plan’s most comfortable chairs – with sufficient padding to park any size behind! They can be found in a variety of fabrics but these have retained their original black vinyl upholstery. I carried them home from a nearby junkshop, which seemed like a good idea until I woke up the next day and couldn’t move my arms from the pain! Sold**
December 7, 2012
1950′s Butterfly Chairs
These are G Plan’s most iconic & instantly recognisable chairs from their earlier Liberenza range. Designed in 1955 by E. Gomme they are uniquely crafted using tola wood curved back rests & ebonised frames. I squealed with joy when I got my hands on a set of these but it turns out mine are a very good copy and not the real thing! Back to the drawing board..
October 20, 2012
1960s Ercol TV Cabinet
Another absolute show stopper from Lucian Ercolani. As with all Ercol pieces this cabinet has been constructed from solid elm and has a striking grain pattern! Its complete with oval lock handles, original shephards castors & dovetail joinery. The doors are on tracks and can be tucked inside the TV compartment to create a delightful cinema experience. I dragged my poor husband down some dark country lanes to collect this one and it didn’t fit in his car! Fortunately the owner saved the day (and my tears) by generously offering to deliver it. Sold**
October 15, 2012
1960s Telephone Table
This one nearly reduced me to tears – took 8 hrs to scrape off the bad varnish job & the best tool I had was a butter knife! A quick polish & some much needed love has made it quite a sight to behold. I tarted it up with a newly upholstered cushion, & had no doubt it would compliment any hallway it had the pleasure of adorning. Sold**
September 6, 2012
1960s G Plan Chest
This rather charming 3 drawer teak chest/cabinet is from G Plan’s immensely popular ‘Fresco’ range, which is credited with starting the revolution in Scandinavian style furniture. I spotted the distinctive handles the minute I stepped into the junk shop & with the help of my other half swiftly bundled it into the back of his car and made a quick getaway before anyone else could claim it! The drawers are dovetailed, the lines are clean, the grain pattern is gorgeous and the top drawer hides a lovely cutlery tray (complete with purple velvet lining – fancy!) What more could you want? Sold**
August 27, 2012
1940s Vintage Fire Bucket
After spying one of these fantastic 1940s buckets a few weeks ago I knew I had to have one! and mine is now sitting happily by the fireplace – I can’t think of a better way to store coal & kindling. These fire buckets have become quite ‘trendy’ and are being used in a variety of ways – planters, hanging baskets, waste paper bins, umbrella stands, etc. Given their age and original function they tend to be a bit battered with chips to the paintwork but that just adds to their charm – go on, get one!
July 8, 2012
1950s Stacking Policeman
I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE vintage wooden stacking toys! The Eastern European ones are my most favourite. If you look hard enough you can find them in a variety of characters – fireman, hula girl, pirate, penguin, etc.. This rather happy looking policeman came from 1950s Czechoslavakia but the £69.95 (!) price tag was a bit steep but oogling is free so I’ve been happily obliging..
June 24, 2012
1950s Stag Chest
I couldn’t believe my luck when I came across another one of these delightful chests literally within days of finding the last! Same as before but the veneer is walnut with ebonised legs & edges. Unfortunately this one was dragged across the floor on its side leaving it with some unsightly war wounds. But I’m hoping some elbow grease will get it sparkling again. Sold**
June 17, 2012
1950s STAG Chest of Drawers
I’ve recently become the proud owner of one of these glorious chests – unfortunately mine isn’t as slick so I’m in the process of sanding back the oak veneer to make it gleem. They were designed in the 1950s by dynamic (husband & wife) duo John & Sylvia Reid for STAG as part of their ‘C’ range. The stark design, recessed handles & turned feet have made them highly sought after – and unlike many of their counterparts STAG furniture was mass factory produced meaning theres alot of it floating about so keep your eyes peeled! Sold**
June 2, 2012
1960s Europa Chest Of Drawers
This substantial piece was manufactured by Harris Lebus of London, and designed by Danish born Cyril Rostgaard as part of their ‘Europa’ range. The chest is constructed from a combination of solid teak (handles & base) and teak veneer/formica – truly ground breaking in its day! It consists of a bank of 9 drawers which feature beautifully scalloped teak handles & the main body of the chest sits on a ‘sleigh’ leg base. Veneer has a tendency to chip so I was surprised to find it in such good order – I spent a bit of time scrubbing out a couple of sticky marks & removing several paint specs but otherwise it was all set for its photo shoot! Sold**
May 27, 2012
1950s Ercol ‘Pebble’ Nest of Tables
I can’t say how much I paid for these little beauties because its criminal – but lets just say you’d pay more for a couple of pints! Made from solid elm planks with rounded edges and beech tapered, turned legs these pebble shape tables have a wonderful simplicity of design & appealing curves. Originally designed in 1956 they continue to be highly sought after, and its easy to see why! Sanding & polishing out the red wine and water stains was quite a trauma but worth it to expose the gorgeous grain. Sold**
May 22, 2012
1950s Industrial Factory Light
These old glass pendant lights are simply mouth watering – originally built for extreme factory environments they are made from cast iron and thickened glass, and super robust. Such is the desirability of these gems that their price tags are sky high. I paid a pretty penny for the one that hangs in my hallway but justified the cost by buying it as a gift for my boyfriend – sneaky! I’m trying to come up with an excuse to get another one so we have a matching pair but as yet the rent seems like more of a priority!
May 16, 2012
1950s Retro, Mid Century Sofabed
This magnificent piece is truly in a league of its own. The frame is made from solid beech wood and the design speaks for itself – the tapered, circular legs & elegantly curved armrests are complimented perfectly by the thick brown woven upholstery. It was love at first sight when I spotted it abandoned in the back room of a junkshop, despite being covered in cat hair and being heavily stained! I hoovered up every last trace of its previous owner’s cat and steam cleaned the dirty upholstery leaving it gleaming. It transforms into its sofabed alter ego using a simple lift mechanism, and the seatpad also lifts up to reveal a bit of hidden storage space – ideal for storing board games & hiding clutter when you have guests! Sold**
May 15, 2012
1950s Retro Bedside Cabinets
Salvaged from an almost certain death – this stylish pair started life as a rather drab looking dressing table set but removing the ghastly mirrors & replacing the drawer handles has given them a new lease of life! The black splayed legs make them an instant retro hit and the petite size provides the perfect diguise for their new life as bedside cabinets. The light weight wood veener frames needed quite a scrub after being banished to the far corner of a junkshop but who would know now that they were ever anything short of fabulous!! Sold**
May 12, 2012
1950s Parker Knoll TV Chair
These chairs are so rare that it took me almost a year to track one down, & like buses several came at once making me the proud owner of 3! Originally designed in the 50s simply to lounge in front of the TV on, their status today has been propelled to retro gold – with their low slung style, velvet upholstery & stunning framework making them one of the best looking chairs in Parker Knoll’s catalogue. It took me a while to sand (out the names ‘Abby’ & ‘Becca’ that were scratched into the framework in child’s handwriting!) and get them back to their stylish best. & so much was the temptation of these delightful gems that I couldn’t resist keeping one for myself – the other two are soon to be whisked off to their new home. Sold**
May 6, 2012
1960s Pifco Fan
I’ve been on the hunt for one of these beauties for ages but they’ve always been a bit overpriced for my pocket. But that changed when this sweet little one smiled up at me from a tabletop sale in Bristol’s Bearpit. These lovely little gems were mass made in the 60s/70s in many eye catching colours, and capture the retro era beautifully! You have the option of sitting it on your desk or mounting it to the wall – either way you need never be hot & bothered again!
May 5, 2012
1950s Factory Clock
My lovely in-laws treated me to a bit of cash for my 30th so I quickly set about finding myself a suitable treasure! & this retro delight is the product of my labour – these huge flip clocks have made quite a come back & its not surprising given their aesthetic appeal. It’s a bit scuffed but keeps time like a dream & has brought me no end of joy in the few days I’ve had it.
May 1, 2012
1960s Cocktail Chairs
Right till the point I photographed this pair I wasn’t sure how much I liked them! But looking at them now there’s no denying their almost regal quality, and its easy to see why cocktail chairs are becoming increasingly popular – classically shaped with subtly winged backs and sturdy, angular armrests – they scream elegance. They came to me in great vintage condition with even the original upholstery looking untouched – not bad given this glamourous pair are over 50 years old! Sold**
April 28, 2012
1960′s Guy Rogers Sofa
So, it’s my 30th birthday and I’ve treated myself to a little something, and gosh its good looking! I’ve never been so enticed by a piece of furniture – produced by Guy Rogers in 1969 for Heals of London it’s the ultimate in mid century living. Beautifully shaped & handcrafted in solid afromosia its seriously mouth watering, and as a bonus its original mustard upholstery is in great condition & perfect for lounging on!
April 24, 2012
Screen Print Cushions
This is the latest addition to my already handsome cushion collection! Made by the women of One25 (a project that reaches out to women trapped in street sex work, supporting them to break free and build new lives away from violence, poverty and addiction) using screen printing and sewing techniques – I think you’ll agree that the end product is pretty amazing! I instantly fell in love with this bird print, one of several designs made by women who access the drop in service at One25 with the help of Helen Hewitt – okdora (One25 Life Skills Worker & all round creative genius!). Snap up your own when more are made for sale later this year..
February 13, 2012
Fidelity HF43 Record Player
These uber retro record players are making quite a come back! I brought this one for my boyfriend for his last birthday. I was drawn in by the fantastic tangerine colour case rather than the quality of the product. Fortunately it turned out to be a winner – with surprisingly good sound quality, and in classic 70s style it’s fully portable with tuck away cable and an easy grip handle. I spent ages painstakingly cleaning it with cotton buds to get it gleaming again but it was worth it to see it back to its vintage best!
January 24, 2012
1960s Chippy Telephone Table/Seat
As you might have guessed I’m a bit partial to a telephone table and the quirky charm of this delightful little one instantly caught my eye. Beautifully made, it has an extending seat that tucks away when not in use and also benefits from a from a single drawer unit – plus a rather handy wipe-clean, notepad/pull out shelf! Although petite in appearance it easily holds its own and makes quite a statement. It came to me with a broken leg but I put my first aid skills to use to give it a new lease of life, and then jazzed it up with some colourful new upholstery. Sold**
December 10, 2011
1950s Kitchen Cabinet
This glorious piece started life in an ivory colour but that quickly changed when I got my hands on it! Now an elegant ‘duck egg’ blue this picture was taken mid restoration – it took ages to scrub away the years of grime and sand back the woodwork but worth it to bring this old relic back to life. These highly functional cabinets have been making a comeback for some time with people appreciating their quintessentially 1950s appeal and storage potential – this particular one lives in my bathroom and hides away all the toilet roll & bleach!
December 4, 2011
1950s Phillips School Wall Map
Old school wall charts like this one have gained great popularity over the last few years & are selling for big bucks. I took little notice of the ones hanging in the humanities dept at my school – and I realise now that I should’ve been plotting ways to get a few in my bag for later riches! This one of North America has particular nostalgic quality following a fantastic road trip I did through California this summer. Unfortunately it sold for far more than even I could justify!
December 3, 2011
1962 Kofod Larsen Dining Chairs
So, I’ve managed to restore another 4 of these glorious chairs, albeit miraculously given the rather distressing state they were in! I roped my dad into helping me this time – he patiently scraped away at the unplesant glue remains and repaired the wobbles, and after a much needed clean, sand & polish they are (almost) back to their elegant best. This set has been re-upholstered in a gorgeous olive green fabric giving them a fabulous mid century glow. I originally had 10 of these chairs and to my delight I’ve been able to bring 8 of them back to life but the last couple really are beyond repair and will have to remain as spares! Sold**
November 19, 2011
1962 Ib Kofod Larsen Chairs
Designed for G Plan’s Danish range these chairs are simply striking. The floating seatpads, hidden fixings & rich teak framework firmly secures their iconic status. I’ve got 10 of these increasingly rare chairs but sadly they arrived in varying degrees of quality – some have wobbles/breaks while others have been subjected to a ghastly glue job, and one has even had its leg chewed by a dog(!) So far I’ve salvaged 4 & have recovered them in a gorgeous rich teal fabric. Perfect to add an air of sophistication to any dining experience. Sold**
October 31, 2011
October 29, 2011
1950s Perpetual Calendar
These old calendars work using a series of 6 knobs which wind forwards & backwards to display the date – and this particular beauty is one of the most beloved items in my treasure trove. They were commonly seen in post offices back in the 60s & 70s and are now highly sought after to add a touch of vintage charm to modern interiors. They’re generally quite pricey but given you’ll never need to replace it I’d say its a very wise investment. Incidentally this one is set at my birthday so no excuses!
October 23, 2011
1920s Vintage Soda Syphon
After seeing a beautiful soda syphon that some friends had lugged back from Brazil – I knew I had to have one! Traditionally used for dispensing soda water they’ve come back into fashion following the trend to acquire classic products. I thought a couple of them could look great in my bathroom filled with handwash to add a bit of old world charm. But I stupidly misread the measurements and had a bit of a shock when they turned out to be 40cm tall! So now they sit on my dresser with no other purpose than to look gorgeous.
October 15, 2011
1964 Austinsuite Chest of Drawers
I still kick myself for letting go of this one! Designed by Frank Guille for high end manufacturer Austinsuite, these wonderful chests have become the only way to store your clothes! Guille held the belief that ‘function lies within form’ and he demonstrated this effortlessly with his body of work, and this piece with its scalloped handles & tapered feet is no exception. The distinctly Danish appearance teamed with the richness of the teak really does make it stand out from its peers. I rescued this one from a charity shop – the vendour even knocked £5 off for a scratch it was carrying, which I quickly remedied to get it looking as good as new. Sold**
October 12, 2011
1960s Writing Desk
A timeless offering from master manufacturer – Austinsuite. This gorgeous piece started life as a dressing table but easily disguises itself as a desk. With its gorgeous scalloped handles & distinctive feet – sitting & writing out your tax returns has never been so glamourous! Sold**
October 11, 2011
1950s Ercol Dining Table & Chairs
This iconic dining set was designed by Lucian Ercolani in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. Dating from the 50s the table is constructed from solid elm planks with rounded edges. The 4 ‘Quaker’ chairs are made from elm & beech and are supported by 6 spindles. A great example of master craftsmanship which has been built to last and is very easy on the eye. After roping my dad into ferrying these back home – I had quite a job sanding the table surface to rid it of some garish marks. I had to sand it twice after stupidly using a dirty paint brush to apply the varnish but the sores on my hands were quickly forgotten when admiring the finished product – elegant is an understatement. Sold**
October 2, 2011
1950s Bookcase/Display Cabinet
These old bookcases are often sneered at and ignored in junkshops but in the right environment they can really shine! The sliding glass doors work on simple runners and the shelf feature can be adjusted to sit at two different levels. Often made from solid teak and with elegant proportions they not only look great but are also very practical – the slim line shape means they don’t take up much space and are perfect for storing all those extra books! They won’t be ignored forever so get one while they’re still cheap and before everyone catches on.. Sold**
October 2, 2011
1960s Telephone Table
Having been very popular in the 1960s & 70s telephone tables have lost their way abit. But this means you can often pick one up for pennies and there are lots of styles around. This one has splayed legs & a sweet little shelf for your phone. It was a bit worn when I got it but it didn’t take long to jazz it up ready for its new home. Sold**
October 1, 2011
September 30, 2011
1970s Le Creuset Casserole Dish
French made ‘Le Creuset’ is as good as it gets when it comes to crockery. I prefer their vintage pieces over the newer & less charming designs. I’ve got my eye on this little pot – not only is it full of charm & character but in an eye catching turquoise. Just need to find a way to justify adding yet another pot to my collection!
September 29, 2011
1962 Ib Kofod-Larsen Table
Today Danish born Kofod-Larsen’s pieces are more desirable than ever, and as G Plan’s most famous designer its easy to see why people are willing to pay big money for his furniture – unique in construction & functionality, his pieces are often made from rosewood and considered to be design master pieces. I stumbled across this table by accident – it was a surplus piece given to me when I purchased some chairs. On closer inspection I discovered the rare ‘Ib Kofod Larsen’ gold embossed stamp on one of the extending leaves and rubbed my hands together with glee! My brother & little sister chipped in to help me sand the surface but they quickly got bored leaving me to expose the grain & take all the glory! Sold**
September 28, 2011
1950s Industrial Lamp
The one I have is green, and I cheekily sent my sister to a strange man’s house in Derby to collect it! Fortunately nothing happened to her and it now hangs in my boyfriends bedroom oozing industrial charm. They’re pretty easy to get hold of but some can be a bit rusty and they often cost a bomb so hold out for a bargain, and I think I prefer the grey – very sophisticated.
September 24, 2011
1970s Step Ladder Stool
Theres quite a few of these stools about, and they are often in need of a make over to take them from geriatric to glorious. So when I got my hands on this colourful oil cloth fabric I knew it was a match made in heaven. The biggest job with these stools is often not reupholstering the seatpads but scrubbing all the mud out of the groves in the rubber steps! But when complete they make a lovely retro addition to any living space, and the steps tuck into the body when not in use making it perfect for those smaller spaces. To date I’ve managed to rescue 3 of them and have shipped them off to new homes where they are very much loved. Sold**
September 24, 2011
1950s Meredew Chests
I won this perfect pair on ebay. My sister kindly drove me across town to collect them – she didn’t complain once despite my alarmingly poor map reading skills & when we nearly broke her car trying to get them into the boot! It took a while to get rid of the musty smell that was lingering in the drawers but no time at all to fall in love with them.
September 24, 2011
1950s Bookcase/Display Cabinet
Another example of one of these often overlooked but gorgeous bookcases. This one was made by Jentique and has a distinct Danish flavour with lovely tapered feet and scalloped drawer handles. The quality of craftsmanship is shown in the dovetail joints and the gently curved surfaces. But its the two lower drawers make this bookcase standout from its peers – a practical addition that not only looks elegant but also allows you to hide away all your mess when playing host! Currently on its way to a new home in Barcelona! Sold**
September 24, 2011
1960s Pair Of Swivel Chairs
Even on a recent trip to San Francisco I couldn’t resist the urge to scout out some treasures. The delicious orange leather on this gorgeous chair has been quilt lined, and is so thick that there are no signs of wear despite them being more than half a century old. The curves of the seat contrast beautifully with the industrial looking solid steel swivel feature. The owner of these amazing chairs got them from an abandoned naval base! Its rare to come across such gorgeous 60s retro, and this is without doubt an example is ‘cool’ with a capital C!
September 23, 2011
1960s Teak Lounge Chairs
These sweet little armchairs were being auctioned off as part of a house clearence. At first I wasn’t sure about the fawn/pale green patterned upholstery but quickly grew to love it after seeing them in real life. Danish inspired and from an era when furniture was at its best – incorporating simplistic, clean lines and perfect proportions. Polishing up some of the marks on the woodwork took abit of time, as did stuffing the cushion pads back into the seat covers after a quick wash but worth it to bring them back to their glamourous best. Sold**
September 22, 2011
1960s Swedish Tea Cups
I have four of these little Swedish beauties complete with little saucers. Like a magpie I spied them in a junk shop looking far too glamourous for their cluttered environment. The vendour named his price and I quickly shoved them in my bag before anyone else could see. The understated yet uber cool print screams of Scandinavian sophistication – the saucers have been dipped in a black glaze to provide a striking contrast when teamed up with the delicate white cups. So for those of you who like drinking tea out of pretty cups please form an orderly queue outside my front door.
September 22, 2011
1950s Teak Sideboard
Having carried this huge sideboard up 15 concreate steps with the help of my sister I can definately vouch for the fact that it is solid! Its well worth finding space for one of these gems in your home – not only are they gorgeous and finely crafted but perfect for hiding away clutter & paperwork. Sold**